17:16 I will bless her and will give you a son through her. I will bless her and she will become a mother of nations. 1 Kings of countries 2 will come from her!”
17:17 Then Abraham bowed down with his face to the ground and laughed 3 as he said to himself, 4 “Can 5 a son be born to a man who is a hundred years old? 6 Can Sarah 7 bear a child at the age of ninety?” 8 17:18 Abraham said to God, “O that 9 Ishmael might live before you!” 10
17:19 God said, “No, Sarah your wife is going to bear you a son, and you will name him Isaac. 11 I will confirm my covenant with him as a perpetual 12 covenant for his descendants after him. 17:20 As for Ishmael, I have heard you. 13 I will indeed bless him, make him fruitful, and give him a multitude of descendants. 14 He will become the father of twelve princes; 15 I will make him into a great nation. 17:21 But I will establish my covenant with Isaac, whom Sarah will bear to you at this set time next year.”
1 tn Heb “she will become nations.”
2 tn Heb “peoples.”
3 sn Laughed. The Hebrew verb used here provides the basis for the naming of Isaac: “And he laughed” is וַיִּצְחָק (vayyitskhaq); the name “Isaac” is יִצְחָק (yitskhaq), “he laughs.” Abraham’s (and Sarah’s, see 18:12) laughter signals disbelief, but when the boy is born, the laughter signals surprise and joy.
4 tn Heb “And he fell on his face and laughed and said in his heart.”
5 tn The imperfect verbal form here carries a potential nuance, as it expresses the disbelief of Abraham.
6 tn Heb “to the son of a hundred years.”
7 sn It is important to note that even though Abraham staggers at the announcement of the birth of a son, finding it almost too incredible, he nonetheless calls his wife Sarah, the new name given to remind him of the promise of God (v. 15).
8 tn Heb “the daughter of ninety years.”
9 tn The wish is introduced with the Hebrew particle לוּ (lu), “O that.”
10 tn Or “live with your blessing.”
12 tn Or “as an eternal.”
14 tn Heb “And I will multiply him exceedingly, exceedingly.” The repetition is emphatic.
15 tn For a discussion of the Hebrew word translated “princes,” see E. A. Speiser, “Background and Function of the Biblical Nasi’,” CBQ 25 (1963): 111-17.