January 5
Genesis 15:1 18:33

15 After these things the word of Jehovah came to Abram in a vision, saying: “Do not fear, Abram. I am a shield for you. Your reward will be very great.” 2 At this Abram said: “Sovereign Lord Jehovah, what will you give me, seeing that I am going childless and the one who will possess my house is a man of Damascus, Eliezer?” 3 And Abram added: “Look! You have given me no seed, and, look! a son of my household is succeeding me as heir.” 4 But, look! the word of Jehovah to him was in these words: “This man will not succeed you as heir, but one who will come out of your own inward parts will succeed you as heir.”

     5 He now brought him outside and said: “Look up, please, to the heavens and count the stars, if you are possibly able to count them.” And he went on to say to him: “So your seed will become.” 6 And he put faith in Jehovah; and he proceeded to count it to him as righteousness. 7 Then he added to him: “I am Jehovah, who brought you out of Ur of the Chaldeans to give you this land to take it in possession.” 8 To this he said: “Sovereign Lord Jehovah, by what shall I know that I shall take it in possession?” 9 In turn he said to him: “Take for me a three-year-old heifer and a three-year-old she-goat and a three-year-old ram and a turtledove and a young pigeon.” 10 So he took all these to himself and cut them in two and put each part of them so as to match the other, but the birds he did not cut in pieces. 11 And the birds of prey began to descend upon the carcasses, but Abram kept driving them away.

     12 After a while the sun was about to set, and a deep sleep fell upon Abram, and, look! a frightfully great darkness was falling upon him. 13 And he began to say to Abram: “You may know for sure that your seed will become an alien resident in a land not theirs, and they will have to serve them, and these will certainly afflict them for four hundred years. 14 But the nation that they will serve I am judging, and after that they will go out with many goods. 15 As for you, you will go to your forefathers in peace; you will be buried at a good old age. 16 But in the fourth generation they will return here, because the error of the Amorites has not yet come to completion.”

     17 The sun was now setting and a dense darkness came and, look! a smoking furnace and a fiery torch that passed in between these pieces. 18 On that day Jehovah concluded with Abram a covenant, saying: “To your seed I will give this land, from the river of Egypt to the great river, the river Euphrates: 19 the Kenites and the Kenizzites and the Kadmonites 20 and the Hittites and the Perizzites and the Rephaim 21 and the Amorites and the Canaanites and the Girgashites and the Jebusites.”

16 Now Sarai, Abram’s wife, had borne him no children; but she had an Egyptian maidservant and her name was Hagar. 2 Hence Sarai said to Abram: “Please now! Jehovah has shut me off from bearing children. Please, have relations with my maidservant. Perhaps I may get children from her.” So Abram listened to the voice of Sarai. 3 Then Sarai, Abram’s wife, took Hagar, her Egyptian maidservant, at the end of ten years of Abram’s dwelling in the land of Canaan, and gave her to Abram her husband as his wife. 4 Accordingly he had relations with Hagar, and she became pregnant. When she became aware that she was pregnant, then her mistress began to be despised in her eyes.

     5 At this Sarai said to Abram: “The violence done me be upon you. I myself gave my maidservant over to your bosom, and she became aware that she was pregnant, and I began to be despised in her eyes. May Jehovah judge between me and you.” 6 So Abram said to Sarai: “Look! Your maidservant is at your disposal. Do to her what is good in your eyes.” Then Sarai began to humiliate her so that she ran away from her.

     7 Later Jehovah’s angel found her at a fountain of waters in the wilderness, at the fountain on the way to Shur. 8 And he began to say: “Hagar, maidservant of Sarai, just where have you come from and where are you going?” To this she said: “Why, from Sarai my mistress I am running away.” 9 And Jehovah’s angel went on to say to her: “Return to your mistress and humble yourself under her hand.” 10 Then Jehovah’s angel said to her: “I shall greatly multiply your seed, so that it will not be numbered for multitude.” 11 Further Jehovah’s angel added to her: “Here you are pregnant, and you shall give birth to a son and must call his name Ishmael; for Jehovah has heard your affliction. 12 As for him, he will become a zebra of a man. His hand will be against everyone, and the hand of everyone will be against him; and before the face of all his brothers he will tabernacle.”

     13 Then she began to call the name of Jehovah, who was speaking to her: “You are a God of sight,” for she said: “Have I here actually looked upon him who sees me?” 14 That is why the well was called Beer-lahai-roi. Here it is between Kadesh and Bered. 15 Later on Hagar bore to Abram a son and Abram called the name of his son whom Hagar bore Ishmael. 16 And Abram was eighty-six years old at Hagar’s bearing Ishmael to Abram.

17 When Abram got to be ninety-nine years old, then Jehovah appeared to Abram and said to him: “I am God Almighty. Walk before me and prove yourself faultless. 2 And I will give my covenant between me and you, that I may multiply you very, very much.”

     3 At this Abram fell upon his face, and God continued to speak with him, saying: 4 “As for me, look! my covenant is with you, and you will certainly become a father of a crowd of nations. 5 And your name will not be called Abram anymore, and your name must become Abraham, because a father of a crowd of nations I will make you. 6 And I will make you very, very fruitful and will make you become nations, and kings will come out of you.

     7 “And I will carry out my covenant between me and you and your seed after you according to their generations for a covenant to time indefinite, to prove myself God to you and to your seed after you. 8 And I will give to you and to your seed after you the land of your alien residences, even the entire land of Canaan, for a possession to time indefinite; and I will prove myself God to them.”

     9 And God said further to Abraham: “As for you, you are to keep my covenant, you and your seed after you according to their generations. 10 This is my covenant that YOU men will keep, between me and YOU men, even your seed after you: Every male of YOURS must get circumcised. 11 And YOU must get circumcised in the flesh of YOUR foreskins, and it must serve as a sign of the covenant between me and YOU. 12 And every male of YOURS eight days old must be circumcised, according to your generations, anyone born in the house and anyone purchased with money from any foreigner who is not from your seed. 13 Every man born in your house and every man purchased with money of yours must without fail get circumcised; and my covenant in the flesh of YOU men must serve as a covenant to time indefinite. 14 And an uncircumcised male who will not get the flesh of his foreskin circumcised, even that soul must be cut off from his people. He has broken my covenant.”

     15 And God went on to say to Abraham: “As for Sarai your wife, you must not call her name Sarai, because Sarah is her name. 16 And I will bless her and also give you a son from her; and I will bless her and she shall become nations; kings of peoples will come from her.” 17 At this Abraham fell upon his face and began to laugh and to say in his heart: “Will a man a hundred years old have a child born, and will Sarah, yes, will a woman ninety years old give birth?”

     18 After that Abraham said to the [true] God: “O that Ishmael might live before you!” 19 To this God said: “Sarah your wife is indeed bearing you a son, and you must call his name Isaac. And I will establish my covenant with him for a covenant to time indefinite to his seed after him. 20 But as regards Ishmael I have heard you. Look! I will bless him and will make him fruitful and will multiply him very, very much. He will certainly produce twelve chieftains, and I will make him become a great nation. 21 However, my covenant I shall establish with Isaac, whom Sarah will bear to you at this appointed time next year.”

     22 With that God finished speaking with him and went up from Abraham. 23 Abraham then proceeded to take Ishmael his son and all the men born in his house and everyone purchased with money of his, every male among the men of the household of Abraham, and he went to circumcising the flesh of their foreskins in this very day, just as God had spoken with him. 24 And Abraham was ninety-nine years old when he had the flesh of his foreskin circumcised. 25 And Ishmael his son was thirteen years old when he had the flesh of his foreskin circumcised. 26 In this very day Abraham got circumcised, and also Ishmael his son. 27 And all the men of his household, anyone born in the house and anyone purchased with money from a foreigner, got circumcised with him.

18 Afterward Jehovah appeared to him among the big trees of Mamre, while he was sitting at the entrance of the tent about the heat of the day. 2 When he raised his eyes, then he looked and there three men were standing some distance from him. When he caught sight of them he began running to meet them from the entrance of the tent and proceeded to bow down to the earth. 3 Then he said: “Jehovah, if, now, I have found favor in your eyes, please do not pass by your servant. 4 Let a little water be taken, please, and YOU must have YOUR feet washed. Then recline under the tree. 5 And let me get a piece of bread, and refresh YOUR hearts. Following that, YOU can pass on, because that is why YOU have passed this way to YOUR servant.” At this they said: “All right. You may do just as you have spoken.”

     6 So Abraham went hurrying to the tent to Sarah and said: “Hurry! Get three seah measures of fine flour, knead the dough and make round cakes.” 7 Next Abraham ran to the herd and proceeded to get a tender and good young bull and to give it to the attendant, and he went hurrying to get it ready. 8 He then took butter and milk and the young bull that he had got ready and set it before them. Then he himself kept standing by them under the tree as they were eating.

9 They now said to him: “Where is Sarah your wife?” To this he said: “Here in the tent!” 10 So he continued: “I am surely going to return to you next year at this time, and, look! Sarah your wife will have a son.” Now Sarah was listening at the tent entrance, and it was behind the man. 11 And Abraham and Sarah were old, being advanced in years. Sarah had stopped having menstruation. 12 Hence Sarah began to laugh inside herself, saying: “After I am worn out, shall I really have pleasure, my lord being old besides?” 13 Then Jehovah said to Abraham: “Why was it that Sarah laughed, saying, ‘Shall I really and truly give birth although I have become old?’ 14 Is anything too extraordinary for Jehovah? At the appointed time I shall return to you, next year at this time, and Sarah will have a son.” 15 But Sarah began to deny it, saying: “I did not laugh!” For she was afraid. At this he said: “No! but you did laugh.”

     16 Later the men got up from there and looked down toward Sodom, and Abraham was walking with them to escort them. 17 And Jehovah said: “Am I keeping covered from Abraham what I am doing? 18 Why, Abraham is surely going to become a nation great and mighty, and all the nations of the earth must bless themselves by means of him. 19 For I have become acquainted with him in order that he may command his sons and his household after him so that they shall keep Jehovah’s way to do righteousness and judgment; in order that Jehovah may certainly bring upon Abraham what he has spoken about him.”

     20 Consequently Jehovah said: “The cry of complaint about Sodom and Gomorrah, yes, it is loud, and their sin, yes, it is very heavy. 21 I am quite determined to go down that I may see whether they act altogether according to the outcry over it that has come to me, and, if not, I can get to know it.”

     22 At this point the men turned from there and got on their way to Sodom; but as for Jehovah, he was still standing before Abraham. 23 Then Abraham approached and began to say: “Will you really sweep away the righteous with the wicked? 24 Suppose there are fifty righteous men in the midst of the city. Will you, then, sweep them away and not pardon the place for the sake of the fifty righteous who are inside it? 25 It is unthinkable of you that you are acting in this manner to put to death the righteous man with the wicked one so that it has to occur with the righteous man as it does with the wicked! It is unthinkable of you. Is the Judge of all the earth not going to do what is right?” 26 Then Jehovah said: “If I shall find in Sodom fifty righteous men in the midst of the city I will pardon the whole place on their account.” 27 But Abraham went on to answer and say: “Please, here I have taken upon myself to speak to Jehovah, whereas I am dust and ashes. 28 Suppose the fifty righteous should be lacking five. Will you for the five bring the whole city to ruin?” To this he said: “I shall not bring it to ruin if I find there forty-five.”

     29 But yet again he spoke further to him and said: “Suppose forty are found there.” In turn he said: “I shall not do it on account of the forty.” 30 But he continued: “May Jehovah, please, not grow hot with anger, but let me go on speaking: Suppose thirty are found there.” In turn he said: “I shall not do it if I find thirty there.” 31 But he continued on: “Please, here I have taken upon myself to speak to Jehovah: Suppose twenty are found there.” In turn he said: “I shall not bring it to ruin on account of the twenty.” 32 Finally he said: “May Jehovah, please, not grow hot with anger, but let me speak just this once: Suppose ten are found there.” In turn he said: “I shall not bring it to ruin on account of the ten.” 33 Then Jehovah went his way when he had finished speaking to Abraham, and Abraham returned to his place.