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B'resheet (Gen) 18

18
Parashah 4: Vayera (He appeared) 18:1–22:24
1Adonai appeared to Avraham by the oaks of Mamre as he sat at the entrance to the tent during the heat of the day. 2He raised his eyes and looked, and there in front of him stood three men. On seeing them, he ran from the tent door to meet them, prostrated himself on the ground, 3and said, “My lord, if I have found favor in your sight, please don’t leave your servant. 4Please let me send for some water, so that you can wash your feet; then rest under the tree, 5and I will bring a piece of bread. Now that you have come to your servant, refresh yourselves before going on.” “Very well,” they replied, “do what you have said.”
6Avraham hurried into the tent to Sarah and said, “Quickly, three measures of the best flour! Knead it and make cakes.” 7Avraham ran to the herd, took a good, tender calf and gave it to the servant, who hurried to prepare it. 8Then he took curds, milk and the calf which he had prepared, and set it all before the men; and he stood by them under the tree as they ate. 9They said to him, “Where is Sarah your wife?” He said, “There, in the tent.” 10He said, “I will certainly return to you around this time next year, and Sarah your wife will have a son.” Sarah heard him from the entrance of the tent, behind him. 11Avraham and Sarah were old, advanced in years; Sarah was past the age of childbearing. 12So Sarah laughed to herself, thinking, “I am old, and so is my lord; am I to have pleasure again?” 13Adonai said to Avraham, “Why did Sarah laugh and ask, ‘Am I really going to bear a child when I am so old?’ 14Is anything too hard for Adonai? At the time set for it, at this season next year, I will return to you; and Sarah will have a son.” (ii) 15Sarah denied it, saying, “I didn’t either laugh,” because she was afraid. He said, “Not so — you did laugh.”
16The men set out from there and looked over toward S’dom, and Avraham went with them to see them on their way. 17Adonai said, “Should I hide from Avraham what I am about to do, 18inasmuch as Avraham is sure to become a great and strong nation, and all the nations of the earth will be blessed by him? 19For I have made myself known to him, so that he will give orders to his children and to his household after him to keep the way of Adonai and to do what is right and just, so that Adonai may bring about for Avraham what he has promised him.”
20Adonai said, “The outcry against S’dom and ‘Amora is so great and their sin so serious 21that I will now go down and see whether their deeds warrant the outcry that has reached me; if not, I will know.” 22The men turned away from there and went toward S’dom, but Avraham remained standing before Adonai. 23Avraham approached and said, “Will you actually sweep away the righteous with the wicked? 24Maybe there are fifty righteous people in the city; will you actually sweep the place away, and not forgive it for the sake of the fifty righteous who are there? 25Far be it from you to do such a thing — to kill the righteous along with the wicked, so that the righteous and the wicked are treated alike! Far be it from you! Shouldn’t the judge of all the earth do what is just?” 26Adonai said, “If I find in S’dom fifty who are righteous, then I will forgive the whole place for their sake.”
27Avraham answered, “Here now, I, who am but dust and ashes, have taken it upon myself to speak to adonai. 28What if there are five less than fifty righteous?” He said, “I won’t destroy it if I find forty-five there.”
29He spoke to him yet again: “What if forty are found there?” He said, “For the sake of the forty I won’t do it.”
30He said, “I hope adonai won’t be angry if I speak. What if thirty are found there?” He said, “I won’t do it if I find thirty there.”
31He said, “Here now, I have taken it upon myself to speak to adonai. What if twenty are found there?” He said, “For the sake of the twenty I won’t destroy it.”
32He said, “I hope adonai won’t be angry if I speak just once more. What if ten are found there?” He said, “For the sake of the ten I won’t destroy it.” 33Adonai went on his way as soon as he had finished speaking to Avraham, and Avraham returned to his place.
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Birth of Isaac Promised
1Now the Lord appeared to #Lit himAbraham by the #Or terebinthsoaks of Mamre, while he was sitting at the tent door in the heat of the day. 2When he raised his eyes and looked, behold, three men were standing opposite him; and when he saw them, he ran from the tent door to meet them and bowed down to the ground, 3and said, “#Or O LordMy Lord, if now I have found favor in Your sight, please do not #Lit pass away from Your servantpass Your servant by. 4Please let a little water be brought and wash #I.e., referring to the three visitorsyour feet, and make yourselves comfortable under the tree; 5and I will #Lit takebring a piece of bread, so that you may #Lit sustain your heartrefresh yourselves; after that you may go on, since you have #Lit come tovisited your servant.” And they said, “So do as you have said.” 6So Abraham hurried into the tent to Sarah, and said, “#Lit Hasten three measuresQuickly, prepare three #Heb seah; one seah is about 7 qt. or 7.7 litersmeasures of fine flour, knead it, and make bread cakes.” 7Abraham also ran to the herd, and took a tender and #Lit goodchoice calf and gave it to the servant, and he hurried to prepare it. 8He took curds and milk and the calf which he had prepared, and set it before them; and he was standing by them under the tree #Lit andas they ate.
9Then they said to him, “Where is your wife Sarah?” And he said, “There, in the tent.” 10He said, “I will certainly return to you #Lit when the time revivesat this time next year; and behold, your wife Sarah will have a son.” And Sarah was listening at the tent door, which was behind him. 11Now Abraham and Sarah were old, advanced in age; Sarah was past #Lit the way of womenchildbearing. 12So Sarah laughed #Lit withinto herself, saying, “After I have become old, am I to have pleasure, my lord being old also?” 13But the Lord said to Abraham, “Why did Sarah laugh, saying, ‘Shall I actually give birth to a child, when I am so old?’ 14Is anything too #Or wonderfuldifficult for the Lord? At the appointed time I will return to you, #Lit when the time revivesat this time next year, and Sarah will have a son.” 15Sarah denied it, however, saying, “I did not laugh”; for she was afraid. And He said, “No, but you did laugh.”
16Then the men rose up from there, and looked down toward Sodom; and Abraham was walking with them to send them off. 17The Lord said, “Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do, 18since Abraham will certainly become a great and #Or populousmighty nation, and in him all the nations of the earth will be blessed? 19For I have #Lit knownchosen him, so that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing righteousness and justice, so that the Lord may bring upon Abraham what He has spoken about him.” 20And the Lord said, “The outcry of Sodom and Gomorrah is indeed great, and their sin is exceedingly grave. 21I will go down now and see whether they have done entirely as the outcry, which has come to Me indicates; and if not, I will know.”
Abraham Appeals for Sodom
22Then the men turned away from there and went toward Sodom, while Abraham was still standing before the Lord. 23Abraham approached and said, “Will You indeed sweep away the righteous with the wicked? 24Suppose there are fifty righteous people within the city; will You indeed sweep it away and not #Or forgivespare the place for the sake of the fifty righteous who are in it? 25Far be it from You to do #Lit like this thingsuch a thing, to kill the righteous with the wicked, so that the righteous and the wicked are treated alike. Far be it from You! Shall not the Judge of all the earth #Lit do justicedeal justly?” 26So the Lord said, “If I find in Sodom fifty righteous within the city, then I will #Or forgivespare the entire place on their account.” 27And Abraham replied, “Now behold, I have #Or resolvedventured to speak to the Lord, although I am only dust and ashes. 28Suppose the fifty righteous are lacking five, will You destroy the entire city because of five?” And He said, “I will not destroy it if I find forty-five there.” 29And he spoke to Him yet again and said, “Suppose forty are found there?” And He said, “I will not do it on account of the forty.” 30Then he said, “Oh may the Lord not be angry, and I shall speak; suppose thirty are found there?” And He said, “I will not do it if I find thirty there.” 31And he said, “Now behold, I have #Or resolvedventured to speak to the Lord; suppose twenty are found there?” And He said, “I will not destroy it on account of the twenty.” 32Then he said, “Oh may the Lord not be angry, and I shall speak only this once: suppose ten are found there?” And He said, “I will not destroy it on account of the ten.” 33As soon as He had finished speaking to Abraham the Lord departed, and Abraham returned to his place.