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Genesis 26:26-31


26:26 Now Abimelech had come 1  to him from Gerar along with 2  Ahuzzah his friend 3  and Phicol the commander of his army. 26:27 Isaac asked them, “Why have you come to me? You hate me 4  and sent me away from you.” 26:28 They replied, “We could plainly see 5  that the Lord is with you. So we decided there should be 6  a pact between us 7  – between us 8  and you. Allow us to make 9  a treaty with you 26:29 so that 10  you will not do us any harm, just as we have not harmed 11  you, but have always treated you well 12  before sending you away 13  in peace. Now you are blessed by the Lord.” 14 

26:30 So Isaac 15  held a feast for them and they celebrated. 16  26:31 Early in the morning the men made a treaty with each other. 17  Isaac sent them off; they separated on good terms. 18 

1 tn The disjunctive clause supplies pertinent supplemental information. The past perfect is used because the following narrative records the treaty at Beer Sheba. Prior to this we are told that Isaac settled in Beer Sheba; presumably this treaty would have allowed him to do that. However, it may be that he settled there and then made the treaty by which he renamed the place Beer Sheba. In this case one may translate “Now Abimelech came to him.”

2 tn Heb “and.”

3 tn Many modern translations render the Hebrew term מֵרֵעַ (merea’) as “councillor” or “adviser,” but the term may not designate an official position but simply a close personal friend.

4 tn The disjunctive clause is circumstantial, expressing the reason for his question.

5 tn The infinitive absolute before the verb emphasizes the clarity of their perception.

6 tn Heb “And we said, ‘Let there be.’” The direct discourse in the Hebrew text has been rendered as indirect discourse in the translation for stylistic reasons.

7 tn The pronoun “us” here is inclusive – it refers to the Philistine contingent on the one hand and Isaac on the other.

8 tn The pronoun “us” here is exclusive – it refers to just the Philistine contingent (the following “you” refers to Isaac).

9 tn The translation assumes that the cohortative expresses their request. Another option is to understand the cohortative as indicating resolve: “We want to make.’”

10 tn The oath formula is used: “if you do us harm” means “so that you will not do.”

11 tn Heb “touched.”

12 tn Heb “and just as we have done only good with you.”

13 tn Heb “and we sent you away.”

14 tn The Philistine leaders are making an observation, not pronouncing a blessing, so the translation reads “you are blessed” rather than “may you be blessed” (cf. NAB).

15 tn Heb “and he”; the referent (Isaac) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

16 tn Heb “and they ate and drank.”

17 tn Heb “and they got up early and they swore an oath, a man to his brother.”

18 tn Heb “and they went from him in peace.”

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