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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
God Provides for Hagar and Ishmael
1The Lord came to help Sarah and did for her what he had promised. 2So she became pregnant, and at the exact time God had promised, she gave birth to a son for Abraham in his old age. 3Abraham named his newborn son Isaac. 4When Isaac was eight days old, Abraham circumcised him as God had commanded. 5Abraham was 100 years old when his son Isaac was born.
6Sarah said, “God has brought me laughter, and everyone who hears about this will laugh with me. 7Who would have predicted to Abraham that Sarah would nurse children? Yet, I have given him a son in his old age.”
8The child grew and was weaned. On the day Isaac was weaned, Abraham held a big feast. 9Sarah saw that Abraham’s son by Hagar the Egyptian was laughing at Isaac. 10She said to Abraham, “Get rid of this slave and her son, because this slave’s son must never share the inheritance with my son Isaac.” 11Abraham was upset by this because of his son Ishmael. 12But God said to Abraham, “Don’t be upset about the boy and your slave. Listen to what Sarah says because through Isaac your descendants will carry on your name. 13Besides, I will make the slave’s son into a nation also, because he is your child.”
14Early the next morning Abraham took bread and a container of water and gave them to Hagar, putting them on her shoulder. He also gave her the boy and sent her on her way. So she left and wandered around in the desert near Beersheba. 15When the water in the container was gone, she put the boy under one of the bushes. 16Then she went about as far away as an arrow can be shot and sat down. She said to herself, “I don’t want to watch the boy die.” So she sat down and sobbed loudly.
17God heard the boy crying, and the Messenger of God called to Hagar from heaven. “What’s the matter, Hagar?” he asked her. “Don’t be afraid! God has heard the boy crying from the bushes. 18Come on, help the boy up! Take him by the hand, because I’m going to make him into a great nation.”
19God opened her eyes. Then she saw a well. She filled the container with water and gave the boy a drink.
20God was with the boy as he grew up. He lived in the desert and became a skilled archer. 21He lived in the desert of Paran, and his mother got him a wife from Egypt.
Abraham’s Agreement with Abimelech
22At that time Abimelech, accompanied by Phicol, the commander of his army, said to Abraham, “God is with you in everything you do. 23Now, swear an oath to me here in front of God that you will never cheat me, my children, or my descendants. Show me and the land where you’ve been living the same kindness that I have shown you.”
24Abraham said, “I so swear.”
25Then Abraham complained to Abimelech about a well which Abimelech’s servants had seized. 26Abimelech replied, “I don’t know who did this. You didn’t tell me, and I didn’t hear about it until today.”
27Abraham took some sheep and cattle and gave them to Abimelech, and the two of them made an agreement. 28Then Abraham set apart seven female lambs from the flock. 29Abimelech asked him, “What is the meaning of these seven female lambs you have set apart?”
30Abraham answered, “Accept these lambs from me so that they may be proof  #21:30 Or “a witness.” that I dug this well.” 31This is why that place is called Beersheba,#21:31 Beersheba can mean either “Well of the Seven” or “Well of the Oath.” because both of them swore an oath there.
32After they made the treaty at Beersheba, Abimelech and Phicol, the commander of his army, left and went back to the land of the Philistines. 33Abraham planted a tamarisk tree at Beersheba and worshiped the Lord, the Everlasting God, there. 34Abraham lived a long time in the land of the Philistines.