Genesis 21:22
At that time Abimelech and Phicol the commander of his army said to Abraham, "God is with you in all that you do.
Christian ProsperityA. W. Potts.Genesis 21:22
The Son of the BondwomanF. Hastings.Genesis 21:22
A Covenant Between the Patriarch and the Philistine KingR.A. Redford Genesis 21:22-34

Abraham a sojourner in that land, afterwards the troubler of Israel; for his sake as discipline, for their sakes as opportunity.

1. God's care for those beyond the covenant. A Beersheba in a heathen land.

2. The things of this world made a channel of higher blessings. The covenant arising out of bodily wants a civil agreement. The oath a testimony to God where reverently made.

3. He is not far from every one of us. The neighborhood of Beersheba, the revelation of Jehovah, the little company of believers.

4. The blessing made manifest. The days spent in Philistia left behind them some enlightenment.

5. Adaptation of Divine truth to those to whom it is sent. Abraham's name of God, Jehovah El Olam; the two revelations, the God of nature and the God of grace. The name of the Lord itself an invitation to believe and live. Paul at Athens adapted himself in preaching to the people's knowledge while leading them to faith. - R.



III. ALL CHRISTIAN PROSPERITY IS IDENTIFIED WITH CHRISTIAN ENTERPRISE. Between God blessing a man's labour and God doing a man's labour for him there is a wide difference. God won't pasture the sheep, but God will multiply the flock. God won't dig the ground, but He'll water it with rain and dew.


(A. W. Potts.)

God's care even for Ishmael — for one who would appear to be outside all covenant blessings — is a most encouraging fact!

1. God delivered him in extremity. He heard his cry and distress. He knew his needs; for God always knows our needs and how to supply them. There is a well for bondmen as well as for the free. God's living well is to be reached in any position of life. "The word is nigh thee, in thine heart," etc. (Romans 10:8).

2. God was with the son of the bondwoman as he developed. He was with him as he grew up, and gave him favour in the sight of others. God is ever seeking by His Holy Spirit to mould the characters of the worst for good.

3. God had intentions of grace towards the slave-mother's boy. He gave a promise to him as well as to Isaac.

4. God shewed how He was with Ishmael by quickening his faculties. "He became an archer." He had to learn to defend himself, and secure for himself by God's help a position. The fiery defenders of faith and controversial champions of the truth have their sphere as well as the pious, plodding, pastors of Christ's flock. We have all to learn to appreciate diversity of talents, and to remember that skill in any work is the outcome of independence, resolution and energy.

4. God's care was seen in the selection of the place of abode for the son of the bond-woman. He gave to him the desert for his domain, a place in which he might roam and pitch his tent at his own suggestion. The wilderness was the most suitable place for this man of wild nature. Some grow up under the sweet shadow of the home, and ever find there a resting-place. They occupy themselves in some work at hand, pleasant and profitable; but others wander off, perhaps go to sea, emigrate, engage in sheep-farming, cattle-tending in some wide and lonely ranch, or go to gold-digging and diamond-hunting. God works through all these phases of life to discipline the heart. He follows each one, and cares for all.

5. God also was with Ishmael, securing for him acceptance among others. He was to " dwell in the presence of his brethren" (Genesis 16:12). Though cast out by Abraham he was not cast off by God, or cut off from all interchange with others.

6. God was with Ishmael to the end of his life. He had a shorter life than Isaac. Ishmael died at a hundred and thirty years old, Isaac at a hundred and eighty. Evidently the active, restless, wandering, hazardous life was more wearing and consuming than the calm and meditative life of pastoral Isaac. But that his death was recorded shows that it was noticed by God.

(F. Hastings.)

Abimelech, Abraham, Hagar, Isaac, Phichol, Sarah
Beersheba, Egypt, Gerar, Paran
Abimelech, Abim'elech, Army, Captain, Chief, Commander, Doest, Forces, Host, Pass, Phichol, Phicol, Saying, Spake, Speaketh, Spoke
1. Isaac is born, and circumcised.
6. Sarah's joy.
8. Isaac is weaned.
9. Hagar and Ishmael sent away.
15. Hagar in distress.
17. The angel relieves and comforts her.
23. Abimelech's covenant with Abraham at Beersheba.

Dictionary of Bible Themes
Genesis 21:22

     4019   life, believers' experience
     5077   Abraham, character
     5261   commander

Genesis 21:22-24

     5468   promises, human

Genesis 21:22-31

     5430   oaths, human

Genesis 21:22-32

     5592   treaty

Compassion for Souls
Behold the compassion of a mother for her child expiring with thirst, and remember that such a compassion ought all Christians to feel towards souls that are perishing for lack of Christ, perishing eternally, perishing without hope of salvation. If the mother lifted up her voice arid wept, so also should we; and if the contemplation of her dying, child was all too painful for her, so may the contemplation of the wrath to come, which is to pass upon every soul that dies impenitent, become too painful
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 17: 1871

Therefore, if we Compare the Things Themselves, we May no Way Doubt that The...
28. Therefore, if we compare the things themselves, we may no way doubt that the chastity of continence is better than marriage chastity, whilst yet both are good: but when we compare the persons, he is better, who hath a greater good than another. Further, he who hath a greater of the same kind, hath also that which is less; but he, who only hath what is less, assuredly hath not that which is greater. For in sixty, thirty also are contained, not sixty also in thirty. But not to work from out that
St. Augustine—On the Good of Marriage

The Gospel Feast
"When Jesus then lifted up His eyes, and saw a great company come unto Him, He saith unto Philip, Whence shall we buy bread that these may eat?"--John vi. 5. After these words the Evangelist adds, "And this He said to prove him, for He Himself knew what He would do." Thus, you see, our Lord had secret meanings when He spoke, and did not bring forth openly all His divine sense at once. He knew what He was about to do from the first, but He wished to lead forward His disciples, and to arrest and
John Henry Newman—Parochial and Plain Sermons, Vol. VII

Of Bearing the Cross --One Branch of Self-Denial.
The four divisions of this chapter are,--I. The nature of the cross, its necessity and dignity, sec. 1, 2. II. The manifold advantages of the cross described, sec. 3-6. III. The form of the cross the most excellent of all, and yet it by no means removes all sense of pain, sec. 7, 8. IV. A description of warfare under the cross, and of true patience, (not that of philosophers,) after the example of Christ, sec. 9-11. 1. THE pious mind must ascend still higher, namely, whither Christ calls his disciples
Archpriest John Iliytch Sergieff—On the Christian Life

But if Moreover any not Having Charity, which Pertaineth to the Unity of Spirit...
23. But if moreover any not having charity, which pertaineth to the unity of spirit and the bond of peace whereby the Catholic Church is gathered and knit together, being involved in any schism, doth, that he may not deny Christ, suffer tribulations, straits, hunger, nakedness, persecution, perils, prisons, bonds, torments, swords, or flames, or wild beasts, or the very cross, through fear of hell and everlasting fire; in nowise is all this to be blamed, nay rather this also is a patience meet to
St. Augustine—On Patience

The Annunciation of Jesus the Messiah, and the Birth of his Forerunner.
FROM the Temple to Nazareth! It seems indeed most fitting that the Evangelic story should have taken its beginning within the Sanctuary, and at the time of sacrifice. Despite its outward veneration for them, the Temple, its services, and specially its sacrifices, were, by an inward logical necessity, fast becoming a superfluity for Rabbinism. But the new development, passing over the intruded elements, which were, after all, of rationalistic origin, connected its beginning directly with the Old Testament
Alfred Edersheim—The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah

The First Chaldaean Empire and the Hyksos in Egypt
Syria: the part played by it in the ancient world--Babylon and the first Chaldaean empire--The dominion of the Hyksos: Ahmosis. Some countries seem destined from their origin to become the battle-fields of the contending nations which environ them. Into such regions, and to their cost, neighbouring peoples come from century to century to settle their quarrels and bring to an issue the questions of supremacy which disturb their little corner of the world. The nations around are eager for the possession
G. Maspero—History Of Egypt, Chaldaea, Syria, Babylonia, and Assyria, V 4

The Holiness of God
The next attribute is God's holiness. Exod 15:51. Glorious in holiness.' Holiness is the most sparkling jewel of his crown; it is the name by which God is known. Psa 111:1. Holy and reverend is his name.' He is the holy One.' Job 6:60. Seraphims cry, Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts, the whole earth is full of his glory.' Isa 6:6. His power makes him mighty, his holiness makes him glorious. God's holiness consists in his perfect love of righteousness, and abhorrence of evil. Of purer eyes than
Thomas Watson—A Body of Divinity

The Old Testament opens very impressively. In measured and dignified language it introduces the story of Israel's origin and settlement upon the land of Canaan (Gen.--Josh.) by the story of creation, i.-ii. 4a, and thus suggests, at the very beginning, the far-reaching purpose and the world-wide significance of the people and religion of Israel. The narrative has not travelled far till it becomes apparent that its dominant interests are to be religious and moral; for, after a pictorial sketch of
John Edgar McFadyen—Introduction to the Old Testament

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