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Genesis 12:7

Context
12:7 The Lord appeared to Abram and said, “To your descendants 1  I will give this land.” So Abram 2  built an altar there to the Lord, who had appeared to him.

Genesis 13:15

Context
13:15 I will give all the land that you see to you and your descendants 3  forever.

Genesis 15:2

Context

15:2 But Abram said, “O sovereign Lord, 4  what will you give me since 5  I continue to be 6  childless, and my heir 7  is 8  Eliezer of Damascus?” 9 

Genesis 15:18

Context
15:18 That day the Lord made a covenant 10  with Abram: “To your descendants I give 11  this land, from the river of Egypt 12  to the great river, the Euphrates River –

Genesis 17:8

Context
17:8 I will give the whole land of Canaan – the land where you are now residing 13  – to you and your descendants after you as a permanent 14  possession. I will be their God.”

Genesis 24:7

Context
24:7 “The Lord, the God of heaven, who took me from my father’s house and the land of my relatives, 15  promised me with a solemn oath, 16  ‘To your descendants I will give this land.’ He will send his angel 17  before you so that you may find 18  a wife for my son from there.

Genesis 48:4

Context
48:4 He said to me, ‘I am going to make you fruitful 19  and will multiply you. 20  I will make you into a group of nations, and I will give this land to your descendants 21  as an everlasting possession.’ 22 

1 tn The same Hebrew term זֶרַע (zera’) may mean “seed” (for planting), “offspring” (occasionally of animals, but usually of people), or “descendants” depending on the context.

2 tn Heb “he”; the referent (Abram) has been supplied in the translation for clarification.

3 tn Heb “for all the land which you see to you I will give it and to your descendants.”

4 tn The Hebrew text has אֲדֹנָי יֱהוִה (’adonay yehvih, “Master, Lord”). Since the tetragrammaton (YHWH) usually is pointed with the vowels for the Hebrew word אֲדֹנָי (’adonay, “master”) to avoid pronouncing the divine name, that would lead in this place to a repetition of אֲדֹנָי. So the tetragrammaton is here pointed with the vowels for the word אֱלֹהִים (’elohim, “God”) instead. That would produce the reading of the Hebrew as “Master, God” in the Jewish textual tradition. But the presence of “Master” before the holy name is rather compelling evidence that the original would have been “Master, Lord,” which is rendered here “sovereign Lord.”

5 tn The vav (ו) disjunctive at the beginning of the clause is circumstantial, expressing the cause or reason.

6 tn Heb “I am going.”

7 tn Heb “the son of the acquisition of my house.”

sn For the custom of designating a member of the household as heir, see C. H. Gordon, “Biblical Customs and the Nuzu Tablets,” Biblical Archaeologist Reader, 2:21-33.

8 tn The pronoun is anaphoric here, equivalent to the verb “to be” (R. J. Williams, Hebrew Syntax, 23, §115).

9 sn The sentence in the Hebrew text employs a very effective wordplay on the name Damascus: “The son of the acquisition (בֶּן־מֶשֶׁק, ben-mesheq) of my house is Eliezer of Damascus (דַּמֶּשֶׁק, dammesheq).” The words are not the same; they have different sibilants. But the sound play gives the impression that “in the nomen is the omen.” Eliezer the Damascene will be Abram’s heir if Abram dies childless because “Damascus” seems to mean that. See M. F. Unger, “Some Comments on the Text of Genesis 15:2-3,” JBL 72 (1953): 49-50; H. L. Ginsberg, “Abram’s ‘Damascene’ Steward,” BASOR 200 (1970): 31-32.

10 tn Heb “cut a covenant.”

11 tn The perfect verbal form is understood as instantaneous (“I here and now give”). Another option is to understand it as rhetorical, indicating certitude (“I have given” meaning it is as good as done, i.e., “I will surely give”).

sn To your descendants I give this land. The Lord here unconditionally promises that Abram’s descendants will possess the land, but he does not yet ratify his earlier promises to give Abram a multitude of descendants and eternal possession of the land. The fulfillment of those aspects of the promise remain conditional (see Gen 17:1-8) and are ratified after Abraham offers up his son Isaac (see Gen 22:1-19). For a fuller discussion see R. B. Chisholm, “Evidence from Genesis,” A Case for Premillennialism, 35-54.

12 sn The river of Egypt is a wadi (a seasonal stream) on the northeastern border of Egypt, not to the River Nile.

13 tn The verbal root is גּוּר (gur, “to sojourn, to reside temporarily,” i.e., as a resident alien). It is the land in which Abram resides, but does not yet possess as his very own.

14 tn Or “as an eternal.”

15 tn Or “the land of my birth.”

16 tn Heb “and who spoke to me and who swore to me, saying.”

17 tn Or “his messenger.”

18 tn Heb “before you and you will take.”

19 tn Heb “Look, I am making you fruitful.” The participle following הִנֵּה (hinneh) has the nuance of a certain and often imminent future.

20 tn The perfect verbal form with vav consecutive carries on the certain future idea.

21 tn The Hebrew text adds “after you,” which has not been included in the translation for stylistic reasons.

22 tn The Hebrew word אֲחֻזָּה (’akhuzzah), translated “possession,” describes a permanent holding in the land. It is the noun form of the same verb (אָחַז, ’akhaz) that was used for the land given to them in Goshen (Gen 47:27).



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