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Genesis 21:15-16

Context
21:15 When the water in the skin was gone, she shoved 1  the child under one of the shrubs. 21:16 Then she went and sat down by herself across from him at quite a distance, about a bowshot 2  away; for she thought, 3  “I refuse to watch the child die.” 4  So she sat across from him and wept uncontrollably. 5 

1 tn Heb “threw,” but the child, who was now thirteen years old, would not have been carried, let alone thrown under a bush. The exaggerated language suggests Ishmael is limp from dehydration and is being abandoned to die. See G. J. Wenham, Genesis (WBC), 2:85.

2 sn A bowshot would be a distance of about a hundred yards (ninety meters).

3 tn Heb “said.”

4 tn Heb “I will not look on the death of the child.” The cohortative verbal form (note the negative particle אַל,’al) here expresses her resolve to avoid the stated action.

5 tn Heb “and she lifted up her voice and wept” (that is, she wept uncontrollably). The LXX reads “he” (referring to Ishmael) rather than “she” (referring to Hagar), but this is probably an attempt to harmonize this verse with the following one, which refers to the boy’s cries.



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