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Isaac & Abimelech
The Battle of the WellsAnd it would seem, that Isaac's plan would pay off. For we now find, that Isaac's servants, had in fact -- discovered a fresh water resource. Now this new discovery, would bring about immediate opposition, from the herdsmen of Gerar.
(Bible Study Online Article Covers : Genesis 26:16-25)
In the last article, we'd learned that Isaac would end up facing "faith tests" that were very similar to his father Abraham. For Isaac would find himself dealing with a Philistine king, who had went by the name Abimelech -- just like his father had done, some 100 years before him.
But know that the similarities wouldn't end there?
For the Sacred Record would reveal, that just like his father before him -- Isaac would have to deal with a severe famine, that was wreaking severe havoc upon the land of Canaan.
And just like Abraham before him, it would seem -- that Isaac had made the decision, to possibly seek relief from the famine, by heading down to Egypt. But first we're told, that Isaac would stop off, to see king Abimelech.
Bible Study OnlineThe Lord Pays Isaac A Visit?
But the Lord would end up intervening, by paying Isaac a visit, while he was down in the land of the Philistines. And it would be during this visit, that the Lord would specifically instruct Isaac not to go down to Egypt:
"Do not go down to Egypt; live in the land where I tell you to live. Stay in this land for a while, and I will be with you and will bless you. For to you and your descendants I will give all these lands, and will confirm the oath I swore to your father Abraham. I will make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and will give them all these lands, and through your offspring all nations on will be blessed, because Abraham obeyed me and kept my requirements, my commands, my decrees and my laws." -- (Genesis 26:2-5)
Bible Study OnlineTheir Similarities Wouldn't End There?
However that may have been, know that similarities between Isaac and Abraham's faith-tests, wouldn't end there? For the Sacred Record would also reveal, that Isaac would end up lying to the Philistines, when it came to his wife Rebekah. And he'd did this by telling them, that she was his sister, instead of telling them the truth.
And just like his father Abraham before him, the Philistine king would find out what Isaac had done. And because of this, Abimelech would immediately confront Isaac about it. And just like his father before him, Isaac would reveal, that he was afraid to tell them the truth -- because he had feared for his life, just like his father did, some 100 years before.
Bible Study OnlineIsaac Forced Out!
But once again, it's now time for us to move forward a bit more, when it comes to our journey. For we've now arrived, at a point during this account, where we find -- that the relationship between Isaac and Abimelech, had begun to turn sour? Now as I had noted in the last article... that after the Lord had been blessing Isaac tremendously, Abimelech and the rest of the Philistines, had begun to grow very jealous of him. For they were witnessing first hand... God's favor upon Isaac's life, and the benefit he'd incurred -- that dealt with him being financially awarded, because of it.
And because of this, the Sacred Record would reveal -- that Abimelech had this to say, when it came to Isaac and his new found wealth: "Move away from us; you have become too powerful for us." And needless-to-say, being the man that Isaac was -- he would not resist, or challenge the king, in any sort of way. And make no mistake, there's no doubt, that Isaac could have done just that? But instead of being prideful, Isaac would stay humble -- and because of this, for the time being, he'd kept strife at bay.
Bible Study OnlineOkay, I'll Leave?
And this is why, we now find the Sacred Record informing us, that Isaac had decided to move away from the Philistine town. And because of him relocating, Isaac would eventually settle from within an area, that was known as "The Valley of Gerar". And even though, Isaac had moved away from Abimelech's kingdom, know that he would still continue to be very industrious. For we must remember -- that Isaac was very skilled, when it came to taking care of his flocks, and the cultivating of the land.
Bible Study OnlineThe Unearthing of the Wells?
Now as we move forward, we now find, that the Sacred Record reveals -- that Isaac would begin to unearth the water-wells, that his father had once dug. Now come to find out, the Sacred Record tells us -- that right after Abraham had died, for whatever reason (possibly because of the envy that they now held for Isaac), the Philistines had filled his water-wells up with dirt: "So all the wells that his father's servants had dug in the time of his father Abraham, the Philistines stopped up, filling them with earth." -- Genesis 26:15
However that may have been, we now find Isaac honoring, and bringing remembrance to his father -- buy unearthing those very same water-wells. Now after he had done this -- Isaac gave the wells, the very same names, that his father had originally given them. But keep in mind, that Isaac wouldn't stop there? For we now find him, instructing his servants, to continue digging from within the valley. Understand that Isaac had done this, because he'd hoped that his servants, would find more fresh water resources -- so that they could dig and construct more water-wells from within the area.
Bible Study OnlineIsaac's Plan Is Successful?
And it would seem, that Isaac's plan, had paid off. For we now find, that Isaac's servants, had in fact -- discovered a fresh water resource. Now this new discovery, would bring about immediate opposition, from the herdsmen of Gerar. Also keep in mind, that all of this was happening -- during the time, in which a great famine was wreaking havoc upon the land. And because of this, water was seen as a very rare, and valuable commodity.
Bible Study OnlineThe Herdsmen of Gerar?
Be that as it may, we now find, that the "herdsmen of Gerar" -- would lay claim to the new water-well, that Isaac's servants had dug and constructed. For it's possible, that the herdsmen had used some type of force, or intimidation tactic -- in order to secure the water-well, from Isaac's camp? Nevertheless, because of this dispute, Isaac would name that water-well "Esek" -- which meant "contention".
Now once again, being the man that he was, Isaac did not challenge the "herdsmen of Gerar". But what he did instead, he went about his business. And it would be during this time, that Isaac would have his servants, find another water resource. This way, they could dig another water-well, and replace the one they had just lost to the "herdsmen of Gerar".
But unfortunately, and just like before, the "herdsmen of Gerar" would discover this. And once again, we find, that they would immediately lay claim to that water-well as well. Now this particular quarrel, would prompt Isaac to name that water-well "Sitnah" -- which meant "hatred".
Bible Study OnlineIsaac Stays Humbled?
And once again, in spite of all this, and with Isaac being a man of great means and power -- did not fight, or resist the herdsmen. But what he did instead, he moved on, and had his servants dig another water-well. But this time around, things would be different? For the Sacred Record would reveal, that the "herdsmen of Gerar" -- would not come and quarrel over this water-well, and once Isaac had realized this, he would name this water-well "Rehoboth" -- which meant "enlargements." And this is why we now find Isaac proclaiming: "Now the Lord has given us room, and we will flourish in the land."
In the next Bible Study Online Article:
Now that things seem to have calm down a bit, when it comes to Isaac's household, and king Abimelech's herdsmen of Gerar. Will this indeed, be the end of their strife? Or will things begin to stir up again, when it comes to the near future? And what about the oath that the Philistines had made with Abraham, some 100 years before -- have they forgotten, how all of that had came about?
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28) The Twelve Rulers of Ishmael
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31) Isaac and the Canaan Famine
32) Isaac Lied About Rebekah
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Added to Page: 34) Abimelech & Isaac Makes An Oath
35) Esau the Rebellious
36) Isaac's Favorite Son Esau
37) God has Checkmate
38) Rebekah's Reaction
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40) Deceitful Hearts
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42) Esau's Heart of Vengeance
43) Jacob - The Path of Uncertainty
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