Now the LORD had said to Abram, Get you out of your country, and from your kindred, and from your father's house…
Abram's emigration teaches by example precisely the same profound and universal lesson of spiritual life which Jesus taught in words: "Whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be My disciple." St. Francis of Assisi, and many like him, have read this evangelical call to renounce the world too literally. Nevertheless, if we would choose and pursue the heavenly country to which God is calling us, there must be in the heart of each of us a virtual leaving of father and mother, a forsaking of all that we have, in order to be Christ's followers. Of this we have the first great type in the emigration of Abram. Besides, God cut him off from kindred that He might draw him closer to Himself. If renunciation for God's sake be the condition of strong piety, solitary converse with God is its nurse. Emigration often does a great deal for a man. By throwing him back for aid upon his own resources, it teaches him to help himself, and develops the manhood that is in him. The emigration of a godly man at God's call does still more for him. It forces him to lean much on God, Who becomes his only constant comrade and unfailing helper. It throws him back at each emergency upon the spiritual resources of faith, and trains into full maturity the graces of his religious nature. Inwardly, Abram could hardly have become the spiritual hero he was in later life, if he had not been forced to walk through the long trials of his exile with nothing but the unseen eternal God for his "shield," and compelled to brood through homeless years over the mighty thoughts which God had uttered to his faith.
(J. O. Dykes, D. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee: