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Genesis 26

26
Isaac and Abimelech
1There was a famine in the land, besides #Gen. 12:10the first famine that was in the days of Abraham. And Isaac went to #Gen. 20:1, 2Abimelech king of the Philistines, in Gerar.
2Then the Lord appeared to him and said: #Gen. 12:7; 17:1; 18:1; 35:9“Do not go down to Egypt; live in #Gen. 12:1the land of which I shall tell you. 3#Gen. 20:1; Ps. 39:12; Heb. 11:9Dwell in this land, and #Gen. 28:13, 15I will be with you and #Gen. 12:2bless you; for to you and your descendants #Gen. 12:7; 13:15; 15:18I give all these lands, and I will perform #Gen. 22:16; Ps. 105:9the oath which I swore to Abraham your father. 4And #Gen. 15:5; 22:17; Ex. 32:13I will make your descendants multiply as the stars of heaven; I will give to your descendants all these lands; #Gen. 12:3; 22:18; Gal. 3:8and in your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed; 5#Gen. 22:16, 18because Abraham obeyed My voice and kept My charge, My commandments, My statutes, and My laws.”
6So Isaac dwelt in Gerar. 7And the men of the place asked about his wife. And #Gen. 12:13; 20:2, 12, 13he said, “She is my sister”; for #Prov. 29:25he was afraid to say, “She is my wife,” because he thought, “lest the men of the place kill me for Rebekah, because she is #Gen. 12:11; 24:16; 29:17beautiful to behold.” 8Now it came to pass, when he had been there a long time, that Abimelech king of the Philistines looked through a window, and saw, and there was Isaac, showing endearment to Rebekah his wife. 9Then Abimelech called Isaac and said, “Quite obviously she is your wife; so how could you say, ‘She is my sister’?”
Isaac said to him, “Because I said, ‘Lest I die on account of her.’ ”
10And Abimelech said, “What is this you have done to us? One of the people might soon have lain with your wife, and #Gen. 20:9you would have brought guilt on us.” 11So Abimelech charged all his people, saying, “He who #Ps. 105:15touches this man or his wife shall surely be put to death.”
12Then Isaac sowed in that land, and reaped in the same year #Matt. 13:8, 23; Mark 4:8a hundredfold; and the Lord #Gen. 24:1; 25:8, 11; 26:3; Job 42:12; Prov. 10:22blessed him. 13The man #Gen. 24:35; (Prov. 10:22)began to prosper, and continued prospering until he became very prosperous; 14for he had possessions of flocks and possessions of herds and a great number of servants. So the Philistines #Gen. 37:11; Eccl. 4:4envied him. 15Now the Philistines had stopped up all the wells #Gen. 21:25, 30which his father’s servants had dug in the days of Abraham his father, and they had filled them with earth. 16And Abimelech said to Isaac, “Go away from us, for #Ex. 1:9you are much mightier than we.”
17Then Isaac departed from there and pitched his tent in the Valley of Gerar, and dwelt there. 18And Isaac dug again the wells of water which they had dug in the days of Abraham his father, for the Philistines had stopped them up after the death of Abraham. #Gen. 21:31He called them by the names which his father had called them.
19Also Isaac’s servants dug in the valley, and found a well of running water there. 20But the herdsmen of Gerar #Gen. 21:25quarreled with Isaac’s herdsmen, saying, “The water is ours.” So he called the name of the well Esek, because they quarreled with him. 21Then they dug another well, and they quarreled over that one also. So he called its name Sitnah. 22And he moved from there and dug another well, and they did not quarrel over it. So he called its name Rehoboth, because he said, “For now the Lord has made room for us, and we shall #Gen. 17:6; 28:3; 41:52; Ex. 1:7be fruitful in the land.”
23Then he went up from there to Beersheba. 24And the Lord #Gen. 26:2appeared to him the same night and said, #Gen. 17:7, 8; 24:12; Ex. 3:6; Acts 7:32“I am the God of your father Abraham; #Gen. 15:1do not fear, for #Gen. 26:3, 4I am with you. I will bless you and multiply your descendants for My servant Abraham’s sake.” 25So he #Gen. 12:7, 8; 13:4, 18; 22:9; 33:20built an altar there and #Gen. 21:33; Ps. 116:17called on the name of the Lord, and he pitched his tent there; and there Isaac’s servants dug a well.
26Then Abimelech came to him from Gerar with Ahuzzath, one of his friends, #Gen. 21:22and Phichol the commander of his army. 27And Isaac said to them, “Why have you come to me, #Judg. 11:7since you hate me and have #Gen. 26:16sent me away from you?”
28But they said, “We have certainly seen that the Lord #Gen. 21:22, 23is with you. So we said, ‘Let there now be an oath between us, between you and us; and let us make a covenant with you, 29that you will do us no harm, since we have not touched you, and since we have done nothing to you but good and have sent you away in peace. #Gen. 24:31; Ps. 115:15You are now the blessed of the Lord.’ ”
30#Gen. 19:3So he made them a feast, and they ate and drank. 31Then they arose early in the morning and #Gen. 21:31swore an oath with one another; and Isaac sent them away, and they departed from him in peace.
32It came to pass the same day that Isaac’s servants came and told him about the well which they had dug, and said to him, “We have found water.” 33So he called it Shebah. #Gen. 21:31; 28:10Therefore the name of the city is Beersheba to this day.
34#Gen. 28:8; 36:2When Esau was forty years old, he took as wives Judith the daughter of Beeri the Hittite, and Basemath the daughter of Elon the Hittite. 35And #Gen. 27:46; 28:1, 8they were a grief of mind to Isaac and Rebekah.
26
Isaac Deceives Abimelech
1A severe famine now struck the land, as had happened before in Abraham’s time. So Isaac moved to Gerar, where Abimelech, king of the Philistines, lived.
2The Lord appeared to Isaac and said, “Do not go down to Egypt, but do as I tell you. 3Live here as a foreigner in this land, and I will be with you and bless you. I hereby confirm that I will give all these lands to you and your descendants,#26:3 Hebrew seed; also in 26:4, 24. just as I solemnly promised Abraham, your father. 4I will cause your descendants to become as numerous as the stars of the sky, and I will give them all these lands. And through your descendants all the nations of the earth will be blessed. 5I will do this because Abraham listened to me and obeyed all my requirements, commands, decrees, and instructions.” 6So Isaac stayed in Gerar.
7When the men who lived there asked Isaac about his wife, Rebekah, he said, “She is my sister.” He was afraid to say, “She is my wife.” He thought, “They will kill me to get her, because she is so beautiful.” 8But some time later, Abimelech, king of the Philistines, looked out his window and saw Isaac caressing Rebekah.
9Immediately, Abimelech called for Isaac and exclaimed, “She is obviously your wife! Why did you say, ‘She is my sister’?”
“Because I was afraid someone would kill me to get her from me,” Isaac replied.
10“How could you do this to us?” Abimelech exclaimed. “One of my people might easily have taken your wife and slept with her, and you would have made us guilty of great sin.”
11Then Abimelech issued a public proclamation: “Anyone who touches this man or his wife will be put to death!”
Conflict over Water Rights
12When Isaac planted his crops that year, he harvested a hundred times more grain than he planted, for the Lord blessed him. 13He became a very rich man, and his wealth continued to grow. 14He acquired so many flocks of sheep and goats, herds of cattle, and servants that the Philistines became jealous of him. 15So the Philistines filled up all of Isaac’s wells with dirt. These were the wells that had been dug by the servants of his father, Abraham.
16Finally, Abimelech ordered Isaac to leave the country. “Go somewhere else,” he said, “for you have become too powerful for us.”
17So Isaac moved away to the Gerar Valley, where he set up their tents and settled down. 18He reopened the wells his father had dug, which the Philistines had filled in after Abraham’s death. Isaac also restored the names Abraham had given them.
19Isaac’s servants also dug in the Gerar Valley and discovered a well of fresh water. 20But then the shepherds from Gerar came and claimed the spring. “This is our water,” they said, and they argued over it with Isaac’s herdsmen. So Isaac named the well Esek (which means “argument”). 21Isaac’s men then dug another well, but again there was a dispute over it. So Isaac named it Sitnah (which means “hostility”). 22Abandoning that one, Isaac moved on and dug another well. This time there was no dispute over it, so Isaac named the place Rehoboth (which means “open space”), for he said, “At last the Lord has created enough space for us to prosper in this land.”
23From there Isaac moved to Beersheba, 24where the Lord appeared to him on the night of his arrival. “I am the God of your father, Abraham,” he said. “Do not be afraid, for I am with you and will bless you. I will multiply your descendants, and they will become a great nation. I will do this because of my promise to Abraham, my servant.” 25Then Isaac built an altar there and worshiped the Lord. He set up his camp at that place, and his servants dug another well.
Isaac’s Covenant with Abimelech
26One day King Abimelech came from Gerar with his adviser, Ahuzzath, and also Phicol, his army commander. 27“Why have you come here?” Isaac asked. “You obviously hate me, since you kicked me off your land.”
28They replied, “We can plainly see that the Lord is with you. So we want to enter into a sworn treaty with you. Let’s make a covenant. 29Swear that you will not harm us, just as we have never troubled you. We have always treated you well, and we sent you away from us in peace. And now look how the Lord has blessed you!”
30So Isaac prepared a covenant feast to celebrate the treaty, and they ate and drank together. 31Early the next morning, they each took a solemn oath not to interfere with each other. Then Isaac sent them home again, and they left him in peace.
32That very day Isaac’s servants came and told him about a new well they had dug. “We’ve found water!” they exclaimed. 33So Isaac named the well Shibah (which means “oath”). And to this day the town that grew up there is called Beersheba (which means “well of the oath”).
34At the age of forty, Esau married two Hittite wives: Judith, the daughter of Beeri, and Basemath, the daughter of Elon. 35But Esau’s wives made life miserable for Isaac and Rebekah.