1One day during that year when it was hot, Yahweh appeared to Abraham again near the big trees that belonged to Mamre, while Abraham was sitting in the entrance to his tent.
2Abraham looked up MTY and was surprised to see three men standing near him. Actually, one was Yahweh, and the other two were angels. When he saw them, he ran to meet them. He prostrated himself with his face on the ground to show respect,
3and said to one of them, “Sir, if you are pleased with me, stay here for a little while LIT.
4Allow my servants to bring a little water and wash your feet, and rest under this tree.
5Since you have come here to me, allow me to bring you some food SYN so that you can feel refreshed before you leave.” Yahweh replied, “All right, do as you have said.”
6So Abraham quickly went into the tent and said to Sarah, “Quick, get some of our best flour and make some loaves of bread!”
7Then he ran to the herd of cattle and selected a calf whose meat would be tender and tasty. He gave it to one of his servants and told him to quickly kill it and cook it.
8When the meat was cooked, Abraham brought some curds and milk and the meat that had been prepared, and set them in front of his visitors. Then he stood near them, under a tree, while they ate.
9One of them asked him, “Where is Sarah, your wife?” He replied, “She is in the tent.”
10Then the leader of the group said, “I will return to you ◄about this time/in the springtime► next year, and to your amazement, your wife Sarah will have an infant son.” It happened that Sarah was listening at the entrance of the tent, which was behind the one who was speaking.
11Abraham and Sarah were very old, and Sarah was far past the time of /when she could bear children.
12So Sarah laughed to herself, thinking, “My body is worn out, and my husband is old. So how can I have the pleasure of having a child?” RHQ
13Yahweh said to Abraham, “Why did Sarah laugh? Why was she thinking, ‘I am too old, so how can I bear a child?’
14I am Yahweh! ◄Is there anything too difficult for me?/There is nothing too difficult for me!► RHQ I will return about this time next year in the springtime, and Sarah will have an infant son.”
15Then Sarah was afraid, so she lied and said, “I did not laugh.” But Yahweh said, “Don't deny it! You did laugh.”
16When the three men got up to leave, they looked down into the valley toward Sodom city. Abraham was walking with them to say “goodbye” to them.
17Yahweh thought to himself, “It is not right for me to prevent Abraham from knowing what I plan to do RHQ.
18Abraham's descendants MTY will become a great and powerful nation. And people of MTY all nations will be blessed because of what I do for him.
19I have chosen him in order that he will teach his children and their families to obey me and do what is right and fair, and then I will do for Abraham what I promised.”
20So Yahweh said to Abraham, “I have heard the terrible things that have been said about the people of MTY Sodom and Gomorrah. Their sins are very great.
21So I will go down now, and I will see if all the terrible things that I have heard are true or not true.”
22Then the two men turned and started walking toward Sodom. But Yahweh remained, standing in front of Abraham.
23Abraham came closer to him and said, “Will you really destroy righteous people along with wicked ones?
24What will you do if there are only 50 righteous people in the city? Will you really get rid of them all, and not spare the place/city for the sake of the 50 righteous people who are in the city?
25It would certainly not be right for you to do such a thing, to kill righteous people along with wicked ones, and treat righteous people and wicked people the same way. You could not do that, because you, who are the judge of everyone on the earth, will certainly do what is right regarding the people of Sodom!” RHQ
26Yahweh replied, “If I find 50 righteous people in Sodom, I will spare the whole place/city for their sake.”
27Abraham replied, “I should not be bold like this and speak to you, God, because I am as worthless as dust and ashes MET.
28But what will you do if there are only 45 righteous people? Will you destroy everyone in the whole city because there are only 45 and not 50 righteous people?” Yahweh replied, “I will not destroy it if I find that there are 45 righteous people.”
29Abraham continued to speak to him like this, saying, “What will you do if you find that there are only 40 righteous people there?” Yahweh replied, “I will not destroy them all, for the sake of the 40.”
30Abraham said, “God, please don't be angry now. Let me speak again. What will you do if there are only 30 righteous people?” He replied, “I will not do it if I find that there are 30 there.”
31Abraham said, “I should not be bold and speak to you like this, God. But what will you do if you find that there are only 20 righteous people there?” He replied, “I will not destroy the whole city, for the sake of those 20.”
32Abraham said, “God, don't be angry now. Just let me speak one time more. What will you do if you find that there are only ten righteous people there?” Yahweh answered, “I will not destroy the city for the sake of those ten.”
33Abraham said no more, and as soon as Yahweh finished speaking with Abraham, he left, and Abraham returned home.