“Then Abimelech went to him from Gerar, and Ahuzzath one of his friends, and Phichol the chief captain of his army. And Isaac said unto them, Wherefore come ye to me, seeing ye hate me, and have sent me away from you? And they said, We saw certainly that the Lord was with thee: and we said, Let there be now an oath betwixt us, even betwixt us and thee, and let us make a covenant with thee; That thou wilt do us no hurt, as we have not touched thee, and as we have done unto thee nothing but good, and have sent thee away in peace: thou art now the blessed of the Lord. And he made them a feast, and they did eat and drink. And they rose up betimes in the morning, and sware one to another: and Isaac sent them away, and they departed from him in peace.”
(Genesis 26:26-31, KJV)
Did any ancient legal system place any significance on oaths or agreements being made in the morning? It appears that Isaac and Abimelech and his companions discussed the agreement in the evening but did not formalize it until the morning. Was this actually required for legal purposes in any ancient jurisdictions? (In this case, it was an agreement between a king and another person, so "laws" aren't really relevant, but I'm curious if this was standard practice.)
I don't want to debate the historicity of the Bible. I believe that this interaction truly did occur, but the question itself (did agreements have to be made in the morning?) is valid regardless of one's opinion on whether or not this really happened.
I tagged this as contract-law because a contract seems to be the closest modern concept to the oath here.