Genesis 20:7 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 20:7, NIV: "Now return the man's wife, for he is a prophet, and he will pray for you and you will live. But if you do not return her, you may be sure that you and all who belong to you will die.'"

Genesis 20:7, ESV: "Now then, return the man’s wife, for he is a prophet, so that he will pray for you, and you shall live. But if you do not return her, know that you shall surely die, you and all who are yours.”"

Genesis 20:7, KJV: "Now therefore restore the man his wife; for he is a prophet, and he shall pray for thee, and thou shalt live: and if thou restore her not, know thou that thou shalt surely die, thou, and all that are thine."

Genesis 20:7, NASB: "Now then, return the man’s wife, for he is a prophet, and he will pray for you and you will live. But if you do not return her, know that you will certainly die, you and all who are yours.'"

Genesis 20:7, NLT: "Now return the woman to her husband, and he will pray for you, for he is a prophet. Then you will live. But if you don't return her to him, you can be sure that you and all your people will die.'"

Genesis 20:7, CSB: "Now return the man's wife, for he is a prophet, and he will pray for you and you will live. But if you do not return her, know that you will certainly die, you and all who are yours.""

What does Genesis 20:7 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

God has appeared to Abimelech, king of Gerar, in a nighttime dream. God has stated flatly that Abimelech will die from his current illness for taking Sarah as his wife, since she is a married woman (Genesis 20:3; 20:17). When Abimelech protested that he did not know this, God agreed that Abimelech acted with integrity and had not yet touched Sarah, albeit because of God's own intervention (Genesis 20:6).

Now God gives Abimelech a choice about whether he will live or not. He is to return Sarah to Abraham. When he does so, Abraham will pray, and Abimelech and his household will live. Otherwise, they will all die.

This is the first use of the Hebrew word for prophet, nabiy', in the Old Testament. God considered Abraham to be a prophet, one who speaks for God and to God on behalf of others. Abraham has already approached God on behalf of Lot and the people of Sodom in Genesis 18.

Apparently, this is the end of God's conversation with Abimelech in a dream. When morning comes, Abimelech will quickly act on what the Lord has said to him.