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Genesis 18

18
Isaac’s birth announced
1The LORD appeared to Abraham at the oaks of Mamre while he sat at the entrance of his tent in the day’s heat. 2He looked up and suddenly saw three men standing near him. As soon as he saw them, he ran from his tent entrance to greet them and bowed deeply. 3He said, “Sirs, if you would be so kind, don’t just pass by your servant. 4Let a little water be brought so you may wash your feet and refresh yourselves under the tree. 5Let me offer you a little bread so you will feel stronger, and after that you may leave your servant and go on your way—since you have visited your servant.”
They responded, “Fine. Do just as you have said.”
6So Abraham hurried to Sarah at his tent and said, “Hurry! Knead three seahs#18.6 One seah is seven and a half quarts. of the finest flour and make some baked goods!” 7Abraham ran to the cattle, took a healthy young calf, and gave it to a young servant, who prepared it quickly. 8Then Abraham took butter, milk, and the calf that had been prepared, put the food in front of them, and stood under the tree near them as they ate.
9They said to him, “Where’s your wife Sarah?”
And he said, “Right here in the tent.”
10Then one of the men said, “I will definitely return to you about this time next year. Then your wife Sarah will have a son!”
Sarah was listening at the tent door behind him. 11Now Abraham and Sarah were both very old. Sarah was no longer menstruating. 12So Sarah laughed to herself, thinking, I’m no longer able to have children and my husband’s old.
13The LORD said to Abraham, “Why did Sarah laugh and say, ‘Me give birth? At my age?’ 14Is anything too difficult for the LORD? When I return to you about this time next year, Sarah will have a son.”
15Sarah lied and said, “I didn’t laugh,” because she was frightened.
But he said, “No, you laughed.”
Abraham pleads for Sodom
16The men got up from there and went over to look down on Sodom. Abraham was walking along with them to send them off 17when the LORD said, “Will I keep from Abraham what I’m about to do? 18Abraham will certainly become a great populous nation, and all the earth’s nations will be blessed because of him. 19I have formed a relationship with him so that he will instruct his children and his household after him. And they will keep to the LORD’s path, being moral and just so that the LORD can do for Abraham everything he said he would.” 20Then the LORD said, “The cries of injustice from Sodom and Gomorrah are countless, and their sin is very serious! 21I will go down now to examine the cries of injustice that have reached me. Have they really done all this? If not, I want to know.”
22The men turned away and walked toward Sodom, but Abraham remained standing in front of the LORD.#18.22 Some ancient manuscripts read but the LORD remained standing in front of Abraham. 23Abraham approached and said, “Will you really sweep away the innocent#18.23 Or righteous with the guilty?#18.23 Or wicked 24What if there are fifty innocent people in the city? Will you really sweep it away and not save the place for the sake of the fifty innocent people in it? 25It’s not like you to do this, killing the innocent with the guilty as if there were no difference. It’s not like you! Will the judge of all the earth not act justly?”
26The LORD said, “If I find fifty innocent people in the city of Sodom, I will save it because of them.”
27Abraham responded, “Since I’ve already decided to speak with my Lord, even though I’m just soil and ash, 28what if there are five fewer innocent people than fifty? Will you destroy the whole city over just five?”
The LORD said, “If I find forty-five there, I won’t destroy it.”
29Once again Abraham spoke, “What if forty are there?”
The LORD said, “For the sake of forty, I will do nothing.”
30He said, “Don’t be angry with me, my Lord, but let me speak. What if thirty are there?”
The LORD said, “I won’t do it if I find thirty there.”
31Abraham said, “Since I’ve already decided to speak with my Lord, what if twenty are there?”
The LORD said, “I won’t do it, for the sake of twenty.”
32Abraham said, “Don’t be angry with me, my Lord, but let me speak just once more. What if there are ten?”
And the LORD said, “I will not destroy it because of those ten.” 33When the LORD finished speaking with Abraham, he left; but Abraham stayed there in that place.
18
The Son of Promise
1Then the Lord appeared to him by the #Gen. 13:18; 14:13terebinth trees of Mamre, as he was sitting in the tent door in the heat of the day. 2#Gen. 18:16, 22; 32:24; Josh. 5:13; Judg. 13:6–11; Heb. 13:2So he lifted his eyes and looked, and behold, three men were standing by him; #Gen. 19:1; 1 Pet. 4:9and when he saw them, he ran from the tent door to meet them, and bowed himself to the ground, 3and said, “My Lord, if I have now found favor in Your sight, do not pass on by Your servant. 4Please let #Gen. 19:2; 24:32; 43:24a little water be brought, and wash your feet, and rest yourselves under the tree. 5And #Judg. 6:18, 19; 13:15, 16I will bring a morsel of bread, that #Judg. 19:5; Ps. 104:15you may refresh your hearts. After that you may pass by, #Gen. 19:8; 33:10inasmuch as you have come to your servant.”
They said, “Do as you have said.”
6So Abraham hurried into the tent to Sarah and said, “Quickly, make ready three measures of fine meal; knead it and make cakes.” 7And Abraham ran to the herd, took a tender and good calf, gave it to a young man, and he hastened to prepare it. 8So #Gen. 19:3he took butter and milk and the calf which he had prepared, and set it before them; and he stood by them under the tree as they ate.
9Then they said to him, “Where is Sarah your wife?”
So he said, “Here, #Gen. 24:67in the tent.”
10And He said, “I will certainly return to you #2 Kin. 4:16according to the time of life, and behold, #Gen. 17:19, 21; 21:2; Rom. 9:9Sarah your wife shall have a son.”
(Sarah was listening in the tent door which was behind him.) 11Now #Gen. 17:17; Luke 1:18; Rom. 4:19; Heb. 11:11, 12, 19Abraham and Sarah were old, well advanced in age; and Sarah #Gen. 31:35had passed the age of childbearing. 12Therefore Sarah #Gen. 17:17laughed within herself, saying, #Luke 1:18“After I have grown old, shall I have pleasure, my #1 Pet. 3:6lord being old also?”
13And the Lord said to Abraham, “Why did Sarah laugh, saying, ‘Shall I surely bear a child, since I am old?’ 14#Num. 11:23; Jer. 32:17; Zech. 8:6; Matt. 3:9; 19:26; Luke 1:37; Rom. 4:21Is anything too hard for the Lord? #Gen. 17:21; 18:10; 2 Kin. 4:16At the appointed time I will return to you, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son.”
15But Sarah denied it, saying, “I did not laugh,” for she was afraid.
And He said, “No, but you did laugh!”
Abraham Intercedes for Sodom
16Then the men rose from there and looked toward Sodom, and Abraham went with them #Acts 15:3; Rom. 15:24to send them on the way. 17And the Lord said, #Gen. 18:22, 26, 33; Ps. 25:14; Amos 3:7; (John 15:15)“Shall I hide from Abraham what I am doing, 18since Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be #(Gen. 12:3; 22:18); Matt. 1:1; Luke 3:34; (Acts 3:25, 26; Gal. 3:8)blessed in him? 19For I have known him, in order #(Deut. 4:9, 10; 6:6, 7)that he may command his children and his household after him, that they keep the way of the Lord, to do righteousness and justice, that the Lord may bring to Abraham what He has spoken to him.” 20And the Lord said, “Because #Gen. 4:10; 19:13; Ezek. 16:49, 50the outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their #Gen. 13:13sin is very grave, 21#Gen. 11:5; Ex. 3:8; Ps. 14:2I will go down now and see whether they have done altogether according to the outcry against it that has come to Me; and if not, #Deut. 8:2; 13:3; Josh. 22:22; Luke 16:15; 2 Cor. 11:11I will know.”
22Then the men turned away from there #Gen. 18:16; 19:1and went toward Sodom, but Abraham still stood before the Lord. 23And Abraham #(Heb. 10:22)came near and said, #Ex. 23:7; Num. 16:22; 2 Sam. 24:17; Ps. 11:4–7“Would You also #Job 9:22destroy the #Gen. 20:4righteous with the wicked? 24Suppose there were fifty righteous within the city; would You also destroy the place and not spare it for the fifty righteous that were in it? 25Far be it from You to do such a thing as this, to slay the righteous with the wicked, so that #Job 8:20; Is. 3:10, 11the righteous should be as the wicked; far be it from You! #Deut. 1:16, 17; 32:4; Job 8:3, 20; 34:17; Ps. 58:11; 94:2; Is. 3:10, 11; Rom. 3:5, 6Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?”
26So the Lord said, #Jer. 5:1; Ezek. 22:30“If I find in Sodom fifty righteous within the city, then I will spare all the place for their sakes.”
27Then Abraham answered and said, “Indeed now, I who am #(Gen. 3:19); Job 4:19; 30:19; 42:6; (1 Cor. 15:47, 48)but dust and ashes have taken it upon myself to speak to the Lord: 28Suppose there were five less than the fifty righteous; would You destroy all of the city for lack of five?”
So He said, “If I find there forty-five, I will not destroy it.
29And he spoke to Him yet again and said, “Suppose there should be forty found there?”
So He said, “I will not do it for the sake of forty.”
30Then he said, #Judg. 6:39“Let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak: Suppose thirty should be found there?”
So He said, “I will not do it if I find thirty there.”
31And he said, “Indeed now, I have taken it upon myself to speak to the Lord: Suppose twenty should be found there?”
So He said, “I will not destroy it for the sake of twenty.”
32Then he said, “Let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak but once more: Suppose ten should be found there?”
#James 5:16And He said, “I will not destroy it for the sake of ten.” 33So the Lord went His way as soon as He had finished speaking with Abraham; and Abraham returned to his place.