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In Genesis 23:4 Abraham is in conversation with the residents of Heth and says:

"I am a stranger and a sojourner with you. Give me a possession for a burying place with you, that I may bury my dead out of my sight."
Genesis 23:4 (KJV)

The term "stranger and sojourner", ger v'toshav sounds to me like an idiomatic expression whose meaning isn't immediately evident.

  • What does Abraham mean by the expression "stranger and sojourner"?
  • What statement is he making about himself and his relationship with the Heth community?

It may or may not be relevant to this question, but in Leviticus 25:23 the same exact terminology, ger v'toshav is used again. There, God is describing ownership of the land of Israel and his relationship with the people of Israel:

The land shall not be sold for ever, for the land is Mine; for ye are strangers and sojourners with Me.
Leviticus 25:23 (KJV)

Edited in response to Gone Quiet's answer:

Throughout Tanakh the word ger is used to mean "resident alien," eg: Exodus 2:22, 12:49, Numbers 9:14-16 and many other places as well. How is ger v'toshav different from the type of resident alien implied by the term ger alone?

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