The Call of Abram

12 Now (A)the Lord said[a] to Abram, “Go from your country[b] and your kindred and your father's house to the land that I will show you. (B)And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing. (C)I will bless those who bless you, and him who dishonors you I will curse, and (D)in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”[c]

So Abram went, as the Lord had told him, and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he departed from (E)Haran. And Abram took Sarai his wife, and Lot his brother's son, and all their possessions that they had gathered, and the people that they had acquired in Haran, and they set out to go to the land of Canaan. When they came to the land of Canaan, Abram (F)passed through the land to the place at Shechem, to (G)the oak[d] of (H)Moreh. At that time (I)the Canaanites were in the land. Then the Lord appeared to Abram and said, (J)“To your offspring I will give this land.” So he built there an altar to the Lord, who had appeared to him. From there he moved to the hill country on the east of (K)Bethel and pitched his tent, with Bethel on the west and Ai on the east. And there he built an altar to the Lord and called upon the name of the Lord. And Abram journeyed on, still going toward the Negeb.

Abram and Sarai in Egypt

10 Now (L)there was a famine in the land. So Abram went down to Egypt to sojourn there, for the famine was severe in the land. 11 When he was about to enter Egypt, he said to Sarai his wife, “I know that you are a woman beautiful in appearance, 12 and when the Egyptians see you, they will say, ‘This is his wife.’ Then they (M)will kill me, but they will let you live. 13 Say you are my sister, that it may go well with me because of you, and that my life may be spared for your sake.” 14 When Abram entered Egypt, the Egyptians saw that the woman was very beautiful. 15 And when the princes of Pharaoh saw her, they praised her to Pharaoh. And the woman was taken into Pharaoh's house. 16 And for her sake he dealt well with Abram; and he had sheep, oxen, male donkeys, male servants, female servants, female donkeys, and camels.

17 But the Lord (N)afflicted Pharaoh and his house with great plagues because of Sarai, Abram's wife. 18 So Pharaoh called Abram and said, “What is this you have done to me? Why did you not tell me that she was your wife? 19 Why did you say, ‘She is my sister,’ so that I took her for my wife? Now then, here is your wife; take her, and go.” 20 And Pharaoh gave men orders concerning him, and they sent him away with his wife and all that he had.

Abram and Lot Separate

13 So Abram went up from Egypt, he and his wife and all that he had, and Lot with him, (O)into the Negeb.

(P)Now Abram was very rich in livestock, in silver, and in gold. And he journeyed on from the Negeb as far as Bethel to the place where his tent had been at the beginning, between Bethel and Ai, to (Q)the place where he had made an altar at the first. And there Abram called upon the name of the Lord. And Lot, who went with Abram, also had flocks and herds and tents, so that (R)the land could not support both of them dwelling together; for their possessions were so great that they could not dwell together, (S)and there was strife between the herdsmen of Abram's livestock and the herdsmen of Lot's livestock. At that time (T)the Canaanites and the Perizzites were dwelling in the land.

Then Abram said to Lot, (U)“Let there be no strife between you and me, and between your herdsmen and my herdsmen, (V)for we are kinsmen.[e] (W)Is not the whole land before you? Separate yourself from me. If you take the left hand, then I will go to the right, or if you take the right hand, then I will go to the left.” 10 And Lot lifted up his eyes and saw that the (X)Jordan Valley was well watered everywhere like (Y)the garden of the Lord, like the land of Egypt, in the direction of (Z)Zoar. (This was before the Lord (AA)destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah.) 11 So Lot chose for himself all the Jordan Valley, and Lot journeyed east. Thus they separated from each other. 12 Abram settled in the land of Canaan, while Lot settled among the cities of the valley and moved his tent as far as Sodom. 13 Now the men of Sodom (AB)were wicked, great sinners against the Lord.

14 The Lord said to Abram, after Lot had separated from him, “Lift up your eyes and look from the place where you are, (AC)northward and southward and eastward and westward, 15 for all the land that you see I will give (AD)to you and (AE)to your offspring forever. 16 (AF)I will make your offspring as the dust of the earth, so that if one can count the dust of the earth, your offspring also can be counted. 17 Arise, walk through the length and the breadth of the land, for I will give it to you.” 18 So Abram moved his tent and came and (AG)settled by the (AH)oaks[f] of Mamre, which (AI)are at Hebron, and there he built an altar to the Lord.

Abram Rescues Lot

14 In the days of Amraphel king of (AJ)Shinar, Arioch king of Ellasar, Chedorlaomer king of (AK)Elam, and Tidal king of Goiim, these kings made war with (AL)Bera king of Sodom, Birsha king of Gomorrah, Shinab king of (AM)Admah, Shemeber king of (AN)Zeboiim, and the king of Bela (that is, Zoar). And all these joined forces in the Valley of Siddim ((AO)that is, the Salt Sea). Twelve years they had served Chedorlaomer, but in the thirteenth year they rebelled. In the fourteenth year Chedorlaomer and the kings who were with him came and defeated the (AP)Rephaim in (AQ)Ashteroth-karnaim, the (AR)Zuzim in Ham, the (AS)Emim in Shaveh-kiriathaim, and the (AT)Horites in their hill country of Seir as far as (AU)El-paran on the border of the wilderness. Then they turned back and came to En-mishpat (that is, (AV)Kadesh) and defeated all the country of the Amalekites, and also the Amorites who were dwelling (AW)in Hazazon-tamar.

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) went out, and they joined battle in the Valley of Siddim with Chedorlaomer king of Elam, Tidal king of Goiim, Amraphel king of Shinar, and Arioch king of Ellasar, four kings against five. 10 Now the Valley of Siddim was full of (AX)bitumen pits, and as the kings of Sodom and Gomorrah fled, some fell into them, and the rest fled (AY)to the hill country. 11 So the enemy took (AZ)all the possessions of Sodom and Gomorrah, and all their provisions, and went their way. 12 They also took Lot, (BA)the son of Abram's brother, (BB)who was dwelling in Sodom, and his possessions, and went their way.

13 Then one who had escaped came and told Abram the Hebrew, (BC)who was living by the (BD)oaks[g] of Mamre the Amorite, brother of Eshcol and of Aner. These were allies of Abram. 14 When Abram heard that his kinsman had been taken captive, he led forth his trained men, (BE)born in his house, 318 of them, and went in pursuit as far as (BF)Dan. 15 And he divided his forces against them by night, he and his servants, and defeated them and pursued them to Hobah, north of Damascus. 16 Then he brought back all the possessions, and also brought back his kinsman Lot (BG)with his possessions, and the women and the people.

Abram Blessed by Melchizedek

17 After his return from the defeat of Chedorlaomer and the kings who were with him, the king of Sodom went out to meet him at the Valley of Shaveh (that is, the (BH)King's Valley). 18 And (BI)Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine. (He was (BJ)priest of (BK)God Most High.) 19 And he blessed him and said,

(BL)“Blessed be Abram by God Most High,
    (BM)Possessor[h] of heaven and earth;
20 and blessed be God Most High,
    who has delivered your enemies into your hand!”

And Abram gave him (BN)a tenth of everything. 21 And the king of Sodom said to Abram, “Give me the persons, but take the goods for yourself.” 22 But Abram said to the king of Sodom, (BO)“I have lifted my hand[i] to the Lord, God Most High, Possessor of heaven and earth, 23 that (BP)I would not take a thread or a sandal strap or anything that is yours, lest you should say, ‘I have made Abram rich.’ 24 I will take nothing but what the young men have eaten, and the share of the men who went with me. Let (BQ)Aner, Eshcol, and Mamre take their share.”

God's Covenant with Abram

15 After these things the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision: (BR)“Fear not, Abram, I am (BS)your shield; your reward shall be very great.” But Abram said, “O Lord God, what will you give me, for I continue[j] childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?” And Abram said, “Behold, you have given me no offspring, and (BT)a member of my household will be my heir.” And behold, the word of the Lord came to him: “This man shall not be your heir; (BU)your very own son[k] shall be your heir.” And he brought him outside and said, “Look toward heaven, and (BV)number the stars, if you are able to number them.” Then he said to him, (BW)“So shall your offspring be.” And (BX)he believed the Lord, and (BY)he counted it to him as righteousness.

And he said to him, “I am the Lord who (BZ)brought you out from Ur of the Chaldeans (CA)to give you this land to possess.” But he said, “O Lord God, (CB)how am I to know that I shall possess it?” He said to him, “Bring me a heifer three years old, a female goat three years old, a ram three years old, a turtledove, and a young pigeon.” 10 And he brought him all these, (CC)cut them in half, and laid each half over against the other. But (CD)he did not cut the birds in half. 11 And when birds of prey came down on the carcasses, Abram drove them away.

12 As the sun was going down, a (CE)deep sleep fell on Abram. And behold, dreadful and great darkness fell upon him. 13 Then the Lord said to Abram, “Know for certain (CF)that your offspring will be sojourners in a land that is not theirs and will be servants there, and (CG)they will be afflicted for (CH)four hundred years. 14 But (CI)I will bring judgment on the nation that they serve, and afterward (CJ)they shall come out with great possessions. 15 As for you, you shall go to your fathers in peace; (CK)you shall be buried in a good old age. 16 And they shall come back here in the fourth generation, for (CL)the iniquity of the Amorites (CM)is not yet complete.”

17 When the sun had gone down and it was dark, behold, a smoking fire pot and a flaming torch passed between these pieces. 18 On that day the Lord made a covenant with Abram, saying, (CN)“To your offspring I give[l] this land, from (CO)the river of Egypt to the great river, the river Euphrates, 19 the land of the Kenites, the Kenizzites, the Kadmonites, 20 the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Rephaim, 21 the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Girgashites and the Jebusites.”

Sarai and Hagar

16 (CP)Now Sarai, Abram's wife, had borne him no children. She had a female Egyptian servant whose name was (CQ)Hagar. And Sarai said to Abram, “Behold now, the Lord has prevented me from bearing children. Go in to my servant; it may be that I shall obtain children[m] by her.” And Abram listened to the voice of Sarai. So, after Abram (CR)had lived ten years in the land of Canaan, Sarai, Abram's wife, took Hagar the Egyptian, her servant, and gave her to Abram her husband as a wife. And he went in to Hagar, and she conceived. And when she saw that she had conceived, (CS)she looked with contempt on her mistress.[n] And Sarai said to Abram, “May the wrong done to me be on you! I gave my servant to your embrace, and when she saw that she had conceived, she looked on me with contempt. May (CT)the Lord judge between you and me!” But Abram said to Sarai, “Behold, your servant is in your power; do to her as you please.” Then Sarai dealt harshly with her, and she fled from her.

The angel of the Lord found her by a spring of water in the wilderness, the spring on the way to (CU)Shur. And he said, “Hagar, servant of Sarai, where have you come from and where are you going?” She said, “I am fleeing from my mistress Sarai.” The angel of the Lord said to her, “Return to your mistress and submit to her.” 10 The angel of the Lord also said to her, (CV)“I will surely multiply your offspring so that they cannot be numbered for multitude.” 11 And the angel of the Lord said to her,

“Behold, you are pregnant
    and shall bear a son.
You shall call his name Ishmael,[o]
    (CW)because the Lord has listened to your affliction.
12 He shall be (CX)a wild donkey of a man,
    his hand against everyone
    and everyone's hand against him,
and he shall dwell (CY)over against all his kinsmen.”

13 So she called the name of the Lord who spoke to her, “You are a God of seeing,”[p] for she said, (CZ)“Truly here I have seen him who looks after me.”[q] 14 Therefore the well was called (DA)Beer-lahai-roi;[r] it lies between (DB)Kadesh and Bered.

15 And Hagar bore Abram a son, and Abram called the name of his son, whom Hagar bore, Ishmael. 16 Abram was eighty-six years old when Hagar bore Ishmael to Abram.

Abraham and the Covenant of Circumcision

17 When Abram was ninety-nine years old the Lord appeared to Abram and said to him, “I am God Almighty;[s] walk before me, and be (DC)blameless, that I may make my covenant between me and you, and (DD)may multiply you greatly.” Then Abram (DE)fell on his face. And God said to him, “Behold, my covenant is with you, and you shall be (DF)the father of a multitude of nations. No longer shall your name be called Abram,[t] but (DG)your name shall be Abraham,[u] (DH)for I have made you the father of a multitude of nations. I will make you exceedingly fruitful, and I will make (DI)you into nations, and (DJ)kings shall come from you. And I will (DK)establish my covenant between me and you and your offspring after you throughout their generations for an everlasting covenant, (DL)to be God to you and to your offspring after you. And (DM)I will give to you and to your offspring after you the land of your sojournings, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession, and (DN)I will be their God.”

And God said to Abraham, “As for you, you shall keep my covenant, you and your offspring after you throughout their generations. 10 This is my covenant, which you shall keep, between me and you and your offspring after you: Every male among you shall be circumcised. 11 You shall be circumcised in the flesh of your foreskins, and it shall be a (DO)sign of the covenant between me and you. 12 He who is (DP)eight days old among you shall be circumcised. Every male throughout your generations, whether born in your house or (DQ)bought with your money from any foreigner who is not of your offspring, 13 both he who is born in your house and he who is bought with your money, shall surely be circumcised. So shall my covenant be in your flesh an everlasting covenant. 14 Any uncircumcised male who is not circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin shall be cut off from his people; he has broken my covenant.”

Isaac's Birth Promised

15 And God said to Abraham, “As for Sarai your wife, you shall not call her name Sarai, but Sarah[v] shall be her name. 16 I will bless her, and moreover, I will (DR)give[w] you a son by her. I will bless her, and (DS)she shall become nations; kings of peoples shall come from her.” 17 Then Abraham (DT)fell on his face (DU)and laughed and said to himself, “Shall a child be born to a man who is a hundred years old? Shall Sarah, who is ninety years old, bear a child?” 18 And Abraham said to God, “Oh that Ishmael might live before you!” 19 God said, “No, but (DV)Sarah your wife shall bear you a son, and you shall call his name (DW)Isaac.[x] I will establish my covenant with him as an everlasting covenant for his offspring after him. 20 As for Ishmael, I have heard you; behold, I have blessed him and will make him fruitful and (DX)multiply him greatly. He (DY)shall father twelve princes, and (DZ)I will make him into a great nation. 21 But (EA)I will establish my covenant with Isaac, (EB)whom Sarah shall bear to you at this time next year.”

22 When he had finished talking with him, (EC)God went up from Abraham. 23 Then Abraham took Ishmael his son and all those born in his house or bought with his money, every male among the men of Abraham's house, and he circumcised the flesh of their foreskins that very day, as God had said to him. 24 Abraham was ninety-nine years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin. 25 And Ishmael his son was thirteen years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin. 26 That very day Abraham and his son Ishmael were circumcised. 27 And all the men of his house, those born in the house and those bought with money from a foreigner, were circumcised with him.

Footnotes

  1. Genesis 12:1 Or had said
  2. Genesis 12:1 Or land
  3. Genesis 12:3 Or by you all the families of the earth shall bless themselves
  4. Genesis 12:6 Or terebinth
  5. Genesis 13:8 Hebrew we are men, brothers
  6. Genesis 13:18 Or terebinths
  7. Genesis 14:13 Or terebinths
  8. Genesis 14:19 Or Creator; also verse 22
  9. Genesis 14:22 Or I have taken a solemn oath
  10. Genesis 15:2 Or I shall die
  11. Genesis 15:4 Hebrew what will come out of your own loins
  12. Genesis 15:18 Or have given
  13. Genesis 16:2 Hebrew be built up, which sounds like the Hebrew for children
  14. Genesis 16:4 Hebrew her mistress was dishonorable in her eyes; similarly in verse 5
  15. Genesis 16:11 Ishmael means God hears
  16. Genesis 16:13 Or You are a God who sees me
  17. Genesis 16:13 Hebrew Have I really seen him here who sees me? or Would I have looked here for the one who sees me?
  18. Genesis 16:14 Beer-lahai-roi means the well of the Living One who sees me
  19. Genesis 17:1 Hebrew El Shaddai
  20. Genesis 17:5 Abram means exalted father
  21. Genesis 17:5 Abraham means father of a multitude
  22. Genesis 17:15 Sarai and Sarah mean princess
  23. Genesis 17:16 Hebrew have given
  24. Genesis 17:19 Isaac means he laughs

Bible Gateway Recommends

ESV Archaeology Study Bible--soft leather-look, brown
ESV Archaeology Study Bible--soft leather-look, brown
Retail: $79.99
Our Price: $21.99
Save: $58.00 (73%)
5.0 of 5.0 stars
ESV Holy Bible for Kids, Softcover Economy Edition
ESV Holy Bible for Kids, Softcover Economy Edition
Retail: $5.99
Our Price: $4.49
Save: $1.50 (25%)
4.5 of 5.0 stars
ESV Study Bible, Large Print , Hardcover
ESV Study Bible, Large Print , Hardcover
Retail: $69.99
Our Price: $43.99
Save: $26.00 (37%)
4.5 of 5.0 stars
ESV Thinline Bible, Genuine Leather, Black
ESV Thinline Bible, Genuine Leather, Black
Retail: $59.99
Our Price: $31.49
Save: $28.50 (48%)
4.5 of 5.0 stars
ESV Following Jesus Bible, Softcover
ESV Following Jesus Bible, Softcover
Retail: $22.99
Our Price: $8.99
Save: $14.00 (61%)
5.0 of 5.0 stars