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Where was Lot during the famine?


In Lech L'cha there is a famine so severe that Avram has to leave Canaan and go down to Egypt for food. He leaves Egypt with great wealth, and then in Bereishit 13:1 he continues traveling with Lot. Lot isn't mentioned in the Egypt part of the episode.

Did Lot go to Egypt too? If not, how did he survive the famine -- how was he able to stay in Canaan if even Avram couldn't?

We know that after the famine Lot had significant flocks and herds, enough that he and Avram had to separate (Bereishit 13:5). The text doesn't tell us when he gained those, though, so I don't know if pre-famine he was richer than Avram, could survive in Canaan on his holding, and didn't share.

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2 answers


Rashi alludes to this in Beresheet 13:5:

"WHO WENT WITH ABRAM — What brought it about that he possessed all this? The fact that he was accompanying Abram (Genesis Rabbah 41:3; Pesikta Rabbati, שמיני)."

And he expounds on this in Beresheet 19:29:

"GOD REMEMBERED ABRAHAM — What bearing has God’s remembering Abraham upon the rescue of Lot? He remembered that Lot knew that Sarah was Abraham’s wife and that when he heard that Abraham said in Egypt regarding Sarah, “She is my sister”, he did not betray him because he had sympathy with him. For this reason God had mercy upon him (Lot) (Genesis Rabbah 51:6)."


Genesis 13:1 might already be adequate user8078‭ 28 days ago

@user8078 it depends on how you bind "with Lot" -- does it mean that Avram and Sarai came out of Egypt and Lot joined them as they headed to the Negev, or that Lot was with them all along? Monica Cellio‭ 28 days ago


Rav Hirsch says that Lot was with them all along from the time that they left Charan until he split from them after they returned (wealthy) to Canaan.

Lech Lacha 12:5

And Abram took Sarai his wife and Lot his brother's son, and all their possessions that they had acquired, and the souls they had acquired in Haran, and they went to go to the land of Canaan, and they came to the land of Canaan.

Rav Hirsch also points out that each reference shows the gradual estrangement of Lot from Avraham.

Lech Lecha 13:1

And Abram came up from Egypt, he and his wife and all that was his, and Lot with him, to the south.

Until finally, Lot is referenced in a separate pasuk

Lech Lecha 13:5

And also Lot, who went with Abram, had flocks and cattle and tents.

Then the dispute arose and Lot decided to turn down Avraham's offer of half the land and settle to the east in Sodom.


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