20 Abraham traveled from there to the Negev[a] and settled between Kadesh and Shur. While he was living in Gerar as an outsider, 2 because Abraham kept saying about his wife Sarah, “She is my sister,” King Abimelech of Gerar summoned them and took Sarah into his household.[b]
3 But God came to Abimelech in a dream during the night and spoke to him, “Pay attention! You’re about to die, because the woman you have taken is a man’s wife!”
4 Now Abimelech had not yet come near her, so he asked, “Lord, will you destroy an innocent nation? 5 Didn’t he say to me, ‘She’s my sister’? And she also said, ‘He’s my brother.’ I did this with pure intentions and clean hands.”
6 Then God replied to him in the dream, “I know that you did this with pure intentions, and it was I who kept you from sinning against me. Therefore, I didn’t allow you to touch her. 7 Now then, return the man’s wife. As a matter of fact, he’s a prophet and can intercede for you so you’ll live. But if you don’t return her, be aware that you and all who are yours will certainly die.”
8 So Abimelech got up early the next morning, summoned all his servants, and told them all these things. The men became terrified.
9 Then Abimelech called Abraham and asked him, “What have you done to us? How have I sinned against you, that you have brought such great sin against me and my kingdom? You’ve done things to me that ought not to have been done.”
10 Abimelech also asked Abraham, “What could you have been thinking when you did this?”
11 “I thought that there’s no fear of God in this place,” Abraham replied, “and that they would kill me because of my wife. 12 Besides, she really is my sister—she’s my father’s daughter, but not my mother’s daughter—so she could become my wife. 13 When God caused me to journey from my father’s house, I asked her to do me this favor and say,[c] ‘He’s my brother.’”
14 So Abimelech took some sheep and oxen, and some male and female servants, gave them to Abraham, returned his wife Sarah to him, 15 and said, “Look! My land is available to you, so settle wherever you please.”
16 Abimelech also told Sarah, “Look! I am giving your brother 1,000 pieces of silver to vindicate[d] you in the eyes of all who are with you. As a result, you will be completely vindicated.”
17 Then Abraham interceded with God, and God healed Abimelech, his wife, and his female servants so they could bear children, 18 since the Lord had made all the women barren[e] in Abimelech’s household on account of Abraham’s wife Sarah.
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