The death of Sarah
1Sarah lived to be a hundred and twenty-seven years old. 2She died at Kiriath Arba (that is, Hebron) in the land of Canaan, and Abraham went to mourn for Sarah and to weep over her.
3Then Abraham rose from beside his dead wife and spoke to the Hittites.#23:3 Or the descendants of Heth; also in verses 5, 7, 10, 16, 18 and 20 He said, 4‘I am a foreigner and stranger among you. Sell me some property for a burial site here so that I can bury my dead.’
5The Hittites replied to Abraham, 6‘Sir, listen to us. You are a mighty prince among us. Bury your dead in the choicest of our tombs. None of us will refuse you his tomb for burying your dead.’
7Then Abraham rose and bowed down before the people of the land, the Hittites. 8He said to them, ‘If you are willing to let me bury my dead, then listen to me and intercede with Ephron son of Zohar on my behalf 9so that he will sell me the cave of Machpelah, which belongs to him and is at the end of his field. Ask him to sell it to me for the full price as a burial site among you.’
10Ephron the Hittite was sitting among his people and he replied to Abraham in the hearing of all the Hittites who had come to the gate of his city. 11‘No, my lord,’ he said. ‘Listen to me; I give#23:11 Or sell you the field, and I give#23:11 Or sell you the cave that is in it. I give#23:11 Or sell it to you in the presence of my people. Bury your dead.’
12Again Abraham bowed down before the people of the land 13and he said to Ephron in their hearing, ‘Listen to me, if you will. I will pay the price of the field. Accept it from me so that I can bury my dead there.’
14Ephron answered Abraham, 15‘Listen to me, my lord; the land is worth four hundred shekels#23:15 That is, about 4.6 kilograms of silver, but what is that between you and me? Bury your dead.’
16Abraham agreed to Ephron’s terms and weighed out for him the price he had named in the hearing of the Hittites: four hundred shekels of silver, according to the weight current among the merchants.
17So Ephron’s field in Machpelah near Mamre – both the field and the cave in it, and all the trees within the borders of the field – was legally made over 18to Abraham as his property in the presence of all the Hittites who had come to the gate of the city. 19Afterwards Abraham buried his wife Sarah in the cave in the field of Machpelah near Mamre (which is at Hebron) in the land of Canaan. 20So the field and the cave in it were legally made over to Abraham by the Hittites as a burial site.