ImmerseBeginnings NLT - Page 35



17:13–18:6
G enesis
23
his birth. This applies not only to members of your family but also to the
servants born in your household and the ­foreign-­born servants whom you
have purchased. All must be circumcised. Your bodies will bear the mark
of my everlasting covenant. Any male who fails to be circumcised will be
cut off from the covenant family for breaking the covenant.”
Then God said to Abraham, “Regarding Sarai, your ­wife—­her name
will no longer be Sarai. From now on her name will be Sarah. And I will
bless her and give you a son from her! Yes, I will bless her richly, and she
will become the mother of many nations. Kings of nations will be among
her descendants.”
Then Abraham bowed down to the ground, but he laughed to himself
in disbelief. “How could I become a father at the age of 100?” he thought.
“And how can Sarah have a baby when she is ninety years old?” So Abraham said to God, “May Ishmael live under your special blessing!”
But God replied, “­No—­Sarah, your wife, will give birth to a son for you.
You will name him Isaac, and I will confirm my covenant with him and his
descendants as an everlasting covenant. As for Ishmael, I will bless him
also, just as you have asked. I will make him extremely fruitful and multiply
his descendants. He will become the father of twelve princes, and I will
make him a great nation. But my covenant will be confirmed with Isaac,
who will be born to you and Sarah about this time next year.” When God
had finished speaking, he left Abraham.
On that very day Abraham took his son, Ishmael, and every male in his
household, including those born there and those he had bought. Then he
circumcised them, cutting off their foreskins, just as God had told him.
Abraham was ­ninety-­nine years old when he was circumcised, and Ishmael, his son, was thirteen. Both Abraham and his son, Ishmael, were circumcised on that same day, along with all the other men and boys of the
household, whether they were born there or bought as servants. All were
circumcised with him.
The Lord appeared again to Abraham near the oak grove belonging to
Mamre. One day Abraham was sitting at the entrance to his tent during
the hottest part of the day. He looked up and noticed three men standing
nearby. When he saw them, he ran to meet them and welcomed them,
bowing low to the ground.
“My lord,” he said, “if it pleases you, stop here for a while. Rest in the
shade of this tree while water is brought to wash your feet. And since
you’ve honored your servant with this visit, let me prepare some food to
refresh you before you continue on your journey.”
“All right,” they said. “Do as you have said.”
So Abraham ran back to the tent and said to Sarah, “Hurry! Get three





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