Day 98: Foreigner

Genesis 21:22-34

It happened at that time, that Abimelech and Phicol the captain of his army spoke to Abraham, saying, “God is with you in all that you do. Now, therefore, swear to me here by God that you will not deal falsely with me, nor with my son, nor with my son’s son. But according to the kindness that I have done to you, you shall do to me, and to the land in which you have lived as a foreigner.”

Abraham said, “I will swear.” Abraham complained to Abimelech because of a water well, which Abimelech’s servants had violently taken away. Abimelech said, “I don’t know who has done this thing. You didn’t tell me, neither did I hear of it, until today.”

Abraham took sheep and cattle, and gave them to Abimelech. Those two made a covenant. Abraham set seven ewe lambs of the flock by themselves. Abimelech said to Abraham, “What do these seven ewe lambs which you have set by themselves mean?”

He said, “You shall take these seven ewe lambs from my hand, that it may be a witness to me, that I have dug this well.” Therefore he called that place Beersheba, because they both swore there. So they made a covenant at Beersheba. Abimelech rose up with Phicol, the captain of his army, and they returned into the land of the Philistines. Abraham planted a tamarisk tree in Beersheba, and called there on the name of Yahweh, the Everlasting God. Abraham lived as a foreigner in the land of the Philistines many days.

Here we see that Abraham was happy to promise to be truthful to Abimelech and his children but that he also expected Abimelech to keep charge of his servants. We see here that it was Abimelech’s servants who had attempted to steal from Abraham, not the other way around.

Abraham lived as a foreigner in a land that God had promised would someday be his. This is similar to us as Christians today. God is our father and Jesus is to rule the whole earth someday, but now, we live as strangers in this sinful world. It is odd that, at times people act like Christians are the problem, when the truth is, Christians are some of the most persecuted people in the world, even to this very moment. We should all pray for strength and peace for those who live in countries that currently will not allow Christians to worship or speak freely. Let’s pray that those countries will change their laws and that God would remind them that Jesus will be in charge someday.