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Genesis 12

12
God picked Abram
1This story about Abram started when God said to him, “Abram, I want you to leave your country, your father’s family and all your relatives, and go to the country that I will show you.#Acts 7:2-4; Hebrews 11:8 2And I will give you a big family, and they will become a great nation, and I will do good things for you and your family, and I will make your mob strong. Then everyone will know about you and your family, and everyone will respect you. And you and your family will do good things for other people. 3If anyone does good things for you and your family, I will do good things for them. But, if anyone does bad things to you, and if they make trouble for you and your family, I will curse them and make trouble for them. I will use your family to do good things for all the families in the world.”#Galatians 3:8
Abram and his family went to Canaan country
4-5Abram was 75 years old when he left the town called Haran and went to the country called Canaan. That was the country that God told him to go to. He took his wife Sarai, and his nephew Lot with him. He also took all the things and all the workers that they got in Haran, and they all went to the new country called Canaan. 6Abram and everyone with him walked through that new country, and they went to a town called Shekem, and they camped there, near a big tree at a place called Moreh. The people that lived in that country were called the Canaan mob, and they didn’t know God. 7God showed himself to Abram there, and he said to him, “I will give this country to your son, and to all the people that will be born into his family later on.” So Abram piled up stones to make a table with a flat top. It was a special place for him to burn an animal to show right respect to God.#Acts 7:5; Galatians 3:16
8Later on, Abram and his mob left Shekem, and they went south to the hill country that was on the east side of a town called Bethel, and they camped between Bethel and another town called Ayi. Bethel was to the west of his camp and Ayi was to the east. Then Abram piled up stones there to make another special table, and he burned animals on it to show respect to God. He prayed to God, and he called God by his special name Yahweh.
9After that, Abram and his mob kept going south to the dry desert country.
Abram and his family went to Egypt
10At that time, there wasn’t much food in that country. Everyone was short of food, so Abram and everyone with him went south to live in another country, called Egypt. 11Just before they got to Egypt, Abram said to his wife, Sarai, “You are a really beautiful woman. 12I reckon the men in Egypt will see you, and they will say, ‘That beautiful woman is Abram’s wife. Let’s kill Abram, so that we can have her for ourselves.’ Then they will kill me, but they will let you live. 13So listen. You have to tell everyone that you are my sister. Then they will be good to me, and they will not kill me.”#Genesis 20:2; 26:7
14And that’s what happened. They got to Egypt, and the people there looked at Sarai, and they saw that she was really beautiful. 15Some of them worked for the big boss of Egypt, and they told him, “Sarai is really beautiful.” So that big boss took her to live in his house. 16That boss was very good to Abram, because he thought that Abram was Sarai’s brother. He gave Abram sheep, and goats, and cows, and bulls, and donkeys, and camels, as well as men and women that had to work for Abram.
17God was not happy, because Sarai was living with the big boss of Egypt, so God made him really sick, and God made everyone that lived in his house really sick too. 18-19Then that big boss found out that Sarai was already Abram’s wife, and he got really wild. He sent somebody to get Abram, and he said to Abram, “You did a really bad thing to me. You tricked me. You didn’t tell me that Sarai is your wife. You said, ‘She is my sister,’ and you let me marry her. Now, here is your wife. Take her back, and then get out of my country.” 20Then the big boss told his soldiers, “Get Abram, and Sarai, and everything they own, and all their workers, and send them out of Egypt. Send them away, and do it right now.” So his soldiers did that. They sent Abram and his mob away from Egypt.
12
The Call of Abram
1The Lord had said to Abram, “Go from your country, your people and your father’s household to the land I will show you.
2“I will make you into a great nation,
and I will bless you;
I will make your name great,
and you will be a blessing.#12:2 Or be seen as blessed
3I will bless those who bless you,
and whoever curses you I will curse;
and all peoples on earth
will be blessed through you.”#12:3 Or earth / will use your name in blessings (see 48:20)
4So Abram went, as the Lord had told him; and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he set out from Harran. 5He took his wife Sarai, his nephew Lot, all the possessions they had accumulated and the people they had acquired in Harran, and they set out for the land of Canaan, and they arrived there.
6Abram traveled through the land as far as the site of the great tree of Moreh at Shechem. At that time the Canaanites were in the land. 7The Lord appeared to Abram and said, “To your offspring#12:7 Or seed I will give this land.” So he built an altar there to the Lord, who had appeared to him.
8From there he went on toward the hills east of Bethel and pitched his tent, with Bethel on the west and Ai on the east. There he built an altar to the Lord and called on the name of the Lord.
9Then Abram set out and continued toward the Negev.
Abram in Egypt
10Now there was a famine in the land, and Abram went down to Egypt to live there for a while because the famine was severe. 11As he was about to enter Egypt, he said to his wife Sarai, “I know what a beautiful woman you are. 12When the Egyptians see you, they will say, ‘This is his wife.’ Then they will kill me but will let you live. 13Say you are my sister, so that I will be treated well for your sake and my life will be spared because of you.”
14When Abram came to Egypt, the Egyptians saw that Sarai was a very beautiful woman. 15And when Pharaoh’s officials saw her, they praised her to Pharaoh, and she was taken into his palace. 16He treated Abram well for her sake, and Abram acquired sheep and cattle, male and female donkeys, male and female servants, and camels.
17But the Lord inflicted serious diseases on Pharaoh and his household because of Abram’s wife Sarai. 18So Pharaoh summoned Abram. “What have you done to me?” he said. “Why didn’t you tell me she was your wife? 19Why did you say, ‘She is my sister,’ so that I took her to be my wife? Now then, here is your wife. Take her and go!” 20Then Pharaoh gave orders about Abram to his men, and they sent him on his way, with his wife and everything he had.