Genesis 15:9
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
So the LORD said to him, "Bring me a heifer, a goat and a ram, each three years old, along with a dove and a young pigeon."

New Living Translation
The LORD told him, "Bring me a three-year-old heifer, a three-year-old female goat, a three-year-old ram, a turtledove, and a young pigeon."

English Standard Version
He said to him, “Bring me a heifer three years old, a female goat three years old, a ram three years old, a turtledove, and a young pigeon.”

New American Standard Bible
So He said to him, "Bring Me a three year old heifer, and a three year old female goat, and a three year old ram, and a turtledove, and a young pigeon."

King James Bible
And he said unto him, Take me an heifer of three years old, and a she goat of three years old, and a ram of three years old, and a turtledove, and a young pigeon.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
He said to him, "Bring Me a three-year-old cow, a three-year-old female goat, a three-year-old ram, a turtledove, and a young pigeon."

International Standard Version
The LORD responded, "Bring me a three-year-old cow, a three-year-old female goat, a three-year-old ram, a turtledove, and a young pigeon."

NET Bible
The LORD said to him, "Take for me a heifer, a goat, and a ram, each three years old, along with a dove and a young pigeon."

New Heart English Bible
He said to him, "Bring me a heifer three years old, a female goat three years old, a ram three years old, a turtledove, and a young pigeon."

GOD'S WORD® Translation
He answered Abram, "Bring me a three-year-old heifer, a three-year-old female goat, a three-year-old ram, a mourning dove, and a pigeon."

JPS Tanakh 1917
And He said unto him: 'Take Me a heifer of three years old, and a she-goat of three years old, and a ram of three years old, and a turtle-dove, and a young pigeon.'

New American Standard 1977
So He said to him, “Bring Me a three year old heifer, and a three year old female goat, and a three year old ram, and a turtledove, and a young pigeon.”

Jubilee Bible 2000
And he said unto him, Take me a heifer three years old and a she goat three years old and a ram three years old and a turtledove and a young pigeon.

King James 2000 Bible
And he said unto him, Take me a heifer three years old, and a female goat three years old, and a ram three years old, and a turtle dove, and a young pigeon.

American King James Version
And he said to him, Take me an heifer of three years old, and a she goat of three years old, and a ram of three years old, and a turtledove, and a young pigeon.

American Standard Version
And he said unto him, Take me a heifer three years old, and a she-goat three years old, and a ram three years old, and a turtle-dove, and a young pigeon.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And the Lord answered, and said: Take me a cow of three years old, and a she goat of three years, and a ram of three years, a turtle also, and a pigeon.

Darby Bible Translation
And he said to him, Take me a heifer of three years old, and a she-goat of three years old, and a ram of three years old, and a turtle-dove, and a young pigeon.

English Revised Version
And he said unto him, Take me an heifer of three years old, and a she-goat of three years old, and a ram of three years old, and a turtledove, and a young pigeon.

Webster's Bible Translation
And he said to him, Take me a heifer of three years old, and a she-goat of three years old, and a ram of three years old, and a turtle-dove, and a young pigeon.

World English Bible
He said to him, "Bring me a heifer three years old, a female goat three years old, a ram three years old, a turtledove, and a young pigeon."

Young's Literal Translation
And He saith unto him, 'Take for Me a heifer of three years, and a she-goat of three years, and a ram of three years, and a turtle-dove, and a young bird;'
Study Bible
God Confirms His Promise
8He said, "O Lord GOD, how may I know that I will possess it?" 9So He said to him, "Bring Me a three year old heifer, and a three year old female goat, and a three year old ram, and a turtledove, and a young pigeon." 10Then he brought all these to Him and cut them in two, and laid each half opposite the other; but he did not cut the birds.…
Cross References
Genesis 15:8
He said, "O Lord GOD, how may I know that I will possess it?"

Genesis 15:10
Then he brought all these to Him and cut them in two, and laid each half opposite the other; but he did not cut the birds.

Leviticus 1:14
'But if his offering to the LORD is a burnt offering of birds, then he shall bring his offering from the turtledoves or from young pigeons.

Leviticus 12:6
'When the days of her purification are completed, for a son or for a daughter, she shall bring to the priest at the doorway of the tent of meeting a one year old lamb for a burnt offering and a young pigeon or a turtledove for a sin offering.

Song of Solomon 2:12
The flowers have already appeared in the land; The time has arrived for pruning the vines, And the voice of the turtledove has been heard in our land.
Treasury of Scripture

And he said to him, Take me an heifer of three years old, and a she goat of three years old, and a ram of three years old, and a turtledove, and a young pigeon.

Genesis 22:13 And Abraham lifted up his eyes, and looked, and behold behind him …

Leviticus 1:3,10,14 If his offering be a burnt sacrifice of the herd, let him offer a …

Leviticus 3:1,6 And if his oblation be a sacrifice of peace offering, if he offer …

Leviticus 9:2,4 And he said to Aaron, Take you a young calf for a sin offering, and …

Leviticus 12:8 And if she be not able to bring a lamb, then she shall bring two …

Leviticus 14:22,30 And two turtledoves, or two young pigeons, such as he is able to …

Psalm 50:5 Gather my saints together to me; those that have made a covenant …

Isaiah 15:5 My heart shall cry out for Moab; his fugitives shall flee to Zoar, …

Luke 2:24 And to offer a sacrifice according to that which is said in the law …

(9, 10) Take me an heifer . . . --This form of making a covenant was probably that usual in Babylonia, and thus Abram received the assurance of his inheritance by means of a ceremonial with which he was familiar. But in most ancient languages men are said to cut or strike a covenant, because the most solemn formula involved either the cutting of victims in two, or striking them dead, as was the Roman manner. The severing of the bodies was not, as some suppose, to represent the two parties; but, as explained in Jeremiah 34:18-20, it set forth the penalty of perjury, and was usually accompanied by the imprecation upon the covenant-breaker of a destruction as complete as that which had befallen the slaughtered animals. There is no mention in this place of a sacrifice, although the animals are those subsequently set apart for sacrifice by the Levitical law. The heifer, she-goat, and ram at three years old would each have attained its full maturity; but there may be a further symbolic meaning in there being three animals each three years old.

Laid each piece . . . --More exactly, and laid each half over against the other. The birds were not divided; but as there were two, Abram probably placed one on one side and one on the other.

Verse 9. - And he said unto him, Take me (literally, for me, i.e. for my use in sacrifice) an heifer of three years old. So rightly (LXX., Syriac, Samaritan, Arabic, Josephus, Bochart, Rosenmüller, Keil); not three heifers (Onkelos, Jarchi, Kimchi, et alii). And a she goat of three years old, and a ram of three years old. These offerings, afterwards prescribed by the law (Exodus 29:15; Numbers 15:27; Numbers 19:2; Deuteronomy 21:3), were three in number, and of three years each, to symbolize him who was, and is, and is to come (Wordsworth); perhaps rather to indicate-the perfection of the victim in respect of maturity (Murphy). Cf. Ganymede's offering (in 'Lucian's Dialogues') of a three years old ram for a ransom. And a turtle-dove, and a young pigeon - also prescribed by the law (Leviticus 1:14; Luke 2:24). And he said unto him, take me an heifer of three years old,.... This, with what follows, is the sign by which Abram might know that he, that is, his seed, should inherit the land of Canaan; for the whole of this is an emblem of the state and condition of his posterity, until they should enter into that land: wherefore he is ordered to "take" out of his herds and flocks this and the following creatures, which were used in sacrifice before the ceremonial law was given, as well as under it; and the distinction of creatures for sacrifice, though not for food, was known as early, as appears from Genesis 8:20; hence Onkelos renders the phrase, "offer before me"; and the Targum of Jonathan is,"take unto me oblations, and offer before me.''Though this difference is to be observed, that the Levitical law required creatures of a year old only to be offered; whereas these were three years old, because they are then at their full growth, and in their full strength and greatest perfection; and such were used among the Heathens for sacrifice; so Lucian (h) represents Ganymedes as proposing to Jupiter, that if he would let her go she would offer a ram of three years old: but it should be remarked, that these creatures here were not taken merely for sacrifice, nor is there any mention made of their being offered; though it is probable they might be offered after they had answered the principal end, which was to be a sign, whereby Abram might know that his seed should inherit the land; but the intention of God was, that as by them Abram's seed might be taught what sort of creatures they were to offer for their sins, so chiefly to show that they themselves would fall a sacrifice to the rage and fury of their enemies, in a land not theirs, and be used as these creatures were: and the number three may denote the three complete centuries in which they would be afflicted, and in the fourth come out safe and whole like the undivided birds, the turtle, dove, and pigeon, to which they were comparable. Ramban (i) thinks, that this number represents the three sorts of sacrifices, the burnt offering, the sin offering, and the peace offering; and that of these three kinds of animals, only one individual of them was taken, and is called "treble", because each individual were joined together. Onkelos renders it three heifers, and so three goats and three rams afterwards; in which he is followed by Jarchi and Ben Melech; the former thinks the three heifers refer to the heifer of the day of atonement, that for uncertain murder, and the red heifer; and in like manner he interprets the three goats and rams; but the Targum of Jonathan, and Aben Ezra, interpret them as we do of creatures of three years old: it follows:

and a she goat of three years old, and a ram of three years old, and a turtledove and a young pigeon. Some Jewish writers (k) have a notion that these creatures represent the four monarchies; the "heifer", the Babylonian monarchy, which had three kings, Nebuchadnezzar, Evilmerodach, and Belshazzar; but others make this to be the fourth monarchy, they call Idumaean or Roman, which is like an heifer at grass, Jeremiah 50:11, which passage better suits with Babylon; the "goat", Media (or Persia), which had three kings, Cyrus, Darius, and Ahasuerus; and the "ram", Grecia; but others say the goat signifies the Grecian monarchy, and the ram the Medo-Persian monarchy, which latter agrees with Daniel 8:3; and by the "turtle", the word for which, in the Syriac language, signifies an ox, they understand, some the children of Ishmael, or the Turkish empire, and others Edom, or the Roman: but it is much better to interpret them of Abram's posterity, comparable to these creatures, both for their good and bad qualities; to an "heifer" for laboriousness in service, and patience in sufferings; and for their backslidings, Hosea 4:16; to a "goat" for their vicious qualities, their lusts and lasciviousness; and to a "ram", for their strength and fortitude; and to a "turtle", and a young pigeon, for their simplicity, innocence, and harmlessness, when they were in their purest state, see Psalm 74:19; and it may be observed, that these were the only fowl used in sacrifice.

(h) Dialogis Deorum. (i) Apud Munster in loc. (k) Vid. Bereshit Rabba, sect. 43. fol. 39. 2. Pirke Eliezer, c. 28. 9-21. Take me an heifer, etc.—On occasions of great importance, when two or more parties join in a compact, they either observe precisely the same rites as Abram did, or, where they do not, they invoke the lamp as their witness. According to these ideas, which have been from time immemorial engraven on the minds of Eastern people, the Lord Himself condescended to enter into covenant with Abram. The patriarch did not pass between the sacrifice and the reason was that in this transaction he was bound to nothing. He asked a sign, and God was pleased to give him a sign, by which, according to Eastern ideas, He bound Himself. In like manner God has entered into covenant with us; and in the glory of the only-begotten Son, who passed through between God and us, all who believe have, like Abram, a sign or pledge in the gift of the Spirit, whereby they may know that they shall inherit the heavenly Canaan. 15:7-11 Assurance was given to Abram of the land of Canaan for an inheritance. God never promises more than he is able to perform, as men often do. Abram did as God commanded him. He divided the beasts in the midst, according to the ceremony used in confirming covenants, Jer 34:18,19. Having prepared according to God's appointment, he set himself to wait for the sign God might give him. A watch must be kept upon our spiritual sacrifices. When vain thoughts, like these fowls, come down upon our sacrifices, we must drive them away, and seek to attend on God without distraction.
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