So why, after he already gave Abimelek flocks of sheep and cattle, did Abraham give him seven lambs as a witness that Abraham dug the well? Category: Sermon StructureTags: Genesis, Genesis 21, Old Testament Narrative, Home | Admissions | Academics | Campus Life | Alumni, All content copyright 2023 Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary 1. Arise We have had hitherto God's account of that which He had made; then the 22 And it came to pass at that time that Abimelech and Phichol, the commander of his army, spoke to Abraham, saying, "God is with you in all that you do. _The birth of Isaac. The Covenant Between Abraham and Abimelech NINTH SECTION Of great importance for the scientific data that has been included in the author's exposition. God's people, though expected meekly to suffer wrong, cannot always help seeing that it is wrong they suffer. b. Vs.1-7 The birth of Isaac. Philistines generally (Genesis 2 ISHMAEL AND ISAAC Philistines generally (Genesis 2 ISHMAEL AND ISAAC One of Abrahams deeply rooted fears when God called him to leave his homeland and go to the land of Canaan was that the people of the land would see his wife and kill him in order to take her. and the LORD did unto Sarah as he had spoken (Genesis 21:1). He rained down fire and brimstone to destroy wicked Sodom. 7. He gives Abimelek seven lambs so Abimelek can tell his servants that the well has been purchased. Do others see the hand of God on your life? all that thou _AND IT CAME TO PASS AT THAT TIME, THAT ABIMELECH AND PHICHOL THE Hence "the ownership of wells m Palestine was as jealously guarded as the possession of a mine in our own" (Inglis). fear And alls well. "'Do not lay a hand on the boy,' he said. 139:16)! CRITICAL NOTES. The league is proposed by Abimelech, and Phichol his prime-minister of state and general of his army. Cyril Barber on Morris' The Genesis Record : a Scientific and Devotional Commentary (It can be borrowed) - Valuable as corollary reading. This new cop couldnt believe it. Verse Genesis 21:22. (1) God fulfills His promise to Abraham and Sarah. GENESIS 21:23. Show to me and my country the same kindness Ive shown you. Give people youre in disagreement with a graceful way out. It hadnt worked the two times they tried it. you do. Will God forgive me for losing hope and the will to live? _ALUN OWEN_ 1. Perhaps Abimelech had heard of how God had given Abraham and Sarah a son in their old age. We live with the daily, ordinary routines that characterize the greater part of our lives: getting ready for the day, rushing off to work, getting the kids off to school, shopping for groceries, paying bills, mowing lawns, and maintaining the household. 7. See also Genesis 21:22-34 in other biblical comments: Adam Clarke Bible Commentary. 1. Youll be happier, people will be more cooperative toward you, and youll have healthier relationships. 22 And it came to pass at that time, that Abimelech and Phicol the The significance of the presence of Phichol at the ceremony indicates Abimelechs promise not to pursue military action against Abraham. Genesis 21:22-34 In-Context. In that case Abraham went down to Egypt, whereas Isaac went only as far as Gerar, in the land of the Philistines, but the same place where we read of Abraham denying his relationship with Sarah. V2 So Sarah became *pregnant. The tree sealed the site of the oath. And Abraham plantedas a sign of his peaceful occupation of the soil (Calvin); as a memorial of the transaction about the well ('Speaker's Commentary'); or simply as a shade for his tent (Rosenmller); scarcely as an oratory (Bush, Kalisch)a grovethe wood, plantation (Targum, Vulgate, Samaritan, Kimchi); a field, (LXX. 1886. The Atlantic, June 2009. Some try to convey that they are perfect. Good men should do all they can to make others so. As Abraham is the father of all the faithful, so the Hagar out of heaven, and said unto her, What aileth thee, Hagar? all that thou doest: 9 Hagar & Ishmael are cast forth. Now if Abraham dug the well it was his. Im not suggesting that you go on sinning and tell everyone that youre a Christian. favourite of God, chap. Here we have accomplished promise the blessed Wells of water are scarce and valuable in eastern countries. NOR WITH MY SON, NOR WITH MY SONS SON.] Even in this ordinary incident, Abraham acknowledged Gods faithful care for him. He normally didnt attend church, but he was troubled about some matters and went to church, hoping to find some relief. As he was leaving, a young man walked up and quoted John 3:16: For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. The businessman didnt see how such a thing could be true and he didnt understand the connection between Gods giving His Son and a person having eternal life. laughed with the laughter of incredulity, now laughed with the _Abimelech, king of Gerara, who knew that Abraham was a prophet, and a Genesis 21:22. ), Posted on October 2, 2011 by Kurt Bennett, Category: Bible Study, Genesis, How Jesus Loved People - How You Can Too, I Wish Someone Had Told Me This When I Was Young, Tags: Abraham and Abimelek, Bible relationships, Christian, depression, how to be happy, how to love, love, Well of Beersheba, ive had a dream on this subject and have was awaken, Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window), Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window), Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window). How Jesus guarded his heart by taking care of himselfhe even nappedand why you should do the same. Wheres the balance between taking measures for our own safety versus trusting God to protect us? Gunkel has given strong IN ALL THAT THOU DOEST:_ . The files holding the data are as thick as unabridged dictionaries. "The Lord visited Sarah as he had said." The Lord keeps His word. He wasnt a TV evangelist. Abimelech has reason to be suspicious of Abraham, but recognizes Gods blessing on his life, so he wisely seeks a covenant of truth and peace between them. Weaned] in his second or third year, as is usual among Orientals. GODS ANCIENT PEOPLE It is wise to connect ourselves with those who are blessed of God; and we ought to requite kindness to those who have been kind to us. Numbers 14:13). The deal is sealed. (3) that in making charges or preferring complaints it is well to avoid both heat of temper and severity of language. Each time, the young man, who was retarded and knew only this one verse, responded simply by quoting John 3:16. @#$%^&* salary!. Yesterday (at the time of this writing) I participated in a class that teaches you how to communicate with people on the street in a way that encourages cooperation and avoids the need for physical force. *** Abimelech reenters the picture with his enforcer, Phicol. So the treaty is solidified. He suggested that Abraham and he make a treaty that would guarantee good relations between them (22-24). It is as much the duty of him who has a grievance to reveal it, as it is the duty of him who has caused the grievance to remove it. captain of his host spake unto Abraham, saying, God [is] with thee in GENESIS 21:23. The term for making a treaty (used here and vs. 32) is karat. undertakings. So swear to me here before God that you wont deal falsely with me or my children or my descendants. In like manner Phichol, mouth of all, seems to have been the official designation of the prime minister, and commander-in-chief. But it is significant that Gods blessing on Abraham is evident even to this pagan king, Abimelech, who tells Abraham, God is with you in all that you do (21:22). Abimelek the king of Gerar and his top general Phicol approach Abraham and say to him, We recognize that God is with you in everything you do. 27:7). 22. In this narrative, Abraham appears as a chieftain powerful enough for a king to wish to make an alliance with him; and thus his abandonment of Sarah, and his receiving of presents in compensation for the wrong done her, seems the more unworthy of him. not; for God hath heard the voice of the lad where he is. No more can be expected from an honest man than that he be ready to do right, as soon as he knows he has done wrong. Here we have accomplished promise the blessed One of the most comforting doctrines of Scripture is the truth that God providentially protects His children. 7. And Abraham stayed in the land of the Philistines for a long time. IN ALL THAT THOU DOEST:_ Peace. Observing what he had done, and not knowing the design of it: what mean these seven ewe lambs which thou hast set by themselves ? He walked in daily communion with God. Separate from the sheep and oxen he gave to Abimelech, and from those that were used in making the covenant. Abraham's name of God, Jehovah El Olam; the two revelations, the God of nature and the God of grace. Checking his ticket which he hadnt used, he realized that if his earlier flight to Chicago had not been cancelled, he would have been on that flight. Abimelech, the king who had inadvertently taken Sarah into his harem because Abraham had lied about her being his sister, pays a visit to Abraham, acknowledges that God is with him, and proposes a peace pact. Only before concluding the agreement there was a matter of a more personal character that required settlement. Abimelech. And yet he was used in Gods great purpose of blessing the nations through Abrahams seed, the Lord Jesus Christ. His friendship is valued, is courted, though a stranger, though a tenant at will to the Canaanites and Perizzites. 7. 23 Now therefore, swear[ a] to me by God that you will not deal falsely with me, with my offspring, or with my posterity; but that according to the kindness that I have done to you, you will do 9 Hagar & Ishmael are cast forth. Why are we told this? Show us kindness like we have been kind to you. How to survive a life of loving like Jesus (or how not to become a Christian doormat). Hagar and Ishmael sent away. It is not necessary to conclude from verse 1 and 2 that Sarah only became pregnant after the episode that is told in the previous chapter. Why did she come at exactly the time the mechanism was broken? with his wi AND IT CAME TO PASS AT THAT TIME,. Not when Ishmael was grown up 17 The Angel comforteth her. It also signified a tranquil, settled life, under Gods providential care. You know what Ive learned? How Jesus loved his betrayer Judas, even to the very end. Love Like Jesusexamines a variety of stories, examples, and research, including: With genuine unfiltered honesty,Love Like Jesus, shows you how to live a life according to Gods definition of success: A life of loving God well, and loving the people around you well too. 22 And it came to pass at that time, that Abimelech and Phicol the 15 Hagar in distresse. Hes letting Abimeleks servants off the hook! You might be protesting. Sometimes we think that weve got to be perfect before God can use us as a witness. I.e. COVENANT. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture Quotations are from the New American Standard Bible, The Lockman Foundation, Related Topics: Character of God, Discipleship, Ecclesiology (The Church), Empower, Spiritual Life, Steve served as the pastor of Flagstaff Christian Fellowship from May, 1992 through his retirement in December, 2018. See also David living in the land of the Philistines (1 Sam. ), his knowledge of Isaac's birth, and his general observation of the patriarch's prosperity. Hes lying! Abraham instituted two memorials of the important transactions, naming the well Beersheba, and planting a tamarisk beside his tent. In Chapter s 20, 21 we have the question of the heir and of the path Why did the woman have the prayer already written before he asked for it? Theyre people who live rather ordinary lives, except for one significant fact--their lives count for eternity because they are used by God to help fulfill His purpose. 1 The LORD visited Sarah as he had said, and the LORD did to Sarah as he had promised. *** Abimelech reenters the picture with his enforcer, Phicol. Ver. fear From 1977-1992 he was the pastor of Lake Gregory Community Church in Crestline, California. and poetical word. olam) as a name for the Lord, This is the word used on the covenant with Abraham (13:15; 17: 7, 8, 13, 19). Not long ago he was asked, What have you learned from the Grant Study men?, Vaillants response: That the only thing that really matters in life are your relationships to other people. (What makes us happy? Note the significance of the word oath (Hb. Now the grace of God bears its most important fruit in the history of ISAAC IS BORN His life wasnt made up of one spectacular event after another. Sarah as he had spoken." And Abraham took sheep and oxen, and gave them unto Abimelech As the usual covenant presents (cf. Which things are an. His calendar wasnt full of speaking engagements. As you think about Abrahams life, you realize that he was a fairly ordinary man, except that he was a man of extraordinary faith and obedience to God. 6 Sarahs ioy. However, see 26:17-33, where Isaac also has a dispute with Abimelech (likely not the same person) over wells and makes a treaty with him. 4. How aggressive should we be? Ver. 21:28-30 The giving and receiving of the lambs stipulates that Abraham dug the well in Beersheba and thus rightfully owns the well. Good men mostly desire to have the saints as friends, and even the wicked can perceive an advantage in being allied to the righteous. His friendship is valued, is courted, though a stranger, though a tenant at will to the Canaanites and Perizzites. fruit of patient waiting upon God. CONCLUSION: Behind every promise of God is the purpose a Genesis 21:3. He provided manna in the wilderness and brought water from a rock. Abraham, the one who took his army of 318 men and rescued Lot from the armies of four kings, Abraham goes after the servants of Abimelek and takes them out, right? And if anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, hand over your coat as well. He graduated from Dallas Theological Seminary (Th.M., 1976 in Bible exposition) and Califo More. 22. Another highlight of this passage is the explanation for the origin of the name Beersheba. And Abraham replies, These seven lambs are a witness that I dug the well that your servants seized. Scripture Story: Genesis 21:1-5; Genesis 22:1-12. Now therefore swear unto me here by Godthe verb to swear is derived from the Hebrew numeral seven, inasmuch as the septennary number was sacred, and oaths were confirmed either by seven sacrifices (Genesis 21:28) or by seven witnesses and pledgesthat thou wilt not deal falsely with me,literally, if thou shalt lie unto me; a common form of oath in Hebrew, in which the other member of the sentence is for emphasis left unexpressed (cf. 4 He is circumcised. He complains to Abimelek about a well of water that Abimeleks servants had seized. God burned the words into his heart and gave him the faith to believe. the long-promised son was born. A son was ABIMELECHS COVENANT WITH ABRAHAM. reasons for holding that J is here made up of two main sources ABRAHAM AND ABIMELECH MAKE A COVENANT AT BEERSHEBA. Abraham called on the name of the everlasting God. . And Abraham said, I will swear. Isaac is born, and circumcised. The most comprehensive longitudinal study in history is a research project called the Grant Study. We are secure in His providential care. Your neighbor may have a Ph.D. and you may be a blue collar worker. "This scene occurs at the same time as the events of Scene 6 [ Genesis 21:1-21] but focuses on different characters and tensions. 8. He did what he The name of the Lord itself an invitation to believe and live. It is wise to connect ourselves with those who are blessed 21:22-34 Abimelech felt sure that the promises of God would be fulfilled to Abraham. Yet in spite of Abrahams sins and insensitivity, Abimelech here seeks him out because he recognized God in Abrahams life! Abraham called on the name of the Lord. I heard a story about a new police officer who, on his first day on the job, caught someone speeding. 1. This is even more significant when you realize that Abraham wasnt doing anything spectacular. of God; and we ought to requite kindness to those who have We plainly see that God blesseth and prospereth thee in all thy Probably from JE. None ever waited in vain. We have here an account of the treaty between Abimelech and Abraham, in which appears the accomplishment of that promise (Gen. 12:2) that God would make his name great. (Murphy)that Abimelechthe king of Gerar (Genesis 20:2; Genesis 26:1, Genesis 26:16)and Phi-cholif the name be Shemitic, "mouth of all," i.e. If he would walk with God, so that it was evident to others, Abraham had nothing to fear. In Genesis 21:22-34, we see Abraham in a scene from his ordinary life. God promised that His covenant with Abraham would be an everlasting covenant; Abraham recognized God as everlasting., This foreshadows future encounters between the Israelites and the Philistines. DISMISSAL OF HAGAR AND ISHMAEL. And he said, For these seven ewe lambs shalt thou take of my hand, that they may be a witness unto me,that this peculiar kind of oath never occurs again in Old Testament history is no proof of the mythical character of the narrative (Bohlen); on the contrary, "that the custom existed in primitive Hebrew times is shown by the word , which had early passed into the language, and which would be inexplicable without the existence of such a custom" (Havernick)that I have digged this well. of his host, spoke to Abraham saying, God is with you in all that law of Hebrew narrative, probably not Now the LORD visited Sarah as he had said (Genesis 21:1), Genesis 21:22 He sets apart seven lambs from the flock and gives them to Abimelek. 1 Kings 15:19; Isaiah 30:6; Isaiah 39:1). Youll recall that he had been deceptive, pawning off Sarah as his sister. Arab Ishmael is the father of all our outcasts. Weaned] in his second or third year, as is usual among Orientals. GODS ANCIENT PEOPLE But other than that, Abrahams life was fairly routine. Here God shows Abraham that not only would the people of the land not take his wife, they wouldnt even take his well. This passage chronicles a covenant between Abraham and Abimelech. GENESIS 21:22 After the treaty had been made at Beersheba, Abimelek and Phicol the commander of his forces returned to the land of the Philistines. How to respond to critics the way Jesus did. I dont have to give you my license and registration., Listen you ! A son was ABIMELECHS COVENANT WITH ABRAHAM. CHRISTIAN PROSPERITY What for you is the most threatening aspect about telling someone about Christ. The one great miracle in his life was the birth of Isaac in his old age. 2. could sing with Mary, My soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spi God is with thee in all that thou doest 2. 17 The Angel comforteth her. There he made, not only a constant practice, but an open profession of his religion. The LXX. The driver of the vehicle wasnt given a graceful way out. (2) that as Beersheba was situated on the confines of the Philistines' territory, Abraham must frequently have sojourned in their country while pasturing his flocks (Rosenmller). By the way the new cops boss, the Police Chief, called him into his office the next day for what the new cop thought was going to be an atta-boy. His flight from New York was first delayed and then cancelled, so that he would have missed his meetings. He was, to put it gently, directed to find a way to verbally persuade subjects to cooperate. Treaty with Abimelech (21:22-34) Abraham had settled in the south of Canaan in Abimelech's territory and at Abimelech's invitation (see 20:15). THAT ABIMELECH, AND PHICHOL, THE CHIEF CAPTAIN OF HIS HOST, SPAKE And it came to pass at that time, that Abimelech and Phichol the chief Newly released book by Kurt Bennett, now available onAmazon! He checked his badge, it was on right side up. Another step in Abrahams walk with God is seen in verse 33, where he plants a tree and calls on the name of the Lord, the Everlasting God. Planting the tree was an act to remind Abraham of Gods faithfulness, especially in the everyday matter of providing the well which supplied the water for this tree to grow. and the LORD did unto Sarah as he had spoken (Genesis 21:1). Abraham had two sons, the one by a bondmaid, the other by a freewoman. In seeking to bring about both of these promises, Abraham resorted to human schemes to help God out: with the son, he went in to Hagar and produced Ishmael; with regard to the land, his fears of being wiped out by the inhabitants of the land prompted him to lie about Sarah being his sister, not his wife. Then this brand new cop said,Sir, step out of the car. Now therefore swear to me here by God that you will not de Genesis 21 Genesis 21 1. he understood what the sheep and oxen were for, that they were presents to him, at least some of them, and the rest were for the solemnizing and ratifying the covenant between them; but what these were for he could not devise. Of _Abimelech, _ see GENESIS 20:2. And the Lord visited Sarah, as he had said, and the Lord did unto 14. . As a prince, Abimelech was afraid of Abraham's growing power; as a good man, he insures the safety of himself and his dominions not by resorting to war, but by forming an amicable treaty with his neighbornor with my son, nor with my son's son: (LXX. The angel relieves and comforts her. Gen. 21:22-34 Locate the passage This passage chronicles a covenant between Abraham and Abimelech. Abraham kept up public worship, in which his neighbours might join. Sarah The inducement to it was God's favour to Abraham (Gen. 21:22): ?God is with thee in all that thou doest, read more, Observe, 1. Abraham took the occasion of Abimelechs visit to bring up the matter of a well which Abimelechs servants had seized from Abrahams servants. GENESIS Abraham's acquiescence in the king's proposal was no doubt dictated by a peaceable disposition, a sense of equity, a spirit of contentment, and an unwavering confidence in God. 2. The palpable injury. This may grow out of the previous encounter when God spoke to Abimelech, called Abraham a prophet, and answered Abrahams prayer (for the infertility of the women in his house). trial and utter ruin of the creature, with the revelation of divine Abimelech, that is _Father-King,_ was Abraham denies his relationship Do we work hard or slack off? The significance of this passage is Abraham finding a place in the land promised to him in safety. mercy in Christ the Lord. 4. at the time God Himself had 22-34 Abimelech felt sure that the promises of God would be fulfilled Abimelech claimed no prior knowledge of the matter, and the covenant the two men ratified stipulated that the well belonged to Abraham (21:30). chesed) to Abraham. As a tax payer Im your boss I pay your ! and married, but when Isaac was weaned and Ishmael was expelled: Genesis 21:1; Genesis 22:1 you do. to Abraham. So if Abimelek gives the well back to Abraham, Abimeleks servants might react, You believe that foreigner over us? Good men should not only rectify the wrongs they do to one another, but adopt all wise precautions against their repetition. But thats not fair! You might be saying. He did what he And it came to pass at that time, that Abimelech and Phichol the chief captain of his host spake unto Abraham, saying, God. A.M. 2118. How can we turn everyday situations into opportunities for telling others about Christ? Abimelech and Phichol. _The Covenant with Abimelech_ (Genesis 21:22-34) Ishmael mocking (Genesis 22:9) As the psalmist proclaims, Behold, the eye of the Lord is on those who fear Him, on those who hope for His loving kindness, to deliver their soul from death, and to keep them alive in famine (Ps. (22) ABIMELECH AND PHICHOL. _The birth of Isaac. God used the only Scripture this retarded young man knew to give eternal life to this sophisticated businessman (told by Martin & Deidre Bobgan, Competent to Minister [EastGate], pp. All rights reserved. Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers 21:25-26 Interrupting the covenant-making ceremony, Abraham airs a grievance that he has with Abimelech related to Abimelechs servants taking possession of a well that Abraham previously dug. But Abimelek said, I dont know who has done this. How to love unlovable people the way Jesus did. That word sounds very much like the Hebrew word for seven (sheva) used in 21:28, 29, and 30. The oath a testimony to God where reverently made. _AT THAT TIME_] This may either refer to the transactions recorded in the preceding chapter, or to the time of Ishmael's marriage, but most probably to the former. ALL CHRISTIAN PROSPERITY IS ALSO CONSCIOUSLY IDENTIFIED WITH Abimelechs proposal includes his offspring, but does not specifically include any offspring of Abraham. How Jesus didnt love everyone the same (and why you shouldnt either). In that desert land, a well was essential for survival, both for a mans flocks and for his family. What makes us happy? 1886. The apparent contradiction between the statement of this verse and that of Genesis 21:32 may be removed by supposing either. After pouring over Jesus every interaction with another human being, he realized he was doing a much better job ofstudyingJesus words than he wasfollowingJesus words and example. And it came to pass at that time, that Abimelech and Phichol the chief captain of his host spake unto Abraham, saying, God is with thee in all that thou doest: , saying, God is with thee in all that thou doest, Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers, Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament. Then Abraham does something unexpected. Here he is in this situation where he dug a well, a large investment in that area at that time. 22-34 Abimelech felt sure that the promises of God would be fulfilled to Abraham. So its a huge deal for someone to take over a well as Abimeleks servants did. Its about relationships with people. In this section It is wise to connect ourselves with those who are blessed of God; and we ought to requite kindness to those who have been kind to us. The Covenant Between Abraham and Abimelech NINTH SECTION Phichol.] 2. God also took care of Hagar and Ishmael, remembering His promise to greatly multiply their descendants (see Birth of Isaac ). So that place was called Beersheba,because the two men swore an oath there. Genesis 21 Genesis 22 Genesis 23 Genesis 24 . It may have been that his servants were telling him, No way, Abraham didnt dig that well, we did! Abraham planted a tamarisk tree in Beersheba, and there he called on the name of the LORD, the Eternal God. Do you call on the name of the Lord regardless of your circumstances. It shows how God faithfully provided all that Abraham needed apart from Abrahams schemes. _God is with thee in all tha 1 Isaac is borne. trial and utter ruin of the creature, with the revelation of divine And it came to pass at that time,possibly in immediate sequence to the incident of the preceding chapter, but, "according to the common law of Hebrew narrative, probably not long after the birth of Isaac."