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Tuesday, August 13 2013
Genesis 24: The Marriage of Isaac and Rebekah
"Isaac brought her into his mother Sarah's tent, and took Rebekah, and she became his wife; and he loved her"
Abraham had lived a long life, a journey of a life to where he would await his eternal life (see Abraham's Journey: When Will He Arrive?). As was made known to Abraham, his salvation, and that of all of humanity, would come from a future descendant of Abraham, though the branch of Isaac. For that to happen, Isaac needed a wife. With the intent of keeping the Messianic "seed" prophecy in accordance with its original proclamation (see The LORD's Seed Covenants With The Two Men Of Iraq), Abraham sent one of his servants to find a wife for Isaac from among Abraham's Iraqi family in Syria (that happened because the journey from Iraq was done in two stages, with most of the family group settling in Syria, while Abraham continued on to the land of Canaan; see Genesis 12: Abram's Mission).
"24:1 And Abraham was old, and well stricken in age: and the LORD had blessed Abraham in all things. 24:2 And Abraham said unto his eldest servant of his house, that ruled over all that he had, Put, I pray thee, thy hand under my thigh: 24:3 And I will make thee swear by the LORD, the God of heaven, and the God of the earth, that thou shalt not take a wife unto my son of the daughters of the Canaanites, among whom I dwell: 24:4 But thou shalt go unto my country, and to my kindred, and take a wife unto my son Isaac." (Genesis 24:1-4 KJV)
From his encampment in Canaan (see Camped Out In Canaan), Abraham gave the servant the instructions for seeking a wife for Isaac.
"24:5 And the servant said unto him, Peradventure the woman will not be willing to follow me unto this land: must I needs bring thy son again unto the land from whence thou camest?
So the servant set off on his task. The servant was also a man of God; he departed with a prayer: "O LORD God of my master Abraham, I pray thee, send me good speed this day, and shew kindness unto my master Abraham."
"24:10 And the servant took ten camels of the camels of his master, and departed; for all the goods of his master were in his hand: and he arose, and went to Mesopotamia, unto the city of Nahor. 24:11 And he made his camels to kneel down without the city by a well of water at the time of the evening, even the time that women go out to draw water.
The prayer was fulfilled, with the signs that were requested. There was no doubt that Rebekah was the LORD's choice, not merely for a wife for Isaac, but for one of His own human ancestors i.e. "the LORD God" was and is Jesus Christ (see Genesis 1: In The Beginning Was The Word and The Kingdom Of The LORD God).
"24:15 And it came to pass, before he had done speaking, that, behold, Rebekah came out, who was born to Bethuel, son of Milcah, the wife of Nahor, Abraham's brother, with her pitcher upon her shoulder. 24:16 And the damsel was very fair to look upon, a virgin, neither had any man known her: and she went down to the well, and filled her pitcher, and came up.
Rebekah then summoned her brother Laban (with whom Jacob / Israel would later live for twenty years when he too returned to Syria for wives from among his Iraqi family; see the Fact Finder question below).
"24:28 And the damsel ran, and told them of her mother's house these things. 24:29 And Rebekah had a brother, and his name was Laban: and Laban ran out unto the man, unto the well. 24:30 And it came to pass, when he saw the earring and bracelets upon his sister's hands, and when he heard the words of Rebekah his sister, saying, Thus spake the man unto me; that he came unto the man; and, behold, he stood by the camels at the well. 24:31 And he said, Come in, thou blessed of the LORD; wherefore standest thou without? for I have prepared the house, and room for the camels.
Rebekah had the final say. "And they called Rebekah, and said unto her, Wilt thou go with this man? And she said, I will go."
"24:50 Then Laban and Bethuel answered and said, The thing proceedeth from the LORD: we cannot speak unto thee bad or good. 24:51 Behold, Rebekah is before thee, take her, and go, and let her be thy master's son's wife, as the LORD hath spoken.
The caravan departed with a prophecy that would be fulfilled, not merely physically, but spiritually, by means of the salvation that would be made possible by the Messiah.
"24:59 And they sent away Rebekah their sister, and her nurse, and Abraham's servant, and his men. 24:60 And they blessed Rebekah, and said unto her, Thou art our sister, be thou the mother of thousands of millions, and let thy seed possess the gate of those which hate them.
So it was the Isaac and Rebekah were married. There was no "church wedding." There was no "marriage license" from any government. But Isaac "took Rebekah, and she became his wife; and he loved her."
"24:62 And Isaac came from the way of the well Lahairoi; for he dwelt in the south country. 24:63 And Isaac went out to meditate in the field at the eventide: and he lifted up his eyes, and saw, and, behold, the camels were coming. 24:64 And Rebekah lifted up her eyes, and when she saw Isaac, she lighted off the camel. 24:65 For she had said unto the servant, What man is this that walketh in the field to meet us?
Fact Finder: As covered in this study, Isaac found his wife from among his own Iraqi-Syrian relatives in Syria. Later, Jacob, who the LORD renamed as Israel, found his two wives and two concubines also from among his own Iraqi-Syrian relatives in Syria - where nearly all (except Benjamin) of the Israelite tribal patriarchs, including Judah, were born (see A Biography Of Jacob: The Jacobites Of Syria). On the other hand, where did Judah find his wife? Did the first Jews have Canaanite mothers?
This Day In History, August 13
554: Justinian's "Pragmatic Sanction" confirmed and increased the papacy's temporal power, and gave guidelines for regulating civil and ecclesiastical affairs in Rome and Italy (see also A History Of Jerusalem: Constantine and Muhammad).
1516: The Treaty of Noyon between France and Spain was signed. Francis I of France recognized Charles's claim to Naples, and Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor, recognised Francis's claim to Milan.
1521: Spanish Conquistador ("conqueror") Hernando Cortes captured and destroyed Tenochtitlan (Mexico City) after a three-month siege.
1535: French explorer Jacques Cartier discovered the St. Lawrence River.
1553: Michael Servetus was arrested by John Calvin in Geneva, Switzerland as a heretic for his (correct) belief that the Church of Rome's "Trinity" doctrine is incorrect (as also taught at Daily Bible Study, based on what the Word of God, not any man, actually says, while the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit all exist, the Holy Spirit is the power of God, not a "person" of God).
1624: Cardinal Richelieu was appointed Chief Minister of France by Louis XIII.
1704: The Battle of Blenheim during the War of the Spanish Succession. French and Bavarian forces were routed by a combined British, German and Dutch army at Blenheim, Germany. The victors lost 6,000 soldiers compared with 21,000 French and Bavarian troops.
1787: The Ottoman Empire declared war on Russia (listen to our Sermon The Ottoman Empire).
1788: Prussia joined the Anglo-Dutch alliance to form the Triple Alliance to prevent the spread of the Russo-Swedish War of 1788-90.
1792: King Louis XVI of France was arrested by the revolutionary National Tribunal and declared an enemy of the people.
1814: The Cape of Good Hope was formally ceded to the British by the Dutch.
1831: After witnessing a solar eclipse that he believed was "a sign from God," Nat Turner led 70 other slaves in the murder of 55 whites in Southampton County, Virginia.
1868: A powerful earthquake near Arica, Peru, killed approximately 25,000 people. An accompanying tsunami caused damage as far away as Hawaii and New Zealand.
1898: Carl Gustav Witt discovered 433 Eros, the first near-Earth asteroid to be found.
1920: During the Polish-Soviet War, the Battle of Warsaw began.
1960: The Central African Republic declared independence from France.
1961: East Germany's communist government began building the Berlin Wall after more than 3,000,000 of its citizens fled to the west. The wall snaked 103 miles (166 kilometers) around West Berlin.
1962: Representatives from the Russian Orthodox Church and Vatican City met in Metz, France. They agreed that the Russian church would have observers attending the Second Vatican Council; in return, the Roman Catholic Church agreed to not condemn Communism.
1964: The last hangings in Britain took place when two men were executed for murder at Liverpool and Manchester.
1996: Data sent back by the Galileo space probe indicated there may be water on one of Jupiter's moons, heightening the possibility it could support a primitive life form.
2008: During the South Ossetian War, Russian forces occupied the Georgian city of Gori.