“And Abraham reproved Abimelech because of a well of water, which Abimelech’s servants had violently taken away.” (Gen. 21:25)
So, let me get this straight. One chapter back, Abraham is willing to share his wife with Abimelech, but when his servants take one of his wells, he gets all bent out of shape. If the book of Proverbs had been written and Abraham had had access to it, no doubt he would have assumed that chapter five, verse fifteen was talking about a literal well and literal water: “Drink waters out of thine own cistern, and running waters out of thine own well”; but verse eighteen makes it plain it’s “the wife of thy youth” that Solomon is talking about.
This episode in Abraham’s life is a prime example of Matt. 23:24, where we read about people who “strain at a gnat and swallow a camel.” But we do it too, maybe not to the extent that Abraham did. I’m convinced the things we let slide and the ones we pounce on are as good an indicator as any of the state of our spiritual lives. Here are a few examples.
Which would bother me more, having my integrity questioned or my Christianity? Does it upset me more if my child acts up in public or lies to me behind closed doors? In other words, what’s more important, my reputation or his or her character? What would I most hate to lose, a lot of money or one really good friend? Do I judge a church by its song service or its preaching service? As a woman, is it easier for me to love a man who pleases me, or one who pleases God? I could say more, but I’ve said enough now to make me uncomfortable. How about you?
Priorities: well placed or misplaced?