Finding a Bride

Posted: May 10, 2018 in Genesis, Uncategorized

Genesis 24, “Finding a Bride”

Proverbs 18:22 says, “He who finds a wife finds a good thing, And obtains favor from the Lord.” Every husband can attest (or should be able to attest, in an ideal scenario) that one of the best blessings they every received from the Lord was their wife. For some, this was an easier task than others. Some people marry their high-school sweetheart that they have known most of their lives – some meet in random scenarios and immediately hit it off. Others have to work hard, and search far and wide for the right person God has intended for them. It’s not always easy, but when it’s right, it’s worth it!

For Isaac and Rebekah, they had a bit of both. On one hand, Isaac had to search (or rather, have someone sent to search) far distances for a bride, traveling to ancient homelands hundreds of miles away, hoping to meet exactly the right family out of all of the families that were there. It wasn’t too unlike searching for a needle in a haystack. On the other hand, Isaac’s servant was led directly by the Lord God. If anyone could pick out a needle from a haystack, it is the Lord! He knew exactly the right bride for Isaac, and could (and did) lead the servant directly to her doorstep. When the provision is of the Lord, it’s no problem at all.

That is one of the main lessons seen throughout Chapter 24: the provision of God is given not only the father (Abraham), but to the son (Isaac). Just as the covenant blessing would soon pass from father to son, so would God’s covenant provision. Isaac was prophesied to grow into a great nation that would eventually lead to the Messiah, and that meant he required the right bride from the right bloodline, and Almighty God would see it done.

God’s provision was most recently seen in Genesis 22, when Abraham’s faith was tested by God in one of the most extreme ways possible: Isaac (the son for whom he waited 25 years) had to be given back to the Lord in sacrifice. Yet Abraham had faith in God’s goodness, God’s promise, and God’s power, knowing that God could & would raise Isaac from the dead, if need be. Isaac had been promised, and had been given…and God would give him again if that’s what it took for God’s word to be true. Abraham raised his knife, but God stopped the sacrifice, providing His own substitute (and foreshadowing the day when Jesus would become the substitute for all mankind, as the only begotten Son of God). In response, God reiterated all of the covenant blessings He had earlier promised to Abraham.

Time passed, and Abraham’s wife Sarah died, prompting Abraham to purchase the only piece of land he ever owned in Canaan: a burial plot/cave. Despite the greediness of the previous landowner, Abraham conducted himself with honor, trusting the Lord to provide for his every need…and God always did.

With Sarah buried, and his inheritance guaranteed to Isaac apart from any competitive claims from Ishmael (having been expelled), only one thing remained. Abraham wanted to find a wife for his beloved son. This wasn’t simply Abraham’s desire; it was to be God’s provision. Just as God was Jehovah Jireh (Yahweh Yireh) for Abraham, so He would be for Isaac. God would provide his every need, ensuring he received the covenant promises – even if that meant finding a needle in a haystack for Isaac’s wife.

We can trust God’s provision – we can trust His care for us! We know God leads us, so we want to be faithful in following.

Genesis 24

  • The servant’s oath (1-9)

1 Now Abraham was old, well advanced in age; and the LORD had blessed Abraham in all things.

  1. Although some scholars believe Abraham was 140 at this point, the text doesn’t actually say. He was 137 at the time of Sarah’s death, so it is reasonable to believe that some time had passed. Either way, he truly was “well advanced in age.” By this point, he was making final preparations for himself and for his family.
  2. And had God blessed him? Yes – immensely! God had given him a home, an inheritance, a promise, and a son. And that’s not even to mention the wealth, livestock, and good health the Lord gave to him. Abraham was not perfect, but he certainly had a blessed life!

2 So Abraham said to the oldest servant of his house, who ruled over all that he had, “Please, put your hand under my thigh, 3 and I will make you swear by the LORD, the God of heaven and the God of the earth, that you will not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, among whom I dwell; 4 but you shall go to my country and to my family, and take a wife for my son Isaac.”

  1. Who was the servant? Technically, we don’t know. Some scholars are convinced it was Eliezer of Damascus (Genesis 15:2), but that is under the assumption that Eliezer is still alive by this point. Just because Abraham lived a very long life doesn’t mean that everyone in his household did. Additionally, it seems strange that a servant who was named earlier would be left nameless here. In the end, it doesn’t matter. This was an elderly trusted servant of Abraham, and he was faithful to Abraham and to Abraham’s God. That’s the important part.
  2. By this point, Isaac was anywhere from 37-40 years old. He was no longer a young boy who needed caring for – why would Isaac not be personally sent to find his own bride from Abraham’s family? Perhaps there were several reasons, but the most obvious was this: Abraham loved his son! As is seen in the text, Abraham firmly believed that Isaac was meant by God to remain in the land of promise, and Isaac would be unable to do so if he went all the way back to Abraham’s family in order to find himself a wife. In the culture of the day, marriages were often arranged, so it was not unusual at all for a father to find a bride for his son. Obviously Abraham was too old to personally travel, so he called for his trusted servant to do it for him.
    1. Interestingly this changes in the following generation. Later, Jacob would personally make this same trip to find wife, but the circumstances were drastically different. His travel was not due to love, but fear. Jacob had to flee for his life, and it brought on a lot of heartache that might have otherwise been avoided.
  3. From Abraham’s perspective, the need at hand was that Isaac not marry any of the women of the Canaanites. These were women who worshipped foreign gods, and that would pose a constant danger to his son, especially in terms of the covenant blessing. Any time the Hebrews married the Gentiles around them, it was a snare to them, and Abraham would guard his son from that. 

5 And the servant said to him, “Perhaps the woman will not be willing to follow me to this land. Must I take your son back to the land from which you came?”

  1. Reasonable question! What would happen if the potential bride refused to be a bride?

6 But Abraham said to him, “Beware that you do not take my son back there. 7 The LORD God of heaven, who took me from my father’s house and from the land of my family, and who spoke to me and swore to me, saying, ‘To your descendants I give this land,’ He will send His angel before you, and you shall take a wife for my son from there.

  1. Abraham’s answer? It wouldn’t happen. He had faith that God would not allow failure. YHWH would “send His angel” to lead and guide the servant. Just like God had led Abraham out of Ur & away from Padan Aram to come to Canaan, so would God lead Abraham’s servant in the opposite direction. Not only would God lead the servant to the right city and right family, but God would lead the servant to a willing woman. Abraham had faith that this trip would end in total success.
  2. Was this simply good hopes & well-wishing? Was Abraham simply engaging in the power of positive thinking? Not at all. Abraham had faith in the goodness and grace of God. God promised Abraham a son, and God delivered. God promised Abraham a land, and God delivered. Now God promised Abraham a nation, and Abraham had no doubt that God would deliver this as well. That required a pure wife, someone unmixed from the current nations surrounding Abraham. After all, if Isaac married a Canaanite, then his descendants would have been thought of as Canaanites – there wouldn’t be the birth of a separate distinct nation at all. This is yet another miracle God would have to provide, but Abraham knew that God would provide it. God had proven Himself faithful too many other times for Him to fail now!
    1. God will always see His promises fulfilled! There is no word of His that He will not bring to fruition. Of that you can be sure!

8 And if the woman is not willing to follow you, then you will be released from this oath; only do not take my son back there.” 9 So the servant put his hand under the thigh of Abraham his master, and swore to him concerning this matter.

  1. Did Abraham’s faith waver? This is not a just-in-case “if;” this is a it-won’t-happen-but-I’ll-say-it-anyway “if.” Abraham’s faith is not in the persuasive power of the servant; it was in the promise and power of God. The servant would not be blamed if God failed to deliver…but God wouldn’t fail. Abraham was certain of it. (This is faith!)
  2. FYI: The practice of putting a hand “under the thigh” when making an oath was a way of strengthening the importance. According to some, it was a sign of swearing to the future generations of one’s own faithfulness. If the servant failed to be obedient, then the future generations of Abraham still within his body would rise up to punish the servant. The bottom line is that this wasn’t a pie-crust promise; this was a solemn oath made with the utmost sincerity.
  • The servant’s test (10-28)

10 Then the servant took ten of his master’s camels and departed, for all his master’s goods were in his hand. And he arose and went to Mesopotamia, to the city of Nahor.

  1. If it sounds like the servant took a lot of supplies, he did – and it was necessary. From Hebron to Haran was a distance of 520 miles, which would take an estimated 21 days via camel. The servant had the potential of being gone nearly two months in total.
  2. Eventually he arrived (all the travel time is left unnarrated as it was unimportant), and he immediately set to his task. 

11 And he made his camels kneel down outside the city by a well of water at evening time, the time when women go out to draw water. 12 Then he said, “O LORD God of my master Abraham, please give me success this day, and show kindness to my master Abraham. 13 Behold, here I stand by the well of water, and the daughters of the men of the city are coming out to draw water. 14 Now let it be that the young woman to whom I say, ‘Please let down your pitcher that I may drink,’ and she says, ‘Drink, and I will also give your camels a drink’—let her be the one You have appointed for Your servant Isaac. And by this I will know that You have shown kindness to my master.”

  1. The servant had a wise plan. He arrived during the time when women would most naturally be at the well. If he was searching for a woman, that was one of his best opportunities and locations within the city.
    1. Wisdom and faith go hand-in-hand. These aren’t mutually exclusive.
  2. The servant spoke a faithful prayer. On his own, he understood he didn’t have a chance in the world of just “happening” to run across Abraham’s family. Ultimately, his trust was in God’s “kindness” or God’s “loyal love” to Abraham.
    1. What is the source for any of our blessing? Only the grace and kindness of God!
  3. The servant had a test of provision. Although we are not to put the Lord our God to the test (Dt 6:16, Mt 4:7), what the servant did here was necessary. This wasn’t his temptation of the Lord; it was his trust in the Lord. He understood that his success was 100% dependent upon God’s work, and he needed some way in which to know that God was leading & working, so he came up with this. If the young woman watered not only himself, but his camels, then that would be the sign.
    1. Again, we don’t test God with signs today, but that’s because God has already given us a sign: Jesus’ resurrection from the dead. We can’t get a better demonstration of His power and provision for us than that!

15 And it happened, before he had finished speaking, that behold, Rebekah, who was born to Bethuel, son of Milcah, the wife of Nahor, Abraham’s brother, came out with her pitcher on her shoulder. 16 Now the young woman was very beautiful to behold, a virgin; no man had known her. And she went down to the well, filled her pitcher, and came up.

  1. This was a quick answer to the servant’s prayer! He hadn’t “finished speaking” his prayer to God in his heart before a young woman came to the well. And this wasn’t any young woman; it was exactly the right young woman! She was the perfect match, although the servant did not know it at the time. Before the servant was finished praying, God was already in the process of answering his prayer. In fact, before the servant had ever started praying, God had already set things in motion, causing Rebekah to start walking to the well at the exact moment that Abraham’s servant would arrive and be ready to look for her.
  2. Question: Should the servant still have prayed? Absolutely! God already knew the prayer that would be prayed, and He already provided the answer to it before he prayed it.
    1. What prayers is God ready to answer, of which you haven’t yet prayed? What ways is God prepared to show Himself faithful, of which you haven’t yet trusted Him? Step out in faith! You might just be surprised at what God will do.

17 And the servant ran to meet her and said, “Please let me drink a little water from your pitcher.” 18 So she said, “Drink, my lord.” Then she quickly let her pitcher down to her hand, and gave him a drink.

  1. So far, so good. Now what would happen? To this point, it was all basic kindness. The first part of the test wasn’t really a big deal. The second part was the real test…

19 And when she had finished giving him a drink, she said, “I will draw water for your camels also, until they have finished drinking.” 20 Then she quickly emptied her pitcher into the trough, ran back to the well to draw water, and drew for all his camels.

  1. This was the answer he was waiting for! She offered water not only to him, but all his camels. Remember, he had brought ten camels for his journey, and she faithfully watered each of them with the single pitcher she brought with her. This was hard-work, yet Rebekah did it willingly without complaint. It demonstrated not only her work-ethic, but also her servant’s heart.

21 And the man, wondering at her, remained silent so as to know whether the LORD had made his journey prosperous or not.

  1. Considering how the test seems to have been fully answered, why did the servant wonder? Because even in all of this, he still didn’t know Rebekah’s identity. To this point, he hadn’t asked her name or her family. Abraham’s charge was that the servant go to Abraham’s family in Haran; not simply any family in Haran. The truly difficult tests had been performed, but there would yet be only one way to know for sure if God had led him to this point. That’s when he generously paid Rebekah for her services in watering the camels, and then sprung the big question on her. 

22 So it was, when the camels had finished drinking, that the man took a golden nose ring weighing half a shekel, and two bracelets for her wrists weighing ten shekels of gold, 23 and said, “Whose daughter are you? Tell me, please, is there room in your father’s house for us to lodge?” 24 So she said to him, “I am the daughter of Bethuel, Milcah’s son, whom she bore to Nahor.” 25 Moreover she said to him, “We have both straw and feed enough, and room to lodge.”

  1. Success! This was exactly the answer he for which he hoped. Out of all the people he could have met upon entering the town – of all the days he arrived – out of all of the chances in the world, it was obvious this wasn’t “chance” at all! God led him to exactly the right woman, the great-niece of his master Abraham. And not only did she confirm her genealogy, but she also confirmed her family’s hospitality. Everything that the servant needed of the Lord God was laid graciously at his feet.
    1. The providence of God is incredible! Never doubt it – always trust in it!
  2. The servant’s response: what else, but worship!

26 Then the man bowed down his head and worshiped the LORD. 27 And he said, “Blessed be the LORD God of my master Abraham, who has not forsaken His mercy and His truth toward my master. As for me, being on the way, the LORD led me to the house of my master’s brethren.”

  1. Earlier, it was unclear whether or not the servant truly worshipped the Lord, or if he simply prayed to the God of his master, Abraham. Here, there’s no question. He worshiped YHWH! His response to the answered prayers and direct leading of God was for him to bow & prostrate himself before the God of heaven and earth in worship. He knew the Lord, and He knew the Lord had been faithful. God had not abandoned/forsaken His loyal love towards Abraham – God’s covenant promises to Abraham proved to be true, even when Abraham was over 500 miles away! God’s word was always true, because God is a faithful God! Centuries later, Moses would say this to Abraham’s descendants: Deuteronomy 7:9, “Therefore know that the LORD your God, He is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and mercy for a thousand generations with those who love Him and keep His commandments;” God is the faithful God! He was faithful to Abraham – He was faithful to Israel – and He will be faithful to us!
    1. God keeps His word simply because of who He is. He can do no different, as He will never contradict Himself. He is faithful! Do you trust Him? Do you trust the promises of Jesus? Do you trust His character & His person & His mercies? He will not forsake them, thus He will not forsake you.

28 So the young woman ran and told her mother’s household these things.

  1. There’s no mention of any response of Rebekah back to the servant. No doubt, this was more than a bit surprising. She probably was so taken aback that she wasn’t sure what to do!
  • The servant’s tale & request (29-53)

29 Now Rebekah had a brother whose name was Laban, and Laban ran out to the man by the well. 30 So it came to pass, when he saw the nose ring, and the bracelets on his sister’s wrists, and when he heard the words of his sister Rebekah, saying, “Thus the man spoke to me,” that he went to the man. And there he stood by the camels at the well. 31 And he said, “Come in, O blessed of the LORD! Why do you stand outside? For I have prepared the house, and a place for the camels.”

  1. This is the reader’s introduction to Laban, who becomes more prominent in the account of Jacob. Here, he is shown with apparent hospitality, potentially even knowing the Lord God of Abraham (YHWH). Later, it becomes obvious he is a schemer & conniver. At the very least, he demonstrates the cultural hospitality at the time, inviting the servant to come and stay with his family, which he did.

32 Then the man came to the house. And he unloaded the camels, and provided straw and feed for the camels, and water to wash his feet and the feet of the men who were with him. 33 Food was set before him to eat, but he said, “I will not eat until I have told about my errand.” And he said, “Speak on.”

  1. The servant takes a few minutes to do what’s necessary, but he doesn’t let anything delay him from his mission. Even if the camels needed to eat, he himself could wait. The servant had demonstrated himself to be obedient this far, and after the demonstration to him by the Lord earlier that day, no doubt the servant was bursting at the seams ready to see what would happen next.

34 So he said, “I am Abraham’s servant. 35 The LORD has blessed my master greatly, and he has become great; and He has given him flocks and herds, silver and gold, male and female servants, and camels and donkeys. 36 And Sarah my master’s wife bore a son to my master when she was old; and to him he has given all that he has.

  1. Before he gets to the important part of his story, he has to first tell them about God’s blessing of Abraham. Keep in mind that there wasn’t much information that travelled back and forth between people at the time. They may have wondered how Abram’s name was changed to Abraham, and even been amazed that Abraham was still alive, considering that he was actually the uncle of Bethuel and great-uncle of Laban. Additionally, the servant speaks of God’s blessing upon Abraham. He was amazingly wealthy by the standards of the day, viewed as a prince by those around him. This would have been impressive, to be sure.
  2. The background stated, the servant goes on to recount the tale of his journey, repeating much of what has already been written for the reader…

37 Now my master made me swear, saying, ‘You shall not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, in whose land I dwell; 38 but you shall go to my father’s house and to my family, and take a wife for my son.’ 39 And I said to my master, ‘Perhaps the woman will not follow me.’ 40 But he said to me, ‘The LORD, before whom I walk, will send His angel with you and prosper your way; and you shall take a wife for my son from my family and from my father’s house. 41 You will be clear from this oath when you arrive among my family; for if they will not give her to you, then you will be released from my oath.’ 42 “And this day I came to the well and said, ‘O LORD God of my master Abraham, if You will now prosper the way in which I go, 43 behold, I stand by the well of water; and it shall come to pass that when the virgin comes out to draw water, and I say to her, “Please give me a little water from your pitcher to drink,” 44 and she says to me, “Drink, and I will draw for your camels also,”—let her be the woman whom the LORD has appointed for my master’s son.’ 45 “But before I had finished speaking in my heart, there was Rebekah, coming out with her pitcher on her shoulder; and she went down to the well and drew water. And I said to her, ‘Please let me drink.’ 46 And she made haste and let her pitcher down from her shoulder, and said, ‘Drink, and I will give your camels a drink also.’ So I drank, and she gave the camels a drink also. 47 Then I asked her, and said, ‘Whose daughter are you?’ And she said, ‘The daughter of Bethuel, Nahor’s son, whom Milcah bore to him.’ So I put the nose ring on her nose and the bracelets on her wrists. 48 And I bowed my head and worshiped the LORD, and blessed the LORD God of my master Abraham, who had led me in the way of truth to take the daughter of my master’s brother for his son.

  1. Few new details are given to the reader, mostly minor, such as the servant being the one to actually put the nose ring into Rebekah’s nose.
  2. In the telling, notice his emphasis on the work of the Lord God. Abraham’s faith in YHWH was known (40) – the servant’s dependence upon YHWH was seen (42, 44) – the work of YHWH was acknowledged through the servant’s worship of Him (48). For all the action that took place among the servant & Rebekah, the Actor who received the most attention and credit was the Lord God Himself.
  3. What is the servant doing? Sharing his testimony. He said where he had come from, how God had led him, the work of God for him, and his response to God in praise. That’s exactly what we do when we share our faith in Christ… And likewise, the emphasis in our testimonies needs to be upon the Lord Jesus; not us. We are witnesses of Him; not ourselves…
  4. The servant even gave an invitation. 

49 Now if you will deal kindly and truly with my master, tell me. And if not, tell me, that I may turn to the right hand or to the left.”

  1. The servant had already responded to the work of the Lord; now it was their turn. This was the moment of truth, and it was time for a decision. Would they acknowledge God, or not? (There comes a time for all of us, when a decision needs to be made!)

50 Then Laban and Bethuel answered and said, “The thing comes from the LORD; we cannot speak to you either bad or good. 51 Here is Rebekah before you; take her and go, and let her be your master’s son’s wife, as the LORD has spoken.” 52 And it came to pass, when Abraham’s servant heard their words, that he worshiped the LORD, bowing himself to the earth.

  1. Be careful not to get the wrong idea from verse 50. It’s not that Laban and Bethuel are apathetic, unwilling to take a stand on the matter; they readily acknowledged that this circumstance came “from the LORD.” The idea is that whatever opinion they might have had regarding the actions of the servant were irrelevant. If God ordained it, who were they to come against it? The will of God would prosper, regardless of their approval.
    1. BTW – interestingly, it seems that Bethuel, Rebekah’s father, was still alive, even though most of the decisions are voiced by Laban. It could be that Bethuel had become feeble to the point of handing off the day-to-day family responsibilities to his oldest son.
  2. In the end, Laban and Bethuel gave their permission for Rebekah to leave, thereby answering all of the prayers of the servant. Once again, he worshipped the Lord, properly giving God the glory for the things that had been done. Laban and Bethuel might be thanked, but it was only God who was to be praised. Ultimately, He was the one responsible. 

53 Then the servant brought out jewelry of silver, jewelry of gold, and clothing, and gave them to Rebekah. He also gave precious things to her brother and to her mother.

  1. Culturally, this was probably the equivalent to the dowry payment. Gifts were given to Rebekah, as an advance taste of what she would receive in the home of Isaac. Other gifts of wealth were given to her family (headed by “her brother”), both as a sign of goodwill, and insurance against future potential problems.
  • The servant’s departure (54-61)

54 And he and the men who were with him ate and drank and stayed all night. Then they arose in the morning, and he said, “Send me away to my master.” 55 But her brother and her mother said, “Let the young woman stay with us a few days, at least ten; after that she may go.” 56 And he said to them, “Do not hinder me, since the LORD has prospered my way; send me away so that I may go to my master.”

  1. Just as the servant had wanted to immediately state his request prior to even eating dinner, the servant did not waste time the next morning. A late night did not hinder his early departure, and he was soon ready to make his 21+ day journey back to Canaan.
  2. This time, there was a bit of a problem. Laban and his (and Rebekah’s) mother objected, asking for more time. And they didn’t just ask a little…they asked for a minimum of ten days. They were willing to stretch out the servant’s journey by nearly another two weeks. Question: why? The text doesn’t say, but it’s possible that they were seeking more gifts of wealth from the servant as a type of bribe. He was the proverbial “cash cow,” and they probably didn’t want him leaving so quickly.
  3. The servant wasn’t fooled at all. This wasn’t sentimentality on the part of the family; this was purposeful hindrance. Everyone had already acknowledged that the Lord God was at work, there should have been no problem in immediate obedience. Any delay at this point was purposeful rebellion, and the servant would have no part in it.

57 So they said, “We will call the young woman and ask her personally.” 58 Then they called Rebekah and said to her, “Will you go with this man?” And she said, “I will go.”

  1. The family was probably counting on Rebekah to fear the future and refuse to go. If so, they were disappointed! From the text, there is no indication that Rebekah hesitated in the slightest. When given the chance, she was willing to leave.
  2. At this point, we start to see Rebekah’s own faith. Think about it: the only thing she knew of this servant was from her encounter with him the previous day. She had only his word upon which to rely, and she was about to leave the only home she had ever known to go with him to a land hundreds of miles away, with no possibility of ever seeing her family again. She had barely 12-18 hours to know the servant and consider the matter, and yet she’s willing to go. Were not the Lord dramatically and obviously involved, this would be the height of foolishness! As it was, it was sheer faith. God was involved, and there could be no doubt. It was a miracle that had led the servant directly to Rebekah, and she understood this in her heart. Her only possible response was immediate obedience.
    1. That’s the way it ought to be with us! When God’s word is clear (as it is in the Bible), our response ought to be evident.
  3. With Rebekah’s commitment, Laban had no other choice. They let her go with their blessing…

59 So they sent away Rebekah their sister and her nurse, and Abraham’s servant and his men. 60 And they blessed Rebekah and said to her: “Our sister, may you become The mother of thousands of ten thousands; And may your descendants possess The gates of those who hate them.”

  1. Although they had no way of knowing, their blessing was truly prophetic. There’s no indication that Abraham’s servant told them of the many aspects of God’s covenant with him, yet this was all part of God’s plan for Abraham’s descendants. Rebekah truly would become a mother of nations, and they would experience the victory and blessing of God!

61 Then Rebekah and her maids arose, and they rode on the camels and followed the man. So the servant took Rebekah and departed.

  1. Off they went. How many maids went with Rebekah, we don’t know. 
  • The servant’s success (62-67)

62 Now Isaac came from the way of Beer Lahai Roi, for he dwelt in the South. 63 And Isaac went out to meditate in the field in the evening; and he lifted his eyes and looked, and there, the camels were coming.

  1. Fast-forward 21+ days, and the provision of God is still at work. The servant went past Hebron further to the south where Isaac dwelt, and who does he happen to encounter at the moment of his arrival? 
  2. Interestingly, Isaac was in the region of Beer Lahai Roi, the same location visited by Hagar when she was originally pregnant with Ishmael. At the time, she had run away from Sarai, and God coaxed her back, graciously demonstrating that He saw her. “Beer Lahai Roi” translates to “The well of the Living One who sees me.” God had seen Hagar, and God saw Isaac. Even here, Isaac lifted his own eyes and saw the provision of God before him. And he wasn’t the only one…

64 Then Rebekah lifted her eyes, and when she saw Isaac she dismounted from her camel; 65 for she had said to the servant, “Who is this man walking in the field to meet us?” The servant said, “It is my master.” So she took a veil and covered herself.

  1. Just as Isaac had seen Rebekah in the distance, so did she see her future husband. At this point, she did what was culturally appropriate at the time & veiled herself, as she would remain until the day of their marriage.

66 And the servant told Isaac all the things that he had done. 67 Then Isaac brought her into his mother Sarah’s tent; and he took Rebekah and she became his wife, and he loved her. So Isaac was comforted after his mother’s death.

  1. Isaac is told the news, and eventually the two are wed.

Conclusion:

Genesis 24 is the longest narrative account in the book, but how wonderful it is! Through this long narration, we repeatedly see the gracious provision of God. He had a loyal covenantal love for Abraham and Isaac, and His kindness to them would not be forsaken. God would lead a servant through deserts and into strange cities to exactly the right person out of any number of people, if that was what it took for God’s promises to be honored. No obstacle was too great, no journey too difficult. When God was leading, He could find a needle in a haystack – He could even bring forth the needle before the seeker knew where to look!

Our God still provides! Our God is still faithful! He does not forsake His promises or His people. What He has said, He will do – and He has proven this through what He has already done. We have no greater proof of the love of God than the cross and resurrection of Christ. In Jesus, He has already shown Himself to be abundantly faithful.

So believe Him – worship Him – obey Him – tell others about Him! Follow the example of Abraham’s servant, ourselves being servants of the Most High God!

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