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Hebrews 11:8-19

Context

11:8 By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place he would later receive as an inheritance, and he went out without understanding where he was going. 11:9 By faith he lived as a foreigner 1  in the promised land as though it were a foreign country, living in tents with Isaac and Jacob, who were fellow heirs 2  of the same promise. 11:10 For he was looking forward to the city with firm foundations, 3  whose architect and builder is God. 11:11 By faith, even though Sarah herself was barren and he was too old, 4  he received the ability to procreate, 5  because he regarded the one who had given the promise to be trustworthy. 11:12 So in fact children 6  were fathered by one man – and this one as good as dead – like the number of stars in the sky and like the innumerable grains of sand 7  on the seashore. 8  11:13 These all died in faith without receiving the things promised, 9  but they saw them in the distance and welcomed them and acknowledged that they were strangers and foreigners 10  on the earth. 11:14 For those who speak in such a way make it clear that they are seeking a homeland. 11:15 In fact, if they had been thinking of the land that they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. 11:16 But as it is, 11  they aspire to a better land, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore, God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them. 11:17 By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac. He had received the promises, 12  yet he was ready to offer up 13  his only son. 11:18 God had told him, “Through Isaac descendants will carry on your name,” 14  11:19 and he reasoned 15  that God could even raise him from the dead, and in a sense 16  he received him back from there.

1 tn Or “settled as a resident alien.”

2 tn Or “heirs with him.”

3 tn Grk “that has foundations.”

4 tn Grk “past the time of maturity.”

5 tn Grk “power to deposit seed.” Though it is not as likely, some construe this phrase to mean “power to conceive seed,” making the whole verse about Sarah: “by faith, even though Sarah herself was barren and too old, she received ability to conceive, because she regarded the one who had given the promise to be trustworthy.”

6 tn Grk “these”; in the translation the referent (children) has been specified for clarity.

7 tn Grk a collective “the sand.”

8 sn An allusion to Gen 22:17 (which itself goes back to Gen 15:5).

9 tn Grk “the promises,” referring to the things God promised, not to the pledges themselves.

10 tn Or “sojourners.”

11 tn Grk “now.”

12 tn Here “received the promises” refers to the pledges themselves, not to the things God promised.

13 tn Grk “he was offering up.” The tense of this verb indicates the attempt or readiness to sacrifice Isaac without the actual completion of the deed.

14 tn Grk “in Isaac seed will be named for you.”

sn A quotation from Gen 21:12.

15 tn Grk “having reasoned,” continuing the ideas of v. 17.

16 tn Grk “in/by a symbol.”



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