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Genesis 26

26
1 Then, when a famine arose over the land, after that barrenness which had happened in the days of Abraham, Isaac went to Abimelech, king of the Palestinians, in Gerar.
2 And the Lord appeared to him, and he said: "Do not descend into Egypt, but rest in the land that I will tell you,
3 and sojourn in it, and I will be with you, and I will bless you. For to you and to your offspring I will give all these regions, completing the oath that I promised to Abraham your father.
4 And I will multiply your offspring like the stars of heaven. And I will give to your posterity all these regions. And in your offspring all the nations of the earth will be blessed,
5 because Abraham obeyed my voice, and kept my precepts and commandments, and observed the ceremonies and the laws."
6 And so Isaac remained in Gerar.
7 And when he was questioned by the men of that place about his wife, he answered, "She is my sister." For he was afraid to confess her to be his mate, thinking that perhaps they would put him to death because of her beauty.
8 And when very many days had passed, and he had remained in the same place, Abimelech, king of the Palestinians, gazing through a window, saw him being playful with Rebekah, his wife.
9 And summoning him, he said: "It is clear that she is your wife. Why did you falsely claim her to be your sister?" He answered, "I was afraid, lest I might die because of her."
10 And Abimelech said: "Why have you burdened us? Someone from the people could have lain with your wife, and you would have brought a great sin upon us." And he instructed all the people, saying,
11 "Whoever will touch the wife of this man will die a death."
12 Then Isaac sowed in that land, and he found, in that same year, one hundredfold. And the Lord blessed him.
13 And the man was enriched, and he continued prospering as well as increasing, until he became very great.
14 Likewise, he had possessions of sheep and of herds, and a very large family. Because of this, the Palestinians envied him,
15 so, at that time, they obstructed all the wells that the servants of his father Abraham had dug, filling them with soil.
16 It reached a point where Abimelech himself said to Isaac, "Move away from us, for you have become very much more powerful than we."
17 And departing, he then went toward the torrent of Gerar, and he dwelt there.
18 Again, he dug up other wells, which the servants of his father Abraham had dug, and which, after his death, the Philistines had formerly obstructed. And he called them by the same names that his father had called them before.
19 And they dug in the torrent, and they found living water.
20 But in that place also the shepherds of Gerar argued against the shepherds of Isaac, by saying, "It is our water." For this reason, he called the name of the well, because of what had happened, 'Calumny.'
21 Then they dug up yet another one. And over that one also they fought, and he called it, 'Enmity.'
22 Advancing from there, he dug another well, over which they did not contend. And so he called its name, 'Latitude,' saying, "Now the Lord has expanded us and caused us to increase across the land."
23 Then he ascended from that place into Beersheba,
24 where the Lord appeared to him on the same night, saying: "I am the God of Abraham your father. Do not be afraid, for I am with you. I will bless you, and I will multiply your offspring because of my servant Abraham."
25 And so he built an altar there. And he invoked the name of the Lord, and he stretched out his tent. And he instructed his servants to dig a well.
26 When Abimelech, and Ahuzzath, his friend, and Phicol, the leader of the military, had arrived from Gerar to that place,
27 Isaac said to them, "Why have you come to me, a man whom you hate, and whom you have expelled from among you?"
28 And they responded: "We saw that the Lord is with you, and therefore we said: Let there be an oath between us, and let us initiate a pact,
29 so that you may not do us any kind of harm, just as we have touched nothing of yours, and have not caused any injury to you, but with peace we released you, augmented by the blessing of the Lord."
30 Therefore, he made them a feast, and after the food and drink,
31 arising in the morning, they swore to one another. And Isaac sent them away peacefully to their own place.
32 Then, behold, on the same day the servants of Isaac came, reporting to him about a well which they had dug, and saying: "We have found water."
33 Therefore, he called it, 'Abundance.' And the name of the city was established as 'Beersheba,' even to the present day.
34 In truth, at forty years of age, Esau took wives: Judith, the daughter of Beeri, the Hittite, and Basemath, the daughter of Elon, of the same place.
35 And they both offended the mind of Isaac and Rebekah.
26
Isaac Settles in Gerar
1Now there was a famine in the land [of Canaan], besides the previous famine that had occurred in the days of Abraham. So Isaac went to Gerar, to #This is not the Abimelech of ch 20. Abimelech may actually be a dynastic title, like Caesar or Pharaoh, instead of a proper name. The events recounted in chapters 20 and 26 are separated by almost a hundred years.Abimelech king of the Philistines. 2The Lord appeared to him and said, “Do not go down to Egypt; stay in the land of which I will tell you. 3Live temporarily [as a resident] in this land and I will be with you and will bless and favor you, for I will give all these lands to you and to your descendants, and I will establish and carry out the oath which I swore to Abraham your father. 4I will make your descendants multiply as the stars of the heavens, and will give to your descendants all these lands; and by your descendants shall all the nations of the earth be blessed, 5because Abraham listened to and obeyed My voice and [consistently] kept My charge, My commandments, My statutes, and My laws.”
6So Isaac stayed in Gerar. 7The men of the place asked him about his wife, and he said, “She is my #When Abraham used this ploy, it was a half-truth; when Isaac said this it was a complete lie. At this time Isaac was at least seventy-five years old; Rebekah’s age at this time is not known.sister,” for he was afraid to say, “my wife”—thinking, “the men of the place might kill me on account of Rebekah, since she is very beautiful.” 8It happened when he had been there a long time, that Abimelech king of the Philistines looked out of a window and saw Isaac #The name “Isaac” is based on the Hebrew verb translated “caressing,” whose primary meaning is “to laugh” (cf 17:19).caressing Rebekah his wife. 9Then Abimelech called Isaac and said, “See here, Rebekah is in fact your wife! How did you [dare to] say to me, ‘She is my sister’?” And Isaac said to him, “Because I thought I might be killed because of her [desirability].” 10Abimelech said, “What is this that you have done to us? One of the men [among our people] might easily have been intimate with your wife, and you would have brought guilt on us [before God].” 11Then Abimelech commanded all his people, “Whoever touches this man [Isaac] or his wife [Rebekah] shall without exception be put to death.”
12Then Isaac planted [seed] in that land [as a farmer] and reaped in the same year a hundred times [as much as he had planted], and the Lord blessed and favored him. 13And the man [Isaac] became great and gained more and more until he became very wealthy and extremely distinguished; 14he owned flocks and herds and a great household [with a number of servants], and the Philistines envied him. 15Now all the wells which his father’s servants had dug in the days of Abraham his father, the Philistines stopped up by filling them with dirt. 16Then Abimelech said to Isaac, “Go away from here, because you are far too powerful for us.” 17So Isaac left that region and camped in the Valley of Gerar, and settled there.
Quarrel over the Wells
18Now Isaac again dug [and reopened] the wells of water which had been dug in the days of Abraham his father, because the Philistines had filled them up [with dirt] after the death of Abraham; and he gave the wells the same names that his father had given them. 19But when Isaac’s servants dug in the valley and found there a well of flowing [spring] water, 20the herdsmen of Gerar quarreled with Isaac’s herdsmen, saying, “The water is ours!” So Isaac named the well Esek (quarreling), because they quarreled with him. 21Then his servants dug another well, and they quarreled over that also, so Isaac named it Sitnah (enmity). 22He moved away from there and dug another well, and they did not quarrel over that one; so he named it Rehoboth (broad places), saying, “For now the Lord has made #I.e. broad places.room for us, and we shall be #Lit fruitful.prosperous in the land.”
23Then he went up from there to Beersheba. 24The Lord appeared to him the same night and said,
“I am the God of Abraham your father;
Do not be afraid, for I am with you.
I will bless and favor you, and multiply your descendants,
For the sake of My servant Abraham.”
25So Isaac built an altar there and called on the name of the Lord [in prayer]. He pitched his tent there; and there Isaac’s servants dug a well.
Covenant with Abimelech
26Then Abimelech came to him from Gerar with Ahuzzath, his [close friend and confidential] adviser, and Phicol, the commander of his army. 27Isaac said to them, “Why have you [people] come to me, since you hate me and have sent me away from you?” 28They said, “We see clearly that the Lord has been with you; so we said, ‘There should now be an oath between us [with a curse for the one who breaks it], that is, between you and us, and let us make a covenant (binding agreement, solemn promise) with you, 29that you will not harm us, just as we have not touched you and have done nothing but good to you and have sent you away in peace. You are now the blessed and favored of the Lord!’ ” 30Then Isaac held a [formal] banquet (covenant feast) for them, and they ate and drank. 31They got up early in the morning and swore oaths [pledging to do nothing but good to each other]; and Isaac sent them on their way and they left him in peace. 32Now on the same day, Isaac’s servants came and told him about the well they had dug, saying, “We have found water.” 33So he named the well #This could mean “oath” or “overflow, abundance.” Likewise, the name Beersheba could mean “well of abundance,” or “well of the oath,” or “seven wells.”Shibah; therefore the name of the city is Beersheba to this day.
34When Esau was forty years old he married Judith the daughter of Beeri the Hittite, and Basemath the daughter of Elon the Hittite as his wives; 35and they were a #Lit bitterness of spirit.source of grief to [Esau’s parents] Isaac and Rebekah.