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Genesis 18

18
The Three Visitors
1Then the Lord appeared to Abraham by the Oaks #18:1 Or Terebinths or Great Trees of Mamre in the heat of the day, while he was sitting at the entrance of his tent. 2And Abraham looked up and saw three men standing nearby. When he saw them, he ran from the entrance of his tent to meet them and bowed low to the ground.
3“My lord,” said Abraham, “if I have found favor in your sight, please do not pass your servant by. 4Let a little water be brought, that you may wash your feet and rest yourselves under the tree. 5And I will bring a bit of bread so that you may refresh yourselves. This is why you have passed your servant’s way. After that, you may continue on your way.”
“Yes,” they replied, “you may do as you have said.”
6So Abraham hurried into the tent and said to Sarah, “Quick! Prepare three seahs of fine flour,#18:6 3 seahs is approximately 19.8 dry quarts or 21.9 liters (probably about 24.5 pounds or 11.1 kilograms of flour). knead it, and bake some bread.”
7Meanwhile, Abraham ran to the herd, selected a tender and choice calf, and gave it to a servant, who hurried to prepare it. 8Then Abraham brought curds and milk and the calf that had been prepared, and he set them before the men and stood by them under the tree as they ate.
Sarah Laughs at the Promise
9“Where is your wife Sarah?” they asked.
“There, in the tent,” he replied.
10Then the Lord said, “I will surely return to you at this time next year, and your wife Sarah will have a son!”
Now Sarah was behind him, listening at the entrance to the tent. 11And Abraham and Sarah were already old and well along in years; Sarah had passed the age of childbearing. 12So she laughed to herself, saying, “After I am worn out and my master is old, will I now have this pleasure?”
13And the Lord asked Abraham, “Why did Sarah laugh and say, ‘Can I really bear a child when I am old?’ 14Is anything too difficult for the Lord? At the appointed time I will return to you—in about a year—and Sarah will have a son.”#18:14 Cited in Romans 9:9
15But Sarah was afraid, so she denied it and said, “I did not laugh.”
“No,” replied the Lord, “but you did laugh.”
Abraham Intercedes for Sodom
16When the men got up to leave, they looked out over Sodom, and Abraham walked along with them to see them off.
17And the Lord said, “Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do? 18Abraham will surely become a great and powerful nation, and through him all the nations of the earth will be blessed. 19For I have chosen him, so that he will command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing what is right and just, in order that the Lord may bring upon Abraham what He has promised.”
20Then the Lord said, “The outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is great. Because their sin is so grievous, 21I will go down to see if their actions fully justify the outcry that has reached Me. If not, I will find out.”
22And the two men turned away and went toward Sodom, but Abraham remained standing before the Lord.
23Abraham stepped forward and said, “Will You really sweep away the righteous with the wicked? 24What if there are fifty righteous ones in the city? Will You really sweep it away and not spare the place for the sake of the fifty righteous ones who are there? 25Far be it from You to do such a thing—to kill the righteous with the wicked, so that the righteous and the wicked are treated alike. Far be it from You! Will not the Judge of all the earth do what is right?”
26So the Lord replied, “If I find fifty righteous ones within the city of Sodom, on their account I will spare the whole place.”
27Then Abraham answered, “Now that I have ventured to speak to the Lord—though I am but dust and ashes— 28suppose the fifty righteous ones lack five. Will You destroy the whole city for the lack of five?”
He replied, “If I find forty-five there, I will not destroy it.”
29Once again Abraham spoke to the Lord, “Suppose forty are found there?”
He answered, “On account of the forty, I will not do it.”
30Then Abraham said, “May the Lord not be angry, but let me speak further. Suppose thirty are found there?”
He replied, “If I find thirty there, I will not do it.”
31And Abraham said, “Now that I have ventured to speak to the Lord, suppose twenty are found there?”
He answered, “On account of the twenty, I will not destroy it.”
32Finally, Abraham said, “May the Lord not be angry, but let me speak once more. Suppose ten are found there?”
And He answered, “On account of the ten, I will not destroy it.”
33When the Lord had finished speaking with Abraham, He departed, and Abraham returned home.

Genesis 18

18
1-2God appeared to Abraham at the Oaks of Mamre while he was sitting at the entrance of his tent. It was the hottest part of the day. He looked up and saw three men standing. He ran from his tent to greet them and bowed before them.
3-5He said, “Master, if it please you, stop for a while with your servant. I’ll get some water so you can wash your feet. Rest under this tree. I’ll get some food to refresh you on your way, since your travels have brought you across my path.”
They said, “Certainly. Go ahead.”
6Abraham hurried into the tent to Sarah. He said, “Hurry. Get three cups of our best flour; knead it and make bread.”
7-8Then Abraham ran to the cattle pen and picked out a nice plump calf and gave it to the servant who lost no time getting it ready. Then he got curds and milk, brought them with the calf that had been roasted, set the meal before the men, and stood there under the tree while they ate.
9The men said to him, “Where is Sarah your wife?”
He said, “In the tent.”
10One of them said, “I’m coming back about this time next year. When I arrive, your wife Sarah will have a son.” Sarah was listening at the tent opening, just behind the man.
11-12Abraham and Sarah were old by this time, very old. Sarah was far past the age for having babies. Sarah laughed within herself, “An old woman like me? Get pregnant? With this old man of a husband?”
13-14God said to Abraham, “Why did Sarah laugh saying, ‘Me? Have a baby? An old woman like me?’ Is anything too hard for God? I’ll be back about this time next year and Sarah will have a baby.”
15Sarah lied. She said, “I didn’t laugh,” because she was afraid.
But he said, “Yes you did; you laughed.”
16When the men got up to leave, they set off for Sodom. Abraham walked with them to say good-bye.
17-19Then God said, “Shall I keep back from Abraham what I’m about to do? Abraham is going to become a large and strong nation; all the nations of the world are going to find themselves blessed through him. Yes, I’ve settled on him as the one to train his children and future family to observe God’s way of life, live kindly and generously and fairly, so that God can complete in Abraham what he promised him.”
20-21God continued, “The cries of the victims in Sodom and Gomorrah are deafening; the sin of those cities is immense. I’m going down to see for myself, see if what they’re doing is as bad as it sounds. Then I’ll know.”
22The men set out for Sodom, but Abraham stood in God’s path, blocking his way.
23-25Abraham confronted him, “Are you serious? Are you planning on getting rid of the good people right along with the bad? What if there are fifty decent people left in the city; will you lump the good with the bad and get rid of the lot? Wouldn’t you spare the city for the sake of those fifty innocents? I can’t believe you’d do that, kill off the good and the bad alike as if there were no difference between them. Doesn’t the Judge of all the Earth judge with justice?”
26God said, “If I find fifty decent people in the city of Sodom, I’ll spare the place just for them.”
27-28Abraham came back, “Do I, a mere mortal made from a handful of dirt, dare open my mouth again to my Master? What if the fifty fall short by five—would you destroy the city because of those missing five?”
He said, “I won’t destroy it if there are forty-five.”
29Abraham spoke up again, “What if you only find forty?”
“Neither will I destroy it if for forty.”
30He said, “Master, don’t be irritated with me, but what if only thirty are found?”
“No, I won’t do it if I find thirty.”
31He pushed on, “I know I’m trying your patience, Master, but how about for twenty?”
“I won’t destroy it for twenty.”
32He wouldn’t quit, “Don’t get angry, Master—this is the last time. What if you only come up with ten?”
“For the sake of only ten, I won’t destroy the city.”
33When God finished talking with Abraham, he left. And Abraham went home.