December 16, 2014

Commentary on the Book of Genesis

By: Tom Lowe

 

PART III: HISTORY OF ISAAC AND JACOB. (Genesis 25:19-36:43)

Topic #A:ISAAC'S FAMILY AND SOME TROUBLES. (Genesis 25:19-26:35)                                                                                           

 

 


Lesson III.A.5: Trouble about Wells Part 4, (Gen. 26:12-33).                                                                                                                                                                                                       

 

Part 1: The Blessing (12-14)

Part 2: The Conflict (15-17)

Part 3: The Search (18-22)

Part 4: The Assurance (23-25)

Part 5: The Agreement (26-33)

 

 

Part 4: The Assurance (Genesis 23-25) (KJV)

 

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.

 

 

Introduction

 

The same night that Isaac came weary and uneasy to Beersheba, God brought comfort to his soul.

 

 

Commentary

 

23 And he went up from thence to Beersheba.

 

“Beersheba” was a very special place for Isaac, because there his father had entered into a covenant with the Philistine leaders (vs. 21-22), and there the Lord reassured him with the promise of blessing, and there Isaac built an altar (worship), pitched a tent (abiding), and dug a well (reviving).  “Beersheba” means “the well of the oath.” There Isaac began to give evidence of a godly spirit that he had not revealed so clearly,till then.

 

 

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.

 

Although, Isaac continued firm in his religion, and kept up his communion with God, the Philistines expelled him from their land, forced him to leave his home and go to a different place, and continually mistreated him, but God visited him, and gave him fresh assurance of his support and approval.  The very same night that Isaac came weary and troubled to Beersheba, God graciously appeared to him; He confirmed again the “Abrahamic Covenant,” and eased Isaac’s anxiety at facing envy, quarrels, and hostility (vs. 14, 20, 27), and assured Isaac that he had reasoned correctly—fruitfulness would prevail in his posterity.  [God appeared to all the patriarchs with the exception of Joseph.  He appeared to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.] The Lord comes to us with His assuring Word just when we need encouragement (see Acts 18:9-11; 23:11; 27:23-24; 2 Timothy 2:19).

 

Here for the first time appear the words which are to echo and re-echo in the Bible—the “God of Abraham.”

 

 

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.

 

No matter who is against us, God is with us and for us (see Genesis 28:15; 31:3; Romans 8:31-39), and there’s no need for us to be afraid.  In response to God’s gracious word of promise, Isaac built an alter of worship to mark the spot of God’s appearance to him, and he worshipped the Lord, as did his father before him—“The LORD appeared to Abram and said, "To your offspring I will give this land." So he built an altar there to the LORD, who had appeared to him” (Genesis 12:7).  He was expressing the inherited impulse which he had received from his father Abraham and which gave to Abraham his greatness. Here are two men with whom prayer comes ahead of their own particular plans. If any part of life was to be worth something, it must begin with worship.  He was ready to meet his adversaries.

 

Like his father Abraham, Isaac was identified by his tent and altar (Genesis 26:25; see also 12:7-8; 13:3-4, 18).  Isaac was wealthy enough to be able to build himself a fine home, but his tent identified him as a pilgrim and stranger in the land (Hebrews 11:8-10, 13-16).  A fugitive is fleeing from home; a vagabond has no home; a stranger is away from home; but the pilgrim is heading home.  The tent identified Isaac as a pilgrim, and the altar announced that he worshipped Jehovah and was heading to the heavenly kingdom.

 

Like Isaac, all who have trusted Jesus Christ are strangers in the world and pilgrims heading for a better world—“Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To God's elect, strangers in the world. . .” (1 Peter 1:1; also see 2:11).  The body we live in is our “tent”; one day it will be taken down and we will go to the heavenly city (2 Corinthians 5:1-8).  Life here is brief and temporary, because this tent is fragile, but our glorified body will be ours for eternity—“But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body” (Philippians 3:20-21; also see 1 John 3:1-3).  The comforts and encouragement which God gives us by His Word, should excite us and bring about acts of devotion, by which God may be honored, and our association with heaven maintain. But while we are here on earth, let’s be sure we build our altar and give our witness that Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world.

 

Isaac goes on again, digging Wells.  You can always put a well down next to Isaac.  You can put an altar down next to Abraham, and you can put a tent down next to Jacob, as we shall see later on.

 

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