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Genesis 12

12
Chapter 12
Abram leaves Haran
1The Lord had said to Abram, ‘Leave your country and the people of your father's family. Go to the land that I will show you. #12:1 The Lord said this to Abram when he lived in Ur, among the Chaldeans. The Chaldeans worshipped false gods. See Joshua 24:2.
2I will cause your descendants to become a great nation. I will bless you. Everyone will know your name. You will bring my blessing to other people. 3I will bless those people who bless you. But I will curse anyone who insults you. Through you, I will bless all the families of people on the earth.’ #12:3 Jesus Christ is a descendant of Abram. Through Jesus, God blesses all the nations and families of people on the earth.
4Abram did what the Lord had told him. He left Haran. Abram was 75 years old when he left Haran. Lot went with him. 5Abram took his wife Sarai, and his nephew Lot. He took everything that belonged to them. He also took the people that worked for them in Haran. They all left to go to the land of Canaan.
When they arrived in Canaan, 6Abram walked through the land. He went as far as Shechem, to the special oak tree of Moreh. At that time, Canaanites lived in this land. 7The Lord appeared to Abram there. He said, ‘I will give this land to your descendants.’ So Abram built an altar in that place to worship the Lord. #12:7 The Canaanites did not worship God. The special tree of Moreh is a place where the Canaanites worshipped false gods. Abram built an altar to worship God. The Canaanites would see that Abram worshipped the Lord. But Abram was not afraid. He knew that this place belonged to God. He did that because the Lord had appeared to him.
8Then Abram left Shechem. He went to the hills that are on the east of Bethel. He put up his tent in that place. Bethel was towards the west, and Ai was towards the east. Abram also built an altar there to worship the Lord.
9Then Abram took his tent and he left that place. He continued to travel towards the Negev. #12:9 The Negev is a dry land. It is between Egypt and Canaan.
Abram and Sarai in Egypt
10There was a famine in the land of Canaan. #12:10 A famine happens when there is not enough food for people to eat. It often happens when no rain has fallen for a long time. Nothing can grow in the ground because there is no water. Egypt did not often have a famine because the River Nile went through the land. So Abram went to live in Egypt for a time, because the famine was very bad.
11When Abram was going to arrive in Egypt, he said to his wife Sarai, ‘Listen to me. I know that you are a very beautiful woman. 12When the Egyptians see you they will say, “This is Abram's wife.” Then they will kill me, but they will let you live.#12:12 Abram thinks that the king of Egypt might want to take Sarai as one of his wives. If he knows that Sarai is Abram's wife, the king will have to kill Abram. 13So, tell them that you are my sister. Then they will do good things to me, because they want to please you. They will not kill me because they will think that you are my sister.’
14When Abram arrived in Egypt, the people saw that Sarai was a very beautiful woman. 15The king's officers saw her. They told Pharaoh that she was very beautiful. They took her to the king's palace.#12:15 A palace is a large house for a king.
16Pharaoh did good things to help Abram because of Sarai. He gave Abram sheep, cows, donkeys and camels. He also gave Abram male servants and female servants.
17But the Lord made Pharaoh and the people in his palace very ill. The Lord did this because the king had taken Abram's wife Sarai. 18So Pharaoh called Abram to come to him. Pharaoh said, ‘You have done this bad thing to me! You did not tell me that Sarai is your wife! Why not? 19You told me “She is my sister”. As a result, I took her to be my wife. Now, here is your wife. Take her and go away!’ #12:19 God made Pharaoh and the people in his palace ill. God stopped Pharaoh from doing something wrong and taking Sarai as his wife.
20Pharaoh told his officers what to do with Abram. They sent Abram away, with his wife and everything that belonged to them. #12:20 Abram did not need to tell a lie to keep himself safe. God had promised to bless him. God had promised that Abram would have many descendants. So Abram should have trusted God.
12
God Calls Abram
1The Lord said to Abram, “Leave your country and your people. Leave your father’s family and go to the country that I will show you.
2I will build a great nation from you.
I will bless you
and make your name famous.
People will use your name
to bless other people.
3I will bless those who bless you,
and I will curse those who curse you.
I will use you to bless
all the people on earth.”
Abram Goes to Canaan
4So Abram left Haran just like the Lord said, and Lot went with him. Abram was 75 years old when he left Haran. 5He took his wife Sarai, his nephew Lot, all the slaves, and all the other things he had gotten in Haran. Then he and his group moved to the land of Canaan. 6Abram traveled through the land as far as the town of Shechem and then to the big tree at Moreh. The Canaanites were living in the land at that time.
7The Lord appeared#12:7 The Lord appeared God often used special shapes so that people could see him. Sometimes he was like a man, an angel, a fire, or a bright light. to Abram and said, “I will give this land to your descendants.”
Abram built an altar to honor the Lord who appeared to him there. 8Then he left that place and traveled to the mountains east of Bethel. He set up his tent there. Bethel was to the west, and Ai#12:8 Ai The name of this town means “the ruins.” was to the east. Abram built another altar at that place to honor the Lord, and he worshiped the Lord there. 9Then he moved on toward the Negev, stopping for a time at several places on the way.
Abram in Egypt
10During this time there was not enough food in the land, so Abram went down to Egypt to live. 11Just before they arrived in Egypt, Abram told Sarai, “Look, I know that you are a very beautiful woman. 12When the Egyptian men see you, they will say, ‘This woman is his wife.’ Then they will kill me and keep you alive because they want you. 13So tell them that you are my sister. Then they will be good to me because of you. In this way you will save my life.”
14So when Abram went into Egypt, the Egyptian men saw that Sarai was a very beautiful woman. 15Even some of Pharaoh’s officials noticed her and told Pharaoh how beautiful she was. So they took her to Pharaoh’s house. 16Pharaoh was kind to Abram because he thought Abram was Sarai’s brother. He gave Abram sheep, cattle, donkeys, camels, and men and women servants.
17Pharaoh took Abram’s wife, so the Lord caused Pharaoh and all the people in his house to have very bad diseases. 18Pharaoh called Abram and said to him, “You have done a very bad thing to me! Why didn’t you tell me Sarai was your wife? 19You said, ‘She is my sister.’ Why did you say that? I took her so that she could be my wife, but now I give your wife back to you. Take her and go!” 20Then Pharaoh commanded his men to lead Abram out of Egypt. So Abram and his wife left that place and took everything they had with them.