The Lord's Promise to Abram
1Later the Lord spoke to Abram in a vision, “Abram, don't be afraid! I will protect you and reward you greatly.”
2But Abram answered, “Lord All-Powerful, you have given me everything I could ask for, except children. And when I die, Eliezer of Damascus will get all I own.#15.2 And … own: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text. 3You have not given me any children, and this servant of mine will inherit everything.”
4The Lord replied, “No, he won't! You will have a son of your own, and everything you have will be his.” 5#Ro 4.18; He 11.12. Then the Lord took Abram outside and said, “Look at the sky and see if you can count the stars. That's how many descendants you will have.” 6#1 Macc 2.52; Ro 4.3; Ga 3.6; Jas 2.23. Abram believed the Lord, so the Lord was pleased with him and accepted him.
The Lord Makes Another Promise to Abram
7The Lord said to Abram, “I brought you here from Ur in Chaldea, and I gave you this land.”
8Abram asked, “Lord God, how can I know the land will be mine?”
9Then the Lord told him, “Bring me a three-year-old cow, a three-year-old female goat, a three-year-old ram, a dove, and a young pigeon.”
10Abram obeyed the Lord. Then he cut#15.10 cut: In Hebrew “cut” sounds something like “agreement.” What follows shows that the Lord is making an agreement with Abram. the animals in half and laid the two halves of each animal opposite each other on the ground. But he did not cut the doves and pigeons in half. 11And when birds came down to eat the animals, Abram chased them away.
12 # Job 4.13,14. As the sun was setting, Abram fell into a deep sleep, and everything became dark and frightening. 13-15#Ex 1.1-14; Ac 7.6; Ex 12.40,41; Ac 7.7. Then the Lord said:
Abram, you will live to an old age and die in peace.
But I solemnly promise that your descendants will live as foreigners in a land that doesn't belong to them. They will be forced into slavery and abused for 400 years. But I will terribly punish the nation that enslaves them, and they will leave with many possessions.
16Four generations later,#15.16 Four generations later: This may refer to the “400 years” of verses 13-15. your descendants will return here and take this land, because only then will the people who live here#15.16 people who live here: The Hebrew text has “Amorites,” a name sometimes used of the people who lived in Palestine before the Israelites. be so sinful that they deserve to be punished.
17Sometime after sunset, when it was very dark, a smoking cooking pot#15.17 smoking cooking pot: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text. The smoke and fire represent the presence of the Lord. and a flaming fire passed between the two halves of each animal. 18#Ac 7.5. At that time the Lord made an agreement with Abram and told him:
I will give your descendants the land east of the Shihor River#15.18 Shihor River: See Joshua 13.2-7. on the border of Egypt as far as the Euphrates River. 19They will possess the land of the Kenites, the Kenizzites, the Kadmonites, 20the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Rephaites, 21the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Girgashites, and the Jebusites.
Learn More About Contemporary English Version Interconfessional Edition
Contemporary English Version, Second Edition (CEV®)
© 2006 American Bible Society. All rights reserved.
B'resheet (Gen) 15
1Some time later the word of Adonai came to Avram in a vision: “Don’t be afraid, Avram. I am your protector; your reward will be very great.” 2Avram replied, “Adonai, God, what good will your gifts be to me if I continue childless; and Eli‘ezer from Dammesek inherits my possessions? 3You haven’t given me a child,” Avram continued, “so someone born in my house will be my heir.” 4But the word of Adonai came to him: “This man will not be your heir. No, your heir will be a child from your own body.” 5Then he brought him outside and said, “Look up at the sky, and count the stars — if you can count them! Your descendants will be that many!” 6He believed in Adonai, and he credited it to him as righteousness.
(vi) 7Then he said to him, “I am Adonai, who brought you out from Ur-Kasdim to give you this land as your possession.” 8He replied, “Adonai, God, how am I to know that I will possess it?” 9He answered him, “Bring me a three-year-old cow, a three-year-old female goat, a three-year-old ram, a dove and a young pigeon.” 10He brought him all these, cut the animals in two and placed the pieces opposite each other; but he didn’t cut the birds in half. 11Birds of prey swooped down on the carcasses, but Avram drove them away.
12As the sun was about to set, a deep sleep fell on Avram; horror and great darkness came over him. 13Adonai said to Avram, “Know this for certain: your descendants will be foreigners in a land that is not theirs. They will be slaves and held in oppression there four hundred years. 14But I will also judge that nation, the one that makes them slaves. Afterwards, they will leave with many possessions. 15As for you, you will join your ancestors in peace and be buried at a good old age. 16Only in the fourth generation will your descendants come back here, because only then will the Emori be ripe for punishment.”
17After the sun had set and there was thick darkness, a smoking fire pot and a flaming torch appeared, which passed between these animal parts. 18That day Adonai made a covenant with Avram: “I have given this land to your descendants — from the Vadi of Egypt to the great river, the Euphrates River — 19the territory of the Keni, the K’nizi, the Kadmoni, 20the Hitti, the P’rizi, the Refa’im, 21the Emori, the Kena‘ani, the Girgashi and the Y’vusi.”
For more information and to purchase a hard copy of the Complete Jewish Bible,Learn More About Complete Jewish Bible