Genesis Chapter Fourteen, Strength in numbers? 

In our study of Genesis chapter fourteen, we will look at the fact that God doesn't require the majority to accomplish His will. In our world today, it seems like everyone wants to go along with the crowd and everyone looks at their number of followers but that is contrary to the way that God works.

Genesis 14:1 - 4

"At this time Amraphel king of Shinar, Arioch king of Ellasar, Kedorlaomer king of Elam and Tidal king of Goiim went to war against Bera king of Sodom, Birsha king of Gomorrah, Shinab king of Admah, Shemeber king of Zeboiim, and the king of Bela (that is, Zoar). All these latter kings joined forces in the Valley of Siddim (the Salt Sea). For twelve years they had been subject to Kedorlaomer, but in the thirteenth year they rebelled." NIV translation

At this time refers to the fact that it was when Abram and Lot separated. Lot went to live near Sodom and they were subject to Kedorlaomer the king of Elam. They rebelled against that authority and so a battle is coming. 

Genesis 14:5 - 7

"In the fourteenth year, Kedorlaomer and the kings allied with him went out and defeated the Rephaites in Ashteroth Karnaim, the Zuzites in Ham, the Emites in Shaveh Kiriathaim and the Horites in the hill country of Seir, as far as El Paran near the desert. Then they turned back and went to En Mishpat (that is, Kadesh), and they conquered the whole territory of the Amalekites, as well as the Amorites who were living in Hazazon Tamar." NIV translation

The group of kings with Sodom and Gomorrah saw that their masters were busy fighting elsewhere. We see that they defeated many groups and so must have been a pretty strong force.

Genesis 14:8 & 9

"Then the king of Sodom, the king of Gomorrah, the king of Admah, the king of Zeboiim and the king of Bela (that is, Zoar) marched out and drew up their battle lines in the Valley of Siddim against Kedorlaomer king of Elam, Tidal king of Goiim, Amraphel king of Shinar and Arioch king of Ellasar - four kings against five." NIV translation

These rebellious people looked at the numbers and figured that they had the opportunity to take over. They were confident in their numbers in spite of the fact that the force they were up against had already been successful against the others.