What does Genesis 21:32 mean?
ESV: So they made a covenant at Beersheba. Then Abimelech and Phicol the commander of his army rose up and returned to the land of the Philistines.
NIV: After the treaty had been made at Beersheba, Abimelek and Phicol the commander of his forces returned to the land of the Philistines.
NASB: So they made a covenant at Beersheba; and Abimelech and Phicol, the commander of his army, got up and returned to the land of the Philistines.
CSB: After they had made a covenant at Beer-sheba, Abimelech and Phicol, the commander of his army, left and returned to the land of the Philistines.
NLT: After making their covenant at Beersheba, Abimelech left with Phicol, the commander of his army, and they returned home to the land of the Philistines.
KJV: Thus they made a covenant at Beer-sheba: then Abimelech rose up, and Phichol the chief captain of his host, and they returned into the land of the Philistines.
NKJV: Thus they made a covenant at Beersheba. So Abimelech rose with Phichol, the commander of his army, and they returned to the land of the Philistines.
Verse Commentary:
A solemn treaty between Abimelech, king of Gerar, and Abraham has just been completed. Abimelech and Abraham have exchanged animals as part of an agreement for their households to treat each other agreeably. Abraham has also claimed formal ownership of the well he dug, and which was taken at some point by men serving under Abimelech. His symbolic price for these rights was seven sheep. This agreement was significant enough that the name of the well's location was changed to Beersheba, meaning "well of the oath" or "well of seven."

Now Abimelech and Phicol, the commander of his army, return home. We're told that Gerar is located in the land of Philistines. These Philistines may have been the forerunners to those who would later plague Israel in the time of Saul and David. Or, the text may be saying that Gerar was in a region which would later be occupied by the Philistines.
Verse Context:
Genesis 21:22–34 describes a covenant treaty between Abraham and Abimelech, king of Gerar. Abimelech had previously given Abraham land to occupy. Now the king wishes to formalize their relationship. Abraham swears not to deceive Abimelech or his offspring again, and to deal kindly with all in the land. Abimelech agrees to recognize Abraham's ownership of a well at the place which becomes known as Beersheba, which means ''well of seve'' or ''well of the oath.''
Chapter Summary:
The Lord did as He had promised. Sarah, now 90 years old, gives birth to Isaac, the long-awaited child. Her joy sours, though, over a fear that Isaac might have to share an inheritance with Ishmael. In obedience to the Lord, who promises to safeguard Ishmael, Abraham sends him and his mother, Hagar, into the wilderness. God rescues them and renews His promise to make Ishmael a great nation in his own right. Meanwhile, Abimelech, king of Gerar, approaches Abraham to make a permanent treaty between them and their descendants. The agreement includes Abraham's possession of a well, at a place which will become known as Beersheba.
Chapter Context:
In the prior chapter, Abraham managed to get Sarah back from Abimelech, following his own deception and God's intervention. Here, Abraham and Sarah finally conceive a natural child. Isaac, the long-awaited child of the promise, is born. In obedience to God, Abraham sends Hagar and Ishmael away. Abimelech approaches Abraham to make a treaty, giving Abraham a permanent home in a place that becomes known as Beersheba. In the following chapter, God will test Abraham's faith and obedience, in one of Scripture's ultimate examples of trust.
Book Summary:
The book of Genesis establishes fundamental truths about God. Among these are His role as the Creator, His holiness, His hatred of sin, His love for mankind, and His willingness to provide for our redemption. We learn not only where mankind has come from, but why the world is in its present form. The book also presents the establishment of Israel, God's chosen people. Many of the principles given in other parts of Scripture depend on the basic ideas presented here in the book of Genesis. Within the framework of the Bible, Genesis explains the bare-bones history of the universe leading up to the captivity of Israel in Egypt, setting the stage for the book of Exodus.
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