Dealing With Gentiles

There is a subtle lesson learned in yesterday’s Parsha in the manner in which Yitzchak Avinu dealt with Avimelech.

Yitzchak had suffered a great deal of aggravation from Avimelech as the wells he dug were filled up by Avimelech’s servants. Despite all of this, Avimelech asks Yitzchak to make a treaty between them. Yitzchak’s response is that it makes no sense as they have shown over and over again that they hate him.

We see that we must be very careful in our dealings with the Gentile world. Their interaction with us is entirely because of their own self interest and opportunism.

Avimelech saw that Yitzchak was an איש מצליח, a successful man. He realized it would be good for him to stay on good terms with him. It was not because of his love for Yitzchak.

We must learn from this incident and be very cautious with our eyes open, when dealing with the Gentile world.