I spent the last 25 years of my life, residing 2 hours north of Rehobeth, Delaware. While Rehobeth means place of rest in the Bible, this once quaint ocean community is far from a restful place due to an influx of urban sprawl. As I read Moses’ account of the life of Isaac, I came across Rehoboth, a similar name with a completely different meaning. Following a series of disputes with desert herdsmen, the well at Rehoboth served as a steady source of water for Isaac’s family without any drama.
And Isaac dug again the wells of water which had been dug in the days of Abraham his father, for the Philistines had stopped them after the death of Abraham; and he gave them the names by which his father had called them. 19 Now Isaac’s servants dug in the valley and found there a well of living [spring] water, Genesis 26:18-19.
In this age of social media where individuals think out loud with the click of a mouse or pounding on a keyboard, most posts are negative. These come in the form of insults, put downs and slander to trash anyone these critics don’t like. A recent commercial has linked social media to eating disorders as women try to live up to other people’s expectations. Perhaps, it’s time for godly leaders to respond with biblical principles, 1 Peter 3:9, repaying evil with a blessing.
And the herdsmen of Gerar quarreled with Isaac’s herdsmen, saying, The water is ours. And he named the well Esek [contention] because they quarreled with him. 21 Then [his servants] dug another well, and they quarreled over that also; so he named it Sitnah [enmity]. 22 And he moved away from there and dug another well, and for that one they did not quarrel. He named it Rehoboth [room], saying, For now the Lord has made room for us, and we shall be fruitful in the land, Genesis 26:20-22.
The term Rehoboth symbolizes that the Lord made room for Isaac, giving them a place to live in the desert that was not reliant on someone else’s water. If the Lord made room for Isaac’s family, Christians should make room in their busy schedules to minister to angry, bitter, and hurting souls. Although Jesus’ concept of turning the other cheek may be difficult to grasp, Matthew 5:38-39, Peter’s call to replace evil with a blessing is a way to apply this biblical principle in a proactive manner. Don’t get distracted; make room for others like Rehoboth.
by Jay Mankus