My favorite story from the Book of Jasher is found in chapter 11. It’s about Abram’s relationship with his idolatrous father.
The first time I heard it, I couldn’t stop laughing, so it was on my mind for quite a while to illustrate the story and share it with you.
The Book of Jasher is an apocryphal book useful for untold details about the lives of the persons mentioned in the Bible as well as in order to better understand the culture at the time, though it should not be taken as Scripture.
We find this book mentioned in the Bible in Joshua 10:13, which, by the way, is one of my favorite verses of the Bible:
And the sun stood still, and the moon stayed, until the people had avenged themselves upon their enemies. Is not this written in the book of Jasher? So the sun stood still in the midst of heaven, and hasted not to go down about a whole day.
This apocryphal book is also mentioned in 2 Samuel 1:18:
(Also he bade them teach the children of Judah the use of the bow: behold it is written in the book of Jasher.)
I hope you will enjoy watching the video. Here is the story about Abram and his idolatrous father (chapter 11, verses 13 to 49):
And in the fiftieth year of the life of Abram son of Terah, Abram came forth from the house of Noah, and went to his father’s house.
And Abram knew the Lord, and he went in his ways and instructions, and the Lord his God was with him.
And Terah his father was in those days, still captain of the host of king Nimrod, and he still followed strange gods.
And Abram came to his father’s house and saw twelve gods standing there in their temples, and the anger of Abram was kindled when he saw these images in his father’s house.
And Abram said, As the Lord liveth these images shall not remain in my father’s house; so shall the Lord who created me do unto me if in three days’ time I do not break them all.
And Abram went from them, and his anger burned within him. And Abram hastened and went from the chamber to his father’s outer court, and he found his father sitting in the court, and all his servants with him, and Abram came and sat before him.
And Abram asked his father, saying, Father, tell me where is God who created heaven and earth, and all the sons of men upon earth, and who created thee and me. And Terah answered his son Abram and said, Behold those who created us are all with us in the house.
And Abram said to his father, My lord, shew them to me I pray thee; and Terah brought Abram into the chamber of the inner court, and Abram saw, and behold the whole room was full of gods of wood and stone, twelve great images and others less than they without number.
And Terah said to his son, Behold these are they which made all thou seest upon earth, and which created me and thee, and all mankind.
And Terah bowed down to his gods, and he then went away from them, and Abram, his son, went away with him.
And when Abram had gone from them he went to his mother and sat before her, and he said to his mother, Behold, my father has shown me those who made heaven and earth, and all the sons of men.
Now, therefore, hasten and fetch a kid from the flock, and make of it savory meat, that I may bring it to my father’s gods as an offering for them to eat; perhaps I may thereby become acceptable to them.
And his mother did so, and she fetched a kid, and made savory meat thereof, and brought it to Abram, and Abram took the savory meat from his mother and brought it before his father’s gods, and he drew nigh to them that they might eat; and Terah his father, did not know of it.
And Abram saw on the day when he was sitting amongst them, that they had no voice, no hearing, no motion, and not one of them could stretch forth his hand to eat.
And Abram mocked them, and said, Surely the savory meat that I prepared has not pleased them, or perhaps it was too little for them, and for that reason they would not eat; therefore tomorrow I will prepare fresh savory meat, better and more plentiful than this, in order that I may see the result.
And it was on the next day that Abram directed his mother concerning the savory meat, and his mother rose and fetched three fine kids from the flock, and she made of them some excellent savory meat, such as her son was fond of, and she gave it to her son Abram; and Terah his father did not know of it.
And Abram took the savory meat from his mother, and brought it before his father’s gods into the chamber; and he came nigh unto them that they might eat, and he placed it before them, and Abram sat before them all day, thinking perhaps they might eat.
And Abram viewed them, and behold they had neither voice nor hearing, nor did one of them stretch forth his hand to the meat to eat.
And in the evening of that day in that house Abram was clothed with the spirit of God.
And he called out and said, Woe unto my father and this wicked generation, whose hearts are all inclined to vanity, who serve these idols of wood and stone which can neither eat, smell, hear nor speak, who have mouths without speech, eyes without sight, ears without hearing, hands without feeling, and legs which cannot move; like them are those that made them and that trust in them.
And when Abram saw all these things his anger was kindled against his father, and he hastened and took a hatchet in his hand, and came unto the chamber of the gods, and he broke all his father’s gods.
And when he had done breaking the images, he placed the hatchet in the hand of the great god which was there before them, and he went out; and Terah his father came home, for he had heard at the door the sound of the striking of the hatchet; so Terah came into the house to know what this was about.
And Terah, having heard the noise of the hatchet in the room of images, ran to the room to the images, and he met Abram going out.
And Terah entered the room and found all the idols fallen down and broken, and the hatchet in the hand of the largest, which was not broken, and the savory meat which Abram his son had made was still before them.
And when Terah saw this his anger was greatly kindled, and he hastened and went from the room to Abram.
And he found Abram his son still sitting in the house; and he said to him, What is this work thou hast done to my gods?
And Abram answered Terah his father and he said, Not so my lord, for I brought savory meat before them, and when I came nigh to them with the meat that they might eat, they all at once stretched forth their hands to eat before the great one had put forth his hand to eat.
And the large one saw their works that they did before him, and his anger was violently kindled against them, and he went and took the hatchet that was in the house and came to them and broke them all, and behold the hatchet is yet in his hand as thou seest.
And Terah’s anger was kindled against his son Abram, when he spoke this; and Terah said to Abram his son in his anger, What is this tale that thou hast told? thou speakest lies to me.
Is there in these gods spirit, soul or power to do all thou hast told me? Are they not wood and stone, and have I not myself made them, and canst thou speak such lies, saying that the large god that was with them smote them? It is thou that didst place the hatchet in his hands, and then sayest he smote them all.
And Abram answered his father and said to him, And how canst thou then serve these idols in whom there is no power to do any thing? Can those idols in which thou trustest deliver thee? can they hear thy prayers when thou callest upon them? can they deliver thee from the hands of thy enemies, or will they fight thy battles for thee against thy enemies, that thou shouldst serve wood and stone which can neither speak nor hear?
And now surely it is not good for thee nor for the sons of men that are connected with thee, to do these things; are you so silly, so foolish or so short of understanding that you will serve wood and stone, and do after this manner?
And forget the Lord God who made heaven and earth, and who created you in the earth, and thereby bring a great evil upon your souls in this matter by serving stone and wood?
Did not our fathers in days of old sin in this matter, and the Lord God of the universe brought the waters of the flood upon them and destroyed the whole earth?
And how can you continue to do this and serve gods of wood and stone, who cannot hear, or speak, or deliver you from oppression, thereby bringing down the anger of the God of the universe upon you?
Now therefore my father refrain from this, and bring not evil upon thy soul and the souls of thy household.
And Abram hastened and sprang from before his father, and took the hatchet from his father’s largest idol, with which Abram broke it and ran away.