1 And Sarah was an hundred and seven and twenty years old: these were the years of the life of Sarah.

2 And Sarah died in Kirjath-arba; the same is Hebron in the land of Canaan: and Abraham came to mourn for Sarah, and to weep for her.

Sarah was Abraham’s longtime companion and friend. From one journey to the next, Abraham had to part ways with one family member after another, but she remained his constant partner. Now, though, after 172 years, Sarah finally took a separate journey of her own.

Abraham has had many causes to attend to throughout the Genesis chapters. He has proven honorable and devoted with Lot, Abimelech, and God. He has faithfully fulfilled his duty to each in turn. Now his story is winding to its close, and there are not going to be any more duties to perform, just a quiet retirement until he rests in his grave.

Or rather, almost it is time for that retirement. Before he comes to that there remains one last duty for Abraham to fulfill, and it is fitting and touching that it is to his wife, Sarah. Now that she has died he must find a place to bury her, and the entirety of this chapter is about Abraham diligently seeking and finding the perfect resting place for her. We will read in the next chapter how he begins entrusting his duties to his servants, but this one task, this is the last that he will undertake with his own hand.

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