PMW 2019-056 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
In Gen. 13:14–15 God promises that he will give the land to Abraham’s descendants “forever” (cp. Gen. 12:7). This will soon be confirmed by solemn covenant (cp. Gen. 15:7, 18) and is noted elsewhere in Scripture (Exo. 32:13; Josh. 14:9; 2 Chron. 20:7; Isa. 60:21).
Since “the earth is the LORD’s, and all it contains, / The world, and those who dwell in it” (Psa. 24:1), as Moses well knows (Exo. 9:29; Deut. 10:14), the land is God’s to give to whomever he pleases. Besides this, the evil Canaanite culture would eventually (Gen. 15:16) justify God’s expelling them from the land (Lev. 18:2–3, 24–28 and “Deuteronomy Introduction” at “Special Issues”).
The “forever” nature of this promise must be understood in terms of both the lexical significance of the Hebrew “forever,” the moral sanctions involved in God’s covenant, and the typological function of Old Testament redemptive history. Continue reading