Abraham Healing Oil (Patriarch of the Old Testament)
Abraham Healing Oil is a venerated patriarch whose relationship with God provides the foundational story for God’s beneficial relationship with humanity. According to biblical tradition (and some say myth). Abraham (c. 20th century BCE) was born in or near the city of Ur in Mesopotamia. Most likely in southern Chaldea. Abraham (originally named Abram). Married his half-sister, Sarah (originally named Sarai) and began a long journey from Mesopotamia to Haran
The Traditional Story of Abraham
The Bible notes that at age 75, Abraham received a divine invitation or calling from God (Yahweh) to travel to a distant land where God would reward him beyond measure. Genesis 12:1–3 states:
Despite the inherent dangers of traveling at such an old age and through unknown and unfriendly territory, Abraham trusted God and took his entire family (including his father and nephew Lot) and personal possessions on his trek to this promised land.
In celebration and worship, Abraham built an altar to God and then “went on toward the hills east of Bethel and pitched his tent, with Bethel on the west and Ai on the east” (12:8). As earlier, Genesis notes that Abraham built another altar to God before moving again to the Negev, southwest of the Dead Sea.
A sad-but-normal part of ancient Middle Eastern existence. A terrible famine swept through Canaan. And Abraham and his family escaped to Egypt for rescue and relief. The move was far from reassuring as Abraham began to fear for his life because of the beauty of his 65-year-old wife. Abraham asserted, “When the Egyptians see you, they will say, ‘This is his wife.’ Then they will kill me but will let you live” (12:12).
In shrewdness or out of cowardice, Abraham instructed his wife to “pretend” to be his sister. Which was already factually true, Sarah being his half-sister. Abraham’s concerns were justified, apparently, because after they entered Egypt, “the Egyptians saw that Sarai was a very beautiful woman. And when the Pharaoh’s officials saw her, they praised her to Pharaoh [possibly Senusret II, who ruled Egypt from 1897-1878 BCE], and she was taken into his palace” (12:14–15). For Abraham, this was not the worst of situations for he received many gifts from Pharaoh, including cattle and servants.