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Genesis 15:2 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— And Abram said, O Lord Jehovah, what wilt thou give me, seeing I go childless, and he that shall be possessor of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— And Abram said, Lord GOD, what wilt thou give me, seeing I go childless, and the steward of my house [is] this Eliezer of Damascus?
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— Abram said, “O Lord GOD, what will You give me, since I am childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?”
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— And Abram said, Lord GOD, what wilt thou give me, seeing I go childless, and the steward of my house [is] this Eliezer of Damascus?
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— And Abram said, Lord Jehovah, what wilt thou give me? seeing I go childless, and the steward of my house is this Eliezer of Damascus.
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— And Abram said, My Lord Yahweh, what canst thou give me, when, I, am going on childless,—and, the heir of my house, is Eliezer, of Damascus.
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— And Abram saith, 'Lord Jehovah, what dost Thou give to me, and I am going childless? and an acquired son in my house is Demmesek Eliezer.'
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— And Abram said: Lord God, what wilt thou give me? I shall go without children: and the son of the steward of my house is this Damascus Eliezer.
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— And Abram said, Lord GOD, what wilt thou giue me, seeing I goe childlesse? and the steward of my house [is] this Eliezer of Damascus.
Brenton Greek Septuagint (LXX, Restored Names)
— And Abram said, Master [and] Lord, what wilt thou give me? whereas I am departing without a child, but the son of Masek my home-born female slave, this Eliezer of Damascus [is mine heir].
Full Hebrew Names / Holy Name KJV (2008) [2] [3]
— And Avram said, Adonay Yahweh, what wilt thou give me, seeing I go childless, and the steward of my house [is] this Eliezer of Dammaseq?

Strong's Numbers & Hebrew NamesHebrew Old TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
And Avrm אַברָם 87
{0087} Prime
Contracted from H0048; high father; Abram, the original name of Abraham.
said, 559
{0559} Prime
A primitive root; to say (used with great latitude).
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
ny אֲדֹנָי 136
{0136} Prime
An emphatic form of H0113; the Lord (used as a proper name of God only).
Yhw יָהוֶה, 3069
{3069} Prime
A variation of H3068 (used after H0136, and pronounced by Jews as H0430, in order to prevent the repetition of the same sound, since they elsewhere pronounce H3068 as H0136).
what x4100
(4100) Complement
A primitive particle; properly interrogitive what? (including how?, why? and when?); but also exclamations like what! (including how!), or indefinitely what (including whatever, and even relatively that which); often used with prefixes in various adverbial or conjugational senses.
wilt thou give 5414
{5414} Prime
A primitive root; to give, used with great latitude of application (put, make, etc.).
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
me, seeing I x595
(0595) Complement
A primitive pronoun; I.
go 1980
{1980} Prime
Akin to H3212; a primitive root; to walk (in a great variety of applications, literally and figuratively).
<8802> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Participle Active (See H8814)
Count - 5386
childless, 6185
{6185} Prime
From H6209; bare, that is, destitute (of children).
and the steward 1121
{1121} Prime
From H1129; a son (as a builder of the family name), in the widest sense (of literal and figurative relationship, including grandson, subject, nation, quality or condition, etc., (like H0001, H0251, etc.).
{4943} Prime
From an unused root meaning to hold; possession.
of my house 1004
{1004} Prime
Probably from H1129 abbreviated; a house (in the greatest variation of applications, especially family, etc.).
[is] this 1931
{1931} Prime
The second form is the feminine beyond the Pentateuch; a primitive word, the third person pronoun singular, he (she or it); only expressed when emphatic or without a verb; also (intensively) self, or (especially with the article) the same; sometimes (as demonstrative) this or that; occasionally (instead of copula) as or are.
l`ezer אֱלִיעֶזֶר 461
{0461} Prime
From H0410 and H5828; God of help; Eliezer, the name of a Damascene and of ten Israelites.
of Damm$ek דַּמָּשֶׂק? 1834
{1834} Prime
Of foreign origin; Damascus, a city of Syria.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

Genesis 15:2

_ _ Lord God, what wilt thou give? — To his mind the declaration, “I am thy exceeding great reward” [Genesis 15:1], had but one meaning, or was viewed but in one particular light, as bearing on the fulfilment of the promise, and he was still experiencing the sickness of hope deferred.

Matthew Henry's Commentary

Genesis 15:2-6

_ _ We have here the assurance given to Abram of a numerous offspring which should descend from him, in which observe,

_ _ I. Abram's repeated complaint, Genesis 15:2, Genesis 15:3. This was that which gave occasion to this promise. The great affliction that sat heavy upon Abram was the want of a child; and the complaint of this he here pours out before the Lord, and shows before him his trouble, Psalms 142:2. Note, Though we must never complain of God, yet we have leave to complain to him, and to be large and particular in the statement of our grievances; and it is some ease to a burdened spirit to open its case to a faithful and compassionate friend: such a friend God is, whose ear is always open. Now his complaint is four-fold: — 1. That he had no child (Genesis 15:3): Behold, to me thou hast given no seed; not only no son, but no seed; if he had had a daughter, from her the promised Messiah might have come, who was to be the seed of the woman; but he had neither son nor daughter. He seems to lay an emphasis on that, to me. His neighbours were full of children, his servants had children born in his house. “But to me,” he complains, “thou hast given none;” and yet God had told him he should be a favourite above all. Note, Those that are written childless must see God writing them so. Again, God often withholds those temporal comforts from his own children which he gives plentifully to others that are strangers to him. 2. That he was never likely to have any, intimated in that I go, or “I am going, childless, going into years, going down the hill apace; nay, I am going out of the world, going the way of all the earth. I die childless,” so the Septuagint, “I leave the world, and leave no child behind me.” 3. That his servants were for the present and were likely to be to him instead of sons. While he lived, the steward of his house was Eliezer of Damascus; to him he committed the care of his family and estate, who might be faithful, but only as a servant, not as a son. When he died, one born in his house would be his heir, and would bear rule over all that for which he had laboured, Ecclesiastes 2:18, Ecclesiastes 2:19, Ecclesiastes 2:21. God had already told him that he would make of him a great nation (Genesis 12:2), and his seed as the dust of the earth (Genesis 13:16); but he had left him in doubt whether it should be his seed begotten or his seed adopted, by a son of his loins or only a son of his house. “Now, Lord,” says Abram, “if it be only an adopted son it must be one of my servants, which will reflect disgrace upon the promised seed, that is to descend from him.” Note, While promised mercies are delayed our unbelief and impatience are apt to conclude them denied. 4. That the want of a son was so great a trouble to him that it took away the comfort of all his enjoyments: “Lord, what wilt thou give me? All is nothing to me, if I have not a son.” Now, If we suppose that Abram looked no further than a temporal comfort, this complaint was culpable. God had, by his providence, given him some good things, and more by his promise; and yet Abram makes no account of them, because he has not a son. It did very ill become the father of the faithful to say, What wilt thou give me, seeing I go childless, immediately after God had said, I am thy shield, and thy exceedingly great reward. Note, Those do not rightly value the advantages of their covenant-relation to God and interest in him who do not think them sufficient whatever. But, (2.) If we suppose that Abram, herein, had a eye to the promised seed, the importunity of his desire was very commendable: all was nothing to him, if he had not the earnest of that great blessing, and an assurance of his relation to the Messiah, of which God had already encouraged him to maintain the expectation. He has wealth, and victory, and honour; but, while he is kept in the dark about the main matter, it is all nothing to him. Note, Till we have some comfortable evidence of our interest in Christ and the new covenant, we should not rest satisfied with any thing else. “This, and the other, I have; but what will all this avail me, if I go Christless?” Yet thus far the complaint was culpable, that there was some diffidence of the promise at the bottom of it, and a weariness of waiting God's time. Note, True believers sometimes find it hard to reconcile God's promises and his providences, when they seem to disagree.

_ _ II. God's gracious answer to this complaint. To the first part of the complaint (Genesis 15:2) God gave no immediate answer, because there was something of fretfulness in it; but, when he renews his address somewhat more calmly (Genesis 15:3), God answered him graciously. Note, If we continue instant in prayer, and yet pray with a humble submission to the divine will, we shall not seek in vain. 1. God gave him an express promise of a son, Genesis 15:4. This that is born in thy house shall not be thy heir, as thou fearest, but one that shall come forth out of thy own bowels shall be thy heir. Note, (1.) God makes heirs; he says, “This shall not, and this shall;” and whatever men devise and design, in settling their estates, God's counsel shall stand. (2.) God is often better to us than our own fears, and gives the mercy we had long despaired of. 2. To affect him the more with this promise, he took him out, and showed him the stars (this vision being early in the morning, before day), and then tells him, So shall thy seed be, Genesis 15:5. (1.) So numerous; the stars seem innumerable to a common eye: Abram feared he should have no child at all, but God assured him that the descendants from his loins should be so many as not to be numbered. (2.) So illustrious, resembling the stars in splendour; for to them pertained the glory, Romans 9:4. Abram's seed, according to his flesh, were like the dust of the earth (Genesis 13:16), but his spiritual seed are like the stars of heaven, not only numerous, but glorious, and very precious.

_ _ III. Abram's firm belief of the promise God now made him, and God's favourable acceptance of his faith, Genesis 15:6. 1. He believed in the Lord, that is, he believed the truth of that promise which God had now made him, resting upon the irresistible power and the inviolable faithfulness of him that made it. Hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good? Note, Those who would have the comfort of the promises must mix faith with the promises. See how the apostle magnifies this faith of Abram, and makes it a standing example, Romans 4:19-21. He was not weak in faith; he staggered not at the promise; he was strong in faith; he was fully persuaded. The Lord work such a faith in every one of us! Some think that his believing in the Lord respected, not only the Lord promising, but the Lord promised, the Lord Jesus, the Mediator of the new covenant. He believed in him, that is, received and embraced the divine revelation concerning him, and rejoiced to see his day, though at so great a distance, John 8:56. 2. God counted it to him for righteousness; that is, upon the score of this he was accepted of God, and, as the rest of the patriarchs, by faith he obtained witness that he was righteous, Hebrews 11:4. This is urged in the New Testament to prove that we are justified by faith without the works of the law (Romans 4:3; Galatians 3:6); for Abram was so justified while he was yet uncircumcised. If Abram, that was so rich in good works was not justified by them, but by his faith, much less can we, that are so poor in them. This faith, which was imputed to Abram for righteousness, had lately struggled with unbelief (Genesis 15:2), and, coming off a conqueror, it was thus crowned, thus honoured. Note, A fiducial practical acceptance of, and dependence upon, God's promise of grace and glory, in and through Christ, is that which, according to the tenour of the new covenant, gives us a right to all the blessings contained in that promise. All believers are justified as Abram was, and it was his faith that was counted to him for righteousness.

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

[[no comment]]

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

Genesis 15:2

And Abram said, (a) Lord GOD, what wilt thou give me, seeing I go childless, and the steward of my house [is] this Eliezer of Damascus?

(a) His fear was not only lest he should not have children, but lest the promise of the blessed seed should not be accomplished in him.

Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance

Genesis 12:1-3 Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee: ... And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.


Genesis 25:21 And Isaac intreated the LORD for his wife, because she [was] barren: and the LORD was intreated of him, and Rebekah his wife conceived.
Genesis 30:1-2 And when Rachel saw that she bare Jacob no children, Rachel envied her sister; and said unto Jacob, Give me children, or else I die. ... And Jacob's anger was kindled against Rachel: and he said, [Am] I in God's stead, who hath withheld from thee the fruit of the womb?
1 Samuel 1:11 And she vowed a vow, and said, O LORD of hosts, if thou wilt indeed look on the affliction of thine handmaid, and remember me, and not forget thine handmaid, but wilt give unto thine handmaid a man child, then I will give him unto the LORD all the days of his life, and there shall no razor come upon his head.
Psalms 127:3 Lo, children [are] an heritage of the LORD: [and] the fruit of the womb [is his] reward.
Proverbs 13:12 Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but [when] the desire cometh, [it is] a tree of life.
Isaiah 56:5 Even unto them will I give in mine house and within my walls a place and a name better than of sons and of daughters: I will give them an everlasting name, that shall not be cut off.
Acts 7:5 And he gave him none inheritance in it, no, not [so much as] to set his foot on: yet he promised that he would give it to him for a possession, and to his seed after him, when [as yet] he had no child.


Genesis 24:2 And Abraham said unto his eldest servant of his house, that ruled over all that he had, Put, I pray thee, thy hand under my thigh:
Genesis 24:10 And the servant took ten camels of the camels of his master, and departed; for all the goods of his master [were] in his hand: and he arose, and went to Mesopotamia, unto the city of Nahor.
Genesis 39:4-6 And Joseph found grace in his sight, and he served him: and he made him overseer over his house, and all [that] he had he put into his hand. ... And he left all that he had in Joseph's hand; and he knew not ought he had, save the bread which he did eat. And Joseph was [a] goodly [person], and well favoured.
Genesis 39:9 [There is] none greater in this house than I; neither hath he kept back any thing from me but thee, because thou [art] his wife: how then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?
Genesis 43:19 And they came near to the steward of Joseph's house, and they communed with him at the door of the house,
Genesis 44:1 And he commanded the steward of his house, saying, Fill the men's sacks [with] food, as much as they can carry, and put every man's money in his sack's mouth.
Proverbs 17:2 A wise servant shall have rule over a son that causeth shame, and shall have part of the inheritance among the brethren.
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Gn 12:1; 24:2, 10; 25:21; 30:1; 39:4, 9; 43:19; 44:1. 1S 1:11. Ps 127:3. Pv 13:12; 17:2. Is 56:5. Ac 7:5.

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