When a famine gripped the land, a different one from the first famine that occurred in Abraham's time, Isaac set out toward Gerar and toward King Abimelech of the Philistines.
The LORD appeared to him and said, "Don't go down to Egypt but settle temporarily in the land that I will show you.
Stay in this land as an immigrant, and I will be with you and bless you because I will give all of these lands to you and your descendants. I will keep my word, which I gave to your father Abraham.
I will give you as many descendants as the stars in the sky, and I will give your descendants all of these lands. All of the nations of the earth will be blessed because of your descendants.
I will do this because Abraham obeyed me and kept my orders, my commandments, my statutes, and my instructions."
So Isaac lived in Gerar.
When the men who lived there asked about his wife, he said, "She's my sister," because he was afraid to say, "my wife," thinking, The men who live there will kill me for Rebekah because she's very beautiful.
After Isaac had lived there for some time, the Philistines' King Abimelech looked out his window and saw Isaac laughing together with his wife Rebekah.
So Abimelech summoned Isaac and said, "She's your wife, isn't she? How could you say, ‘She's my sister'?" Isaac responded, "Because I thought that I might be killed because of her."
Abimelech said, "What are you trying to do to us? Before long, one of the people would have slept with your wife; and you would have made us guilty."
Abimelech gave orders to all of the people, "Anyone who touches this man or his wife will be put to death!"