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Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Inland pond near Rehoboth Beach DE 10/6/18 (Click to enlarge)
Lake Gerar is on the north side of Rehoboth Beach
(Click to enlarge)

"Lessons From Rehoboth"

Message summary: Isaac was able to count his blessings even in the midst of his setbacks. We need to practice this in our lives as well!

to our message on your audio player.

"He (Isaac) moved on from there and dug another well, and no one quarreled over it. He named it Rehoboth, saying, 'Now the Lord has given us room and we will flourish in the land'" (Genesis 26:22).

This last weekend we were in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, a popular shore town we have enjoyed for many years as we view the roaring ocean and expansive seascapes. It is among the most popular shore towns on the east coast with many bike paths in the area. If you go before the season opens or afterwards it is less crowded and the boardwalk allows for biking anytime of the day as opposed to early morning only, also no charge for parking.

English explorers had given this name to nearby Rehoboth Bay in the 17th Century - no doubt in appreciation of its beautiful, broad expanse.

According to a travel site the city’s actual origins as a seaside resort go back to January 27, 1873, when the Rehoboth Beach Camp Meeting Association of the Methodist Episcopal Church was founded here for summer religious gatherings. Using that name, and led by a Reverend Robert Todd, thirty incorporators secured a Charter from the state Legislature to create a "Christian sea-side resort." *

Now, nearly 150 years later there's little evidence of Christian influence in Rehoboth Beach and likely even fewer consider the origin of the name "Rehoboth" but in fact it is a Bible word found only in four places, the most informative being our daily text. It is in this context: Genesis 26:12-25.

Isaac had struck out on his own after his father Abraham's death. "The Lord blessed him, and he became rich, and continued to grow richer until he became very wealthy" (Genesis 26:12,13).

Wells were a vital source of water in the Bible. Due to municipal water supplies many suburban and urban folk never consider wells but out here in the country where we live they are the main source for water. We have a well and use well water for our household watering needs.

The wells were a source of conflict in this passage with others claiming the wells and water rights. Rather than fight, Isaac left two wells and moved on to a third well which today's passage describes "no one quarreled over".

Isaac named this well Rehoboth which means "broad places", saying, "Now the Lord has given us room and we will flourish in the land" (Genesis 26:22).

The quick Bible lesson from this passage is how Isaac was able to count his blessings even in the midst of his setbacks. We need to practice this in our lives as well!

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Father, You chose to bless Isaac as he followed Your commands. In Gerar You instructed him, "Stay in this land for a while, and I will be with you and will bless you. For to you and your descendants I will give all these lands." You made his descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and gave them all these lands. Through his offspring, because Abraham obeyed You and did everything You required of him, You provided for Isaac because He trusted You to keep Your promises. We, too can flourish, in our little spot in the world by trusting You for everything we have need of as we walk in obedience to You. We especially flourish as we extend ourselves and our possessions to others such as Isaac. In counting our blessings help us to bless others in the way You have blessed us. Amen.

For further study, Bible lessons from this passage:

1) This passage is an early reference to the longstanding conflict between the Philistines and Abraham's descendants which lasted for many centuries through the Bible and in fact continues to this day with the Palestines. Today the ancient Philistines no longer exist; however the term rendered "Palestine" is literally, "the land of the Philistines".

2) This passage has the first reference to envy in the Bible."Now Isaac sowed in that land and reaped in the same year a hundredfold. And the Lord blessed him, and the man became rich, and continued to grow richer until he became very wealthy; for he had possessions of flocks and herds and a great household, so that the Philistines envied him"
(Genesis 26:12-14).

Envy is a deadly sin and in Galatians 5 is placed in a list called "deeds of the flesh" that contrasts with the "Fruit Of The Spirit" "Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires" (Galatians 5:19-24).

3) This passage teaches there is a time to concede. Although Isaac was likely powerful enough to take the first two wells he did not but moved on until he found the third well. May God give us the discernment to know when to stand firm and when to let go.

4) The Lord spoke to Isaac after this reassuring him of the promise made to his father Abraham.

"I am the God of your father Abraham;
Do not fear, for I am with you.
I will bless you, and multiply your descendants,
For the sake of My servant Abraham"
(Genesis 26:24)

Thank God for His continued promises and assurances in the course of life!

These are some scenes from our bike riding this last weekend in the Rehoboth Beach area along the Delaware coast

Silver Lake near Rehoboth Beach DE 10/6/18 (Click to enlarge)
Silver Lake is on the south side with beautiful homes around it, some having a view of both the ocean and this lake.
(Click to enlarge)

This photo is taken from  Herring Point Fort on Cape Henlopen north of Rehoboth Beach (seen in the distance beyond the vehicles parked out on the beach where they are surf fishing).
(Click to enlarge)

Gordon's Pond near Rehoboth Beach DE 10/6/18 (Click to enlarge)
Sea birds on Gordon Pond with WW2 Watchtowers in the background.
This is off the Gordon Pond trail
(Click to enlarge)

Junction and Breakwater trail near Rehoboth Beach DE 10/7/18 (Click to enlarge)
The Junction and Breakwater Trail is on an old railroad grade through beautiful forest land.
(Click to enlarge)

Estuary near Rehoboth Beach DE 10/6/18 (Click to enlarge)
A peaceful estuary seen off the Junction & Breakwater Trail
(Click to enlarge)

Jackie Steudler 10/7/18
Sunday afternoon we had lunch with our longtime friend, Jackie Steudler, seated next to Ester. Usually we dine with her and Rick each time we visit but Rick headed to the mountains over the weekend. Rick and Jackie, our gracious hosts,  have a rental house on Rehoboth Avenue, about 1/3 mile up from the boardwalk, where we lodge. The location couldn't be more perfect!

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"Count Your Blessings"
  Video  Guy Penrod

* Rehoboth beach info

A study on the Philistines

Finally today:
Audrey's patio 10/9/18
Yesterday we visited with the employees at Audrey's who have a nice patio area for their lunch and breaks.

Audrey's patio 10/9/18
Another area for the employees to gather outdoors and visit together over lunch.
As we walked through the company yesterday we mentioned to the employees who work hard restocking, packing and shipping their home decor goods that we saw some of their gift items in shops in Rehoboth.

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.

Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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