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Genesis chapter 26

New International Version

1 Now there was a famine in the land--besides the previous famine in Abraham's time--and Isaac went to Abimelek king of the Philistines in Gerar. 2 The LORD appeared to Isaac and said, 'Do not go down to Egypt; live in the land where I tell you to live. 3 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. 4 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 earth will be blessed, 5 because Abraham obeyed me and did everything I required of him, keeping my commands, my decrees and my instructions.' 6 So Isaac stayed in Gerar.
7 When the men of that place asked him about his wife, he said, 'She is my sister,' because he was afraid to say, 'She is my wife.' He thought, 'The men of this place might kill me on account of Rebekah, because she is beautiful.'
8 When Isaac had been there a long time, Abimelek king of the Philistines looked down from a window and saw Isaac caressing his wife Rebekah.
9 So Abimelek summoned Isaac and said, 'She is really your wife! Why did you say, 'She is my sister'?' Isaac answered him, 'Because I thought I might lose my life on account of her.'
10 Then Abimelek said, 'What is this you have done to us? One of the men might well have slept with your wife, and you would have brought guilt upon us.'
11 So Abimelek gave orders to all the people: 'Anyone who harms this man or his wife shall surely be put to death.'
12 Isaac planted crops in that land and the same year reaped a hundredfold, because the LORD blessed him. 13 The man became rich, and his wealth continued to grow until he became very wealthy. 14 He had so many flocks and herds and servants that the Philistines envied him. 15 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.
16 Then Abimelek said to Isaac, 'Move away from us; you have become too powerful for us.'
17 So Isaac moved away from there and encamped in the Valley of Gerar, where he settled. 18 Isaac reopened the wells that had been dug in the time of his father Abraham, which the Philistines had stopped up after Abraham died, and he gave them the same names his father had given them.
19 Isaac's servants dug in the valley and discovered a well of fresh water there. 20 But the herders of Gerar quarreled with those of Isaac and said, 'The water is ours!' So he named the well Esek, because they disputed with him. 21 Then they dug another well, but they quarreled over that one also; so he named it Sitnah. 22 He moved on from there and dug another well, and no one quarreled over it. He named it Rehoboth, saying, 'Now the LORD has given us room and we will flourish in the land.'
23 From there he went up to Beersheba. 24 That night the LORD appeared to him and said, 'I am the God of your father Abraham. Do not be afraid, for I am with you; I will bless you and will increase the number of your descendants for the sake of my servant Abraham.'
25 Isaac built an altar there and called on the name of the LORD. There he pitched his tent, and there his servants dug a well.
26 Meanwhile, Abimelek had come to him from Gerar, with Ahuzzath his personal adviser and Phicol the commander of his forces. 27 Isaac asked them, 'Why have you come to me, since you were hostile to me and sent me away?'
28 They answered, 'We saw clearly that the LORD was with you; so we said, 'There ought to be a sworn agreement between us'--between us and you. Let us make a treaty with you 29 that you will do us no harm, just as we did not harm you but always treated you well and sent you away peacefully. And now you are blessed by the LORD.'
30 Isaac then made a feast for them, and they ate and drank. 31 Early the next morning the men swore an oath to each other. Then Isaac sent them on their way, and they went away peacefully.
32 That day Isaac's servants came and told him about the well they had dug. They said, 'We've found water!' 33 He called it Shibah, and to this day the name of the town has been Beersheba.
34 When Esau was forty years old, he married Judith daughter of Beeri the Hittite, and also Basemath daughter of Elon the Hittite. 35 They were a source of grief to Isaac and Rebekah.
English Standard Version

1 Now there was a famine in the land, besides the former famine that was in the days of Abraham. And Isaac went to Gerar to Abimelech king of the Philistines. 2 And the LORD appeared to him and said, “Do not go down to Egypt; dwell in the land of which I shall tell you. 3 Sojourn in this land, and I will be with you and will bless you, for to you and to your offspring I will give all these lands, and I will establish the oath that I swore to Abraham your father. 4 I will multiply your offspring as the stars of heaven and will give to your offspring all these lands. And in your offspring all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, 5 because Abraham obeyed my voice and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws.”
6 So Isaac settled in Gerar. 7 When the men of the place asked him about his wife, he said, “She is my sister,” for he feared to say, “My wife,” thinking, “lest the men of the place should kill me because of Rebekah,” because she was attractive in appearance. 8 When he had been there a long time, Abimelech king of the Philistines looked out of a window and saw Isaac laughing with Rebekah his wife. 9 So Abimelech called Isaac and said, “Behold, she is your wife. How then could you say, ‘She is my sister’?” Isaac said to him, “Because I thought, ‘Lest I die because of her.’” 10 Abimelech said, “What is this you have done to us? One of the people might easily have lain with your wife, and you would have brought guilt upon us.” 11 So Abimelech warned all the people, saying, “Whoever touches this man or his wife shall surely be put to death.”
12 And Isaac sowed in that land and reaped in the same year a hundredfold. The LORD blessed him, 13 and the man became rich, and gained more and more until he became very wealthy. 14 He had possessions of flocks and herds and many servants, so that the Philistines envied him. 15 (Now the Philistines had stopped and filled with earth all the wells that his father’s servants had dug in the days of Abraham his father.) 16 And Abimelech said to Isaac, “Go away from us, for you are much mightier than we.”
17 So Isaac departed from there and encamped in the Valley of Gerar and settled there. 18 And Isaac dug again the wells of water that had been dug in the days of Abraham his father, which the Philistines had stopped after the death of Abraham. And he gave them the names that his father had given them. 19 But when Isaac’s servants dug in the valley and found there a well of spring water, 20 the herdsmen of Gerar quarreled with Isaac’s herdsmen, saying, “The water is ours.” So he called the name of the well Esek, because they contended with him. 21 Then they dug another well, and they quarreled over that also, so he called its name Sitnah. 22 And he moved from there and dug another well, and they did not quarrel over it. So he called its name Rehoboth, saying, “For now the LORD has made room for us, and we shall be fruitful in the land.”
23 From there he went up to Beersheba. 24 And the LORD appeared to him the same night and said, “I am the God of Abraham your father. Fear not, for I am with you and will bless you and multiply your offspring for my servant Abraham’s sake.” 25 So he built an altar there and called upon the name of the LORD and pitched his tent there. And there Isaac’s servants dug a well.
26 When Abimelech went to him from Gerar with Ahuzzath his adviser and Phicol the commander of his army, 27 Isaac said to them, “Why have you come to me, seeing that you hate me and have sent me away from you?” 28 They said, “We see plainly that the LORD has been with you. So we said, let there be a sworn pact between us, between you and us, and let us make a covenant with you, 29 that you will do us no harm, just as we have not touched you and have done to you nothing but good and have sent you away in peace. You are now the blessed of the LORD.” 30 So he made them a feast, and they ate and drank. 31 In the morning they rose early and exchanged oaths. And Isaac sent them on their way, and they departed from him in peace. 32 That same day Isaac’s servants came and told him about the well that they had dug and said to him, “We have found water.” 33 He called it Shibah; therefore the name of the city is Beersheba to this day.
34 When Esau was forty years old, he took Judith the daughter of Beeri the Hittite to be his wife, and Basemath the daughter of Elon the Hittite, 35 and they made life bitter for Isaac and Rebekah.
King James Version

1 And there was a famine in the land, beside the first famine that was in the days of Abraham. And Isaac went unto Abimelech king of the Philistines unto Gerar. 2 And the LORD appeared unto him, and said, Go not down into Egypt; dwell in the land which I shall tell thee of: 3 Sojourn in this land, and I will be with thee, and will bless thee; for unto thee, and unto thy seed, I will give all these countries, and I will perform the oath which I sware unto Abraham thy father; 4 And I will make thy seed to multiply as the stars of heaven, and will give unto thy seed all these countries; and in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; 5 Because that Abraham obeyed my voice, and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws.
6 And Isaac dwelt in Gerar: 7 And the men of the place asked him of his wife; and he said, She is my sister: for he feared to say, She is my wife; lest, said he, the men of the place should kill me for Rebekah; because she was fair to look upon. 8 And it came to pass, when he had been there a long time, that Abimelech king of the Philistines looked out at a window, and saw, and, behold, Isaac was sporting with Rebekah his wife. 9 And Abimelech called Isaac, and said, Behold, of a surety she is thy wife: and how saidst thou, She is my sister? And Isaac said unto him, Because I said, Lest I die for her. 10 And Abimelech said, What is this thou hast done unto us? one of the people might lightly have lien with thy wife, and thou shouldest have brought guiltiness upon us. 11 And Abimelech charged all his people, saying, He that toucheth this man or his wife shall surely be put to death.
12 Then Isaac sowed in that land, and received in the same year an hundredfold: and the LORD blessed him. 13 And the man waxed great, and went forward, and grew until he became very great: 14 For he had possession of flocks, and possession of herds, and great store of servants: and the Philistines envied him. 15 For all the wells which his father's servants had digged in the days of Abraham his father, the Philistines had stopped them, and filled them with earth. 16 And Abimelech said unto Isaac, Go from us; for thou art much mightier than we. 17 And Isaac departed thence, and pitched his tent in the valley of Gerar, and dwelt there. 18 And Isaac digged again the wells of water, which they had digged in the days of Abraham his father; for the Philistines had stopped them after the death of Abraham: and he called their names after the names by which his father had called them. 19 And Isaac's servants digged in the valley, and found there a well of springing water. 20 And the herdmen of Gerar did strive with Isaac's herdmen, saying, The water is ours: and he called the name of the well Esek; because they strove with him. 21 And they digged another well, and strove for that also: and he called the name of it Sitnah. 22 And he removed from thence, and digged another well; and for that they strove not: and he called the name of it Rehoboth; and he said, For now the LORD hath made room for us, and we shall be fruitful in the land. 23 And he went up from thence to Beersheba. 24 And the LORD appeared unto him the same night, and said, I am the God of Abraham thy father: fear not, for I am with thee, and will bless thee, and multiply thy seed for my servant Abraham's sake. 25 And he builded an altar there, and called upon the name of the LORD, and pitched his tent there: and there Isaac's servants digged a well.
26 Then Abimelech went to him from Gerar, and Ahuzzath one of his friends, and Phichol the chief captain of his army. 27 And Isaac said unto them, Wherefore come ye to me, seeing ye hate me, and have sent me away from you? 28 And they said, We saw certainly that the LORD was with thee: and we said, Let there be now an oath betwixt us, even betwixt us and thee, and let us make a covenant with thee; 29 That thou wilt do us no hurt, as we have not touched thee, and as we have done unto thee nothing but good, and have sent thee away in peace: thou art now the blessed of the LORD. 30 And he made them a feast, and they did eat and drink. 31 And they rose up betimes in the morning, and sware one to another: and Isaac sent them away, and they departed from him in peace. 32 And it came to pass the same day, that Isaac's servants came, and told him concerning the well which they had digged, and said unto him, We have found water. 33 And he called it Shebah: therefore the name of the city is Beersheba unto this day.
34 And Esau was forty years old when he took to wife Judith the daughter of Beeri the Hittite, and Bashemath the daughter of Elon the Hittite: 35 Which were a grief of mind unto Isaac and to Rebekah.
New American Standard Bible

1 Now there was a famine in the land, besides the previous famine that had occurred in the days of Abraham. So Isaac went to Gerar, to Abimelech king of the Philistines. 2 And the LORD appeared to him and said, 'Do not go down to Egypt; stay in the land of which I shall tell you. 3 Live for a time in this land and I will be with you and bless you, for to you and to your descendants I will give all these lands, and I will establish the oath which I swore to your father Abraham. 4 I will multiply your descendants as the stars of heaven, and will give your descendants all these lands; and by your descendants all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, 5 because Abraham obeyed Me and fulfilled his duty to Me, and kept My commandments, My statutes, and My laws.'
6 So Isaac lived in Gerar. 7 When the men of the place asked about his wife, he said, 'She is my sister,' for he was afraid to say, 'my wife,' thinking, 'the men of the place might kill me on account of Rebekah, since she is beautiful.' 8 Now it came about, when he had been there a long time, that Abimelech king of the Philistines looked down through a window, and saw them, and behold, Isaac was caressing his wife Rebekah. 9 Then Abimelech called Isaac and said, 'Behold, she certainly is your wife! So how is it that you said, ‘She is my sister’?' And Isaac said to him, 'Because I thought, ‘otherwise I might be killed on account of her.’?' 10 And Abimelech said, 'What is this that you have done to us? One of the people might easily have slept with your wife, and you would have brought guilt upon us.' 11 So Abimelech commanded all the people, saying, 'He who touches this man or his wife will certainly be put to death.'
12 Now Isaac sowed in that land and reaped in the same year a hundred times as much. And the LORD blessed him, 13 and the man became rich, and continued to grow richer until he became very wealthy; 14 for he had possessions of flocks and herds, and a great household, so that the Philistines envied him. 15 Now all the wells which his father’s servants had dug in the days of his father Abraham, the Philistines stopped up by filling them with dirt. 16 Then Abimelech said to Isaac, 'Go away from us, for you are too powerful for us.' 17 So Isaac departed from there and camped in the Valley of Gerar, and settled there.
18 Then Isaac dug again the wells of water which had been dug in the days of his father Abraham, for the Philistines had stopped them up after the death of Abraham; and he gave them the same names which his father had given them. 19 But when Isaac’s servants dug in the valley and found there a well of flowing water, 20 the herdsmen of Gerar quarreled with the herdsmen of Isaac, saying, 'The water is ours!' So he named the well Esek, because they argued with him. 21 Then they dug another well, and they quarreled over it too, so he named it Sitnah. 22 Then he moved away from there and dug another well, and they did not quarrel over it; so he named it Rehoboth, for he said, 'At last the LORD has made room for us, and we will be fruitful in the land.'
23 And he went up from there to Beersheba.
24 And the LORD appeared to him the same night and said, 'I am the God of your father Abraham; Do not fear, for I am with you. I will bless you and multiply your descendants, For the sake of My servant Abraham.'
25 So he built an altar there and called upon the name of the LORD, and pitched his tent there; and there Isaac’s servants dug a well.
26 Then Abimelech came to him from Gerar with his adviser Ahuzzath, and Phicol the commander of his army. 27 Isaac said to them, 'Why have you come to me, since you hate me and have sent me away from you?' 28 They said, 'We have seen plainly that the LORD has been with you; so we said, ‘An oath must now be taken by us,’ that is, by you and us. So let us make a covenant with you, 29 that you will do us no harm, just as we have not touched you and have done to you nothing but good, and have sent you away in peace. You are now the blessed of the LORD.' 30 Then he made them a feast, and they ate and drank. 31 In the morning they got up early and exchanged oaths; then Isaac sent them away, and they left him in peace. 32 Now it came about on the same day, that Isaac’s servants came in and told him about the well which they had dug, and said to him, 'We have found water.' 33 So he called it Shibah; therefore the name of the city is Beersheba to this day.
34 When Esau was forty years old he married Judith the daughter of Beeri the Hittite, and Basemath the daughter of Elon the Hittite; 35 and they brought grief to Isaac and Rebekah.
New Living Translation

1 A severe famine now struck the land, as had happened before in Abraham's time. So Isaac moved to Gerar, where Abimelech, king of the Philistines, lived.
2 The LORD appeared to Isaac and said, 'Do not go down to Egypt, but do as I tell you. 3 Live here as a foreigner in this land, and I will be with you and bless you. I hereby confirm that I will give all these lands to you and your descendants, just as I solemnly promised Abraham, your father. 4 I will cause your descendants to become as numerous as the stars of the sky, and I will give them all these lands. And through your descendants all the nations of the earth will be blessed. 5 I will do this because Abraham listened to me and obeyed all my requirements, commands, decrees, and instructions.' 6 So Isaac stayed in Gerar.
7 When the men who lived there asked Isaac about his wife, Rebekah, he said, 'She is my sister.' He was afraid to say, 'She is my wife.' He thought, 'They will kill me to get her, because she is so beautiful.' 8 But some time later, Abimelech, king of the Philistines, looked out his window and saw Isaac caressing Rebekah.
9 Immediately, Abimelech called for Isaac and exclaimed, 'She is obviously your wife! Why did you say, 'She is my sister'?' 'Because I was afraid someone would kill me to get her from me,' Isaac replied.
10 'How could you do this to us?' Abimelech exclaimed. 'One of my people might easily have taken your wife and slept with her, and you would have made us guilty of great sin.'
11 Then Abimelech issued a public proclamation: 'Anyone who touches this man or his wife will be put to death!'
12 When Isaac planted his crops that year, he harvested a hundred times more grain than he planted, for the LORD blessed him. 13 He became a very rich man, and his wealth continued to grow. 14 He acquired so many flocks of sheep and goats, herds of cattle, and servants that the Philistines became jealous of him. 15 So the Philistines filled up all of Isaac's wells with dirt. These were the wells that had been dug by the servants of his father, Abraham.
16 Finally, Abimelech ordered Isaac to leave the country. 'Go somewhere else,' he said, 'for you have become too powerful for us.'
17 So Isaac moved away to the Gerar Valley, where he set up their tents and settled down. 18 He reopened the wells his father had dug, which the Philistines had filled in after Abraham's death. Isaac also restored the names Abraham had given them.
19 Isaac's servants also dug in the Gerar Valley and discovered a well of fresh water. 20 But then the shepherds from Gerar came and claimed the spring. 'This is our water,' they said, and they argued over it with Isaac's herdsmen. So Isaac named the well Esek (which means 'argument'). 21 Isaac's men then dug another well, but again there was a dispute over it. So Isaac named it Sitnah (which means 'hostility'). 22 Abandoning that one, Isaac moved on and dug another well. This time there was no dispute over it, so Isaac named the place Rehoboth (which means 'open space'), for he said, 'At last the LORD has created enough space for us to prosper in this land.'
23 From there Isaac moved to Beersheba, 24 where the LORD appeared to him on the night of his arrival. 'I am the God of your father, Abraham,' he said. 'Do not be afraid, for I am with you and will bless you. I will multiply your descendants, and they will become a great nation. I will do this because of my promise to Abraham, my servant.' 25 Then Isaac built an altar there and worshiped the LORD. He set up his camp at that place, and his servants dug another well.
26 One day King Abimelech came from Gerar with his adviser, Ahuzzath, and also Phicol, his army commander. 27 'Why have you come here?' Isaac asked. 'You obviously hate me, since you kicked me off your land.'
28 They replied, 'We can plainly see that the LORD is with you. So we want to enter into a sworn treaty with you. Let's make a covenant. 29 Swear that you will not harm us, just as we have never troubled you. We have always treated you well, and we sent you away from us in peace. And now look how the LORD has blessed you!'
30 So Isaac prepared a covenant feast to celebrate the treaty, and they ate and drank together. 31 Early the next morning, they each took a solemn oath not to interfere with each other. Then Isaac sent them home again, and they left him in peace.
32 That very day Isaac's servants came and told him about a new well they had dug. 'We've found water!' they exclaimed. 33 So Isaac named the well Shibah (which means 'oath'). And to this day the town that grew up there is called Beersheba (which means 'well of the oath').
34 At the age of forty, Esau married two Hittite wives: Judith, the daughter of Beeri, and Basemath, the daughter of Elon. 35 But Esau's wives made life miserable for Isaac and Rebekah.
Christian Standard Bible

1 There was another famine in the land in addition to the one that had occurred in Abraham's time. And Isaac went to Abimelech, king of the Philistines, at Gerar. 2 The LORD appeared to him and said, "Do not go down to Egypt. Live in the land that I tell you about; 3 stay in this land as an alien, and I will be with you and bless you. For I will give all these lands to you and your offspring, and I will confirm the oath that I swore to your father Abraham. 4 I 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 by your offspring, 5 because Abraham listened to me and kept my mandate, my commands, my statutes, and my instructions." 6 So Isaac settled in Gerar.
7 When the men of the place asked about his wife, he said, "She is my sister," for he was afraid to say "my wife," thinking, "The men of the place will kill me on account of Rebekah, for she is a beautiful woman." 8 When Isaac had been there for some time, Abimelech king of the Philistines looked down from the window and was surprised to see Isaac caressing his wife Rebekah.
9 Abimelech 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."
10 Then Abimelech said, "What is this you've done to us? One of the people could easily have slept with your wife, and you would have brought guilt on us." 11 So Abimelech warned all the people, "Whoever harms this man or his wife will certainly be put to death."
12 Isaac sowed seed in that land, and in that year he reaped a hundred times what was sown. The LORD blessed him, 13 and the man became rich and kept getting richer until he was very wealthy. 14 He had flocks of sheep, herds of cattle, and many slaves, and the Philistines were envious of him. 15 Philistines stopped up all the wells that his father's servants had dug in the days of his father Abraham, filling them with dirt. 16 And Abimelech said to Isaac, "Leave us, for you are much too powerful for us."
17 So Isaac left there, camped in the Gerar Valley, and lived there. 18 Isaac 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. 19 Then Isaac's servants dug in the valley and found a well of spring water there. 20 But the herdsmen of Gerar quarreled with Isaac's herdsmen and said, "The water is ours!" So he named the well Esek because they argued with him. 21 Then they dug another well and quarreled over that one also, so he named it Sitnah. 22 He moved from there and dug another, and they did not quarrel over it. He named it Rehoboth and said, "For now the LORD has made space for us, and we will be fruitful in the land."
23 From there he went up to Beer-sheba, 24 and the LORD appeared to him that night and said, "I am the God of your father Abraham. Do not be afraid, for I am with you. I will bless you and multiply your offspring because of my servant Abraham."
25 So he built an altar there, called on the name of the LORD, and pitched his tent there. Isaac's servants also dug a well there.
26 Now Abimelech came to him from Gerar with Ahuzzath his adviser and Phicol the commander of his army. 27 Isaac said to them, "Why have you come to me? You hated me and sent me away from you."
28 They 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: 29 You 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."
30 So he prepared a banquet for them, and they ate and drank. 31 They got up early in the morning and swore an oath to each other. Isaac sent them on their way, and they left him in peace. 32 On that same day Isaac's servants came to tell him about the well they had dug, saying to him, "We have found water!" 33 He called it Sheba. Therefore the name of the city is still Beer-sheba today.
34 When Esau was forty years old, he took as his wives Judith daughter of Beeri the Hethite, and Basemath daughter of Elon the Hethite. 35 They made life bitter for Isaac and Rebekah.

What does Genesis chapter 26 mean?

Genesis 26 focuses on the Lord reassuring Isaac. God states that His relationship with Abraham, and its blessings, are for Isaac, as well. God appears to Isaac not once, but twice in this chapter. In both cases, the Lord restates and emphasizes the covenant promises He had made to Abraham, and is now making to Isaac.

For the majority of this passage, no mention is made of Jacob and Esau, and Rebekah's marital status is obscured. It's likely that most of this chapter is set back before Jacob and Esau are born. Isaac and Rebekah were childless for 20 years, leaving plenty of time for these events to occur (Genesis 25:20–26).

A season of famine falls on the land. It is a different famine than the one that drove Abraham to move to Egypt in Genesis 12. In fact, the Lord appears to Isaac and commands him not to move to Egypt, but to settle instead in Gerar, the region of the Philistines ruled by King Abimelech (Genesis 26:1–5). Scholars disagree on whether this is the same Abimelech Abraham knew in Genesis 20—21 or a new one. Interestingly, both the king and the commander of the army have the same names as in the incident with Abraham (Genesis 21:22). This might prove they are, in fact, the very same men. Or, it might simply mean the fathers had passed down both their names and positions to their sons. Given how long it has been since Abraham's encounter, it seems most likely this is a new ruler.

In any case, Isaac settles his large household in Gerar, in obedience to the Lord. When some locals ask about Isaac's beautiful wife Rebekah, he immediately follows in his father's footsteps and tells them she is his sister. He is afraid they will kill him to take her from him. The same failure Abraham made—twice—Isaac now makes in his own life.

The lie is revealed when King Abimelech himself catches the couple being intimate. He is furious because Isaac's lie could have brought guilt about the kingdom, just as Abraham's had done. Still, the king decrees that anyone who harms Isaac or Rebekah will be killed. God demonstrates that He will protect Isaac as He did Abraham, fearful and faithless or not (Genesis 26:6–11).

The Lord then blesses Isaac by giving a hundredfold return on his crops in a season of famine. In fact, Isaac becomes so rich and powerful that old disputes about water rights crop up. Abimelech sends Isaac away for being "much mightier" than the Philistines (Genesis 26:12–16).

Resettled in a different part of Gerar, Isaac continues to have disputes with the locals about the wells he is digging to water his herds and flocks. Eventually, Isaac travels to Beersheba, given its name in Genesis 21 by Abraham himself. In Beersheba, the Lord again appears to Isaac, commands him not to be afraid, and renews His promises to be with Isaac and bless him and multiply his offspring for Abraham's sake (Genesis 26:17–24).

Isaac responds with worship, building an altar and calling the Lord's name. He also pitches his tent and commands his servants to begin digging a well (Genesis 26:25).

Abimelech arrives to visit Isaac. Though suspicious at first, Isaac agrees to the king's proposal of a peace treaty between them. To honor the treaty, Isaac names the well his servants have dug after the word for "oath" (Genesis 26:26–33).

Finally, the story jumps well into the future. Esau marries two Canaanite women, Hittites. Those marriages make life bitter for Isaac and Rebekah, perhaps because Esau did not marry from among Abraham's people (Genesis 26:34–35). This angst, combined with Rebekah's clear preference for Jacob (Genesis 25:28) will play into an infamous act of deception, which will occur in the next chapter.