Genesis 23:7 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 23:7, NIV: "Then Abraham rose and bowed down before the people of the land, the Hittites."

Genesis 23:7, ESV: "Abraham rose and bowed to the Hittites, the people of the land."

Genesis 23:7, KJV: "And Abraham stood up, and bowed himself to the people of the land, even to the children of Heth."

Genesis 23:7, NASB: "So Abraham stood up and bowed to the people of the land, the sons of Heth."

Genesis 23:7, NLT: "Then Abraham bowed low before the Hittites"

Genesis 23:7, CSB: "Then Abraham rose and bowed down to the Hethites, the people of the land."

What does Genesis 23:7 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

In response to Abraham's request for property in Hebron to use as a permanent burying place for his people, the Hittites had graciously acknowledged Abraham's status among them and offered to share their own tombs with him. Abraham, however, intends to secure a permanent piece of property as his own.

In response to their answer, Abraham stands and bows before the Hittites in a sign of great respect. Throughout the negotiation that will follow, both Abraham and the Hittites will remain very respectful to each other. While politeness was an extremely important part of that culture, this exchange is particularly warm. Abraham seems to be going out of his way to be cordial with the Hittites, and they clearly respect him enough to return that respect.