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Genesis 21

21
The Birth of Isaac
1And Yahweh visited Sarah as he had said. And Yahweh did to Sarah as he had promised. 2And she conceived, and Sarah bore to Abraham a son in his old age at the appointed time that God had told him. 3And Abraham called the name of his son who was born to him, whom Sarah bore to him, Isaac. 4And Abraham circumcised Isaac his son when he was eight days old, as God had commanded him. 5And Abraham was one hundred years old when Isaac his son was born to him. 6And Sarah said, “God has made laughter for me; all who hear will laugh for me.” 7And she said, “Who would announce to Abraham that Sarah would nurse children? Yet I have borne a son to Abraham in his old age.”
Hagar and Ishmael
8And the child grew and was weaned. And Abraham made a great feast on the day Isaac was weaned. 9And Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, whom she had borne Abraham, mocking. 10Then she said to Abraham, “Drive out this slave woman and her son, for the son of this slave woman will not be heir with my son, with Isaac.” 11And the matter displeased Abraham very much#Literally “was very bad in the eyes of Abraham” on account of his son. 12Then God said to Abraham, “Do not be displeased#Literally “Do not let it be bad” on account of the boy and on account of the slave woman. Listen to everything that Sarah said to you,#Literally “Everything Sarah said to you, listen with respect to her voice” for through Isaac your offspring will be named. 13And I will also make the son of the slave woman into a nation, for he is your offspring.” 14Then Abraham rose up early in the morning and took bread and a skin of water and gave it to Hagar, putting it on her shoulder. And he sent her away with the child, and she went, wandering about in the wilderness, in Beersheba. 15And when the water was finished from the skin, she put the child under one of the bushes. 16And she went and she sat a good distance away,#Literally “she sat with respect to her, opposite, far away, as the shooting of a bow” for she said, “Let me not see the child’s death.” So she sat away from him and lifted up her voice and wept. 17And God heard the cry#Or “voice” of the boy and the angel of God called to Hagar from the heavens and said to her, “What is the matter#Literally “What to you” Hagar? Do not be afraid, for God has heard the cry#Or “voice” of the boy from where he is.#Literally “in which he is there” 18Get up, take up the boy and take him with your hand, for I will make him a great nation.” 19And God opened her eyes, and she saw a well of water. And she went and filled the skin with water and gave a drink to the boy. 20And God was with the boy, and he grew and lived in the wilderness. And he became an expert with a bow.#Literally “an archer with the bow” 21And he lived in the wilderness of Paran. And his mother took a wife for him from the land of Egypt.
The Covenant Between Abraham and Abimelech
22And it happened that at that time, Abimelech and Phicol, the commander of his army, said to Abraham, “God is with you, in all that you do. 23So now, swear to me here by God that you will not deal with me falsely, or with my descendants, or my posterity. According to the kindness that I have done to you, you shall pledge to do with me and with the land where you have dwelled as an alien.” 24And Abraham said, “I swear.” 25Then Abraham complained to Abimelech on account of the well of water that servants of Abimelech had seized. 26And Abimelech said, “I do not know who did this thing, neither did you tell me, nor have I heard of it except for today.” 27And Abraham took sheep and cattle and gave them to Abimelech. And the two of them made#Literally “cut” a covenant. 28Then Abraham set off seven ewe-lambs of the flock by themselves. 29And Abimelech said to Abraham, “What is the meaning of these seven ewe-lambs that you have set off by themselves?” 30And he said, “You shall take the seven ewe-lambs from my hand as proof on my behalf#Literally “for the sake that it shall be a witness for me” that I dug this well.” 31Therefore that place is called Beersheba, because there the two of them swore an oath. 32And they made#Literally “cut” a covenant at Beersheba. And Abimelech, and Phicol his army commander stood and returned to the land of the Philistines. 33And he#That is, Abraham planted a tamarisk tree in Beersheba, and there he called on the name of Yahweh, the everlasting God.#Literally “El-Olam” 34And Abraham dwelled as an alien in the land of the Philistines many days.
21
1-4God visited Sarah exactly as he said he would; God did to Sarah what he promised: Sarah became pregnant and gave Abraham a son in his old age, and at the very time God had set. Abraham named him Isaac. When his son was eight days old, Abraham circumcised him just as God had commanded.
5-6Abraham was a hundred years old when his son Isaac was born.
Sarah said,
God has blessed me with laughter
and all who get the news will laugh with me!
7She also said,
Whoever would have suggested to Abraham
that Sarah would one day nurse a baby!
Yet here I am! I’ve given the old man a son!
8The baby grew and was weaned. Abraham threw a big party on the day Isaac was weaned.
9-10One day Sarah saw the son that Hagar the Egyptian had borne to Abraham, poking fun at her son Isaac. She told Abraham, “Get rid of this slave woman and her son. No child of this slave is going to share inheritance with my son Isaac!”
11-13The matter gave great pain to Abraham—after all, Ishmael was his son. But God spoke to Abraham, “Don’t feel badly about the boy and your maid. Do whatever Sarah tells you. Your descendants will come through Isaac. Regarding your maid’s son, be assured that I’ll also develop a great nation from him—he’s your son, too.”
14-16Abraham got up early the next morning, got some food together and a canteen of water for Hagar, put them on her back and sent her away with the child. She wandered off into the desert of Beersheba. When the water was gone, she left the child under a shrub and went off, fifty yards or so. She said, “I can’t watch my son die.” As she sat, she broke into sobs.
17-18Meanwhile, God heard the boy crying. The angel of God called from Heaven to Hagar, “What’s wrong, Hagar? Don’t be afraid. God has heard the boy and knows the fix he’s in. Up now; go get the boy. Hold him tight. I’m going to make of him a great nation.”
19Just then God opened her eyes. She looked. She saw a well of water. She went to it and filled her canteen and gave the boy a long, cool drink.
20-21God was on the boy’s side as he grew up. He lived out in the desert and became a skilled archer. He lived in the Paran wilderness. And his mother got him a wife from Egypt.
22-23At about that same time, Abimelech and the captain of his troops, Phicol, spoke to Abraham: “No matter what you do, God is on your side. So swear to me that you won’t do anything underhanded to me or any of my family. For as long as you live here, swear that you’ll treat me and my land as well as I’ve treated you.”
24Abraham said, “I swear it.”
25-26At the same time, Abraham confronted Abimelech over the matter of a well of water that Abimelech’s servants had taken. Abimelech said, “I have no idea who did this; you never told me about it; this is the first I’ve heard of it.”
27-28So the two of them made a covenant. Abraham took sheep and cattle and gave them to Abimelech. Abraham set aside seven sheep from his flock.
29Abimelech said, “What does this mean? These seven sheep you’ve set aside.”
30Abraham said, “It means that when you accept these seven sheep, you take it as proof that I dug this well, that it’s my well.”
31-32That’s how the place got named Beersheba (the Oath-Well), because the two of them swore a covenant oath there. After they had made the covenant at Beersheba, Abimelech and his commander, Phicol, left and went back to Philistine territory.
33-34Abraham planted a tamarisk tree in Beersheba and worshiped God there, praying to the Eternal God. Abraham lived in Philistine country for a long time.