And it came to pass at that time that Abimelech and Phichol, the commander of his army, spoke to Abraham, saying, “God is with you in all that you do. Now therefore, swear to me by God that you will not deal falsely with me, with my offspring, or with my posterity; but that according to the kindness that I have done to you, you will do to me and to the land in which you have dwelt.” (Genesis 21:22-23)
In this passage, Abimelech approached Abraham to form a pact with him and his descendants for a very interesting reason. Typically, different nations would make pacts in order to secure riches or power. The reason Abimelech is interested in forming an alliance with Abraham is because, as he said, “God is with you in all that you do.”
It is worth repeating that Abimelech approached Abraham with overtures of peace and not the other way around. Abraham’s testimony was that the favor of God was so obviously upon his life that kings and captains took notice. (Jewish commentary says that the Philistines honored this pact until the time of Samson).
There are many other examples of how God’s favor upon someone prompts those who are in powerful positions to sit up and take notice. Typically these connections serve to advance God’s purpose for that person as it relates to long-term benefits for God’s people. This principle is still in force today for we see how God will connect those in power with His favored servants. Moreover, Isaiah says that this will become more prevalent in the last days.
Arise, shine; for your light has come! And the glory of the Lord is risen upon you. For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and deep darkness the people; but the Lord will arise over you, and His glory will be seen upon you. The Gentiles shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising. (Isaiah 60:1-3)
As we walk in obedience we shall walk in His favor. As His favor upon His people is manifest, the nations will take note and, in the end, acknowledge that our God is God.
Blessings and Shalom,