Saturday, July 15, 2017

Genesis 21:22-34

22 Meanwhile, Abimelech, having noticed all the ways that God was blessing Abraham, decided that he and Phicol, the commander of his army, should pay him a visit. Abimelech said to Abraham, “It’s pretty clear that God is with you in everything you do. 23 And since I don’t want to end up on his wrong side, please swear to God that you’ll always be fair, open, and honest with me -- as well as my children and their descendants. I’ve gone out of my way to treat you -- an immigrant without standing or rights -- very fairly. So I need your word that you’ll also treat me and everyone in this place with corresponding fairness.

24 Without hesitation, Abraham responded, “I give you my word.” 25 But he added, “Since we’re talking about fairness, some of your servants have seized a well that I dug.”

26 Abimelech replied, “Hmmmm… This is the first I’ve heard of it. You should have told me sooner. I don’t know right off who did that.”

27 As a sign of his seriousness Abraham gave some sheep and cattle to Abimelech and the two of them drew up a covenant agreement of cooperation. 28 In addition, Abraham set aside from his flock seven female lambs. 29 So Abimelech said to Abraham, “What are these lambs for?”

30 Abraham said, “I’m giving these seven lambs to you in order to establish legal proof that I dug this well and that I am therefore the owner.”

31 Thus, that well became known as Beersheba -- which means Oath Well. For at that place Abraham and Abimelech swore a covenant oath to each other.

32 After they drew up their covenant treaty at Beersheba, Abimelech and Commander Phicol returned to their headquarters in the area which eventually became the land of the Philistines.

33 Meanwhile, Abraham planted a tamarisk tree at Beersheba. There he worshiped the Lord -- the God who has no beginning or end. 34 And Abraham settled down there, living for a long time as a foreigner in Philistine country.