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Genesis 1:1 - Genesis 16:16 (World English Bible)

Genesis 1-16

In the beginning, God[a] created the heavens and the earth. The earth was formless and empty. Darkness was on the surface of the deep and God’s Spirit was hovering over the surface of the waters.

God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. God saw the light, and saw that it was good. God divided the light from the darkness. God called the light “day”, and the darkness he called “night”. There was evening and there was morning, the first day.

God said, “Let there be an expanse in the middle of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters.” God made the expanse, and divided the waters which were under the expanse from the waters which were above the expanse; and it was so. God called the expanse “sky”. There was evening and there was morning, a second day.

God said, “Let the waters under the sky be gathered together to one place, and let the dry land appear”; and it was so. 10 God called the dry land “earth”, and the gathering together of the waters he called “seas”. God saw that it was good. 11 God said, “Let the earth yield grass, herbs yielding seeds, and fruit trees bearing fruit after their kind, with their seeds in it, on the earth”; and it was so. 12 The earth yielded grass, herbs yielding seed after their kind, and trees bearing fruit, with their seeds in it, after their kind; and God saw that it was good. 13 There was evening and there was morning, a third day.

14 God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of sky to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs to mark seasons, days, and years; 15 and let them be for lights in the expanse of sky to give light on the earth”; and it was so. 16 God made the two great lights: the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night. He also made the stars. 17 God set them in the expanse of sky to give light to the earth, 18 and to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness. God saw that it was good. 19 There was evening and there was morning, a fourth day.

20 God said, “Let the waters abound with living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth in the open expanse of sky.” 21 God created the large sea creatures and every living creature that moves, with which the waters swarmed, after their kind, and every winged bird after its kind. God saw that it was good. 22 God blessed them, saying, “Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth.” 23 There was evening and there was morning, a fifth day.

24 God said, “Let the earth produce living creatures after their kind, livestock, creeping things, and animals of the earth after their kind”; and it was so. 25 God made the animals of the earth after their kind, and the livestock after their kind, and everything that creeps on the ground after its kind. God saw that it was good.

26 God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the sky, and over the livestock, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” 27 God created man in his own image. In God’s image he created him; male and female he created them. 28 God blessed them. God said to them, “Be fruitful, multiply, fill the earth, and subdue it. Have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the sky, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” 29 God said, “Behold,[b] I have given you every herb yielding seed, which is on the surface of all the earth, and every tree, which bears fruit yielding seed. It will be your food. 30 To every animal of the earth, and to every bird of the sky, and to everything that creeps on the earth, in which there is life, I have given every green herb for food;” and it was so.

31 God saw everything that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. There was evening and there was morning, a sixth day.

The heavens, the earth, and all their vast array were finished. On the seventh day God finished his work which he had done; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had done. God blessed the seventh day, and made it holy, because he rested in it from all his work of creation which he had done.

This is the history of the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that Yahweh[c] God made the earth and the heavens. No plant of the field was yet in the earth, and no herb of the field had yet sprung up; for Yahweh God had not caused it to rain on the earth. There was not a man to till the ground, but a mist went up from the earth, and watered the whole surface of the ground. Yahweh God formed man from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul. Yahweh God planted a garden eastward, in Eden, and there he put the man whom he had formed. Out of the ground Yahweh God made every tree to grow that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food, including the tree of life in the middle of the garden and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. 10 A river went out of Eden to water the garden; and from there it was parted, and became the source of four rivers. 11 The name of the first is Pishon: it flows through the whole land of Havilah, where there is gold; 12 and the gold of that land is good. Bdellium[d] and onyx stone are also there. 13 The name of the second river is Gihon. It is the same river that flows through the whole land of Cush. 14 The name of the third river is Hiddekel. This is the one which flows in front of Assyria. The fourth river is the Euphrates. 15 Yahweh God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to cultivate and keep it. 16 Yahweh God commanded the man, saying, “You may freely eat of every tree of the garden; 17 but you shall not eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil; for in the day that you eat of it, you will surely die.”

18 Yahweh God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make him a helper comparable to[e] him.” 19 Out of the ground Yahweh God formed every animal of the field, and every bird of the sky, and brought them to the man to see what he would call them. Whatever the man called every living creature became its name. 20 The man gave names to all livestock, and to the birds of the sky, and to every animal of the field; but for man there was not found a helper comparable to him. 21 Yahweh God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep. As the man slept, he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh in its place. 22 Yahweh God made a woman from the rib which had taken from the man, and brought her to the man. 23 The man said, “This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh. She will be called ‘woman,’ because she was taken out of Man.” 24 Therefore a man will leave his father and his mother, and will join with his wife, and they will be one flesh. 25 The man and his wife were both naked, and they were not ashamed.

Now the serpent was more subtle than any animal of the field which Yahweh God had made. He said to the woman, “Has God really said, ‘You shall not eat of any tree of the garden?’”

The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees of the garden, but not the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden. God has said, ‘You shall not eat of it. You shall not touch it, lest you die.’”

The serpent said to the woman, “You won’t surely die, for God knows that in the day you eat it, your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

When the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took some of its fruit, and ate; and she gave some to her husband with her, and he ate it, too. Their eyes were opened, and they both knew that they were naked. They sewed fig leaves together, and made coverings for themselves. They heard Yahweh God’s voice walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of Yahweh God among the trees of the garden.

Yahweh God called to the man, and said to him, “Where are you?”

10 The man said, “I heard your voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself.”

11 God said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?”

12 The man said, “The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me fruit from the tree, and I ate it.”

13 Yahweh God said to the woman, “What have you done?”

The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.”

14 Yahweh God said to the serpent,

“Because you have done this,
    you are cursed above all livestock,
    and above every animal of the field.
You shall go on your belly
    and you shall eat dust all the days of your life.
15 I will put hostility between you and the woman,
    and between your offspring and her offspring.
He will bruise your head,
    and you will bruise his heel.”

16 To the woman he said,

“I will greatly multiply your pain in childbirth.
    In pain you will bear children.
Your desire will be for your husband,
    and he will rule over you.”

17 To Adam he said,

“Because you have listened to your wife’s voice,
    and ate from the tree,
    about which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat of it,’
    the ground is cursed for your sake.
You will eat from it with much labor all the days of your life.
18     It will yield thorns and thistles to you;
    and you will eat the herb of the field.
19 By the sweat of your face will you eat bread until you return to the ground,
    for out of it you were taken.
For you are dust,
    and to dust you shall return.”

20 The man called his wife Eve because she would be the mother of all the living. 21 Yahweh God made coats of animal skins for Adam and for his wife, and clothed them.

22 Yahweh God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of us, knowing good and evil. Now, lest he reach out his hand, and also take of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever...” 23 Therefore Yahweh God sent him out from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from which he was taken. 24 So he drove out the man; and he placed cherubim[f] at the east of the garden of Eden, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to guard the way to the tree of life.

The man knew[g] Eve his wife. She conceived,[h] and gave birth to Cain, and said, “I have gotten a man with Yahweh’s help.” Again she gave birth, to Cain’s brother Abel. Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground. As time passed, Cain brought an offering to Yahweh from the fruit of the ground. Abel also brought some of the firstborn of his flock and of its fat. Yahweh respected Abel and his offering, but he didn’t respect Cain and his offering. Cain was very angry, and the expression on his face fell. Yahweh said to Cain, “Why are you angry? Why has the expression of your face fallen? If you do well, won’t it be lifted up? If you don’t do well, sin crouches at the door. Its desire is for you, but you are to rule over it.” Cain said to Abel, his brother, “Let’s go into the field.” While they were in the field, Cain rose up against Abel, his brother, and killed him.

Yahweh said to Cain, “Where is Abel, your brother?”

He said, “I don’t know. Am I my brother’s keeper?”

10 Yahweh said, “What have you done? The voice of your brother’s blood cries to me from the ground. 11 Now you are cursed because of the ground, which has opened its mouth to receive your brother’s blood from your hand. 12 From now on, when you till the ground, it won’t yield its strength to you. You will be a fugitive and a wanderer in the earth.”

13 Cain said to Yahweh, “My punishment is greater than I can bear. 14 Behold, you have driven me out today from the surface of the ground. I will be hidden from your face, and I will be a fugitive and a wanderer in the earth. Whoever finds me will kill me.”

15 Yahweh said to him, “Therefore whoever slays Cain, vengeance will be taken on him sevenfold.” Yahweh appointed a sign for Cain, so that anyone finding him would not strike him.

16 Cain left Yahweh’s presence, and lived in the land of Nod, east of Eden. 17 Cain knew his wife. She conceived, and gave birth to Enoch. He built a city, and called the name of the city, after the name of his son, Enoch. 18 To Enoch was born Irad. Irad became the father of Mehujael. Mehujael became the father of Methushael. Methushael became the father of Lamech. 19 Lamech took two wives: the name of the first one was Adah, and the name of the second one was Zillah. 20 Adah gave birth to Jabal, who was the father of those who dwell in tents and have livestock. 21 His brother’s name was Jubal, who was the father of all who handle the harp and pipe. 22 Zillah also gave birth to Tubal Cain, the forger of every cutting instrument of brass and iron. Tubal Cain’s sister was Naamah. 23 Lamech said to his wives,

“Adah and Zillah, hear my voice.
    You wives of Lamech, listen to my speech,
for I have slain a man for wounding me,
    a young man for bruising me.
24 If Cain will be avenged seven times,
    truly Lamech seventy-seven times.”

25 Adam knew his wife again. She gave birth to a son, and named him Seth, saying, “for God has given me another child instead of Abel, for Cain killed him.” 26 A son was also born to Seth, and he named him Enosh. At that time men began to call on Yahweh’s name.

This is the book of the generations of Adam. In the day that God created man, he made him in God’s likeness. He created them male and female, and blessed them. On the day they were created, he named them “Adam”.[i] Adam lived one hundred thirty years, and became the father of a son in his own likeness, after his image, and named him Seth. The days of Adam after he became the father of Seth were eight hundred years, and he became the father of other sons and daughters. All the days that Adam lived were nine hundred thirty years, then he died.

Seth lived one hundred five years, then became the father of Enosh. Seth lived after he became the father of Enosh eight hundred seven years, and became the father of other sons and daughters. All of the days of Seth were nine hundred twelve years, then he died.

Enosh lived ninety years, and became the father of Kenan. 10 Enosh lived after he became the father of Kenan, eight hundred fifteen years, and became the father of other sons and daughters. 11 All of the days of Enosh were nine hundred five years, then he died.

12 Kenan lived seventy years, then became the father of Mahalalel. 13 Kenan lived after he became the father of Mahalalel eight hundred forty years, and became the father of other sons and daughters 14 and all of the days of Kenan were nine hundred ten years, then he died.

15 Mahalalel lived sixty-five years, then became the father of Jared. 16 Mahalalel lived after he became the father of Jared eight hundred thirty years, and became the father of other sons and daughters. 17 All of the days of Mahalalel were eight hundred ninety-five years, then he died.

18 Jared lived one hundred sixty-two years, then became the father of Enoch. 19 Jared lived after he became the father of Enoch eight hundred years, and became the father of other sons and daughters. 20 All of the days of Jared were nine hundred sixty-two years, then he died.

21 Enoch lived sixty-five years, then became the father of Methuselah. 22 After Methuselah’s birth, Enoch walked with God for three hundred years, and became the father of more sons and daughters. 23 All the days of Enoch were three hundred sixty-five years. 24 Enoch walked with God, and he was not found, for God took him.

25 Methuselah lived one hundred eighty-seven years, then became the father of Lamech. 26 Methuselah lived after he became the father of Lamech seven hundred eighty-two years, and became the father of other sons and daughters. 27 All the days of Methuselah were nine hundred sixty-nine years, then he died.

28 Lamech lived one hundred eighty-two years, then became the father of a son. 29 He named him Noah, saying, “This one will comfort us in our work and in the toil of our hands, caused by the ground which Yahweh has cursed.” 30 Lamech lived after he became the father of Noah five hundred ninety-five years, and became the father of other sons and daughters. 31 All the days of Lamech were seven hundred seventy-seven years, then he died.

32 Noah was five hundred years old, then Noah became the father of Shem, Ham, and Japheth.

When men began to multiply on the surface of the ground, and daughters were born to them, God’s sons saw that men’s daughters were beautiful, and they took any that they wanted for themselves as wives. Yahweh said, “My Spirit will not strive with man forever, because he also is flesh; so his days will be one hundred twenty years.” The Nephilim[j] were in the earth in those days, and also after that, when God’s sons came in to men’s daughters and had children with them. Those were the mighty men who were of old, men of renown.

Yahweh saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of man’s heart was continually only evil. Yahweh was sorry that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him in his heart. Yahweh said, “I will destroy man whom I have created from the surface of the ground—man, along with animals, creeping things, and birds of the sky—for I am sorry that I have made them.” But Noah found favor in Yahweh’s eyes.

This is the history of the generations of Noah: Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time. Noah walked with God. 10 Noah became the father of three sons: Shem, Ham, and Japheth. 11 The earth was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence. 12 God saw the earth, and saw that it was corrupt, for all flesh had corrupted their way on the earth.

13 God said to Noah, “I will bring an end to all flesh, for the earth is filled with violence through them. Behold, I will destroy them and the earth. 14 Make a ship of gopher wood. You shall make rooms in the ship, and shall seal it inside and outside with pitch. 15 This is how you shall make it. The length of the ship shall be three hundred cubits,[k] its width fifty cubits, and its height thirty cubits. 16 You shall make a roof in the ship, and you shall finish it to a cubit upward. You shall set the door of the ship in its side. You shall make it with lower, second, and third levels. 17 I, even I, do bring the flood of waters on this earth, to destroy all flesh having the breath of life from under the sky. Everything that is in the earth will die. 18 But I will establish my covenant with you. You shall come into the ship, you, your sons, your wife, and your sons’ wives with you. 19 Of every living thing of all flesh, you shall bring two of every sort into the ship, to keep them alive with you. They shall be male and female. 20 Of the birds after their kind, of the livestock after their kind, of every creeping thing of the ground after its kind, two of every sort will come to you, to keep them alive. 21 Take with you of all food that is eaten, and gather it to yourself; and it will be for food for you, and for them.” 22 Thus Noah did. He did all that God commanded him.

Yahweh said to Noah, “Come with all of your household into the ship, for I have seen your righteousness before me in this generation. You shall take seven pairs of every clean animal with you, the male and his female. Of the animals that are not clean, take two, the male and his female. Also of the birds of the sky, seven and seven, male and female, to keep seed alive on the surface of all the earth. In seven days, I will cause it to rain on the earth for forty days and forty nights. Every living thing that I have made, I will destroy from the surface of the ground.”

Noah did everything that Yahweh commanded him.

Noah was six hundred years old when the flood of waters came on the earth. Noah went into the ship with his sons, his wife, and his sons’ wives, because of the floodwaters. Clean animals, unclean animals, birds, and everything that creeps on the ground went by pairs to Noah into the ship, male and female, as God commanded Noah. 10 After the seven days, the floodwaters came on the earth. 11 In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, on the seventeenth day of the month, on the same day all the fountains of the great deep were burst open, and the sky’s windows were opened. 12 It rained on the earth forty days and forty nights.

13 In the same day Noah, and Shem, Ham, and Japheth—the sons of Noah—and Noah’s wife and the three wives of his sons with them, entered into the ship— 14 they, and every animal after its kind, all the livestock after their kind, every creeping thing that creeps on the earth after its kind, and every bird after its kind, every bird of every sort. 15 Pairs from all flesh with the breath of life in them went to Noah into the ship. 16 Those who went in, went in male and female of all flesh, as God commanded him; then Yahweh shut him in. 17 The flood was forty days on the earth. The waters increased, and lifted up the ship, and it was lifted up above the earth. 18 The waters rose, and increased greatly on the earth; and the ship floated on the surface of the waters. 19 The waters rose very high on the earth. All the high mountains that were under the whole sky were covered. 20 The waters rose fifteen cubits[l] higher, and the mountains were covered. 21 All flesh died that moved on the earth, including birds, livestock, animals, every creeping thing that creeps on the earth, and every man. 22 All on the dry land, in whose nostrils was the breath of the spirit of life, died. 23 Every living thing was destroyed that was on the surface of the ground, including man, livestock, creeping things, and birds of the sky. They were destroyed from the earth. Only Noah was left, and those who were with him in the ship. 24 The waters flooded the earth one hundred fifty days.

God remembered Noah, all the animals, and all the livestock that were with him in the ship; and God made a wind to pass over the earth. The waters subsided. The deep’s fountains and the sky’s windows were also stopped, and the rain from the sky was restrained. The waters continually receded from the earth. After the end of one hundred fifty days the waters decreased. The ship rested in the seventh month, on the seventeenth day of the month, on Ararat’s mountains. The waters receded continually until the tenth month. In the tenth month, on the first day of the month, the tops of the mountains were visible.

At the end of forty days, Noah opened the window of the ship which he had made, and he sent out a raven. It went back and forth, until the waters were dried up from the earth. He himself sent out a dove to see if the waters were abated from the surface of the ground, but the dove found no place to rest her foot, and she returned to him into the ship, for the waters were on the surface of the whole earth. He put out his hand, and took her, and brought her to him into the ship. 10 He waited yet another seven days; and again he sent the dove out of the ship. 11 The dove came back to him at evening and, behold, in her mouth was a freshly plucked olive leaf. So Noah knew that the waters were abated from the earth. 12 He waited yet another seven days, and sent out the dove; and she didn’t return to him anymore.

13 In the six hundred first year, in the first month, the first day of the month, the waters were dried up from the earth. Noah removed the covering of the ship, and looked. He saw that the surface of the ground was dried. 14 In the second month, on the twenty-seventh day of the month, the earth was dry.

15 God spoke to Noah, saying, 16 “Go out of the ship, you, and your wife, and your sons, and your sons’ wives with you. 17 Bring out with you every living thing that is with you of all flesh, including birds, livestock, and every creeping thing that creeps on the earth, that they may breed abundantly in the earth, and be fruitful, and multiply on the earth.”

18 Noah went out, with his sons, his wife, and his sons’ wives with him. 19 Every animal, every creeping thing, and every bird, whatever moves on the earth, after their families, went out of the ship.

20 Noah built an altar to Yahweh, and took of every clean animal, and of every clean bird, and offered burnt offerings on the altar. 21 Yahweh smelled the pleasant aroma. Yahweh said in his heart, “I will not again curse the ground any more for man’s sake because the imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth. I will never again strike every living thing, as I have done. 22 While the earth remains, seed time and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night will not cease.”

God blessed Noah and his sons, and said to them, “Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth. The fear of you and the dread of you will be on every animal of the earth, and on every bird of the sky. Everything that moves along the ground, and all the fish of the sea, are delivered into your hand. Every moving thing that lives will be food for you. As I gave you the green herb, I have given everything to you. But flesh with its life, that is, its blood, you shall not eat. I will surely require your blood of your lives; at the hand of every animal I will require it. At the hand of man, even at the hand of every man’s brother, I will require the life of man. Whoever sheds man’s blood, his blood will be shed by man, for God made man in his own image. Be fruitful and multiply. Increase abundantly in the earth, and multiply in it.”

God spoke to Noah and to his sons with him, saying, “As for me, behold, I establish my covenant with you, and with your offspring after you, 10 and with every living creature that is with you: the birds, the livestock, and every animal of the earth with you, of all that go out of the ship, even every animal of the earth. 11 I will establish my covenant with you: All flesh will not be cut off any more by the waters of the flood. There will never again be a flood to destroy the earth.” 12 God said, “This is the token of the covenant which I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for perpetual generations: 13 I set my rainbow in the cloud, and it will be a sign of a covenant between me and the earth. 14 When I bring a cloud over the earth, that the rainbow will be seen in the cloud, 15 and I will remember my covenant, which is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh, and the waters will no more become a flood to destroy all flesh. 16 The rainbow will be in the cloud. I will look at it, that I may remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.” 17 God said to Noah, “This is the token of the covenant which I have established between me and all flesh that is on the earth.”

18 The sons of Noah who went out from the ship were Shem, Ham, and Japheth. Ham is the father of Canaan. 19 These three were the sons of Noah, and from these, the whole earth was populated.

20 Noah began to be a farmer, and planted a vineyard. 21 He drank of the wine and got drunk. He was uncovered within his tent. 22 Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father, and told his two brothers outside. 23 Shem and Japheth took a garment, and laid it on both their shoulders, went in backwards, and covered the nakedness of their father. Their faces were backwards, and they didn’t see their father’s nakedness. 24 Noah awoke from his wine, and knew what his youngest son had done to him. 25 He said,

“Canaan is cursed.
    He will be a servant of servants to his brothers.”

26 He said,

“Blessed be Yahweh, the God of Shem.
    Let Canaan be his servant.
27 May God enlarge Japheth.
    Let him dwell in the tents of Shem.
    Let Canaan be his servant.”

28 Noah lived three hundred fifty years after the flood. 29 All the days of Noah were nine hundred fifty years, and then he died.

10 Now this is the history of the generations of the sons of Noah and of Shem, Ham, and Japheth. Sons were born to them after the flood.

The sons of Japheth were: Gomer, Magog, Madai, Javan, Tubal, Meshech, and Tiras. The sons of Gomer were: Ashkenaz, Riphath, and Togarmah. The sons of Javan were: Elishah, Tarshish, Kittim, and Dodanim. Of these were the islands of the nations divided in their lands, everyone after his language, after their families, in their nations.

The sons of Ham were: Cush, Mizraim, Put, and Canaan. The sons of Cush were: Seba, Havilah, Sabtah, Raamah, and Sabteca. The sons of Raamah were: Sheba and Dedan. Cush became the father of Nimrod. He began to be a mighty one in the earth. He was a mighty hunter before Yahweh. Therefore it is said, “like Nimrod, a mighty hunter before Yahweh”. 10 The beginning of his kingdom was Babel, Erech, Accad, and Calneh, in the land of Shinar. 11 Out of that land he went into Assyria, and built Nineveh, Rehoboth Ir, Calah, 12 and Resen between Nineveh and the great city Calah. 13 Mizraim became the father of Ludim, Anamim, Lehabim, Naphtuhim, 14 Pathrusim, Casluhim (which the Philistines descended from), and Caphtorim.

15 Canaan became the father of Sidon (his firstborn), Heth, 16 the Jebusites, the Amorites, the Girgashites, 17 the Hivites, the Arkites, the Sinites, 18 the Arvadites, the Zemarites, and the Hamathites. Afterward the families of the Canaanites were spread abroad. 19 The border of the Canaanites was from Sidon—as you go toward Gerar—to Gaza—as you go toward Sodom, Gomorrah, Admah, and Zeboiim—to Lasha. 20 These are the sons of Ham, after their families, according to their languages, in their lands and their nations.

21 Children were also born to Shem, the father of all the children of Eber, the elder brother of Japheth. 22 The sons of Shem were: Elam, Asshur, Arpachshad, Lud, and Aram. 23 The sons of Aram were: Uz, Hul, Gether, and Mash. 24 Arpachshad became the father of Shelah. Shelah became the father of Eber. 25 To Eber were born two sons. The name of the one was Peleg, for in his days the earth was divided. His brother’s name was Joktan. 26 Joktan became the father of Almodad, Sheleph, Hazarmaveth, Jerah, 27 Hadoram, Uzal, Diklah, 28 Obal, Abimael, Sheba, 29 Ophir, Havilah, and Jobab. All these were the sons of Joktan. 30 Their dwelling extended from Mesha, as you go toward Sephar, the mountain of the east. 31 These are the sons of Shem, by their families, according to their languages, lands, and nations.

32 These are the families of the sons of Noah, by their generations, according to their nations. The nations divided from these in the earth after the flood.

11 The whole earth was of one language and of one speech. As they traveled east, they found a plain in the land of Shinar, and they lived there. They said to one another, “Come, let’s make bricks, and burn them thoroughly.” They had brick for stone, and they used tar for mortar. They said, “Come, let’s build ourselves a city, and a tower whose top reaches to the sky, and let’s make a name for ourselves, lest we be scattered abroad on the surface of the whole earth.”

Yahweh came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of men built. Yahweh said, “Behold, they are one people, and they have all one language, and this is what they begin to do. Now nothing will be withheld from them, which they intend to do. Come, let’s go down, and there confuse their language, that they may not understand one another’s speech.” So Yahweh scattered them abroad from there on the surface of all the earth. They stopped building the city. Therefore its name was called Babel, because there Yahweh confused the language of all the earth. From there, Yahweh scattered them abroad on the surface of all the earth.

10 This is the history of the generations of Shem: Shem was one hundred years old when he became the father of Arpachshad two years after the flood. 11 Shem lived five hundred years after he became the father of Arpachshad, and became the father of more sons and daughters.

12 Arpachshad lived thirty-five years and became the father of Shelah. 13 Arpachshad lived four hundred three years after he became the father of Shelah, and became the father of more sons and daughters.

14 Shelah lived thirty years, and became the father of Eber. 15 Shelah lived four hundred three years after he became the father of Eber, and became the father of more sons and daughters.

16 Eber lived thirty-four years, and became the father of Peleg. 17 Eber lived four hundred thirty years after he became the father of Peleg, and became the father of more sons and daughters.

18 Peleg lived thirty years, and became the father of Reu. 19 Peleg lived two hundred nine years after he became the father of Reu, and became the father of more sons and daughters.

20 Reu lived thirty-two years, and became the father of Serug. 21 Reu lived two hundred seven years after he became the father of Serug, and became the father of more sons and daughters.

22 Serug lived thirty years, and became the father of Nahor. 23 Serug lived two hundred years after he became the father of Nahor, and became the father of more sons and daughters.

24 Nahor lived twenty-nine years, and became the father of Terah. 25 Nahor lived one hundred nineteen years after he became the father of Terah, and became the father of more sons and daughters.

26 Terah lived seventy years, and became the father of Abram, Nahor, and Haran.

27 Now this is the history of the generations of Terah. Terah became the father of Abram, Nahor, and Haran. Haran became the father of Lot. 28 Haran died before his father Terah in the land of his birth, in Ur of the Chaldees. 29 Abram and Nahor married wives. The name of Abram’s wife was Sarai, and the name of Nahor’s wife was Milcah, the daughter of Haran who was also the father of Iscah. 30 Sarai was barren. She had no child. 31 Terah took Abram his son, Lot the son of Haran, his son’s son, and Sarai his daughter-in-law, his son Abram’s wife. They went from Ur of the Chaldees, to go into the land of Canaan. They came to Haran and lived there. 32 The days of Terah were two hundred five years. Terah died in Haran.

12 Now Yahweh said to Abram, “Leave your country, and your relatives, and your father’s house, and go to the land that I will show you. I will make of you a great nation. I will bless you and make your name great. You will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you. All the families of the earth will be blessed through you.”

So Abram went, as Yahweh had told him. Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he departed from Haran. Abram took Sarai his wife, Lot his brother’s son, all their possessions that they had gathered, and the people whom they had acquired in Haran, and they went to go into the land of Canaan. They entered into the land of Canaan. Abram passed through the land to the place of Shechem, to the oak of Moreh. The Canaanites were in the land, then.

Yahweh appeared to Abram and said, “I will give this land to your offspring.” [m]

He built an altar there to Yahweh, who had appeared to him. He left from there to go to the mountain on the east of Bethel and pitched his tent, having Bethel on the west, and Ai on the east. There he built an altar to Yahweh and called on Yahweh’s name. Abram traveled, still going on toward the South.

10 There was a famine in the land. Abram went down into Egypt to live as a foreigner there, for the famine was severe in the land. 11 When he had come near to enter Egypt, he said to Sarai his wife, “See now, I know that you are a beautiful woman to look at. 12 It will happen, when the Egyptians see you, that they will say, ‘This is his wife.’ They will kill me, but they will save you alive. 13 Please say that you are my sister, that it may be well with me for your sake, and that my soul may live because of you.”

14 When Abram had come into Egypt, Egyptians saw that the woman was very beautiful. 15 The princes of Pharaoh saw her, and praised her to Pharaoh; and the woman was taken into Pharaoh’s house. 16 He dealt well with Abram for her sake. He had sheep, cattle, male donkeys, male servants, female servants, female donkeys, and camels. 17 Yahweh afflicted Pharaoh and his house with great plagues because of Sarai, Abram’s wife. 18 Pharaoh called Abram and said, “What is this that you have done to me? Why didn’t you tell me that she was your wife? 19 Why did you say, ‘She is my sister,’ so that I took her to be my wife? Now therefore, see your wife, take her, and go your way.”

20 Pharaoh commanded men concerning him, and they escorted him away with his wife and all that he had.

13 Abram went up out of Egypt—he, his wife, all that he had, and Lot with him—into the South. Abram was very rich in livestock, in silver, and in gold. He went on his journeys from the South even to Bethel, to the place where his tent had been at the beginning, between Bethel and Ai, to the place of the altar, which he had made there at the first. There Abram called on Yahweh’s name. Lot also, who went with Abram, had flocks, herds, and tents. The land was not able to bear them, that they might live together; for their substance was great, so that they could not live together. There was strife between the herdsmen of Abram’s livestock and the herdsmen of Lot’s livestock. The Canaanites and the Perizzites lived in the land at that time. Abram said to Lot, “Please, let there be no strife between you and me, and between your herdsmen and my herdsmen; for we are relatives. Isn’t the whole land before you? Please separate yourself from me. If you go to the left hand, then I will go to the right. Or if you go to the right hand, then I will go to the left.”

10 Lot lifted up his eyes, and saw all the plain of the Jordan, that it was well-watered everywhere, before Yahweh destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, like the garden of Yahweh, like the land of Egypt, as you go to Zoar. 11 So Lot chose the Plain of the Jordan for himself. Lot traveled east, and they separated themselves the one from the other. 12 Abram lived in the land of Canaan, and Lot lived in the cities of the plain, and moved his tent as far as Sodom. 13 Now the men of Sodom were exceedingly wicked and sinners against Yahweh.

14 Yahweh said to Abram, after Lot was separated from him, “Now, lift up your eyes, and look from the place where you are, northward and southward and eastward and westward, 15 for all the land which you see, I will give to you, and to your offspring forever. 16 I will make your offspring as the dust of the earth, so that if a man can number the dust of the earth, then your offspring[n] may also be numbered. 17 Arise, walk through the land in its length and in its width; for I will give it to you.”

18 Abram moved his tent, and came and lived by the oaks of Mamre, which are in Hebron, and built an altar there to Yahweh.

14 In the days of Amraphel, king of Shinar, Arioch, king of Ellasar, Chedorlaomer, king of Elam, and Tidal, king of Goiim, they made war with Bera, king of Sodom, and with Birsha, king of Gomorrah, Shinab, king of Admah, and Shemeber, king of Zeboiim, and the king of Bela (also called Zoar). All these joined together in the valley of Siddim (also called the Salt Sea). They served Chedorlaomer for twelve years, and in the thirteenth year, they rebelled. In the fourteenth year Chedorlaomer came, and the kings who were with him, and struck the Rephaim in Ashteroth Karnaim, and the Zuzim in Ham, and the Emim in Shaveh Kiriathaim, and the Horites in their Mount Seir, to El Paran, which is by the wilderness. They returned, and came to En Mishpat (also called Kadesh), and struck all the country of the Amalekites, and also the Amorites, that lived in Hazazon Tamar. The king of Sodom, and the king of Gomorrah, and the king of Admah, and the king of Zeboiim, and the king of Bela (also called Zoar) went out; and they set the battle in array against them in the valley of Siddim; against Chedorlaomer king of Elam, and Tidal king of Goiim, and Amraphel king of Shinar, and Arioch king of Ellasar; four kings against the five. 10 Now the valley of Siddim was full of tar pits; and the kings of Sodom and Gomorrah fled, and some fell there, and those who remained fled to the hills. 11 They took all the goods of Sodom and Gomorrah, and all their food, and went their way. 12 They took Lot, Abram’s brother’s son, who lived in Sodom, and his goods, and departed.

13 One who had escaped came and told Abram, the Hebrew. At that time, he lived by the oaks of Mamre, the Amorite, brother of Eshcol, and brother of Aner; and they were allies of Abram. 14 When Abram heard that his relative was taken captive, he led out his trained men, born in his house, three hundred and eighteen, and pursued as far as Dan. 15 He divided himself against them by night, he and his servants, and struck them, and pursued them to Hobah, which is on the left hand of Damascus. 16 He brought back all the goods, and also brought back his relative, Lot, and his goods, and the women also, and the other people.

17 The king of Sodom went out to meet him after his return from the slaughter of Chedorlaomer and the kings who were with him, at the valley of Shaveh (that is, the King’s Valley). 18 Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine: and he was priest of God Most High. 19 He blessed him, and said, “Blessed be Abram of God Most High, possessor of heaven and earth: 20 and blessed be God Most High, who has delivered your enemies into your hand.”

Abram gave him a tenth of all.

21 The king of Sodom said to Abram, “Give me the people, and take the goods for yourself.”

22 Abram said to the king of Sodom, “I have lifted up my hand to Yahweh, God Most High, possessor of heaven and earth, 23 that I will not take a thread nor a sandal strap nor anything that is yours, lest you should say, ‘I have made Abram rich.’ 24 I will accept nothing from you except that which the young men have eaten, and the portion of the men who went with me: Aner, Eshcol, and Mamre. Let them take their portion.”

15 After these things Yahweh’s word came to Abram in a vision, saying, “Don’t be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward.”

Abram said, “Lord[o] Yahweh, what will you give me, since I go childless, and he who will inherit my estate is Eliezer of Damascus?” Abram said, “Behold, to me you have given no children[p]: and, behold, one born in my house is my heir.”

Behold, Yahweh’s word came to him, saying, “This man will not be your heir, but he who will come out of your own body will be your heir.” Yahweh brought him outside, and said, “Look now toward the sky, and count the stars, if you are able to count them.” He said to Abram, “So will your offspring[q] be.” He believed in Yahweh, who credited it to him for righteousness. He said to Abram, “I am Yahweh who brought you out of Ur of the Chaldees, to give you this land to inherit it.”

He said, “Lord Yahweh, how will I know that I will inherit 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 He brought him all these, and divided them in the middle, and laid each half opposite the other; but he didn’t divide the birds. 11 The birds of prey came down on the carcasses, and Abram drove them away.

12 When the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell on Abram. Now terror and great darkness fell on him. 13 He said to Abram, “Know for sure that your offspring[r] will live as foreigners in a land that is not theirs, and will serve them. They will afflict them four hundred years. 14 I will also judge that nation, whom they will serve. Afterward they will come out with great wealth, 15 but you will go to your fathers in peace. You will be buried at a good old age. 16 In the fourth generation they will come here again, for the iniquity of the Amorite is not yet full.” 17 It came to pass that, when the sun went down, and it was dark, behold, a smoking furnace, and a flaming torch passed between these pieces. 18 In that day Yahweh made a covenant with Abram, saying, “I have given this land to your offspring,[s] from the river of Egypt to the great river, the river Euphrates: 19 the Kenites, the Kenizzites, the Kadmonites, 20 the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Rephaim, 21 the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Girgashites, and the Jebusites.”

16 Now Sarai, Abram’s wife, bore him no children. She had a servant, an Egyptian, whose name was Hagar. Sarai said to Abram, “See now, Yahweh has restrained me from bearing. Please go in to my servant. It may be that I will obtain children by her.” Abram listened to the voice of Sarai. Sarai, Abram’s wife, took Hagar the Egyptian, her servant, after Abram had lived ten years in the land of Canaan, and gave her to Abram her husband to be his wife. He went in to Hagar, and she conceived. When she saw that she had conceived, her mistress was despised in her eyes. Sarai said to Abram, “This wrong is your fault. I gave my servant into your bosom, and when she saw that she had conceived, I was despised in her eyes. Yahweh judge between me and you.”

But Abram said to Sarai, “Behold, your maid is in your hand. Do to her whatever is good in your eyes.” Sarai dealt harshly with her, and she fled from her face.

Yahweh’s angel found her by a fountain of water in the wilderness, by the fountain on the way to Shur. He said, “Hagar, Sarai’s servant, where did you come from? Where are you going?”

She said, “I am fleeing from the face of my mistress Sarai.”

Yahweh’s angel said to her, “Return to your mistress, and submit yourself under her hands.” 10 Yahweh’s angel said to her, “I will greatly multiply your offspring,[t] that they will not be numbered for multitude.” 11 Yahweh’s angel said to her, “Behold, you are with child, and will bear a son. You shall call his name Ishmael, because Yahweh has heard your affliction. 12 He will be like a wild donkey among men. His hand will be against every man, and every man’s hand against him. He will live opposite all of his brothers.”

13 She called the name of Yahweh who spoke to her, “You are a God who sees,” for she said, “Have I even stayed alive after seeing him?” 14 Therefore the well was called Beer Lahai Roi.[u] Behold, it is between Kadesh and Bered.

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

Footnotes:

  1. Genesis 1:1 The Hebrew word rendered “God” is “אֱלֹהִ֑ים” (Elohim).
  2. Genesis 1:29 “Behold”, from “הִנֵּה”, means look at, take notice, observe, see, or gaze at. It is often used as an interjection.
  3. Genesis 2:4 “Yahweh” is God’s proper Name, sometimes rendered “LORD” (all caps) in other translations.
  4. Genesis 2:12 or, aromatic resin
  5. Genesis 2:18 or, suitable for, or appropriate for.
  6. Genesis 3:24 cherubim are powerful angelic creatures, messengers of God with wings. See Ezekiel 10.
  7. Genesis 4:1 or, lay with, or, had relations with
  8. Genesis 4:1 or, became pregnant
  9. Genesis 5:2 “Adam” and “Man” are spelled with the exact same consonants in Hebrew, so this can be correctly translated either way.
  10. Genesis 6:4 or, giants
  11. Genesis 6:15 a cubit is the length from the tip of the middle finger to the elbow on a man's arm, or about 18 inches or 46 centimeters.
  12. Genesis 7:20 a cubit is the length from the tip of the middle finger to the elbow on a man's arm, or about 18 inches or 46 centimeters.
  13. Genesis 12:7 or, seed
  14. Genesis 13:16 or, seed
  15. Genesis 15:2 The word translated “Lord” is “Adonai”.
  16. Genesis 15:3 or, seed
  17. Genesis 15:5 or, seed
  18. Genesis 15:13 or, seed
  19. Genesis 15:18 or, seed
  20. Genesis 16:10 or, seed
  21. Genesis 16:14 Beer Lahai Roi means “well of the one who lives and sees me”.
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