1Now Jehovah said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto the land that I will show thee: 2and I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and be thou a blessing: 3and I will bless them that bless thee, and him that curseth thee will I curse: and in thee shall all the families of the earth be blessed. 4So Abram went, as Jehovah had spoken unto him; and Lot went with him: and Abram was seventy and five years old when he departed out of Haran. 5And Abram took Sarai his wife, and Lot his brother’s son, and all their substance that they had gathered, and the souls that they had gotten in Haran; and they went forth to go into the land of Canaan; and into the land of Canaan they came. 6And Abram passed through the land unto the place of Shechem, unto the oak of Moreh. And the Canaanite was then in the land. 7And Jehovah appeared unto Abram, and said, Unto thy seed will I give this land: and there builded he an altar unto Jehovah, who appeared unto him. 8And he removed from thence unto the mountain on the east of Beth-el, and pitched his tent, having Beth-el on the west, and Ai on the east: and there he builded an altar unto Jehovah, and called upon the name of Jehovah. 9And Abram journeyed, going on still toward the South.
10And there was a famine in the land: and Abram went down into Egypt to sojourn there; for the famine was sore in the land. 11And it came to pass, when he was come near to enter into Egypt, that he said unto Sarai his wife, Behold now, I know that thou art a fair woman to look upon: 12and it will come to pass, when the Egyptians shall see thee, that they will say, This is his wife: and they will kill me, but they will save thee alive. 13Say, I pray thee, thou art my sister; that it may be well with me for thy sake, and that my soul may live because of thee. 14And it came to pass, that, when Abram was come into Egypt, the Egyptians beheld the woman that she was very fair. 15And the princes of Pharaoh saw her, and praised her to Pharaoh: and the woman was taken into Pharaoh’s house. 16And he dealt well with Abram for her sake: and he had sheep, and oxen, and he-asses, and men-servants, and maid-servants, and she-asses, and camels. 17And Jehovah plagued Pharaoh and his house with great plagues because of Sarai, Abram’s wife. 18And Pharaoh called Abram, and said, What is this that thou hast done unto me? why didst thou not tell me that she was thy wife? 19why saidst thou, She is my sister, so that I took her to be my wife? now therefore behold thy wife, take her, and go thy way. 20And Pharaoh gave men charge concerning him: and they brought him on the way, and his wife, and all that he had.
The Lord chooses Abram
1The LORD said to Abram:#Ac 7.2,3; He 11.8.
Leave your country, your family, and your relatives and go to the land that I will show you. 2I will bless you and make your descendants into a great nation. You will become famous and be a blessing to others. 3I will bless anyone who blesses you, but I will put a curse on anyone who puts a curse on you. Everyone on earth will be blessed because of you.#12.3 Everyone…you: Or “Everyone on earth will ask me to bless them as I have blessed you.”#Ga 3.8.
4-5Abram was seventy-five years old when the LORD told him to leave the city of Haran. He obeyed and left with his wife Sarai, his nephew Lot, and all the possessions and slaves they had got while in Haran.
When they came to the land of Canaan, 6Abram went as far as the sacred tree of Moreh in a place called Shechem. The Canaanites were still living in the land at that time, 7but the LORD appeared to Abram and promised, “I will give this land to your family for ever.” Abram then built an altar there for the LORD.#Ac 7.5; Ga 3.16.
8Abram travelled to the hill country east of Bethel and camped between Bethel and Ai, where he built another altar and worshipped the LORD. 9Later, Abram started out towards the Southern Desert.
Abram in Egypt
10-11The crops failed, and there was no food anywhere in the land. So Abram and his wife Sarai went to live in Egypt for a while. But just before they got there, he said, “Sarai, you are really beautiful! 12When the Egyptians see how lovely you are, they will murder me because I am your husband. But they won't kill you. 13Please save my life by saying that you are my sister.”#Gn 20.2; 26.7.
14As soon as Abram and Sarai arrived in Egypt, the Egyptians noticed how beautiful she was. 15The king's#12.15 the king's: The Hebrew text has “Pharaoh's”, a Hebrew word sometimes used for the king of Egypt. officials told him about her, and she was taken to his house. 16The king was good to Abram because of Sarai, and Abram was given sheep, cattle, donkeys, slaves, and camels.
17Because of Sarai, the LORD struck the king and everyone in his palace with terrible diseases. 18Finally, the king sent for Abram and said to him, “What have you done to me? Why didn't you tell me Sarai was your wife? 19Why did you make me believe she was your sister? Now I've married her. Take her and go! She's your wife.”
20So the king told his men to let Abram and Sarai take their possessions and leave.
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© British and Foreign Bible Society 2012