Bible: Genesis 26:1-33

Isaac and Abimelech

26:1 There was a famine in the land, subsequent to the earlier famine that occurred 1  in the days of Abraham. 2  Isaac went to Abimelech king of the Philistines at Gerar. 26:2 The Lord appeared to Isaac and said, “Do not go down to Egypt; 3  settle down in the land that I will point out to you. 4  26:3 Stay 5  in this land. Then I will be with you and will bless you, 6  for I will give all these lands to you and to your descendants, 7  and I will fulfill 8  the solemn promise I made 9  to your father Abraham. 26:4 I will multiply your descendants so they will be as numerous as the stars in the sky, and I will give them 10  all these lands. All the nations of the earth will pronounce blessings on one another using the name of your descendants. 11  26:5 All this will come to pass 12  because Abraham obeyed me 13  and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws.” 14  26:6 So Isaac settled in Gerar.

26:7 When the men of that place asked him about his wife, he replied, “She is my sister.” 15  He was afraid to say, “She is my wife,” for he thought to himself, 16  “The men of this place will kill me to get 17  Rebekah because she is very beautiful.”

26:8 After Isaac 18  had been there a long time, 19  Abimelech king of the Philistines happened to look out a window and observed 20  Isaac caressing 21  his wife Rebekah. 26:9 So Abimelech summoned Isaac and said, “She is really 22  your wife! Why did you say, ‘She is my sister?” Isaac replied, “Because I thought someone might kill me to get her.” 23 

26:10 Then Abimelech exclaimed, “What in the world have you done to us? 24  One of the men 25  might easily have had sexual relations with 26  your wife, and you would have brought guilt on us! 26:11 So Abimelech commanded all the people, “Whoever touches 27  this man or his wife will surely be put to death.” 28 

26:12 When Isaac planted in that land, he reaped in the same year a hundred times what he had sown, 29  because the Lord blessed him. 30  26:13 The man became wealthy. 31  His influence continued to grow 32  until he became very prominent. 26:14 He had 33  so many sheep 34  and cattle 35  and such a great household of servants that the Philistines became jealous 36  of him. 26:15 So the Philistines took dirt and filled up 37  all the wells that his father’s servants had dug back in the days of his father Abraham.

26:16 Then Abimelech said to Isaac, “Leave us and go elsewhere, 38  for you have become much more powerful 39  than we are.” 26:17 So Isaac left there and settled in the Gerar Valley. 40  26:18 Isaac reopened 41  the wells that had been dug 42  back in the days of his father Abraham, for the Philistines had stopped them up 43  after Abraham died. Isaac 44  gave these wells 45  the same names his father had given them. 46 

26:19 When Isaac’s servants dug in the valley and discovered a well with fresh flowing 47  water there, 26:20 the herdsmen of Gerar quarreled 48  with Isaac’s herdsmen, saying, “The water belongs to us!” So Isaac 49  named the well 50  Esek 51  because they argued with him about it. 52  26:21 His servants 53  dug another well, but they quarreled over it too, so Isaac named it 54  Sitnah. 55  26:22 Then he moved away from there and dug another well. They did not quarrel over it, so Isaac 56  named it 57  Rehoboth, 58  saying, “For now the Lord has made room for us, and we will prosper in the land.”

26:23 From there Isaac 59  went up to Beer Sheba. 26:24 The Lord appeared to him that night and said, “I am the God of your father Abraham. Do not be afraid, for I am with you. I will bless you and multiply your descendants for the sake of my servant Abraham.” 26:25 Then Isaac built an altar there and worshiped 60  the Lord. He pitched his tent there, and his servants dug a well. 61 

26:26 Now Abimelech had come 62  to him from Gerar along with 63  Ahuzzah his friend 64  and Phicol the commander of his army. 26:27 Isaac asked them, “Why have you come to me? You hate me 65  and sent me away from you.” 26:28 They replied, “We could plainly see 66  that the Lord is with you. So we decided there should be 67  a pact between us 68  – between us 69  and you. Allow us to make 70  a treaty with you 26:29 so that 71  you will not do us any harm, just as we have not harmed 72  you, but have always treated you well 73  before sending you away 74  in peace. Now you are blessed by the Lord.” 75 

26:30 So Isaac 76  held a feast for them and they celebrated. 77  26:31 Early in the morning the men made a treaty with each other. 78  Isaac sent them off; they separated on good terms. 79 

26:32 That day Isaac’s servants came and told him about the well they had dug. “We’ve found water,” they reported. 80  26:33 So he named it Shibah; 81  that is why the name of the city has been Beer Sheba 82  to this day.

NET Bible Study Environment