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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The Lord’s First Promise to Abram
1The Lord said to Abram,
“Leave your land,
and your father’s home.
Go to the land that I will show you.
2I will make you a great nation,
I will bless you.
I will make your name great,
and you will be a blessing.
3I will bless those who bless you,
and whoever curses you, I will curse.
Through you every family on earth will be blessed.”
The LORD’s Second Promise to Abram
4So Abram left, as the Lord had told him, and Lot went with him. Abram was 75 years old when he left Haran. 5Abram set out for Canaan. He took along his wife Sarai, his nephew Lot, and all the possessions they had accumulated and the servants they had acquired in Haran.
6They arrived in Canaan, and Abram traveled through the land to the oak tree belonging to Moreh at Shechem. At that time the Canaanites were in the land. 7Then the Lord appeared to Abram and said, “I’m going to give this land to your descendants.” So he built an altar there to the Lord, who had appeared to him.
8He moved on to the hills east of Bethel, and he put up his tent—with Bethel on the west and Ai on the east. He also built an altar to the Lord there and worshiped the Lord. 9Abram kept moving toward the Negev.
Abram Deceives Pharaoh
10There was a famine in the land. Abram went to Egypt to stay awhile because the famine was severe. 11When he was about to enter Egypt, Abram said to his wife Sarai, “I know that you’re a beautiful woman. 12When the Egyptians see you, they’ll say, ‘This is his wife!’ Then they’ll kill me but let you live. 13Please say that you’re my sister. Then everything will be alright for me, and because of you I will live.”
14When Abram arrived in Egypt, the Egyptians saw how very beautiful his wife was. 15When Pharaoh’s officials saw her, they raved about her to Pharaoh, so Sarai was taken to Pharaoh’s palace. 16Everything went well for Abram because of her, and he was given sheep, cattle, donkeys, male and female slaves, and camels.
17However, the Lord struck Pharaoh and his household with terrible plagues because of Sarai, Abram’s wife. 18Then Pharaoh called for Abram. “What have you done to me?” he asked. “Why didn’t you tell me that she’s your wife? 19Why did you say, ‘She’s my sister’ and allow me to take her for my wife? Here’s your wife! Take her and go!” 20Pharaoh gave his men orders concerning Abram. They sent Abram away with his wife and everything that he had.
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