Genesis 16:11 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 16:11, NIV: "The angel of the LORD also said to her: 'You are now pregnant and you will give birth to a son. You shall name him Ishmael, for the LORD has heard of your misery."

Genesis 16:11, ESV: "And the angel of the LORD said to her, “Behold, you are pregnant and shall bear a son. You shall call his name Ishmael, because the LORD has listened to your affliction."

Genesis 16:11, KJV: "And the angel of the LORD said unto her, Behold, thou art with child, and shalt bear a son, and shalt call his name Ishmael; because the LORD hath heard thy affliction."

Genesis 16:11, NASB: "The angel of the LORD said to her further, 'Behold, you are pregnant, And you will give birth to a son; And you shall name him Ishmael, Because the LORD has heard your affliction."

Genesis 16:11, NLT: "And the angel also said, 'You are now pregnant and will give birth to a son. You are to name him Ishmael (which means 'God hears'), for the LORD has heard your cry of distress."

Genesis 16:11, CSB: "The angel of the LORD said to her, "You have conceived and will have a son. You will name him Ishmael, for the LORD has heard your cry of affliction."

What does Genesis 16:11 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

In the previous verse, the angel of the Lord—most likely a pre-incarnate Christ Himself—made a surprising promise to the servant girl carrying Abram's first child. This pregnancy is the result of Abram and Sarai scheming to speed up God's fulfillment of His promises to Abram. While this child is not the heir God intends to give Abram, the angel of the Lord still has good news for Hagar: her offspring would become so numerous as to be uncountable. This is very similar to the promise given to Abram regarding his eventual descendants.

Here, that promise is followed by a formal prophecy, something occasionally referred to as a "birth oracle" and often delivered by angels. First, the angel of the Lord reveals that Hagar's child is a boy, and she will call him Ishmael. Ishmael means "God has heard." In this case, it meant that the Lord listened to Hagar's affliction and stepped in to help.

The oracle continues in the following verse.