Love From Rehoboth
Conflict isn’t fun. Conflict can lead to a reverse in the progress you have made in life. This was the case with Isaac, the son of Abraham.
Just as He had with his father, God lavished His favor on Isaac. The Bible tells us that when Isaac planted his crops one year, he harvested a hundred times more grain than he planted. Isaac acquired so many flocks of sheep and goats, herds of cattle, and servants that the Philistines became jealous of him. (Genesis 26:12-14)
In spite, the Philistines filled up all of Isaac’s wells with dirt – the wells that had been dug by the servants of his father, Abraham.
The conflict increased to the point that the leader of the Philistines ordered Isaac to leave the country. “Go somewhere else,” he demanded, “for you have become too powerful for us.”
So Isaac moved away to the Gerar Valley where he hoped he could live in peace. There he re-dug the wells that the Philistines had filled in. Isaac’s servants also dug a new well and discovered fresh water.
But the conflict continued as shepherds from Gerar claimed the spring as their own. So Isaac’s men dug in another location, but again there was a dispute over it, so Isaac named it “Sitnah,” which means “hostility.”
Abandoning these wells, Isaac moved on and dug yet another well. This time there was no dispute over it, so Isaac named the place Rehoboth, which means “open space.” “At last the Lord has created enough space for us to prosper in this land,” Isaac declared (Gen. 26:22).
Scripture tells us that soon after this Isaac came to Beersheba, where the Lord appeared to him. “I am the God of your father, Abraham,” the Lord assured Isaac. “Do not be afraid, for I am with you and will bless you.”
Isaac and his family had finally come to a place of peace and rest.
The writer of Hebrews gives us what seems to be an oxymoron, saying:
Let us therefore strive to enter that [Sabbath] rest… (Hebrews 4:11a, NASB)
That is what Isaac did, isn’t it? He and his servants kept digging wells (striving) until they went beyond the zone of conflict and entered into the “rest” of Rehoboth. Once he entered that place, Isaac had an encounter with Almighty God, and his life was never the same.
It’s difficult to hear the voice of God or spend quality time in His presence if we are fighting with others. Are you in a place of conflict? Seek peace. Forgive. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all (Romans 12:18, ESV).
Do you feel like you are losing ground in life? Perhaps there is unresolved conflict that is filling in your wells – and even robbing your inheritance. Heed the admonition of Paul:
Make allowance for each other's faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others (Col. 3:13, NLT)
Love from Rehoboth – that place of peace – will never fail to bring rest and to re-dig the wells of God’s blessing in your life. And in that place of rest, you will come to know God in a new and very special way.
© Craig von Buseck