Eternal Creator, Lord of this and every place, of this and every time, teach me something new today from Your Word.
Read GENESIS 24:1–28
Isaac and Rebekah
24 Abraham was now very old, and the Lord had blessed him in every way. 2 He said to the senior servant in his household, the one in charge of all that he had, “Put your hand under my thigh. 3 I want you to swear by the Lord, the God of heaven and the God of earth, that you will not get a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, among whom I am living, 4 but will go to my country and my own relatives and get a wife for my son Isaac.”
5 The servant asked him, “What if the woman is unwilling to come back with me to this land? Shall I then take your son back to the country you came from?”
6 “Make sure that you do not take my son back there,” Abraham said. 7 “The Lord, the God of heaven, who brought me out of my father’s household and my native land and who spoke to me and promised me on oath, saying, ‘To your offspring[a] I will give this land’—he will send his angel before you so that you can get a wife for my son from there. 8 If the woman is unwilling to come back with you, then you will be released from this oath of mine. Only do not take my son back there.” 9 So the servant put his hand under the thigh of his master Abraham and swore an oath to him concerning this matter.
10 Then the servant left, taking with him ten of his master’s camels loaded with all kinds of good things from his master. He set out for Aram Naharaim[b] and made his way to the town of Nahor. 11 He had the camels kneel down near the well outside the town; it was toward evening, the time the women go out to draw water.
12 Then he prayed, “Lord, God of my master Abraham, make me successful today, and show kindness to my master Abraham. 13 See, I am standing beside this spring, and the daughters of the townspeople are coming out to draw water. 14 May it be that when I say to a young woman, ‘Please let down your jar that I may have a drink,’ and she says, ‘Drink, and I’ll water your camels too’—let her be the one you have chosen for your servant Isaac. By this I will know that you have shown kindness to my master.”
15 Before he had finished praying, Rebekah came out with her jar on her shoulder. She was the daughter of Bethuel son of Milkah, who was the wife of Abraham’s brother Nahor. 16 The woman was very beautiful, a virgin; no man had ever slept with her. She went down to the spring, filled her jar and came up again.
17 The servant hurried to meet her and said, “Please give me a little water from your jar.”
18 “Drink, my lord,” she said, and quickly lowered the jar to her hands and gave him a drink.
19 After she had given him a drink, she said, “I’ll draw water for your camels too, until they have had enough to drink.” 20 So she quickly emptied her jar into the trough, ran back to the well to draw more water, and drew enough for all his camels. 21 Without saying a word, the man watched her closely to learn whether or not the Lord had made his journey successful.
22 When the camels had finished drinking, the man took out a gold nose ring weighing a beka[c] and two gold bracelets weighing ten shekels.[d] 23 Then he asked, “Whose daughter are you? Please tell me, is there room in your father’s house for us to spend the night?”
24 She answered him, “I am the daughter of Bethuel, the son that Milkah bore to Nahor.” 25 And she added, “We have plenty of straw and fodder, as well as room for you to spend the night.”
26 Then the man bowed down and worshiped the Lord, 27 saying, “Praise be to the Lord, the God of my master Abraham, who has not abandoned his kindness and faithfulness to my master. As for me, the Lord has led me on the journey to the house of my master’s relatives.”
28 The young woman ran and told her mother’s household about these things.
New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
Worship the risen, exalted Lord Jesus Christ, who will return to gather you and take you to your eternal abode in heaven forevermore.
Choosing a bride for yourself is one thing. Choosing a bride for a third party, when the groom has not invited you to do so, is another. Yet this arranged marriage is crucial to Israel’s history. Abraham requests his servant to find a wife for Isaac.
A message of contagious faith lies within this text. The now aged Abraham insists that the servant does not pick a pagan wife for Isaac from the Canaanites. The servant affirms his promise by putting his hand under the thigh of Abraham. In humble submission, the servant recognizes Abraham’s faith.
First, the servant prays – specifying exactly what he wants to see happen. Before the sentence leaves his lips, Rebekah appears, her actions mirroring his prayer. We might assume that God has answered the servant’s prayer, and all is well. However, the servant waits on the Lord (21). He wants to ensure that Rebekah is ‘the one’ for Isaac. The servant demonstrates sensitivity to the Spirit of God – not running ahead but waiting for continued divine leading. Finally, once the servant discerns that Rebekah is the chosen one, he worships God in thanksgiving for answered prayer (26,27).
You, too, can pray specifically and make your request known to God. Wait in faith, and don’t run ahead as He confirms His perfect will for your life. When God answers your prayers, it’s only polite to say ‘thank you.’ The truest test of your faith may not be how you respond in a crisis, but whether your life of faith is recognized by those who know you well.
For which people close to you are you setting an example of contagious faith – can they catch it from you?
God, my loving Heavenly Father, waiting and listening for You takes discipline and time. As I wait before You today for Your direction, grant me listening ears and an obedient will.