Genesis 20; Genesis 21; Genesis 22; Matthew 6:19-34

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Genesis 20

1 Abraham moved to the Negev and settled between Kadesh and Shur. While he was living in Gerar,
2 Abraham told everyone that his wife Sarah was his sister. So King Abimelech of Gerar sent men to take Sarah.
3 God came to Abimelech in a dream one night and said to him, "You're going to die because of the woman that you've taken! She's a married woman!"
4 Abimelech hadn't come near her, so he asked, "Lord, will you destroy a nation even if it's innocent?
5 Didn't he tell me himself, 'She's my sister,' and didn't she even say, 'He's my brother'? I did this in all innocence and with a clear conscience."
6 "Yes, I know that you did this with a clear conscience," God said to him in the dream. "In fact, I kept you from sinning against me. That's why I didn't let you touch her.
7 Give the man's wife back to him now, because he's a prophet. He will pray for you, and you will live. But if you don't give her back, you and all who belong to you are doomed to die."
8 Early in the morning Abimelech called together all his officials. He told them about all of this, and they were terrified.
9 Then Abimelech called for Abraham and asked him, "What have you done to us? How have I sinned against you that you would bring such a serious sin on me and my kingdom? You shouldn't have done this to me."
10 Abimelech also asked Abraham, "What were you thinking when you did this?"
11 Abraham said, "I thought that because there are no God-fearing people in this place, I'd be killed because of my wife.
12 Besides, she is my sister--my father's daughter but not my mother's. She is also my wife.
13 When God had me leave my father's home and travel around, I said to her, 'Do me a favor: Wherever we go, say that I'm your brother.'"
14 Then Abimelech took sheep, cattle, and male and female slaves and gave them to Abraham. He also gave his wife Sarah back to him.
15 Abimelech said, "Look, here's my land. Live anywhere you like."
16 He said to Sarah, "Don't forget, I've given your brother 25 pounds of silver. This is to silence any criticism against you from everyone with you. You're completely cleared."
17 Abraham prayed to God, and God healed Abimelech, his wife, and his female slaves so that they could have children.
18 (The LORD had made it impossible for any woman in Abimelech's household to have children because of Abraham's wife Sarah.)

Genesis 21

1 The LORD came to help Sarah and did for her what he had promised.
2 So she became pregnant, and at the exact time God had promised, she gave birth to a son for Abraham in his old age.
3 Abraham named his newborn son Isaac.
4 When Isaac was eight days old, Abraham circumcised him as God had commanded.
5 Abraham was 100 years old when his son Isaac was born.
6 Sarah said, "God has brought me laughter, and everyone who hears about this will laugh with me.
7 Who would have predicted to Abraham that Sarah would nurse children? Yet, I have given him a son in his old age."
8 The child grew and was weaned. On the day Isaac was weaned, Abraham held a big feast.
9 Sarah saw that Abraham's son by Hagar the Egyptian was laughing at Isaac.
10 She said to Abraham, "Get rid of this slave and her son, because this slave's son must never share the inheritance with my son Isaac."
11 Abraham was upset by this because of his son Ishmael.
12 But God said to Abraham, "Don't be upset about the boy and your slave. Listen to what Sarah says because through Isaac your descendants will carry on your name.
13 Besides, I will make the slave's son into a nation also, because he is your child."
14 Early the next morning Abraham took bread and a container of water and gave them to Hagar, putting them on her shoulder. He also gave her the boy and sent her on her way. So she left and wandered around in the desert near Beersheba.
15 When the water in the container was gone, she put the boy under one of the bushes.
16 Then she went about as far away as an arrow can be shot and sat down. She said to herself, "I don't want to watch the boy die." So she sat down and sobbed loudly.
17 God heard the boy crying, and the Messenger of God called to Hagar from heaven. "What's the matter, Hagar?" he asked her. "Don't be afraid! God has heard the boy crying from the bushes.
18 Come on, help the boy up! Take him by the hand, because I'm going to make him into a great nation."
19 God opened her eyes. Then she saw a well. She filled the container with water and gave the boy a drink.
20 God was with the boy as he grew up. He lived in the desert and became a skilled archer.
21 He lived in the desert of Paran, and his mother got him a wife from Egypt.
22 At that time Abimelech, accompanied by Phicol, the commander of his army, said to Abraham, "God is with you in everything you do.
23 Now, swear an oath to me here in front of God that you will never cheat me, my children, or my descendants. Show me and the land where you've been living the same kindness that I have shown you."
24 Abraham said, "I so swear."
25 Then Abraham complained to Abimelech about a well which Abimelech's servants had seized.
26 Abimelech replied, "I don't know who did this. You didn't tell me, and I didn't hear about it until today."
27 Abraham took some sheep and cattle and gave them to Abimelech, and the two of them made an agreement.
28 Then Abraham set apart seven female lambs from the flock.
29 Abimelech asked him, "What is the meaning of these seven female lambs you have set apart?"
30 Abraham answered, "Accept these lambs from me so that they may be proof that I dug this well."
31 This is why that place is called Beersheba, because both of them swore an oath there.
32 After they made the treaty at Beersheba, Abimelech and Phicol, the commander of his army, left and went back to the land of the Philistines.
33 Abraham planted a tamarisk tree at Beersheba and worshiped the LORD, the Everlasting God, there.
34 Abraham lived a long time in the land of the Philistines.

Genesis 22

1 Later God tested Abraham and called to him, "Abraham!" "Yes, here I am!" he answered.
2 God said, "Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to Moriah. Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains that I will show you."
3 Early the next morning Abraham saddled his donkey. He took with him two of his servants and his son Isaac. When he had cut the wood for the burnt offering, he set out for the place that God had told him about.
4 Two days later Abraham saw the place in the distance.
5 Then Abraham said to his servants, "You stay here with the donkey while the boy and I go over there. We'll worship. After that we'll come back to you."
6 Then Abraham took the wood for the burnt offering and gave it to his son Isaac. Abraham carried the burning coals and the knife. The two of them went on together.
7 Isaac spoke up and said, "Father?" "Yes, Son?" Abraham answered. Isaac asked, "We have the burning coals and the wood, but where is the lamb for the burnt offering?"
8 Abraham answered, "God will provide a lamb for the burnt offering, Son." The two of them went on together.
9 When they came to the place that God had told him about, Abraham built the altar and arranged the wood on it. Then he tied up his son Isaac and laid him on top of the wood on the altar.
10 Next, Abraham picked up the knife and took it in his hand to sacrifice his son.
11 But the Messenger of the LORD called to him from heaven and said, "Abraham! Abraham!" "Yes?" he answered.
12 "Do not lay a hand on the boy," he said. "Do not do anything to him. Now I know that you fear God, because you did not refuse to give me your son, your only son."
13 When Abraham looked around, he saw a ram behind him caught by its horns in a bush. So Abraham took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering in place of his son.
14 Abraham named that place The LORD Will Provide. It is still said today, "On the mountain of the LORD it will be provided."
15 Then the Messenger of the LORD called to Abraham from heaven a second time
16 and said, "I am taking an oath on my own name, declares the LORD, that because you have done this and have not refused to give me your son, your only son,
17 I will certainly bless you and make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and the grains of sand on the seashore. Your descendants will take possession of their enemies' cities.
18 Through your descendant all the nations of the earth will be blessed, because you have obeyed me."
19 Then Abraham returned to his servants, and together they left for Beersheba. Abraham remained in Beersheba.
20 Later Abraham was told, "Milcah has given birth to these children of your brother Nahor:
21 Uz (the firstborn), Buz (his brother), Kemuel (father of Aram),
22 Kesed, Hazo, Pildash, Jidlaph, and Bethuel.
23 Bethuel is the father of Rebekah. Milcah had these eight sons by Abraham's brother Nahor.
24 Nahor's concubine, whose name was Reumah, had the following children: Tebah, Gaham, Tahash, and Maacah."

Matthew 6:19-34

19 "Stop storing up treasures for yourselves on earth, where moths and rust destroy and thieves break in and steal.
20 Instead, store up treasures for yourselves in heaven, where moths and rust don't destroy and thieves don't break in and steal.
21 Your heart will be where your treasure is.
22 "The eye is the lamp of the body. So if your eye is unclouded, your whole body will be full of light.
23 But if your eye is evil, your whole body will be full of darkness. If the light in you is darkness, how dark it will be!
24 "No one can serve two masters. He will hate the first master and love the second, or he will be devoted to the first and despise the second. You cannot serve God and wealth.
25 "So I tell you to stop worrying about what you will eat, drink, or wear. Isn't life more than food and the body more than clothes?
26 "Look at the birds. They don't plant, harvest, or gather the harvest into barns. Yet, your heavenly Father feeds them. Aren't you worth more than they?
27 "Can any of you add a single hour to your life by worrying?
28 "And why worry about clothes? Notice how the flowers grow in the field. They never work or spin yarn for clothes.
29 But I say that not even Solomon in all his majesty was dressed like one of these flowers.
30 That's the way God clothes the grass in the field. Today it's alive, and tomorrow it's thrown into an incinerator. So how much more will he clothe you people who have so little faith?
31 "Don't ever worry and say, 'What are we going to eat?' or 'What are we going to drink?' or 'What are we going to wear?'
32 Everyone is concerned about these things, and your heavenly Father certainly knows you need all of them.
33 But first, be concerned about his kingdom and what has his approval. Then all these things will be provided for you.
34 "So don't ever worry about tomorrow. After all, tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.