The Promise Reaffirmed to Isaac
1There was another famine in the land in addition to the one that had occurred in Abraham’s time.#Gn 12:10 And Isaac went to Abimelech, king of the Philistines, at Gerar.#Gn 20:2 2The Lord appeared to him and said, “Do not go down to Egypt. Live in the land that I tell you about; 3stay in this land as an alien, and I will be with you and bless you.#Gn 12:2; 26:24; 28:15; 31:3 For I will give all these lands to you and your offspring,#Gn 12:7; 13:15; 15:18 and I will confirm the oath that I swore to your father Abraham.#Gn 22:16–18; Ps 105:9 4I will make your offspring as numerous as the stars of the sky, I will give your offspring all these lands, and all the nations of the earth will be blessed#26:4 Or will consider themselves blessed by your offspring,#Gn 12:3; 18:18; Ac 3:25; Gl 3:8 5because Abraham listened to me and kept my mandate, my commands, my statutes, and my instructions.”#Lv 18:30; Dt 11:1 6So Isaac settled in Gerar.
7When the men of the place asked about his wife, he said, “She is my sister,”#Gn 12:13; 20:5 for he was afraid to say “my wife,” thinking,#Pr 29:25 “The men of the place will kill me on account of Rebekah, for she is a beautiful woman.”#Gn 24:16 8When Isaac had been there for some time, Abimelech king of the Philistines looked down from the window and was surprised to see#26:8 Or and he looked and behold — Isaac caressing his wife Rebekah.
9Abimelech sent for Isaac and said, “So she is really your wife! How could you say, ‘She is my sister’?”
Isaac answered him, “Because I thought I might die on account of her.”
10Then Abimelech said, “What have you done to us? One of the people could easily have slept with your wife, and you would have brought guilt on us.”#Gn 20:8–10 11So Abimelech warned all the people, “Whoever harms this man or his wife will certainly be put to death.”
Conflicts over Wells
12Isaac sowed seed in that land, and in that year he reaped#26:12 Lit found a hundred times what was sown. The Lord blessed him,#Gn 24:1,35 13and the man became rich and kept getting richer until he was very wealthy. 14He had flocks of sheep, herds of cattle, and many slaves, and the Philistines were envious of him. 15Philistines stopped up all the wells that his father’s servants had dug in the days of his father Abraham,#Gn 21:30 filling them with dirt. 16And Abimelech said to Isaac, “Leave us, for you are much too powerful for us.”#26:16 Or are more numerous than we are
17So Isaac left there, camped in the Gerar Valley, and lived there. 18Isaac reopened the wells that had been dug in the days of his father Abraham and that the Philistines had stopped up after Abraham died. He gave them the same names his father had given them. 19Then Isaac’s servants dug in the valley and found a well of spring#26:19 Lit living water there. 20But the herdsmen of Gerar quarreled with Isaac’s herdsmen and said, “The water is ours!” So he named the well Esek#26:20 = Argument because they argued with him.#Gn 21:25 21Then they dug another well and quarreled over that one also, so he named it Sitnah.#26:21 = Hostility 22He moved from there and dug another, and they did not quarrel over it. He named it Rehoboth#26:22 = Open Spaces and said, “For now the Lord has made space for us, and we will be fruitful in the land.”
The Lord Appears to Isaac
23From there he went up to Beer-sheba, 24and the Lord appeared to him that night and said, “I am the God of your father Abraham.#Gn 17:7–8; 24:12; Ex 3:6; Ac 7:32 Do not be afraid, for I am with you.#Gn 21:17; Ex 20:20; 2Kg 6:16; Is 41:10; 43:1,5 I will bless you and multiply your offspring because of my servant Abraham.”
25So he built an altar there,#Gn 8:20; 12:7; 13:18; 35:7; Ex 17:15; Jos 8:30 called on the name of the Lord, and pitched his tent there. Isaac’s servants also dug a well there.#Gn 26:32
Covenant with Abimelech
26Now Abimelech came to him from Gerar with Ahuzzath his adviser and Phicol the commander of his army.#Gn 21:22 27Isaac said to them, “Why have you come to me? You hated me and sent me away from you.”
28They replied, “We have clearly seen how the Lord has been with you. We think there should be an oath between two parties — between us and you. Let us make a covenant with you: 29You will not harm us, just as we have not harmed you but have done only what was good to you, sending you away in peace. You are now blessed by the Lord.”#Gn 24:31; Ps 115:15
30So he prepared a banquet for them, and they ate and drank. 31They got up early in the morning and swore an oath to each other.#26:31 Lit swore, each man to his brother#Gn 21:31 Isaac sent them on their way, and they left him in peace. 32On that same day Isaac’s servants came to tell him about the well they had dug, saying to him, “We have found water!” #Gn 26:19 33He called it Sheba.#26:33 Or Shibah Therefore the name of the city is still Beer-sheba#26:33 = Well of the Oath#Gn 21:30–31 today.
34When Esau was forty years old, he took as his wives Judith daughter of Beeri the Hethite, and Basemath daughter of Elon the Hethite.#Gn 28:9; 36:2–3 35They made life bitter#26:35 Lit And they became bitterness of spirit for Isaac and Rebekah.#Gn 27:46
Learn More About Christian Standard Bible
© 2017 Holman Bible Publishers
Isaac and Abimelech
1Once during Abraham's lifetime, the fields had not produced enough grain, and now the same thing happened. So Isaac went to King Abimelech of the Philistines in the land of Gerar, 2because the Lord had appeared to Isaac and said:
Isaac, stay away from Egypt! I will show you where I want you to go. 3#Gn 22.16-18. You will live there as a foreigner, but I will be with you and bless you. I will keep my promise to your father Abraham by giving this land to you and your descendants.
4I will give you as many descendants as there are stars in the sky, and I will give your descendants all of this land. They will be a blessing to every nation on earth,#26.4 They … on earth: Or “All nations on earth will ask me to bless them.” 5because Abraham did everything I told him to do.
6Isaac moved to Gerar 7#Gn 12.13; 20.2. with his beautiful wife Rebekah. He was afraid that someone might kill him to get her, and so he told everyone that Rebekah was his sister. 8After Isaac had been there a long time, King Abimelech looked out a window and saw Isaac hugging and kissing Rebekah. 9Abimelech called him in and said, “Rebekah must be your wife! Why did you say she is your sister?”
“Because I thought someone would kill me,” Isaac answered.
10“Don't you know what you've done?” Abimelech exclaimed. “If someone had slept with her, you would have made our whole nation guilty!” 11Then Abimelech warned his people that anyone who even touched Isaac or Rebekah would be put to death.
12Isaac planted grain and had a good harvest that same year. The Lord blessed him, 13and Isaac was so successful that he became very rich. 14In fact, the Philistines were jealous of the large number of sheep, goats, and slaves that Isaac owned, 15and they stopped up the wells that Abraham's servants had dug before his death. 16Finally, Abimelech said, “Isaac, I want you to leave our country. You have become too powerful to stay here.”
17Isaac left and settled in Gerar Valley, 18where he cleaned out those wells that the Philistines had stopped up. Isaac also gave each of the wells the same name#26.18 gave … same name: By doing this Isaac claimed ownership of the wells. that Abraham had given to them. 19While his servants were digging in the valley, they found a spring-fed well. 20But the shepherds of Gerar Valley quarreled with Isaac's shepherds and claimed the water belonged to them. So this well was named “Quarrel,” because they had quarreled with Isaac.
21Isaac's servants dug another well, and the shepherds also quarreled about it. So that well was named “Jealous.” 22Finally, they dug one more well. There was no quarreling this time, and the well was named “Lots of Room,” because the Lord had given them room and would make them very successful.
23Isaac went on to Beersheba, 24where the Lord appeared to him that night and told him, “Don't be afraid! I am the God who was worshiped by your father Abraham, my servant. I will be with you and bless you, and because of Abraham I will give you many descendants.” 25Isaac built an altar there and worshiped the Lord. Then he set up camp, and his servants started digging a well.
26 # Gn 21.22. Meanwhile, Abimelech had left Gerar and was taking his advisor Ahuzzath and his army commander Phicol to see Isaac. 27When they arrived, Isaac asked, “Why are you here? Didn't you send me away because you hated me?”
28They answered, “We now know for certain that the Lord is with you, and we have decided there needs to be a peace treaty between you and us. So let's make a solemn agreement 29not to harm each other. Remember, we have never hurt you, and when we sent you away, we let you go in peace. The Lord has truly blessed you.”
30Isaac gave a big feast for them, and everyone ate and drank. 31Early the next morning Isaac and the others made a solemn agreement, then he let them go in peace.
32Later that same day Isaac's servants came and said, “We've struck water!” 33So Isaac named the well Shibah,#26.33 Shibah: In Hebrew “Shibah” sounds something like “good luck” and “promise.” and the town is still called Beersheba.#26.33 Beersheba: Meaning “Well of Good Fortune” or “Peace Treaty Well.”
Esau's Foreign Wives
34When Esau was 40 years old, he married Judith the daughter of Beeri the Hittite and Basemath the daughter of Elon the Hittite. 35But these two women brought a lot of grief to Esau's parents Isaac and Rebekah.
Learn More About Contemporary English Version Interconfessional Edition
Contemporary English Version, Second Edition (CEV®)
© 2006 American Bible Society. All rights reserved.