The First Book of Moses, Called Genesis

Chapter 18

The Lord appears to Abraham, who entertains angels, 1-8. Sarah is reproved for laughing at the promise of a son, 9-15. The destruction of Sodom is revealed to Abraham, 16-22. Abraham makes intercession for the inhabitants, 23-33.

1 And the LORD appeared to him in the plains of Mamre as he sat in the tent door in the heat of the day. 2 And he lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, three men stood by him. And when he saw them, he ran to meet them from the tent door and bowed himself toward the ground, 3 And said, "My Lord, if now I have found favor in your sight, do not pass away, I pray you, from your servant. 4 Let a little water, I pray you, be brought, and wash your feet and rest yourselves under the tree, 5 And I will bring a morsel of bread, and you may comfort your hearts. After that you shall pass on, for therefore you have come to your servant." And they said, "Do so, as you have said." 6 And Abraham hastened into the tent to Sarah and said, "Quickly make ready three measures of fine meal, knead it, and make cakes upon the hearth." 7 And Abraham ran to the herd, brought a calf tender and good, and gave it to a young man, and he hastened to dress it. 8 And he took butter, milk, and the calf which he had dressed and set it before them, and he stood by them under the tree, and they ate.

9 And they said to him, "Where is Sarah your wife?" And he said, "Behold, in the tent." 10 And he said, "I will certainly return to you according to the time of life, and behold, Sarah your wife shall have a son." And Sarah heard it in the tent door, which was behind him. 11 Now Abraham and Sarah were old and far advanced in age, and it ceased to be with Sarah after the manner of women. 12 Therefore, Sarah laughed within herself, saying, "After I have become old, shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also?" 13 And the LORD said to Abraham, "Why did Sarah laugh, saying, 'Shall I certainly bear a child, who am old?' 14 Is anything too hard for the LORD? At the time appointed I will return to you, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son." 15 Then Sarah denied, saying, "I did not laugh," for she was afraid. And he said, "No, but you did laugh."

16 And the men rose up from there and looked toward Sodom. And Abraham went with them to bring them on the way. 17 And the LORD said, "Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do, 18 Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? 19 For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they will keep the way of the LORD, to do justice and judgment, so that the LORD may bring upon Abraham that which he has spoken of him." 20 And the LORD said, "Because the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great and because their sin is very grievous, 21 I will go down now and see whether they have done altogether according to its cry which has come to me, and if not, I will know."

22 And the men turned their faces from there and went toward Sodom, but Abraham stood yet before the LORD. 23 And Abraham drew near and said, "Will you also destroy the righteous with the wicked? 24 Perhaps there are fifty righteous within the city. Will you also destroy and not spare the place for the fifty righteous who are in it? 25 That is far from you to do after this manner, to slay the righteous with the wicked, and that the righteous should be as the wicked. That is far from you. Shall the Judge of all the earth not do right?" 26 And the LORD said, "If I find in Sodom fifty righteous within the city, then I will spare all the place for their sakes." 27 And Abraham answered and said, "Behold now, I, who am dust and ashes, have taken upon myself to speak to the Lord. 28 Perhaps there will lack five of the fifty righteous. Will you destroy all the city for lack of five?" And he said, "If I find there forty-five, I will not destroy it." 29 And he spoke to him yet again, and said, "Perhaps there will be forty found there." And he said, "I will not do it for the forty's sake." 30 And he said, "Oh, do not let the Lord be angry, and I will speak. Perhaps there will be thirty found there." And he said, "I will not do it if I find thirty there." 31 And he said, "Behold now, I have taken upon myself to speak to the Lord. Perhaps there will be twenty found there." And he said, "I will not destroy it for the twenty's sake." 32 And he said, "Oh do not let the Lord be angry, and I will speak yet but this once. Perhaps ten will be found there." And he said, "I will not destroy it for ten's sake." 33 And the LORD went his way as soon as he had left communing with Abraham. And Abraham returned to his place.


Matthew Henry Commentary - Genesis, Chapter 18[➚]


[v.10] - Quoted in Romans 9:9.

[v.18] - Reference, Genesis 12:3, 22:18, 26:4.