34 So he said, “I am Abraham’s servant. 35 The Lord has blessed my master abundantly, and he has become wealthy. He has given him sheep and cattle, silver and gold, male and female servants, and camels and donkeys. 36 My master’s wife Sarah has borne him a son in her old age, and he has given him everything he owns. 37 And my master made me swear an oath, and said, ‘You must not get a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, in whose land I live, 38 but go to my father’s family and to my own clan, and get a wife for my son.’
39 “Then I asked my master, ‘What if the woman will not come back with me?’
40 “He replied, ‘The Lord, before whom I have walked faithfully, will send his angel with you and make your journey a success, so that you can get a wife for my son from my own clan and from my father’s family. 41 You will be released from my oath if, when you go to my clan, they refuse to give her to you—then you will be released from my oath.’
42 “When I came to the spring today, I said, ‘Lord, God of my master Abraham, if you will, please grant success to the journey on which I have come. 43 See, I am standing beside this spring. If a young woman comes out to draw water and I say to her, “Please let me drink a little water from your jar,” 44 and if she says to me, “Drink, and I’ll draw water for your camels too,” let her be the one the Lord has chosen for my master’s son.’
45 “Before I finished praying in my heart, Rebekah came out, with her jar on her shoulder. She went down to the spring and drew water, and I said to her, ‘Please give me a drink.’
46 “She quickly lowered her jar from her shoulder and said, ‘Drink, and I’ll water your camels too.’ So I drank, and she watered the camels also.
47 “I asked her, ‘Whose daughter are you?’
“She said, ‘The daughter of Bethuel son of Nahor, whom Milkah bore to him.’
“Then I put the ring in her nose and the bracelets on her arms, 48 and I bowed down and worshiped the Lord. I praised the Lord, the God of my master Abraham, who had led me on the right road to get the granddaughter of my master’s brother for his son. 49 Now if you will show kindness and faithfulness to my master, tell me; and if not, tell me, so I may know which way to turn.”
50 Laban and Bethuel answered, “This is from the Lord; we can say nothing to you one way or the other. 51 Here is Rebekah; take her and go, and let her become the wife of your master’s son, as the Lord has directed.”
52 When Abraham’s servant heard what they said, he bowed down to the ground before the Lord. 53 Then the servant brought out gold and silver jewelry and articles of clothing and gave them to Rebekah; he also gave costly gifts to her brother and to her mother. 54 Then he and the men who were with him ate and drank and spent the night there.
When they got up the next morning, he said, “Send me on my way to my master.”
55 But her brother and her mother replied, “Let the young woman remain with us ten days or so; then you may go.”
56 But he said to them, “Do not detain me, now that the Lord has granted success to my journey. Send me on my way so I may go to my master.”
57 Then they said, “Let’s call the young woman and ask her about it.”58 So they called Rebekah and asked her, “Will you go with this man?”
“I will go,” she said.
59 So they sent their sister Rebekah on her way, along with her nurse and Abraham’s servant and his men. 60 And they blessed Rebekah and said to her,
“Our sister, may you increase
to thousands upon thousands;
may your offspring possess
the cities of their enemies.”
61 Then Rebekah and her attendants got ready and mounted the camels and went back with the man. So the servant took Rebekah and left.
62 Now Isaac had come from Beer Lahai Roi, for he was living in the Negev. 63 He went out to the field one evening to meditate, and as he looked up, he saw camels approaching. 64 Rebekah also looked up and saw Isaac. She got down from her camel 65 and asked the servant, “Who is that man in the field coming to meet us?”
“He is my master,” the servant answered. So she took her veil and covered herself.
66 Then the servant told Isaac all he had done. 67 Isaac brought her into the tent of his mother Sarah, and he married Rebekah. So she became his wife, and he loved her; and Isaac was comforted after his mother’s death.
(Genesis 24:34-67 NIV)
In the first half of Chapter 24, Abraham tasked his primary servant to go back to his family of origin in Canaan and find a wife for his son Isaac. Abraham was too old to make the trip, and knew that the Lord would provide wisdom and guidance for his servant to find the right woman for Isaac.
The servant made the journey and put his faith in the Lord to find the right woman for Issac. The servant prayed specifically for God’s guidance, and the Lord answered his prayer with Rebekah. When we stopped at verse 33, the servant and his helpers had been invited in by Rebekah’s brother Laban. Before the servant and his men would accept the family’s hospitality, the servant had to tell them why he was there. The servant’s integrity meant that he had to tell them his intentions so they had the opportunity to change their minds about the hospitality they were about to offer.
As we pick up in verse 34 today, the servant repeats the story we heard in the first half of Chapter 24. The response from Rebekah’s father and brother was clear – “This is from the Lord; we can say nothing to you one way or the other.” They gave their blessing and gave Rebekah to be married to Isaac.
The family asked for Rebekah to stay for 10 days to say their goodbyes, but the servant wanted to get started back home. The family put the question to Rebekah, and she agreed to leave that day as the servant requested.
The servant returned home, and Isaac and Rebekah were married. Moses tells us that Rebekah brought great comfort to Isaac in the aftermath of his mother’s death. Moses also tells us that Isaac loved Rebekah – this was far more than another arranged marriage destined for mere survival and domestic duties.
As we look into the life of Isaac, scripture does not tell us a lot about him. He does not seem to be the swashbuckling adventurer like his father Abraham, nor does seem to be the self-protecting and fearful man like his father Abraham (at least at the point in the story).
If anything, Isaac appears at first glance to be a bit of a “mama’s boy”, sticking close to home, happy to be involved in family life. It’s easy to see how this could be, with the Lord telling Abraham and Sarah that His promise to provide descendants as numerous as the sand on the seashore would be fulfilled through Isaac. If we were told that about one of our children, we would probably be very overprotective as well!
But we also see Isaac out for a walk meditating on the Lord when the servant and Rebekah arrive home. Here we get a glimpse of Isaac as a faithful man, a man seeking after the Lord and desiring to walk with God throughout his life. If Isaac were alive today, we would likely describe him as walking closely with and guided by God’s Spirit,
Many times in both the Old and New Testaments, the Lord refers to Himself as the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. There was something about Isaac’s life that is worth studying and emulating, as his life reflects God’s attributes and character.
May we choose to walk with the Lord as Isaac did, carving out time to meditate and invite God’s Holy Spirit to guide and lead us in our daily walk.