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Genesis 26

26
1There was a famine in the country—not the one that happened before in Abraham's time, but a later one. So Isaac moved to Gerar in the territory of Abimelech, king of the Philistines.
2The Lord appeared to Isaac and told him, “Don't go to Egypt—live in the country that I tell you to. 3Stay here in this country. I will be with you and I will bless you, because I'm going to give you and your descendants all these lands. I will keep the solemn promise that I swore to Abraham your father. 4I will make your descendants as numerous as the stars of heaven and I will give them all these lands. All the nations of the earth will be blessed by your descendants, 5because Abraham did what I told him, and kept my requirements, my commands, my regulations, and my laws.”
6So Isaac stayed in Gerar. 7When the men there asked him about his wife, he told them, “She's my sister,” because he was afraid. He said to himself, “If I say she's my wife, the men here will kill me to get Rebekah, because she's so beautiful.” 8But later on, after he'd been there a while, Abimelech, king of the Philistines, happened to look out the window and saw Isaac lovingly fondling his wife Rebekah.
9Abimelech sent for Isaac and complained. “From what I saw she's clearly your wife!” he said. “Why on earth did you say, ‘She's my sister’?”
“Because I thought I'd be killed because of her,” Isaac replied.
10“Why would you do this to us?” Abimelech asked. “One of the men here might have slept with your wife, and you would have made us all guilty!”
11Abimelech issued orders to all the people, warning them, “Anyone who touches this man or his wife will be executed.”
12Isaac sowed grain that year, and the Lord blessed him with a harvest that was a hundred times what he planted. 13He became a rich man, and his wealth steadily increased until he was very rich. 14He owned many flocks of sheep and herds of cattle, as well as many slaves. He had so much that the Philistines became jealous of him. 15So the Philistines used dirt to block up all the wells his father Abraham's servants had dug.
16Then Abimelech told Isaac, “You have to leave our country, because you've become much too powerful for us.”
17So Isaac moved away and set up his tents in the Gerar Valley where he settled down. 18He unblocked the wells that had been dug in his father Abraham's time—the ones the Philistines had blocked after the death of Abraham. He gave them the same names his father had.
19Isaac's servants also dug a new well in the valley and found spring water. 20But the herdsmen from Gerar argued with Isaac's herdsmen, claiming, “That's our water!” So Isaac named the well, “Argument,” because they argued with him. 21He had another well dug, and they argued over that one too. He named the well, “Opposition.”#26:21. “Opposition”: The word is in fact the female form of the word, “satan,” meaning opponent or adversary. 22So they moved on from there and he had another well dug. This time there was no argument so he named the well, “Freedom,”#26:22. “Freedom”: literally, “wide/open space,” which is often used in Hebrew as a synonym for freedom, since people are then given room to move around. See for example Job 36:16; Psalms 118:5. saying, “Now the Lord has given us freedom to expand and be successful in this land.”
23From there he moved on to Beersheba. 24That night the Lord appeared to him and said, “I am the God of Abraham your father. Don't be afraid, for I am with you. I will bless you and give you many descendants for the sake of my servant Abraham.” 25Isaac built an altar and worshiped the Lord. He also set up his tent, and his servants dug a well there.
26Sometime later Abimelech came from Gerar to see Isaac, along with Ahuzzath his advisor, and Phicol the commander of his army.#26:26. See 21:22. In view of the length of time between these events it is unlikely that they are the same individuals. These were probably official titles rather than personal names. 27“Why have you come to see me?” Isaac asked them. “Previously you hated me and told me to leave!”
28“Now we realize that the Lord is with you,” they replied. “So we agreed that we should make a sworn agreement with you. 29You'll promise not to harm us in the same way we've never hurt you. You'll agree that we've always treated you well, and when we asked you to leave we did so kindly. Now look at how the Lord is blessing you!”
30So Isaac had a special meal prepared to celebrate the agreement. They ate and drank, 31and got up early in the morning and they each swore oaths to one other. Then Isaac sent them on their way, and they left in peace.
32It was that very day when Isaac's servants who'd been digging a well came and told him, “We've found water!” 33So Isaac named the well, “Oath,” and that's why the name of the town is “Well of the Oath” (Beersheba) to this day.
34When Esau was 40, he married Judith, daughter of Beeri the Hittite, as well as Basemath, daughter of Elon the Hittite. 35They caused Isaac and Rebekah a great deal of grief.
26
Isaac and Abimelek
Ge 12:10–20; 20:1–18
1#Ge 12:10There was a famine in the land, in addition to the first famine that was during the days of Abraham. Isaac went to Abimelek king of the Philistines in Gerar. 2#Ge 12:1; 12:7The Lord appeared to him and said, “Do not go down to Egypt. Live in the land of which I will tell you. 3#Ge 13:15; 28:15Sojourn in this land, and I will be with you and will bless you; for I will give to you and all your descendants all these lands, and I will fulfill the oath which I swore to Abraham your father. 4#Ge 15:5; 22:17–18I will make your descendants multiply as the stars of the heavens and will give your descendants all these lands. By your descendants all the nations of the earth will be blessed,#Or will bless themselves. 5#Ge 22:16; 22:18because Abraham obeyed Me and kept My charge, My commandments, My statutes, and My laws.” 6So Isaac lived in Gerar.
7#Ge 12:13; 20:2The men of the place asked him about his wife. And he said, “She is my sister,” for he was afraid to say, “She is my wife,” thinking, “The men of the place might kill me on account of Rebekah, because she is beautiful in appearance.”
8When he had been there a long time, Abim­elek the king of the Philistines looked out of a window and saw Isaac caressing Rebekah his wife. 9Abimelek summoned Isaac and said, “She is surely your wife, so how is it you said, ‘She is my sister’?”
Then Isaac said to him, “Because I said, ‘I might die on account of her.’ ”
10Abimelek said, “What is this you have done to us? One of the people might have easily lain with your wife, and you might have brought guilt upon us!”
11#Ps 105:15Abimelek charged all his people, saying, “He who touches this man or his wife will surely be put to death.”
12#Ge 26:3; 24:1Then Isaac sowed in that land and reaped in the same year a hundredfold; the Lord blessed him. 13The man became rich and continued to prosper until he became very wealthy. 14#Ge 37:11; Ecc 4:4For he had possessions of flocks and herds and a great number of servants so that the Philistines envied him. 15#Ge 21:30For the Philistines had stopped up all the wells which his father’s servants had dug in the days of Abraham his father by filling them with dirt.
16#Ex 1:9Abimelek said to Isaac, “Go away from us, for you are much more powerful than we are.”
17So Isaac departed from there and pitched his tent in the Valley of Gerar and settled there. 18#Ge 21:31Isaac 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. He called their names after the names his father had called them.
19But when Isaac’s servants dug in the valley and found a well of running water there, 20#Ge 21:25the herdsmen of Gerar contended with Isaac’s herdsmen, saying, “The water is ours.” So he called the name of the well Esek, because they contended with him. 21They dug another well and quarreled over that also. So he called the name of it Sitnah. 22#Ge 17:6; Ex 1:7Then he moved away from there and dug another well, and they did not quarrel over it. So he called the name of it Rehoboth, for he said, “For now the Lord has made room for us, and we will be fruitful in the land.”
23He went up from there to Beersheba. 24#Ge 15:1; 17:7The Lord appeared to him that same night and said, “I am the God of Abraham your father. Do not fear, for I am with you. I will bless you and multiply your descendants for the sake of My servant Abraham.”
25#Ge 13:18; Ps 116:17He built an altar there, called on the name of the Lord, and pitched his tent there. And there Isaac’s servants dug a well.
26Then Abimelek went to him from Gerar, along with Ahuzzath, one of his friends, and Phicol the commander of his army. 27#Ge 26:16; Jdg 11:7Isaac said to them, “Why have you come to me, since you hate me and have sent me away from you?”
28#Ge 21:22–23And they said, “We saw plainly that the Lord was 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, 29#Ge 24:31; Ps 115:15so that you will do us no harm, just as we have not touched you, and have done you nothing but good and have sent you away in peace. You are now the blessed of the Lord.’ ”
30#Ge 19:3Then he made them a feast, and they ate and drank. 31They rose up early in the morning and swore an oath with one another. Isaac sent them away, and they departed from him in peace.
32That same day Isaac’s servants came and told him about the well that they had dug and said to him, “We have found water.” 33#Ge 21:31And he called it Shibah. Therefore, the name of the city is Beersheba to this day.
34#Ge 36:2Esau was forty years old when he took as wives Judith the daughter of Beeri the Hittite, and Basemath the daughter of Elon the Hittite, 35and they brought grief to Isaac and to Rebekah.