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Genesis Chapter 20

1 Abraham travelled from there towards the land of the South, and lived between Kadesh and Shur. He lived as a foreigner in Gerar.

2 Abraham said about Sarah his wife, "She is my sister." Abimelech king of Gerar sent, and took Sarah.

3 But God came to Abimelech in a dream of the night, and said to him, "Behold, you are a dead man, because of the woman whom you have taken; for she is a man's wife."

4 Now Abimelech had not come near her. He said, "Lord, will you kill even a righteous nation?

5 Didn't he tell me, 'She is my sister'? She, even she herself, said, 'He is my brother.' I have done this in the integrity of my heart and the innocence of my hands."

6 God said to him in the dream, "Yes, I know that in the integrity of your heart you have done this, and I also withheld you from sinning against me. Therefore I didn't allow you to touch her.

7 Now therefore, restore the man's wife. For he is a prophet, and he will pray for you, and you will live. If you don't restore her, know for sure that you will die, you, and all who are yours."

8 Abimelech rose early in the morning, and called all his servants, and told all these things in their ear. The men were very scared.

9 Then Abimelech called Abraham, and said to him, "What have you done to us? How have I sinned against you, that you have brought on me and on my kingdom a great sin? You have done deeds to me that ought not to be done!"

10 Abimelech said to Abraham, "What did you see, that you have done this thing?"

11 Abraham said, "Because I thought, 'Surely the fear of God is not in this place. They will kill me for my wife's sake.'

12 Besides, she is indeed my sister, the daughter of my father, but not the daughter of my mother; and she became my wife.

13 When God caused me to wander from my father's house, I said to her, 'This is your kindness which you shall show to me. Everywhere that we go, say of me, "He is my brother." ' "

14 Abimelech took sheep and cattle, male servants and female servants, and gave them to Abraham, and restored Sarah, his wife, to him.

15 Abimelech said, "Behold, my land is before you. Dwell where it pleases you."

16 To Sarah he said, "Behold, I have given your brother a thousand pieces of silver. Behold, it is for you a covering of the eyes to all that are with you. In front of all you are vindicated."

17 Abraham prayed to God. God healed Abimelech, and his wife, and his female servants, and they bore children.

18 For the LORD had closed up tight all the wombs of the house of Abimelech, because of Sarah, Abraham's wife.

Footnotes


Version: World English Bible


Genesis Chapter 20 Guide

Once again we have to face Abraham's deflection from faith. We see him journeying south to Gerar. This was the centre of a race of men who, having driven out the original possessors of the land, were becoming more and more warlike, and were afterward to be known as the Philistines.

As Abraham approached, an old fear recurred and a former failure was repeated.

These deflections from faith in the life of Abraham did not occur in the great fundamental things, nor in the main essentials of his walk with God; but rather in the application of the principle of faith to the smaller details of life.

As we have said, this was the second time Abraham attempted by his own supposed cleverness to steer clear of a danger he feared; and once again, as in the former case, he ran on the very rocks he dreaded. The result was that the man who stood as a witness for Jehovah was seen by the heathen practising deceit, and thus suffering the degradation of being censured by Abimelech, the heathen king.

Our deflections from faith occur most often through our failure to allow God to undertake in all the small matters of life. Some trivial business worry, or home difficulty, or personal danger, will drive us to acts that dishonour our Master. The highest activity of faith is that which completely confides in God, not only in crisis, but in the commonplaces of Me.

From "An Exposition of the Whole Bible" by G. Campbell Morgan.