The War of the Kings
1In those days Amraphel king of Shinar,#14:1 That is, Babylonia; also in verse 9 Arioch king of Ellasar, Chedorlaomer king of Elam, and Tidal king of Goiim 2went to war against Bera king of Sodom, Birsha king of Gomorrah, Shinab king of Admah, Shemeber king of Zeboiim, and the king of Bela (that is, Zoar).
3The latter five came as allies to the Valley of Siddim (that is, the Salt Sea #14:3 That is, the Dead Sea). 4For twelve years they had been subject to Chedorlaomer, but in the thirteenth year they rebelled.
5In the fourteenth year, Chedorlaomer and the kings allied with him went out and defeated the Rephaites in Ashteroth-karnaim, the Zuzites in Ham, the Emites in Shaveh-kiriathaim, 6and the Horites in the area of Mount Seir, as far as El-paran, which is near the desert. 7Then they turned back to invade En-mishpat (that is, Kadesh), and they conquered the whole territory of the Amalekites, as well as the Amorites who lived in Hazazon-tamar.
8Then the king of Sodom, the king of Gomorrah, the king of Admah, the king of Zeboiim, and the king of Bela (that is, Zoar) marched out and arrayed themselves for battle in the Valley of Siddim #14:8 That is, the Valley of the Dead Sea 9against Chedorlaomer king of Elam, Tidal king of Goiim, Amraphel king of Shinar, and Arioch king of Ellasar—four kings against five.
Abram Rescues Lot
10Now the Valley of Siddim was full of tar pits, and as the kings of Sodom and Gomorrah fled, some men fell into the pits, but the survivors fled to the hill country.
11The four kings seized all the goods of Sodom and Gomorrah and all their food, and they went on their way. 12They also carried off Abram’s nephew Lot and his possessions, since Lot was living in Sodom.
13Then an escapee came and reported this to Abram the Hebrew. Now Abram was living near the Oaks #14:13 Or Terebinths or Great Trees of Mamre the Amorite, a brother of Eshcol and Aner, all of whom were bound by treaty #14:13 Forms of the Hebrew berit are translated in most passages as covenant. to Abram. 14And when Abram heard that his relative had been captured, he mobilized the 318 trained men born in his household, and they set out in pursuit as far as Dan.
15During the night, Abram divided his forces and routed Chedorlaomer’s army, pursuing them as far as Hobah, north of Damascus. 16He retrieved all the goods, as well as his relative Lot and his possessions, together with the women and the rest of the people.
Melchizedek Blesses Abram
(Psalms 110:1–7; Hebrews 7:1–10)
17After Abram returned from defeating Chedorlaomer and the kings allied with him, the king of Sodom went out to meet him in the Valley of Shaveh (that is, the King’s Valley).
18Then Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine—since he was priest of God Most High #14:18 Hebrew El-Elyon; also in verses 19, 20, and 22; cited in Hebrews 7:1— 19and he blessed Abram and said:
“Blessed be Abram by God Most High,
Creator of heaven and earth,
20and blessed be God Most High,
who has delivered your enemies into your hand.”
Then Abram gave Melchizedek a tenth of everything.
21The king of Sodom said to Abram, “Give me the people, but take the goods for yourself.”
22But Abram replied to the king of Sodom, “I have raised my hand to the Lord God Most High, Creator of heaven and earth, 23that I will not accept even a thread, or a strap of a sandal, or anything that belongs to you, lest you should say, ‘I have made Abram rich.’ 24I will accept nothing but what my men have eaten and the share for the men who went with me—Aner, Eshcol, and Mamre. They may take their portion.”