The Abrahamic Covenant
1After these events, the word of the Lord came#1Sm 15:10; 2Sm 7:4; 1Kg 6:11; Is 38:4; Jr 1:2 to Abram in a vision:
Do not be afraid,#Gn 26:24; Is 41:10; Jr 30:10; Lk 1:13,30 Abram.
I am your shield;#Dt 33:29; 2Sm 22:3,31; Ps 3:3; 7:10
your reward will be very great.
2But Abram said, “Lord God, what can you give me, since I am childless and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?” #15:2 Hb obscure 3Abram continued, “Look, you have given me no offspring, so a slave born in#15:3 Lit a son of my house will be my heir.”
4Now the word of the Lord came to him: “This one will not be your heir; instead, one who comes from your own body#15:4 Lit loins will be your heir.” 5He took him outside and said, “Look at the sky and count the stars, if you are able to count them.” Then he said to him, “Your offspring will be that numerous.”#Gn 22:17; 26:4; Ex 32:13; Dt 1:10; 10:22; 1Ch 27:23; Rm 4:18; Heb 11:12
6Abram believed the Lord, and he credited it to him as righteousness.#Rm 4:3,9,22; Gl 3:6; Jms 2:23
7He also said to him, “I am the Lord who brought you from Ur of the Chaldeans to give you this land to possess.”#Gn 11:31; 12:1; Neh 9:7–8; Ac 7:2–4
8But he said, “Lord God, how can I know#Jdg 6:17; 2Kg 20:8; Ps 86:17; Is 7:11–13; Lk 1:18 that I will possess it?”
9He said to him, “Bring me a three-year-old cow, a three-year-old female goat, a three-year-old ram, a turtledove, and a young pigeon.”
10So he brought all these to him, cut them in half, and laid the pieces opposite each other, but he did not cut the birds#Lv 1:17 in half. 11Birds of prey came down on the carcasses, but Abram drove them away. 12As the sun was setting, a deep sleep#Gn 2:21 came over Abram, and suddenly great terror and darkness descended on him.
13Then the Lord said to Abram,#Ac 7:6–7 “Know this for certain: Your offspring will be resident aliens#Ex 22:21; 23:9 for four hundred years#Ex 12:40; Gl 3:17 in a land that does not belong to them and will be enslaved and oppressed.#15:13 Lit will serve them and they will oppress them 14However, I will judge the nation they serve,#Ex 6:6; 7:4; 12:12 and afterward they will go out with many possessions.#Ex 3:22 15But you will go to your ancestors in peace and be buried at a good old age.#Gn 25:8; 47:30 16In the fourth generation they will return here, for the iniquity of the Amorites has not yet reached its full measure.”#15:16 Lit Amorites is not yet complete#Lv 18:24–28; Dn 8:23; Mt 23:32; 1Th 2:16
17When the sun had set and it was dark, a smoking fire pot and a flaming torch appeared and passed between the divided animals. 18On that day the Lord made a covenant with Abram, saying, “I give this land to your offspring,#Gn 12:7; 13:15; 17:8; 24:7; 26:4; Nm 34:2; Dt 34:4; Jos 21:43; Neh 9:8; Ac 7:5 from the Brook of Egypt#Ex 23:31; Nm 34:1–15; Dt 1:7–8; 2Kg 24:7 to the great river, the Euphrates River: 19the land of the Kenites, Kenizzites, Kadmonites, 20Hethites, Perizzites, Rephaim, 21Amorites, Canaanites, Girgashites, and Jebusites.”
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Cutting a Covenant
1After these things the word of Adonai came to Abram in a vision saying, “Do not fear, Abram. I am your shield, your very great reward.”
2But Abram said, “My Lord Adonai, what will You give me, since I am living without children, and the heir of my household is Eliezer of Damascus?”
3Then Abram said, “Look! You have given me no seed, so a house-born servant is my heir.”
4Then behold, the word of Adonai came to him saying, “This one will not be your heir, but in fact, one who will come from your own body will be your heir.
5He took him outside and said, “Look up now, at the sky, and count the stars—if you are able to count them.” Then He said to him, “So shall your seed be.”
6Then he believed in Adonai and He reckoned it to him as righteousness.
7Then He said to him, “I am Adonai who brought you out from Ur of the Chaldeans, in order to give you this land to inherit it.”
8So he said, “My Lord Adonai, how will I know that I will inherit it?”
9Then He said to him, “Bring Me a three year old young cow, a three year old she-goat, a three year old ram, a turtle-dove and a young bird.”
10So he brought all these to Him and cut them in half, and put each piece opposite the other; but he did not cut the birds.
11Then birds of prey came down upon the carcasses, but Abram drove them away.
12When the sun was about to set and a deep sleep fell on Abram, behold, terror of great darkness was falling upon him!
13Then He said to Abram, “Know for certain that your seed will be strangers in a land that is not theirs, and they will be enslaved and oppressed 400 years.
14But I am going to judge the nation that they will serve. Afterward they will go out with many possessions.
15But you, you will come to your fathers in peace. You will be buried at a good old age.
16Then in the fourth generation they will return here—for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet complete.”
17When the sun set and it became dark, behold, there was a smoking oven and a fiery torch that passed between these pieces.
18On that day Adonai cut a covenant with Abram, saying, “I give this land to your seed, from the river of Egypt to the great river, the Euphrates River:
19the Kenite, the Kenizzites, the Kadmonites,
20the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Raphaites,
21the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Girgashites, and the Jebusites.”
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