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Genesis 23

23
The Death of Sarah
1Sarah lived one hundred and twenty-seven years. These were the years of the life of Sarah. 2#Ge 23:19; 13:18Then Sarah died in Kiriath Arba (that is, Hebron) in the land of Canaan, and Abraham went in to mourn for Sarah and to weep for her.
3#Ge 10:15Then Abraham stood up from before his dead and spoke to the Hittites,#From the Septuagint, a cloak with long sleeves, a full-length cloak, or an embroidered cloak, showing favoritism. saying, 4#Ge 17:8; 1Ch 29:15“I am a stranger and a foreigner among you. Give me property for a burying place among you, that I may bury my dead out of my sight.”
5So the Hittites answered Abraham, 6#Ge 24:35; 14:14“Hear us, my lord. You are a mighty prince among us. Bury your dead in the choicest of our burial places. None of us will withhold from you his burial place that you may bury your dead.”
7Then Abraham stood up and bowed himself to the people of the land, the Hittites. 8He spoke with them, saying, “If it be your wish that I bury my dead out of my sight, hear me and entreat Ephron the son of Zohar for me, 9that he may give me the cave of Machpelah, which he owns, at the end of his field. Let him give it to me in your presence for the full price for a burial site.”
10#Ge 34:20; 34:24Now Ephron was sitting among the Hittites; and Ephron the Hittite answered Abraham in the presence of all the Hittites, all who went in at the gate of his city, saying, 11“No, my lord. Hear me: I give you the field and the cave that is in it. I give it to you in the presence of the sons of my people. Bury your dead.”
12Then Abraham bowed before the people of the land. 13Then he spoke to Ephron in the hearing of the people of the land, saying, “Indeed, if you will give it, please hear me. I will give you money for the field; take it from me and I will bury my dead there.”
14Then Ephron answered Abraham, saying to him, 15#Eze 45:12“My lord, listen to me. The land is worth four hundred shekels of silver.#About 10 pounds, or 4.6 kilograms. What is that between me and you? So bury your dead.”
16#Jer 32:9; Zec 11:12Abraham listened to Ephron; and Abraham weighed out for Ephron four hundred shekels of silver, the price that he had named in the hearing of the Hittites, according to the standard commercial measure.
17#Ge 25:9; 50:13So the field of Ephron, which was in Machpelah, which was before Mamre, the field and the cave that was in it, and all the trees that were in the field that were within all the surrounding borders were deeded 18to Abraham as a possession in the presence of the Hittites, before all who went in at the gate of his city. 19After this, Abraham buried Sarah his wife in the cave of the field of Machpelah before Mamre (that is, Hebron) in the land of Canaan. 20#Ru 4:7–10So the field and the cave that was in it were deeded to Abraham by the Hittites as property for a burial place.
23
1-2Sarah lived 127 years. Sarah died in Kiriath Arba, present-day Hebron, in the land of Canaan. Abraham mourned for Sarah and wept.
3-4Then Abraham got up from mourning his dead wife and spoke to the Hittites: “I know I’m only an outsider here among you, but sell me a burial plot so that I can bury my dead decently.”
5-6The Hittites responded, “Why, you’re no mere outsider here with us, you’re a prince of God! Bury your dead wife in the best of our burial sites. None of us will refuse you a place for burial.”
7-9Then Abraham got up, bowed respectfully to the people of the land, the Hittites, and said, “If you’re serious about helping me give my wife a proper burial, intercede for me with Ephron son of Zohar. Ask him to sell me the cave of Machpelah that he owns, the one at the end of his land. Ask him to sell it to me at its full price for a burial plot, with you as witnesses.”
10-11Ephron was part of the local Hittite community. Then Ephron the Hittite spoke up, answering Abraham with all the Hittites who were part of the town council listening: “Oh no, my master! I couldn’t do that. The field is yours—a gift. I’ll give it and the cave to you. With my people as witnesses, I give it to you. Bury your deceased wife.”
12-13Abraham bowed respectfully before the assembled council and answered Ephron: “Please allow me—I want to pay the price of the land; take my money so that I can go ahead and bury my wife.”
14-15Then Ephron answered Abraham, “If you insist, master. What’s four hundred silver shekels between us? Now go ahead and bury your wife.”
16Abraham accepted Ephron’s offer and paid out the sum that Ephron had named before the town council of Hittites—four hundred silver shekels at the current exchange rate.
17-20That’s how Ephron’s field next to Mamre—the field, its cave, and all the trees within its borders—became Abraham’s property. The town council of Hittites witnessed the transaction. Abraham then proceeded to bury his wife Sarah in the cave in the field of Machpelah that is next to Mamre, present-day Hebron, in the land of Canaan. The field and its cave went from the Hittites into Abraham’s possession as a burial plot.