Genesis 18:10 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 18:10, NIV: "Then one of them said, 'I will surely return to you about this time next year, and Sarah your wife will have a son.' Now Sarah was listening at the entrance to the tent, which was behind him."

Genesis 18:10, ESV: "The LORD said, “I will surely return to you about this time next year, and Sarah your wife shall have a son.” And Sarah was listening at the tent door behind him."

Genesis 18:10, KJV: "And he said, I will certainly return unto thee according to the time of life; and, lo, Sarah thy wife shall have a son. And Sarah heard it in the tent door, which was behind him."

Genesis 18:10, NASB: "He said, 'I will certainly return to you at this time next year; and behold, your wife Sarah will have a son.' And Sarah was listening at the tent door, which was behind him."

Genesis 18:10, NLT: "Then one of them said, 'I will return to you about this time next year, and your wife, Sarah, will have a son!' Sarah was listening to this conversation from the tent."

Genesis 18:10, CSB: "The LORD said, "I will certainly come back to you in about a year's time, and your wife Sarah will have a son!" Now Sarah was listening at the entrance of the tent behind him."

What does Genesis 18:10 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Abraham has been entertaining three strangers who arrived mysteriously outside of his tent. He hurried to provide a royal feast for them. It's unclear whether Abraham understood clearly that one of the men was the Lord in human form before this moment, but now the Lord will reveal Himself completely. In the prior verse, the visitors asked where Sarah was. Knowing that these men are God and two angels, this question is really for Abraham's benefit, not their own.

Here, God speaks to Abraham about Sarah with the full knowledge that she is listening. The Lord repeats what He has said to Abraham in the previous chapter. This time, though, He speaks in a way that Sarah will be sure to hear. God announces, and Sarah clearly hears, that she will have a son by this time next year, when the Lord plans a return visit. Hearing such an announcement would clearly confirm for Abraham that this was the Lord who had made the same promise to him in the previous chapter.

Sarah, though, seems to be hearing this promise for the first time. Most likely, Abraham had not told her what God had revealed to him in the prior encounter. Sarah's initial reaction will be similar to Abraham's. Given her lifelong barrenness and advanced age, she will laugh at the suggestion of having a natural-born child.