Genesis 21:22-34

 |  April 9, 2018

Gen. 21:22-34

  1. Locate the passage

This passage chronicles a covenant between Abraham and Abimelech. The significance of this passage is Abraham finding a place in the land promised to him in safety. Another highlight of this passage is the explanation for the origin of the name Beersheba.

  1. Genre

The passage is narrative. It records the conversation between Abraham and Abimelech and their mutual promise of kindness to each other.

  1. Determine the structure of the passage

21:22-24 – A treaty of truth

21:25-31 – An undisputed well

21:32-34 – A place to call on the name of the Lord

  1. Exegete the passage

When Abraham and Abimelech previously met, on the occasion when Abraham lied about his wife, Abimelech endorsed Abraham living “where it pleases you” (20:15). Thus, while the Lord gave Abraham authority to dwell in this land, his presence was recognized by the king of Gerar.

21:22 – Abimelech recognized the blessing of the Lord on Abraham.

21:23 – Abimelech proposes a treaty “not to deal falsely”

21:25-26 – Interrupting the covenant-making ceremony, Abraham airs a grievance that he has with Abimelech related to Abimelech’s servants taking possession of a well     that Abraham previously dug.

21:27 – “They made a covenant”

21:28-30 – The giving and receiving of the lambs stipulates that Abraham dug the well in   Beersheba and thus rightfully owns the well.

21:31 – “Beersheba”

21:33 – Abraham called on the name of the Lord

21:34 – Living in the land of the Philistines

  1. Let the structure of the text drive the sermon

This passage raises three questions relevant for believers today:

Application: Seven lambs sealed the covenant between Abraham and Abimelech, but it was one spotless lamb named Jesus who forever sealed God’s covenant with His people.

Category: Sermon Structure
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