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The Blessed Of The LORD (Gen.26:28-29)

Updated: Apr 30

But they said, "We have certainly seen that the LORD is with you. So we said, 'Let there now be an oath between us, between you and us; and let us make a covenant with you, that you will do us no harm, since we have not touched you, and since we have done nothing to you but good and have sent you away in peace. You are now the blessed of the LORD." (Gen.26:28-29).





Introduction:

The text above is an excerpt from the life and times of Isaac as well as his sojourn years after his father, Abraham's demise, as recorded in Genesis 26. The events and narratives captured the layers of persecutions he suffered from the combined conspiracy of Abimelech - king of Gerar and his people. It was an emotionally laden narrative that was not pleasant to Isaac on his path to destiny fulfillment. Historically, he was born in a very good old age of his father-100 years, "now Abraham was one hundred years old when his son Isaac was born to him." (Gen.21:5).


At a point in his life, Isaac was nothing but the main object of a supposedly sacrifice his father had to offer to God. This singular faith, trust, and confidence in God thrusted an everlasting covenant on his lineage. The individual in whose life the covenant will be activated happened to be Isaac, "because you have done this thing and have not withheld your son, your only son...in your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you obeyed My voice." (Gen.22: 16 & 18). God was to later reiterate to Isaac himself, the terms of the covenant, thus, "and I will make your descendants multiply as the stars of heaven; I will give to your descendants all these lands; and in your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed; because Abraham obeyed My voice and kept My charge, My commandments, and My laws." (Gen.26: 4-5).


What Is Covenant?


The 'blessedness of the LORD' on Isaac, as confirmed by the mouths of Abimelech king of Gerar, an apparent enemy of Isaac, and his team was occasioned by the fulfillment of the 'covenant' God initiated with his father, Abraham, years before this time in history.


In biblical context, covenant is a binding agreement between two or more parties, often with a promise to redeem, as at when due or necessary. For example, David and Jonathan struck a covenant, "so Jonathan made a covenant with the house of David, saying, let the LORD require it at the hand of David's enemies." (1 Sam. 20:16). The contents and details of this 'covenant of kindness' unfolded and actualized in 2 Sam. 9:1 when years after, David asked, "is there still anyone who is left in the house of Saul, that I may show him kindness for Jonathan's sake?" Covenants carry weight and their terms are often honored for the good of all parties involved. Hence, it was uppermost in the mind of David to enforce it at the appointed time in the life of Mephibostesh. Covenants speak volumes and if there is anything we want to gloss over or toy with in this life, covenants should not be it.


Some Truths About Covenants:


  • Godly covenants do not exempt the bearer(s) from challenges and oppositions in life.

  • Covenants, whether good or bad are for a specific time. It may take a while, it will surely come to pass.


"The type of lifestyle we live now is a function of what covenants we are building for our oncoming generations. It is against the backdrop of the Godly covenant Abraham sustained that Isaac gained victory over all his challenges and oppositions."


The Place Of Covenant In The Life Of Isaac- 'The Blessed Of The LORD.'


The actual manifestation of the covenant of God in the life of Isaac started right from the time Abimelech the king issued an order that his (Isaac's) wife be protected from any form of sexual harassment and molestation. In the process, there are obvious events, happenings and occurrences that thrusted the "blessedness of the LORD" on Isaac. Among such are:


  • Isaac enjoyed royal protection over his household, "So Abimelech charged all his people, saying, he who touches this man or his wife shall surely be put to death" (Gen. 26:11).

  • In the year of famine, he planted and reaped and the LORD blessed him, "Then Isaac sowed in the land, and reaped in the same year a hundredfold; and the LORD blessed him"(Gen.26:12). Only God could have made this possible on His chosen...

  • His prosperity in the year of famine was in layers and progression, to a level that he attracted envy from the Philistines, "the man began to prosper , and continued prospering until he became very prosperous; for he had possessions of herds and a great number of servants. So the Philistines envied him" (Gen.26:13-14).

Sidebar:

"By the time an entire nation, group, or an association and her king becomes green with envy of a mere citizen, that tells us that the individual has done something exceptionally beyond human comprehension, and such, is unstoppable by any royal decree or judicial pronouncement. It is the hand of God."


Irony In The Narrative With Reference To Our Contemporary World:


Is it not an irony of fate that within this human space, we see people who are well-to-do still being uncomfortable and edgy with the progress recorded by the less-privileged? Why are we humans not satisfied with whatever the LORD has given us? Why must we still covet from someone who has little or nothing compared to us? Why must we as a matter of power and position opress the needy and the masses? Did David not show this in his dealings with the household of Uriah? "And he wrote in the letter, saying, set Uriah in the forefront of the hottest battle, and retreat from him, that he may be struck down and die" (2 Sam. 11:15). This is the wicked world we live in.


It is an irony of the wickedness of man to man that made the Philstines come after Isaac with further 'transferred anger and envy', simply because of his progressive breakthrough, "now the Philistines had stopped up all the wells which his father's servants had dug in the days of Abraham his father...he called them by the names which his father had called them" (Gen. 26:15-16).


Fully aware of the plans of God for his life, Isaac refused to be intimidated by the aggression of the Philistines against him. He neither reacted in anyway . He was simply acting on divine instruction. Friends, there is nothing that gives peace as walking according to divine dictates. Armed with this, Isaac remained focused and undaunted, as he headed for the next stop on his journey to destiny fulfillment- Rehoboth, "and he moved from there and dug another well, and they did not quarrel over it. So he called its name Rehoboth, because he said, for now the LORD has made room for us, and we shall be fruitful in the land." (Gen.26:22). Beloved, if you are going to a place of destiny fulfillment in life, you should be prepared for unpleasant and uncomplimentary remarks, reactions, and agitations. You just have to be resolute not to give in sheepishly to these cowardly reactions within and without your spheres of influence. Rather see such as stepping stones to the glory ahead.


Having gained ground in Rehoboth, he proceeded to Beersheba, to expand. That same night, the LORD appeared to him to strengthen him and also promised to be with him as He was with Abraham, his father. And by extension, the promises of blessings and multiplications were added-simply for Abraham's sake, "I will bless you for My servant Abraham's sake" (Gen.26:24). The covenant God had with Abraham was on 'auto-occurrence', 'auto-renewal' and 'auto-manifestation' spree, in the life of Isaac . In other words, Isaac needed not do anything spectacular or new, to be a constant and sole carrier or representation of this Godly covenant. His father's ways were so much pleasing to God that no background check was necessary to carry out on Isaac before the entire covenanted blessings were thrusted on him. He earned this privilege on the father's credit. Beloved, what are our lifestyles? How would our lifestyles be a pathway that would make life worth the living for our oncoming generations, even years after we might have left? Are our memories going to give pleasant livelihood for them? Are these memories going to place them on the right positioning for the blessings of God? What credits are available for our children from our conducts, comportment, and overall attitude to people around us and the Supreme Being? We need to ponder over these questions and do the needful while it is yet possible.


PERSECUTORS PROCLAIM ISAAC AS THE BLESSED OF THE LORD:


With Isaac reaching his goal, it was a unanimous agreement between Abimelech the king of Gerar his friend, Ahuzzath, and other lieutenants to trail him to Beersheba, on bended knees, kissing the dust. Their peace divorced them until they came to him as a group, not only to pay obeisance, but to express the truth they saw and knew about Isaac, a man they could not overpower, after several failed attempts. They knew and confessed that he was truly the blessed of the LORD. It was with one voice that they unequivocally affirmed, "we have certainly seen that the LORD is with you."(Gen.26:26). To say Isaac was surprised at this turn of event would be an understatement . He was thrown off balance.


He was yet to recover from this sudden turn of events when the team from Philistine included an addendum in their plea, to swear an oath to strengthen and legitimize their claims; after all, 'he who plays the piper dictates the tune'. It was a moment of self and willful submission by a hitherto persecuting government. The scripture gives the balance from Pr.16:7, "when a man's ways please the LORD, He will make even his enemies to be at peace with him." How many of our ways, can we boldly say are in consonance with the will of God that could warrant all known and unknown enemies to willingly make peace with us?


In all, they submitted to Isaac's blessedness and they did not forget to insert a clause in the "book of oath", pleading, Isaac should do them no harm, "we have certainly seen that the LORD is with you...so we said let there now be an oath, between you and us ; and let us make a covenant with you, that you will do us no harm...and since we have done nothing to you but good and have sent you away in peace. You are now the blessed of the LORD." (Gen. 26: 28-29).


If the LORD favors us and fights for us, it does not matter how strong and established the enemies and oppositions are, they will change the negative narratives and attitudes, the moment they are at the receiving end. This was the heart of the narrative of Isaac's situation. The king of Gerar thought it wise to extend the olive branch to Isaac. He in his mind preempted Isaac and possibly to forestall any reprisal attack from the man of the moment, he quickly ran to him with his high-powered delegation to sue for peace. For as long as your back is on the ground, the enemies will exert more force. Samson ended unfortunately in this manner. May The LORD help us. Amen.


PRAYERS:


LORD, please help me to obey You, even when it seems most humanly impossible (Gen.26:2-3, 6).

LORD, in the midst of enemies and oppositions, let my household enjoy divine protection (Gen.26:11).

My generation is blessed ! (Gen.26:29). Amen !


Conclusion:


Isaac, a child of covenant lived in God's plans and expectations for him. He obeyed God to the letter, even when it made no sense, to remain in a land ravaged with the most severe famine, ever known in his days. Simultaneously, God's agreement with his father was hovering him. Isaac was so level headed that even in the midst of serial persecutions by the host nation he did not see that as an excuse to digress from the ways of the LORD. An apple does not fall far from the tree, so goes a saying. He was just a perfect fit for this divine mandate.


Against all odds, he overcame, and fulfilled destiny. Nation came bowing down for him, seeking his hand in a peace pact...what honor could be more than this? Isaac earned this much honor because even in the face of the most daunting threats and frustrations, that plagued his life, he never spoke a word. Neither did he lift a finger against his detractors. He was just forward-facing until he reached his goal. At the end of the day, he fulfilled scriptures, "the gentiles shall come to your light and kings to the brightness of your rising" (Is.60:3). Beloved, where is our light and the brightness of our rising? The world is watching and waiting.


© May 2024


Being A Monthly Scripture Bulletin

From The Desk Of

Olusegun A Emosu

The Redeemed Christian Church Of God,

Rehoboth Parish.

2244, Panola Rd, Suite 2, (3 D Complex),

Lithonia GA 30058. 404 644 4127


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