What does Genesis 15:2 mean?
ESV: But Abram said, “O Lord GOD, what will you give me, for I continue childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?”
NIV: But Abram said, 'Sovereign LORD, what can you give me since I remain childless and the one who will inherit my estate is Eliezer of Damascus?'
NASB: But Abram said, 'Lord God, what will You give me, since I am childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?'
CSB: But Abram said, "Lord God, what can you give me, since I am childless and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus? "
NLT: But Abram replied, 'O Sovereign Lord, what good are all your blessings when I don’t even have a son? Since you’ve given me no children, Eliezer of Damascus, a servant in my household, will inherit all my wealth.
KJV: And Abram said, Lord GOD, what wilt thou give me, seeing I go childless, and the steward of my house is this Eliezer of Damascus?
Verse Commentary:
Up to this point in Abram's relationship with God, we have seen him silently receive the promise that his descendants would become a great nation. Now, after receiving another assurance, Abram speaks back to God. His current heir is a servant, not a son. He boldly—but respectfully—says to the Lord, "What will you give me?" Though it sounds like a complaint, Abram's question is built on his faith in God's power and promises. Abram believes God, but he cannot yet see a path to the things God has promised. Instead of ceasing to believe, Abram takes the opportunity to ask his hard question to the source of his hope.

Sometimes asking a hard question in prayer is the most faithful step a believer can take. Acknowledging our own limitations to God, while asking for His wisdom, is a much better approach than suffering in silence or ignorance. At times, admitting that we cannot understand God's plan is part of submitting ourselves to it. As we'll see through Abram's example, God is always fully faithful to keep His Word.
Verse Context:
Genesis 15:1–21 falls between Abram's heroic rescue of Lot in Genesis 14 and his less-than-heroic choice to have a child with his wife's servant in chapter 16. Chapter 15 features Abram's hard questions to the Lord about how the lofty promises of uncountable descendants and possession of the land will be kept. God responds, in part, by formalizing His covenant promises to Abram with an elaborate ritual. He also reveals to Abram details about the difficult circumstances his descendants will face before they come back to take possession of the land ''in the fourth generation.''
Chapter Summary:
Genesis 15 consists entirely of a long encounter between the Lord and Abram. When the ''word of the Lord'' comes to Abram in a vision to bring reassurance of God's support for him, Abram takes the opportunity to press God with questions. Abram asks both about his childlessness and how he can know he will one day possess the land of Canaan. God responds, and Abram believes. God's response includes leading Abram through a covenant ritual involving slaughtered animals, as well as a prophecy about the future of Abram's descendants before the time will come to occupy the Promised Land.
Chapter Context:
Where Genesis 14 was an action-packed story of war and rescue, Genesis 15 consists of a single conversational encounter between the Lord and Abram. This concludes with the formalizing of God's covenant promises to Abram in a dramatic covenant ritual. Abram respectfully asks the Lord some hard questions about how the seemingly impossible promises might be kept. God responds and Abram believes. In addition, God reveals to Abram a prophecy about the difficult future his descendants will face as servants in another country before returning to take possession of the land of Canaan.
Book Summary:
The book of Genesis establishes fundamental truths about God. Among these are His role as the Creator, His holiness, His hatred of sin, His love for mankind, and His willingness to provide for our redemption. We learn not only where mankind has come from, but why the world is in its present form. The book also presents the establishment of Israel, God's chosen people. Many of the principles given in other parts of Scripture depend on the basic ideas presented here in the book of Genesis. Within the framework of the Bible, Genesis explains the bare-bones history of the universe leading up to the captivity of Israel in Egypt, setting the stage for the book of Exodus.
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