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Genesis 21

21
Finally, a Baby for Sarah
1The Lord came back to visit Sarah as he said he would, and he kept his promise to her. 2At exactly the time God said it would happen, Sarah became pregnant and gave birth to a son for Abraham in his old age. 3Abraham named his son Isaac.#21:3 Isaac This name means “he laughs” or “he is happy.” 4Abraham did what God commanded and circumcised Isaac when he was eight days old.
5Abraham was 100 years old when his son Isaac was born. 6Sarah said, “God has made me happy, and everyone who hears about this will be happy with me. 7No one thought that I, Sarah, would be able to have Abraham’s child. But I have given Abraham a son, even though he is old.”
Trouble at Home
8Isaac continued to grow, and soon he was old enough to begin eating solid food. So Abraham gave a big party. 9Sarah saw Hagar’s son playing. (Hagar was the Egyptian slave woman who gave birth to Abraham’s first son.) 10Sarah said to Abraham, “Get rid of that slave woman and her son. Send them away! When we die, our son Isaac will get everything we have. I don’t want that slave woman’s son sharing these things with my son Isaac!”
11This upset Abraham very much. He was worried about his son Ishmael. 12But God said to Abraham, “Don’t worry about the boy and the slave woman. Do what Sarah wants. Your descendants will be those who come through Isaac. 13But I will also bless the son of your slave woman. He is your son, so I will make a great nation from his family also.”
14Early the next morning Abraham took some food and water and gave them to Hagar. She carried them and left with her boy. She left that place and wandered in the desert of Beersheba.
15After some time, when all their drinking water was gone, Hagar put her son under a bush. 16Then she walked a short distance away and sat down. She thought her son would die because there was no water. She did not want to watch him die. She sat there and began to cry.
17God heard the boy crying, and God’s angel called to Hagar from heaven. He said, “What is wrong, Hagar? Don’t be afraid! God has heard the boy crying there. 18Go help the boy. Hold his hand and lead him. I will make him the father of many people.”
19Then God allowed Hagar to see a well of water. So she went to the well and filled her bag with water. Then she gave water to the boy to drink.
20God continued to be with the boy while he grew up. Ishmael lived in the desert and became a hunter. He learned to shoot a bow very well. 21His mother found a wife for him in Egypt. They continued to live in the Paran desert.
Abraham’s Bargain With Abimelech
22Then Abimelech and Phicol spoke with Abraham. Phicol was the commander of Abimelech’s army. They said to Abraham, “God is with you in everything you do. 23So make a promise to me here before God. Promise that you will be fair with me and with my children. Promise that you will be kind to me and this country where you have lived. Promise that you will be as kind to me as I have been to you.”
24And Abraham said, “I promise to treat you the same way you have treated me.” 25Then Abraham complained to Abimelech because Abimelech’s servants had captured a well of water.
26But Abimelech said, “I don’t know who did this. You never told me about this before today!”
27So Abraham and Abimelech made an agreement. Abraham gave Abimelech some sheep and cattle as proof of the agreement. 28Abraham also put seven#21:28 seven The Hebrew word for “seven” is like the Hebrew word for “oath” or “promise,” and it is like the last part of the name Beersheba. The seven animals were proof of this promise. female lambs in front of Abimelech.
29Abimelech asked Abraham, “Why did you put these seven female lambs by themselves?”
30Abraham answered, “When you accept these lambs from me, it will be proof that I dug this well.”
31So after that, the well was called Beersheba.#21:31 Beersheba This name means “well of the oath.” Abraham gave the well this name because it was the place where they made a promise to each other.
32So Abraham and Abimelech made an agreement at Beersheba. Then Abimelech and Phicol, his military commander, went back to the country of the Philistines.
33Abraham planted a special tree at Beersheba and prayed to the Lord, the God who lives forever. 34And Abraham lived as a stranger for a long time in the country of the Philistines.
21
Isaac Is Born
1The Lord graciously remembered and visited Sarah as He had said, and the Lord did for her as He had promised. 2So Sarah conceived and gave birth to a son for Abraham in his old age, at the appointed time of which God had spoken to him. 3Abraham named his son Isaac (laughter), the son to whom Sarah gave birth. 4So Abraham circumcised his son Isaac when he was eight days old, just as God had commanded him. 5Abraham was a hundred years old when his son Isaac was born. 6Sarah said, “God has made me laugh; all who hear [about our good news] will laugh with me.” 7And she said, “Who would have said to Abraham that Sarah would nurse children? For I have given birth to a son by him in his old age.”
8The child [Isaac] grew and was #This was probably when the child was about three years of age. Samuel served in the sanctuary from the time that he was weaned (1 Sam 1:22-28), and a Hebrew mother is quoted in 2 Maccabees 7:27 as saying to her son that she nursed him for three years.weaned, and Abraham held a great feast on the day that Isaac was weaned.
Sarah Turns against Hagar
9Now [as time went on] Sarah saw [Ishmael] the son of Hagar the Egyptian, whom she had borne to Abraham, #Ishmael was old enough to know better than to ridicule or tease his much younger brother, and his behavior was inappropriate and thoughtless.mocking [Isaac]. 10Therefore she said to Abraham, “Drive out this maid and her son, for the son of this maid shall not be an heir with my son Isaac.” 11The situation #Lit was very displeasing in the eyes of Abraham.distressed Abraham greatly because of his son [Ishmael]. 12God said to Abraham, “Do not let it distress you because of Ishmael and your maid; whatever Sarah tells you, listen to her and do what she asks, for your descendants will be named through Isaac. 13And I will also make a nation of [Ishmael] the son of the maid, because he is your descendant.” 14So Abraham got up early in the morning and took bread and a skin of water and gave them to Hagar, putting them on her shoulder, and gave her the boy, and sent her #Ishmael was born when Abraham was eighty-six years old (Gen 16:16), so Ishmael was about fourteen when Isaac was born, and about sixteen or seventeen years old when Isaac was weaned (Gen 21:8; 2 Chr 31:16).away. And she left [but lost her way] and wandered [aimlessly] in the Wilderness of Beersheba.
15When the water in the skin was all gone, Hagar abandoned the boy under one of the bushes. 16Then she went and sat down opposite him, about a bowshot away, for she said, “Do not let me see the boy die.” And as she sat down opposite him, she raised her voice and wept. 17God heard the voice of the boy, and the angel of God called to Hagar from heaven and said to her, “What troubles you, Hagar? Do not be afraid, for God has heard the voice of the boy from where he is [resting]. 18Get up, help the boy up, and hold him by the hand, for I will make him a great nation.” 19Then God opened her eyes and she saw a well of water; and she went and filled the [empty] skin with water and gave the boy a drink.
20God was with Ishmael, and he grew and developed; and he lived in the wilderness and became an [expert] archer. 21He lived in the wilderness of Paran; and his mother took a wife for him from the land of Egypt.
Covenant with Abimelech
22Now at that time Abimelech and Phicol, the commander of his army, said to Abraham, “God is with you in everything you do; 23so now, swear to me here by God that you will not deal unfairly with me [by breaking any agreements we have] or with my son or with my descendants, but as I have treated you with kindness, you shall do the same to me and to the land in which you have sojourned (temporarily lived).” 24And Abraham said, “I will swear.” 25Then Abraham complained to Abimelech about a well of water which the servants of Abimelech had [violently] seized [from him], 26Abimelech said, “I do not know who did this thing. Indeed, you did not tell me, and I did not hear of it until today.”
27So Abraham took sheep and oxen and gave them to Abimelech, and the two men made a covenant (binding agreement). 28Then Abraham set apart seven ewe lambs of the flock, 29and Abimelech said to Abraham, “What is the meaning of these seven ewe lambs which you have set apart?” 30Abraham said, “You are to accept these seven ewe lambs from me as a witness for me, that I dug this well.” 31Therefore that place was called Beersheba (Well of the Oath or Well of the Seven), because there the two of them swore an oath. 32So they made a covenant at Beersheba; then Abimelech and Phicol, the commander of his army, got up and returned to the land of the Philistines. 33Abraham planted a tamarisk tree at Beersheba, and there he called on the name of the Lord [in prayer], #Heb El Olam.the Eternal God. 34And Abraham lived [as a resident alien] in the land of the Philistines for #I.e. an extended period of time.many days.