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Genesis 21

21
Chapter 21
Abraham's sons
1The Lord was kind to Sarah. He did what he had promised to do for her. 2Sarah became pregnant. She gave birth to a son for Abraham when he was very old. This happened at the time when God had said that it would. #21:2 See Genesis 18:10.
3Abraham called his son ‘Isaac’. This is the son that Sarah gave birth to. 4When Isaac was 8 days old, Abraham circumcised him. That is what God had told him to do. #21:4 See Genesis 17.
5Abraham was 100 years old when his son, Isaac, was born. 6Sarah said, ‘Now God has made me laugh. Everyone who hears about what has happened will be happy with me.’ 7She also said, ‘Abraham would never have thought that I would feed a child at my breasts. But I have given birth to a son for him, even when he is old.’
8The child grew stronger, and he began to eat food. On that day, Abraham prepared a big party meal.
9Then Sarah saw that Ishmael was laughing at Isaac. (Ishmael was the son of Abraham and Hagar, the Egyptian servant.) 10So, Sarah said to Abraham, ‘Send that slave woman and her son away from here. Ishmael must never receive any of our family's things. Everything must belong to my own son, Isaac.’
11This made Abraham very sad, because Ishmael was his own son.
12God said to Abraham, ‘Do not be upset about Ishmael or about Hagar. Do whatever Sarah tells you. Your family's descendants will come through Isaac, not Ishmael. 13But, because Ishmael is also your son, I will make his descendants become a great nation of people too.’
14Abraham woke up early the next morning. He took some food and some water in a bottle that was made from animal skin. He gave them to Hagar and he put them on her shoulders. Then he sent Hagar away, with their son, Ishmael.
She went and she travelled round the wilderness of Beersheba. #21:14 The wilderness of Beersheba is dry and hot. There is not much water there. 15After they had drunk all the water, Hagar put her son in the shade under a bush. 16She herself went and sat down about 100 metres away from him. She thought, ‘I cannot watch the boy die.’ As she sat there, she began to cry.
17Ishmael was crying and God heard him. The angel of God spoke to Hagar from heaven. He said, ‘What is the trouble, Hagar? Do not be afraid. God has heard the boy while he is crying there. 18Go over to him and lift him up. Take hold of his hand and help him to stand. I will make him become a great nation of people.’ #21:18 God has already told Hagar this, when she ran away from Sarah See Genesis 16:10.
19Then God then helped Hagar to see clearly. She saw a well with water in it. She went to the well and she filled the bottle with water. She gave the boy some water to drink.
20God took care of Ishmael while he grew up. The boy lived in the desert. He became a hunter of wild animals. 21He lived in the Paran wilderness. Hagar, his mother, found an Egyptian wife for him to marry.
Abraham and Abimelech make an agreement together
22At that time Phicol was the leader of King Abimelech's army. Abimelech and Phicol said to Abraham, ‘We see that God helps you in everything that you do. 23So, please make a promise to me in front of God. Promise that you will never deceive me, or my children, or my descendants. You are living here in this land as a stranger. I have been kind to you, so please show that you will also be kind to us.’ 24Abraham said, ‘I promise to do all that.’
25One day, Abraham complained to Abimelech about a certain well of water. Abimelech's servants had taken the well from Abraham. They said that the well belonged to them. 26Abimelech said, ‘I do not know who has done this. You did not tell me before. I did not hear about it until today.’
27So, Abraham brought some sheep and some cows and he gave them to Abimelech. The two men made a promise to help each other. 28Abraham took 7 female lambs from the sheep. He put them in a different place from the other animals. 29Abimelech asked Abraham, ‘Why have you put these seven lambs in a different place?’ 30Abraham replied, ‘You must accept these seven lambs as a gift from me. That will show that you agree that I dug this well. Everyone will know that it belongs to me.’ 31Because of that, the name of the place became ‘Beersheba’, because the two men made a promise there. #21:31 ‘Beersheba’ means ‘well of seven’ or ‘well of the promise’.
32In that way, they made a promise at Beersheba to help one another. Then Abimelech and Phicol, the leader of his army, returned to the land of the Philistines.
33Abraham planted a tamarisk tree in Beersheba. #21:33 A tamarisk tree is a tree that can grow in a dry place. In that place, he worshipped the Lord who is God for ever.
34Abraham lived in the land of the Philistines for a long time.
21
The Birth of Isaac
1#Ge 18:10; 18:14The Lord visited Sarah as He had said, and the Lord did for Sarah as He had spoken. 2#Gal 4:22; Heb 11:11For Sarah conceived and bore Abraham a son in his old age, at the set time that God had spoken to him. 3#Ge 17:19Abraham called the name of his son who was born to him, whom Sarah bore to him, Isaac. 4#Ac 7:8Then Abraham circumcised his son Isaac when he was eight days old, as God had commanded him. 5#Ge 17:17; 17:1Now Abraham was one hundred years old when his son Isaac was born to him.
6#Isa 54:1; Ge 17:17And Sarah said, “God has made me laugh. All who hear will laugh with me.” 7#Ge 18:11–12Also she said, “Who would have said to Abraham that Sarah would nurse children? Yet I have borne him a son in his old age.”
Hagar and Ishmael Depart
8So the child grew and was weaned. Then Abraham made a great feast the same day that Isaac was weaned. 9#Ge 16:15; Gal 4:29; Ge 16:1Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, whom she had borne to Abraham, mocking. 10#Jn 8:35; 1Jn 2:19Therefore she said to Abraham, “Throw out this slave woman and her son, for the son of this slave woman shall not be heir with my son, Isaac.”
11#Ge 17:18; Heb 12:11This matter was very displeasing in Abraham’s sight because of his son. 12#Heb 11:18; Ge 17:19But God said to Abraham, “Do not be upset concerning the boy and your slave wife. Whatever Sarah has said to you, listen to what she says, for in Isaac your descendants will be called. 13#Ge 21:18; 16:10; 17:20Yet I will also make a nation of the son of the slave woman, because he is your offspring.”
14So Abraham rose up early in the morning, and took bread and a skin of water and gave it to Hagar, putting it on her shoulder, and sent her away with the child. So she departed and wandered in the Wilderness of Beersheba.
15When the water in the skin was gone, she placed the child under one of the shrubs. 16Then she went and sat down across from him at a distance of about a bowshot, for she said to herself, “Let me not see the death of the child.” She sat across from him, and lifted up her voice and wept.
17#Ge 16:11; Ex 3:7And God heard the boy’s voice. Then the angel of God called to Hagar out of heaven and said to her, “What is the matter with you, Hagar? Do not be afraid, for God has heard the voice of the boy where he is. 18#Ge 21:13; 16:10Arise, pick up the boy and hold him in your hands, for I will make him a great nation.”
19#Nu 22:31Then God opened her eyes, and she saw a well of water. And she went and filled the skin with water and gave the boy a drink.
20#Ge 28:15; 39:21God was with the boy; and he grew and lived in the wilderness and became an archer. 21He lived in the Wilderness of Paran, and his mother found a wife for him out of the land of Egypt.
The Treaty With Abimelek
22#Ge 20:2; 26:26Now it came to pass at that time that Abimelek and Phicol, the commander of his army, spoke to Abraham, saying, “God is with you in all that you do. 23#Jos 2:12; Ge 20:14Now therefore, swear to me by God that you will not deal deceitfully with me, or with my children, or with my descendants. Instead, according to the kindness that I have shown to you, you will show to me and to the land where you have lived.”
24Abraham said, “I will swear.”
25#Ge 26:15–22Then Abraham complained to Abimelek about a well of water that Abimelek’s servants had violently seized. 26And Abimelek said, “I do not know who has done this. You did not tell me, and I have not heard of it until today.”
27So Abraham took sheep and oxen and gave them to Abimelek, and the two of them made a covenant. 28Then Abraham set seven ewe lambs of the flock by themselves. 29And Abimelek said to Abraham, “What is the meaning of these seven ewe lambs that you have set by themselves?”
30#Ge 31:52And he said, “You shall take these seven ewe lambs from my hand so that they may be a witness that I have dug this well.”
31#Ge 26:33; 21:14Therefore he called that place Beersheba, because the two of them swore an oath there.
32Thus they made a covenant at Beersheba. Then Abimelek rose with Phicol, the commander of his army, and they returned to the land of the Philistines. 33#Ge 4:26; 12:8Abraham planted a tamarisk tree in Beersheba, and there he called on the name of the Lord, the Everlasting God. 34Abraham stayed in the land of the Philistines many days.