Genesis 12:1
Parallel Verses
New International Version
The LORD had said to Abram, "Go from your country, your people and your father's household to the land I will show you.

New Living Translation
The LORD had said to Abram, "Leave your native country, your relatives, and your father's family, and go to the land that I will show you.

English Standard Version
Now the LORD said to Abram, “Go from your country and your kindred and your father’s house to the land that I will show you.

New American Standard Bible
Now the LORD said to Abram, "Go forth from your country, And from your relatives And from your father's house, To the land which I will show you;

King James Bible
Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee:

Holman Christian Standard Bible
The LORD said to Abram: Go out from your land, your relatives, and your father's house to the land that I will show you.

International Standard Version
The LORD told Abram, "You are to leave your land, your relatives, and your father's house and go to the land that I'm going to show you.

NET Bible
Now the LORD said to Abram, "Go out from your country, your relatives, and your father's household to the land that I will show you.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
The LORD said to Abram, "Leave your land, your relatives, and your father's home. Go to the land that I will show you.

Jubilee Bible 2000
But the LORD had said unto Abram, Depart out of thy country and from thy nature and from thy father's house unto a land that I will show thee;

King James 2000 Bible
Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get you out of your country, and from your kindred, and from your father's house, unto a land that I will show you:

American King James Version
Now the LORD had said to Abram, Get you out of your country, and from your kindred, and from your father's house, to a land that I will show you:

American Standard Version
Now Jehovah said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto the land that I will show thee:

Douay-Rheims Bible
And the Lord said to Abram: Go forth out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and out of they father's house, and come into the land which I shall shew thee.

Darby Bible Translation
And Jehovah had said to Abram, Go out of thy land, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, to the land that I will shew thee.

English Revised Version
Now the LORD said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto the land that I will shew thee:

Webster's Bible Translation
Now the LORD had said to Abram, Depart from thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, to a land that I will show thee:

World English Bible
Now Yahweh said to Abram, "Get out of your country, and from your relatives, and from your father's house, to the land that I will show you.

Young's Literal Translation
And Jehovah saith unto Abram, 'Go for thyself, from thy land, and from thy kindred, and from the house of thy father, unto the land which I shew thee.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

12:1-3 God made choice of Abram, and singled him out from among his fellow-idolaters, that he might reserve a people for himself, among whom his true worship might be maintained till the coming of Christ. From henceforward Abram and his seed are almost the only subject of the history in the Bible. Abram was tried whether he loved God better than all, and whether he could willingly leave all to go with God. His kindred and his father's house were a constant temptation to him, he could not continue among them without danger of being infected by them. Those who leave their sins, and turn to God, will be unspeakable gainers by the change. The command God gave to Abram, is much the same with the gospel call, for natural affection must give way to Divine grace. Sin, and all the occasions of it, must be forsaken; particularly bad company. Here are many great and precious promises. All God's precepts are attended with promises to the obedient. 1. I will make of thee a great nation. When God took Abram from his own people, he promised to make him the head of another people. 2. I will bless thee. Obedient believers shall be sure to inherit the blessing. 3. I will make thy name great. The name of obedient believers shall certainly be made great. 4. Thou shalt be a blessing. Good men are the blessings of their country. 5. I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee. God will take care that none are losers, by any service done for his people. 6. In thee shall all the families of the earth be blessed. Jesus Christ is the great blessing of the world, the greatest that ever the world possessed. All the true blessedness the world is now, or ever shall be possessed of, is owing to Abram and his posterity. Through them we have a Bible, a Saviour, and a gospel. They are the stock on which the Christian church is grafted.

Pulpit Commentary

Verses 1-5. - Designed to trace the outward development of God's kingdom on the earth, the narrative now concentrates its attention on one of the foregoing Terachites, whose remarkable career it sketches with considerable minuteness of detail, from the period of his emigration from Chaldea to his death at Hebron in the land of Canaan. Distinguished as a man of undoubted superiority both of character and mind, the head of at least two powerful and important races, and standing, as one might say, on the threshold of the historical era, it is yet chiefly as his life and fortunes connect with the Divine purpose of salvation that they find a place in the inspired record. The progress of infidelity during the four centuries that had elapsed since the Flood, the almost universal corruption of even the Shemits portion of the human family, had conclusively demonstrated the necessity of a second Divine interposition, if the knowledge of salvation were not to be completely banished from the earth. Accordingly, the son of Terah was selected to be the founder of a new nation, in which the light of gospel truth might be deposited for preservation until the fullness of the times, and through which the promise of the gospel might he conducted forward to its ultimate realization in the manifestation of the woman's seed. Partly to prepare him for the high destiny of being the progenitor of the chosen nation, and partly to illustrate the character of that gospel with which he was to be entrusted, he was summoned to renounce his native country and kinsmen in Chaldaea, and venture forth upon an untried journey in obedience to the call of Heaven, to a land which he should afterward receive for an inheritance. In a series of successive theophanies or Divine manifestations, around which the various incidents of his life are grouped - in Ur of the Chaldees (Acts 7:2), at Moreh in Canaan (Genesis 12:7), near Bethel (ibid. 13.), at Mature (ibid. 15, 17.), and on Moriah (ibid. 22.) - he is distinctly promised three things - a land, a seed, and a blessing - as the reward of his compliance with the heavenly invitation; and the confident persuasion both of the reality of these gracious promises and of the Divine ability and willingness to fulfill them forms the animating spirit and guiding principle of his being in every situation of life, whether of trial or of difficulty, in which he is subsequently placed. The miraculous character of these theophanies indeed has been made a ground on which to assail the entire patriarchal history as unhistorical. By certain writers they have been represented as nothing more than natural occurrences embellished by the genius of the author of Genesis (Eichhorn, Bauer, Winer), as belonging to the domain of poetical fiction (De Wette), and therefore as undeserving of anything like serious consideration. But unless the supernatural is to be in toto eliminated from the record, a concession which cannot possibly be granted by an enlightened theism, the Divine appearances to Abraham cannot be regarded as in any degree militating against the historical veracity of the story of his life, which, it may be said, is amply vouched for by the harmony of its details with the characteristics of the period to which it belongs (cf. Havernick's 'Introduction,' § 18). Nor does the employment of the name Jehovah in connection with these theophanies warrant the conclusion that the passages containing them are interpolations of a post Mosaic or Jehovistic editor (Tuch, Bleek, Colenso, Davidson). "Such a hypothesis," says Keil, "can only be maintained by those who' misunderstand the distinctive meaning of the two names, Elohim and Jehovah (q.v. on Genesis 2:4), and arbitrarily set aside the Jehovah in Genesis 17:1, on account of an erroneous determination of the relation in which El Shaddai stands to Jehovah." Indications of the literary unity of the patriarchal history will be noted, and replies to objections given, in the progress of the Exposition. Verse 1. - Now the Lord. Jehovah = the God of salvation, an indication that the narrative is now to specially concern itself with the chosen seed, and the Deity to discover himself as the God of redemption. The hypothesis that vers. 1-4 were inserted in the fundamental document by the Jehovist editor is not required for a satisfactory explanation of the change of the Divine name at this particular stage of the narrative. Had said. Literally, said. In Ur of the Chaldees, according to Stephen (Acts 7:2), reverting, after the usual manner of the writer, to the original point of departure in the Abrahamic history (Aben Ezra, Mede, Piscator, Pererius, Calvin, Willet, Rosenmüller, Dathins, Alford, Murphy, 'Speaker's Commentary'); or in Haran, after Terah's death, as the first call given to the patriarch (LXX., Chaldee, Syriac, Raschi, Lyra, Keil, Kalisch, Dykes), or as a repetition of the call addressed to him in Ur (Clarke, Wordsworth, Inglis). Luther conjectures that the call in Ur was given "fortasse per patti. archam Shem;" but if the authority of Stephen be recognized, this was the occasion of the first theophany vouchsafed to Abram. Get thee out. Literally, go for thyself, a frequent Hebraism, expressive of the way in which the action of the verb returns upon itself, is terminated and completed (cf. Genesis 21:16; Genesis 22:2; Isaiah 31:8; Song of Solomon 2:11; vide Ewald's 'Hebrew Syntax,' § 314); hence, though not necessarily emphatic, it may be equivalent to "Go thou," whoever else remains behind (Jarchi, Ainsworth, Bush). Of thy country. A proof that the date of the call was while Abram was in Ur (Calvin), though if Ur was at Edessa (vide supra) the patriarch could scarcely have been said to be from home. And from thy kindred. At Ur in all probability Nahor and Milcah were left behind; at Haran, Nahor and his family, if they had already arrived thither, and according to some (Kalisch, Dykes) Terah also. And from thy father's house. I.e. if they will not accompany thee. No Divine interdict forbade the other members of the family of Terah joining in the Abrahamic emigration. Unto a (literally, the) land that I will show thee. Through a revelation (Lange), or simply by the guidance of providence. The land itself is left unnamed for the trial of the patriarch's faith, which, if it sustained the proof, was to be rewarded by the exceeding great and precious promises which follow: - according to one arrangement, seven in number, one for each clause of the next two verses (Cajetan, Willet); according to another, four, corresponding to the clauses of the second verse, the last of which is expanded in the third (Keil); according to a third, six, forming three pairs of parallels (Alford); according to a fourth, and perhaps the best, two, a lower or personal blessing, comprising the first three particulars, and a higher or public blessing, embracing the last three (Murphy).

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Now the Lord had said unto Abram,.... In Ur of the Chaldees, before he came and dwelt in Charran, as seems from Acts 7:2 and so Aben Ezra interprets it; but Jarchi and others think, that what follows was said to him in Haran, and so the words may be more literally rendered (u), "and the Lord said unto Abram"; after the death of Terah, who died in Haran; and indeed it is highly probable there were two appearances of God to Abram, and that the same words, or very near the same, were spoken to him at two several times, first in Ur of the Chaldees, and then in Haran:

get thee out of thy country; the land of Chaldea, and the city of Ur, which was in it, or out of Mesopotamia, in which, when taken in a large sense, were both Ur and Haran; and this country was now become idolatrous, for though it was first inhabited and peopled by the posterity of Shem in the time of Arphaxad, yet these, in process of time, degenerated from the true religion, and fell into idolatry. The same Maimonides (w) calls Zabaeans, in whose faith and religion, he says, Abram was brought up, and who asserted there was no other God but the sun, moon, and stars; and these Zabaeans, as he relates from their books and annals, say of Abram themselves, that he was educated in Cuthia, and dissented from the common people; and asserted, that besides the sun, there was another Creator; to whom they objected, and so disputes arose among them on this subject: now Abram being convinced of idolatry, is called out from those people, and to have no fellowship with them; it is literally in the Hebrew text (x), "go to thee out of thy country"; for thy profit and good, as Jarchi interprets it; as it must be to quit all society with such an idolatrous and superstitious people:

and from thy kindred; as Nahor his brother, and his family, who are not mentioned, and seem to be left behind when Terah, Abram, Lot, and Sarai, came out of Ur of the Chaldees; though it looks as if afterwards Nahor did follow them to Haran or Padanaram, which are the same, and where he continued, and therefore is called his city; see Genesis 24:10 so with great propriety Abram might be called a second time to leave his kindred as well as his country; and certain it is, Haran, or Padanaram, as well as Ur of the Chaldees, is called by himself his country, and Nahor and his family his kindred, Genesis 24:4.

and from thy father's house; or household, his family, which better agrees with the second call at Haran, than with the first at Ur; for, upon the first call, Terah and his family came along with Abram, and therefore this phrase is omitted by Stephen, who speaks of that call, Acts 7:3 but Terah dying at Haran, his house or family went no further, but continued there with Nahor; only Abram and Lot, upon this second call, went from thence, as the following history makes it appear; and so Abram left, as he was bid, his father's house and family to go, as it follows:

unto a land that I will show thee; meaning the land of Canaan, though not mentioned, and seems to be omitted for the trial of Abram's faith; hence the author of the epistle to the Hebrews, Hebrews 11:8 observes, that "he obeyed and went out, not knowing whither he went"; and yet it is said, that, when he and Terah came out of Ur of the Chaldees, "they went forth to go into the land of Canaan", Genesis 11:31 and, when he and Lot went first from Haran, the same is said of them, Genesis 12:5 it is probable the case was this; there was no mention made at first what land he was to go to, and when he prepared for his journey he knew not where he was to go, but afterwards it was revealed to him that Canaan was the land, and therefore set out in order to go thither; and still, though he might know the place by name where he was to go, he might neither know the way to it, nor what sort of country it was for quality or quantity; and therefore God promises to show him the way, and direct his course right unto it, and give him a view of it, that he might see what sort of a country, and how large it was, that he would give to his posterity. This call of Abram is an emblem of the call of men by the grace of God out of the world, and from among the men of it, and to renounce the things of it, and not be conformed unto it, and to forget their own people and their father's house, and to cleave to the Lord, and follow him whithersoever he directs them.

(u) "et dixit", Pagninus, Montanus, Cocceius. (w) More Nevochim, par. 3. c. 29. p. 421. (x) "vade tibi", Pagninus, Montanus, Vatablus, Drusius, &c.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary


Ge 12:1-20. Call to Abram.

1. Now the Lord had said unto Abram—It pleased God, who has often been found of them who sought Him not, to reveal Himself to Abraham perhaps by a miracle; and the conversion of Abraham is one of the most remarkable in Bible history.

Get thee out of thy country—His being brought to the knowledge and worship of the true God had probably been a considerable time before. This call included two promises: the first, showing the land of his future posterity; and the second, that in his posterity all the earth was to be blessed (Ge 12:2). Abraham obeyed, and it is frequently mentioned in the New Testament as a striking instance of his faith (Heb 11:8).

Genesis 12:1 Additional Commentaries
The Calling of Abram
1Now the LORD said to Abram, "Go forth from your country, And from your relatives And from your father's house, To the land which I will show you; 2And I will make you a great nation, And I will bless you, And make your name great; And so you shall be a blessing;…
Cross References
Acts 7:3
Leave your country and your people,' God said, 'and go to the land I will show you.'

Hebrews 11:8
By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going.

Genesis 11:32
Terah lived 205 years, and he died in Harran.

Genesis 15:7
He also said to him, "I am the LORD, who brought you out of Ur of the Chaldeans to give you this land to take possession of it."

Genesis 20:13
And when God had me wander from my father's household, I said to her, 'This is how you can show your love to me: Everywhere we go, say of me, "He is my brother."'"

Genesis 24:4
but will go to my country and my own relatives and get a wife for my son Isaac."

Genesis 26:2
The LORD appeared to Isaac and said, "Do not go down to Egypt; live in the land where I tell you to live.

Joshua 24:3
But I took your father Abraham from the land beyond the Euphrates and led him throughout Canaan and gave him many descendants. I gave him Isaac,

Nehemiah 9:7
"You are the LORD God, who chose Abram and brought him out of Ur of the Chaldeans and named him Abraham.

Isaiah 37:12
Did the gods of the nations that were destroyed by my predecessors deliver them--the gods of Gozan, Harran, Rezeph and the people of Eden who were in Tel Assar?

Isaiah 51:2
look to Abraham, your father, and to Sarah, who gave you birth. When I called him he was only one man, and I blessed him and made him many.
Treasury of Scripture

Now the LORD had said to Abram, Get you out of your country, and from your kindred, and from your father's house, to a land that I will show you:


Genesis 11:31,32 And Terah took Abram his son, and Lot the son of Haran his son's …

Genesis 15:7 And he said to him, I am the LORD that brought you out of Ur of the …

Nehemiah 9:7 You are the LORD the God, who did choose Abram, and brought him forth …

Isaiah 41:9 You whom I have taken from the ends of the earth, and called you …

Isaiah 51:2 Look to Abraham your father, and to Sarah that bore you: for I called …

Ezekiel 33:24 Son of man, they that inhabit those wastes of the land of Israel …


Joshua 24:2,3 And Joshua said to all the people, Thus said the LORD God of Israel, …

Psalm 45:10,11 Listen, O daughter, and consider, and incline your ear; forget also …

Luke 14:26-33 If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, …

Acts 7:2-6 And he said, Men, brothers, and fathers, listen; The God of glory …

2 Corinthians 6:17 Why come out from among them, and be you separate, said the Lord, …

Hebrews 11:8 By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which …

Revelation 18:4 And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my …

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