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Bible Commentaries
Genesis 20

Hawker's Poor Man's CommentaryPoor Man's Commentary

Verse 1


The history of the patriarch Abram is re-assumed. In his journey (for he is still in the pilgrimage state) he is going towards the South. In Gerar, where he sojourned, Abimelech, the King of the place, beholdeth the beauty of Sarah, Abraham's wife; and she is, in consequence thereof, taken into the King's house. God, by the ministry of a dream, restrains Abimelech from his evil designs. Abimelech is informed of the relationship between Abraham and Sarah; he reproves Abraham, for not informing him of it himself; and sends him away from him, with his wife, and all that he had. Upon Abraham's Prayer, God removes the affliction from Abimelech and his family.

Verses 1-3

But God came to Abimelech in a dream by night, and said to him, Behold, thou art but a dead man, for the woman which thou hast taken; for she is a man's wife.

By the ministry of dreams and visions of the night, in the early ages of the world, the Lord was pleased to convey many great and important discoveries, not only to the faithful, but (for the benefit of his people), to the profane also. Genesis 41:1 etc. Daniel 2:1 etc.

Verses 4-7

Now therefore restore the man his wife; for he is a prophet, and he shall pray for thee, and thou shalt live: and if thou restore her not, know thou that thou shalt surely die, thou, and all that are thine.

Numbers 22:32 ; Psalms 105:14-15 . Abraham is the first person called a prophet in the Scriptures, and that on account of his immediate intercourse with God by way of divine revelation.

Verses 8-12

And yet indeed she is my sister; she is the daughter of my father, but not the daughter of my mother; and she became my wife.

This was the case. See Genesis 11:29

Verses 13-16

And unto Sarah he said, Behold, I have given thy brother a thousand pieces of silver: behold, he is to thee a covering of the eyes, unto all that are with thee, and with all other: thus she was reproved.

About 1151 in value. See Genesis 24:65

Verse 18


READER! let not the greatness of Abraham's character tempt you to overlook Abraham's infirmity. Alas! what is man in his highest attainments! Had not the Patriarch lost sight that Jehovah himself was his shield and his exceeding great reward, he need not have condescended to such a pitiful resource for the safety of his wife. God forbid, that this weakness of the Patriarch should ever be made a pretence for the sins of others, when we see how it displeased the Lord!

Surely the Holy Ghost causeth the infirmities of the faithful to be recorded, in order to teach his people that most unquestionable truth; that there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good and sinneth not; and to constrain the heart into the love of Jesus; whose perfect righteousness is the alone cause of justification before God. Dearest Lord! how increasingly sweet and interesting, in every renewed instance of human infirmity which I feel in myself, or meet with in others, is thy finished salvation to my view. Oh! Do thou establish my soul in it more and more. Give me to see, and know that I am thine in an everlasting Covenant, which cannot be broken: that from having committed my soul-concerns into thy hands; all my earthly interests I may safely leave at thy disposal; and that the fear of man, as in the case of the Patriarch, may not bring a snare.

Bibliographical Information
Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on Genesis 20". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". https://studylight.org/commentaries/eng/pmc/genesis-20.html. 1828.
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