Old habits die hard.
Abraham, in the twelfth chapter of this book, told his wife Sarai to pretend that she was not his wife. He was afraid that the Egyptian men would kill him to get her. So, she passed for his sister, which was not altogether a lie.
God intervened and Pharaoh’s household paid the price. They were stricken with plagues and Pharaoh repented. To Abram he said, “Why did you say, ‘She is my sister’, so that I took her for my wife? Now then, here is your wife, take her, and be gone,” (Genesis 12:19)
Now, in Gerar, he tries to pull the same stunt! He tells King Abimelech that Sarah is his sister – true but not the whole truth.
This time God intervened before the king fulfilled his desire to be intimate with Abraham’s wife. The Lord told him “You are about to die because of the woman you have taken; for she is a married woman.”
Abimelech reasoned with God who is always reasonable. Why would we ever think that God is just out to get us rather than to help us out of trouble? The Lord saved this king from the would-be troublesome consequences of his unfulfilled desire.
He(Abimelech) confronts Abraham and asks why he has done such a thing ; and Abraham speaks the truth.
The result is that all a blessed. The king gives rich gifts to Sarah and Abraham – precious silver, livestock and slaves (yes, owning people was the thing of that day.
O how the truth sets free!
Abraham prayed for Abimelech; and he and his household were healed to the extent that they would look forward to succeeding generations of their clan.
God is good all the time, we glibly say.
Lord, when we are about to do foolish things because we are afraid of trouble we think we foresee, teach us to trust in your goodness. Help us to wait upon you to do again a new and liberating thing that we and those we encounter may know the liberating power of your love. Amen.