Genesis 18:32 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 18:32, NIV: "Then he said, 'May the Lord not be angry, but let me speak just once more. What if only ten can be found there?' He answered, 'For the sake of ten, I will not destroy it.'"

Genesis 18:32, ESV: "Then he said, “Oh let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak again but this once. Suppose ten are found there.” He answered, “For the sake of ten I will not destroy it.”"

Genesis 18:32, KJV: "And he said, Oh let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak yet but this once: Peradventure ten shall be found there. And he said, I will not destroy it for ten's sake."

Genesis 18:32, NASB: "Then he said, 'Oh may the Lord not be angry, and I shall speak only this once: suppose ten are found there?' And He said, 'I will not destroy it on account of the ten.'"

Genesis 18:32, NLT: "Finally, Abraham said, 'Lord, please don't be angry with me if I speak one more time. Suppose only ten are found there?' And the LORD replied, 'Then I will not destroy it for the sake of the ten.'"

Genesis 18:32, CSB: "Then he said, "Let my lord not be angry, and I will speak one more time. Suppose ten are found there?" He answered, "I will not destroy it on account of ten.""

What does Genesis 18:32 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

After God indicates His intent to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah for their sins, Abraham tries to convince God to consider the righteous people who might live there. In truth, God already knows that Sodom is doomed, and has no need to justify Himself to Abraham. However, using human language, He has allowed Abraham to discuss sparing the city if a small number of people there are not involved in the city's pervasive sins (Genesis 13:13; Ezekiel 16:49–50).

Abraham concludes his negotiation with the Lord here, with another request that the Lord not be angry with him, and a promise not to push any further after this. If the Lord finds 10 righteous people in Sodom, will He spare the city for the sake of those 10 people? This particular number was probably Abraham's goal all along, with the intent of sparing his nephew, Lot, from death in the judgment against Sodom.

Once more, the Lord agrees to Abraham's request. He will not destroy the city if 10 righteous people are found. Of course, the Lord already knows how many righteous people He will find in Sodom and Gomorrah. He knows what's coming. Still, He has been gracious and kind to endure Abraham's pointed questions and requests. In the end, Abraham will know that the Lord is both just in His judgment and merciful in His approach.