Abram as a type of Jesus in Genesis 14:1-16

And it came to pass in the days of Amraphel king of Shinar, Arioch king of Ellasar, Chedorlaomer king of Elam, and Tidal king of nations;

That these made war with Bera king of Sodom, and with Birsha king of Gomorrah, Shinab king of Admah, and Shemeber king of Zeboiim, and the king of Bela, which is Zoar.

All these were joined together in the vale of Siddim, which is the salt sea.

Twelve years they served Chedorlaomer, and in the thirteenth year they rebelled.

And in the fourteenth year came Chedorlaomer, and the kings that were with him, and smote the Rephaims in Ashteroth Karnaim, and the Zuzims in Ham, and the Emims in Shaveh Kiriathaim,

And the Horites in their mount Seir, unto Elparan, which is by the wilderness.

And they returned, and came to Enmishpat, which is Kadesh, and smote all the country of the Amalekites, and also the Amorites, that dwelt in Hazezontamar.

And there went out the king of Sodom, and the king of Gomorrah, and the king of Admah, and the king of Zeboiim, and the king of Bela (the same is Zoar;) and they joined battle with them in the vale of Siddim;

With Chedorlaomer the king of Elam, and with Tidal king of nations, and Amraphel king of Shinar, and Arioch king of Ellasar; four kings with five.

And the vale of Siddim was full of slimepits; and the kings of Sodom and Gomorrah fled, and fell there; and they that remained fled to the mountain.

And they took all the goods of Sodom and Gomorrah, and all their victuals, and went their way.

And they took Lot, Abram's brother's son, who dwelt in Sodom, and his goods, and departed.

And there came one that had escaped, and told Abram the Hebrew; for he dwelt in the plain of Mamre the Amorite, brother of Eshcol, and brother of Aner: and these were confederate with Abram.

And when Abram heard that his brother was taken captive, he armed his trained servants, born in his own house, three hundred and eighteen, and pursued them unto Dan.

And he divided himself against them, he and his servants, by night, and smote them, and pursued them unto Hobah, which is on the left hand of Damascus.

And he brought back all the goods, and also brought again his brother Lot, and his goods, and the women also, and the people.

Genesis 14:1-16

Genesis 14 is perhaps most well-known for the appearance of the elusive priest Melchizedek, whose only other mentions in the Bible (in Psalm 110 and Hebrews 5-7) are comments on his being a type of Jesus. This enigmatic priest-king is the most oft-discussed type in this chapter, but there is another important type displayed in the actions leading up to Melchizedek's blessing of Abram: Abram's rescue of his nephew Lot from captivity points forward to Jesus' rescue of His people.

Previously, Abram and Lot had parted ways as their herds grew, and Lot chose to settle near Sodom, eventually moving into the city itself. In Genesis 14, we see Bera, the king of Sodom, in an alliance with four other kings, including the king of Gomorrah, waging war against king Chedorlaomer of Elam and three others. This resulted in defeat for Bera and his allies, and the capture of many of the city's inhabitants and possessions, including Lot.

Word reached Abram, who courageously led his small militia of 318 men in pursuit of the victorious alliance of kings, over a great distance, and completely defeated them, bringing Lot safely back, along with all his possessions – and all of the other captives and their possessions.

In this rescue, Abram is clearly a picture of Christ, the greater rescuer.

Abram goes to great lengths to rescue his nephew, pursuing his captors over well over a hundred miles (by my estimation), yet Jesus went to even greater lengths to rescue His captive people, not just dying for them, but dying in such a humiliating and painful way, and with the weight of our sins on His shoulders. In both cases, the victory is total: just as everyone whom Abram sets out to save is brought back safely, so too Jesus will rescue every single person given to Him by the Father (John 6:39). Similarly, just as Abram totally defeats Chedorlaomer and his allies, so Jesus totally defeats Satan, sin and death.

Abram very much seems like the underdog in this fight: an old herdsman with 318 men against four kings and their recently-triumphant armies. We are not told exactly how big these armies were, but it is not unreasonable to suppose they numbered more than three hundred! And yet, against these odds, total victory is handed to him by God, with God delivering Abram's enemies into his hands (v. 20). Similarly, to the outsider, Jesus appears pretty average, and as He nears His death He appears incredibly weak. And yet He completely crushes His enemies on the cross, a victory planned and guaranteed by the Father, who puts all Jesus' enemies under His feet (Psalm 110:1). Demonstrating immense power and strength through apparent weakness and against all odds is God's modus operandi.

Lot decided first to live near Sodom, drawn in by the fertile-looking land around it, and later to move into it, and it was this decision which ultimately led to his capture. The allure of the green grass of Sodom led to his ultimate enslavement, and Abram came to save him nonetheless, as his “kinsman” (vv. 14, 16). Now, few cities embody sin quite like Sodom and Gomorrah do, and just like Lot, we are drawn to sin by the appearance of lush pastures, which surround the city of filth and vice that we end up living in. Yet, just like Abram with Lot, Jesus saves us; His kinsmen, His very brothers (Hebrews 2:11), the “seed of Abraham” (Hebrews 2:16).

Abram's courageous, triumphant and selfless rescue of His captive kinsman Lot points us to the supreme rescue performed by Jesus, of His kinsmen, the spiritual offspring of Abraham.