Genesis 17:3

3 Abram fell facedown, and God said to him,

Genesis 17:3 in Other Translations

King James Version (KJV)
3 And Abram fell on his face: and God talked with him, saying,
English Standard Version (ESV)
3 Then Abram fell on his face. And God said to him,
New Living Translation (NLT)
3 At this, Abram fell face down on the ground. Then God said to him,
The Message Bible (MSG)
3 Overwhelmed, Abram fell flat on his face.
American Standard Version (ASV)
3 And Abram fell on his face: and God talked with him, saying,
GOD'S WORD Translation (GW)
3 Immediately, Abram bowed with his face touching the ground, and again God spoke to him,
Holman Christian Standard Bible (CSB)
3 Then Abram fell to the ground, and God spoke with him:
New International Reader's Version (NIRV)
3 Abram fell with his face to the ground. God said to him,

Genesis 17:3 Meaning and Commentary

Genesis 17:3

And Abram fell on his face
At the sight of so glorious a Person that appeared to him, and in reverence of his majesty, and as sensible of his unworthiness of such a visit, and of having such favours bestowed upon him; and not because he was not as yet circumcised, as the Targum of Jonathan expresses it; and so other Jewish F6 writers observe, that before he was circumcised he fell, when God spoke to him, but afterwards he sat and stood, ( Genesis 18:1 ) ; but it may be observed, that not only uncircumcised persons, as Balaam, ( Numbers 22:31 ) , in whom Jarchi instances, but circumcised ones, as Ezekiel, ( Ezekiel 1:28 ) , Joshua, ( Joshua 5:14 ) , and others, have fallen on their faces at a divine appearance:

and God talked with him;
after he was raised up, and was strengthened and encouraged to stand up before God, and hear what he had to say to him; for after this we read of his falling on his face again, ( Genesis 17:17 ) ; which shows that he had been erect, after he first fell on his face: saying; as follows.


F6 Jarchi in loc. Pirke Eliezer, ut supra. (c. 29.)

Genesis 17:3 In-Context

1 When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the LORD appeared to him and said, “I am God Almighty ; walk before me faithfully and be blameless.
2 Then I will make my covenant between me and you and will greatly increase your numbers.”
3 Abram fell facedown, and God said to him,
4 “As for me, this is my covenant with you: You will be the father of many nations.
5 No longer will you be called Abram ; your name will be Abraham, for I have made you a father of many nations.

Cross References 1

  • 1. ver 17; Genesis 18:2; Genesis 19:1; Genesis 33:3; Exodus 18:7; Numbers 14:5; Joshua 5:14; Joshua 7:6; Judges 13:20; Ezekiel 1:28; Ezekiel 3:23
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