After these things the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision, â€œDo not be afraid, Abram, I am your shield; your reward shall be very great.â€
But Abram said, â€œO Lord God, what will you give me, for I continue childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?â€ And Abram said, â€œYou have given me no offspring, and so a slave born in my house is to be my heir.â€ But the word of the Lord came to him, â€œThis man shall not be your heir; no one but your very own issue shall be your heir.â€ He brought him outside and said, â€œLook toward heaven and count the stars, if you are able to count them.â€ Then he said to him, â€œSo shall your descendants be.â€ And he believed the Lord; and the Lord reckoned it to him as righteousness.
Then he said to him, â€œI am the Lord who brought you from Ur of the Chaldeans, to give you this land to possess.â€ But he said, â€œO Lord God, how am I to know that I shall possess it?â€ He said to him, â€œBring me a heifer three years old, a female goat three years old, a ram three years old, a turtledove, and a young pigeon.â€ He brought him all these and cut them in two, laying each half over against the other; but he did not cut the birds in two. And when birds of prey came down on the carcasses, Abram drove them away.
As the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell upon Abram, and a deep and terrifying darkness descended upon him.
When the sun had gone down and it was dark, a smoking fire pot and a flaming torch passed between these pieces. On that day the Lord made a covenant with Abram, saying, â€œTo your descendants I give this land, from the river of Egypt to the great river, the river Euphrates,
Scripture passage from the New Revised Standard Version Bible: Catholic Edition, copyright 1989, 1993, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.