Genesis, chapters 25-28

Last week’s reading taught me about resolving conflicts through faith and mildness.

In Genesis ch. 26 verses 16 & 17, we see how the Philistines grow afraid of Isaac due to his ever-growing prosperity and so their king asks him to leave.

A·bim′e·lech then said to Isaac: “Move from our neighborhood, for you have grown far stronger than we are.” So Isaac moved from there and encamped in the valley of Ge′rar and began dwelling there.

As Isaac’s servants are working hard digging up his fathers’ old wells which the Philistines had stopped up, they find a new well.

And the shepherds of Ge′rar began quarreling with the shepherds of Isaac, saying: “The water is ours!” So he named the well E′sek [meaning: contention] because they had quarreled with him (Gen. 26:20).

Isaac decides to move on and they look for another well.

And they started digging another well, and they began quarreling over it also. So he named it Sit′nah [meaning: accusation] (Gen. 26:21).

Again, instead of arguing with the Philistines, Isaac moves his men elsewhere. This time he is successful.

Later he moved away from there and dug another well, but they did not quarrel over it. So he named it Re·ho′both [meaning: broad places] and said: “It is because now Jehovah has given us ample room and has made us fruitful in the land,” (Gen. 26:22).

As a result, the Philistine king who had kicked him out now seeks him out to form a pact of peace between them.

At this Isaac said to them: “Why have you come to me, seeing that you hated me and sent me away from your neighborhood?” To this they said: “We have clearly seen that Jehovah has been with you. So we said, ‘Let there, please, be an oath of obligation between us and you, and let us make a covenant with you that you will do nothing bad to us just as we have not harmed you, seeing that we have done only good to you in that we sent you away in peace. You now are the blessed of Jehovah.’” Then he made a feast for them, and they ate and drank. In the morning they got up early and swore an oath to each other. After that Isaac sent them away, and they went from him in peace (Gen. 26:27-31).

Isaac’s mildness is blessed again as while this is happening, his servants find yet another well.

On that day the servants of Isaac came and reported to him about the well that they had dug, and they told him: “We have found water!” (Gen. 26:32).

From this I see that when we make a genuine effort to foment peaceful relations with others, even when we know we are right and they are wrong, God does not abandon us and continues providing for our needs.

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