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Bible Commentaries

Hampton's Commentary on Selected Books

Genesis 18

Verses 1-15

On the plains of Mamre, when Sarah heard she would have a son, "according to the time of life," she too laughed ( Gen_18:1-15 ). Sarah was old. She was past the age of conception. The Lord's response was to ask if anything was too hard, or literally "wonderful," for him to do. Though her response may have initially come out of doubt, she did come to believe the word of God ( Heb_11:11-12 ).

Verses 16-33

Abraham's Appeal for Two Cities

After repeating the promise of a son to Abraham and Sarah, God told Abraham of his plans to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah. He may have done that because Abraham was his friend ( Isa_41:8 ). Certainly, God knew this man of faith would follow his will. He also knew Abraham would command his household to obey God's instruction ( Gen_18:16-19 ).

The report of the wickedness of these two cities had come before God. Abraham's appeal was for the cities, but particularly for the righteous who might have been living there. He was persistent in asking God if he would spare the city for 50, 45, 40, 30, 20 or even 10 righteous men. His persistence should serve as a reminder to all Christians of the importance of continuing in prayer ( Gen_18:20-33 ; Luk_18:1-8 ; 1Th_5:17 ). He also showed great confidence in God's justice, in verse 25. "Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?"

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Bibliographical Information
Hampton, Gary. "Commentary on Genesis 18". "Hampton's Commentary on Selected Books". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/ghc/genesis-18.html. 2014.