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Genesis 24

24
A Wife for Isaac
1Abraham was now old, getting on in years, # Lit days # Gn 18:11; Jos 13:1; 23:1-2; 1Kg 1:1 and the Lord had blessed him in everything. 2Abraham said to his servant, the elder of his household who managed all he owned, “Place your hand under my thigh, # Gn 47:29; Ex 1:5 3and I will have you swear by the Lord, God of heaven and God of earth, that you will not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites among whom I live, # Gn 26:34,35; 27:46; Dt 7:3; 2Co 6:14 4but will go to my land and my family to take a wife for my son Isaac.”
5The servant said to him, “Suppose the woman is unwilling to follow me to this land? Should I have your son go back to the land you came from? ”
6Abraham answered him, “Make sure that you don’t take my son back there. 7The Lord, the God of heaven, # 2Ch 36:23; Ezr 1:2 who took me from my father’s house and from my native land, # Gn 12:1 who spoke to me and swore to me, ‘I will give this land to your offspring’ # Gn 12:7; 13:15; 15:18; Ex 32:13 — He will send His angel before you, # Gn 16:7; 21:17; 22:11; Ex 23:20,23 and you can take a wife for my son from there. 8If the woman is unwilling to follow you, then you are free from this oath to me, # Jos 2:17-20 but don’t let my son go back there.” 9So the servant placed his hand under his master Abraham’s thigh and swore an oath to him concerning this matter.
10The servant took 10 of his master’s camels and departed with all kinds of his master’s goods in hand. Then he set out for Nahor’s town Aram-naharaim. 11He made the camels kneel beside a well of water outside the town at evening. This was the time when the women went out to draw water.
12Lord, God of my master Abraham,” he prayed, “give me success today, # Gn 27:20 and show kindness to my master Abraham. 13I am standing here # Gn 24:43-44 at the spring where the daughters of the men of the town are coming out to draw water. 14Let the girl to whom I say, ‘Please lower your water jug so that I may drink,’ and who responds, ‘Drink, and I’ll water your camels also’ — let her be the one You have appointed for Your servant Isaac. By this I will know that You have shown kindness to my master.”
15Before he had finished speaking, there was Rebekah — daughter of Bethuel son of Milcah, # Gn 11:29; 22:23 the wife of Abraham’s brother Nahor — coming with a jug on her shoulder. 16Now the girl was very beautiful, # Gn 12:11; 26:7; 29:17 a young woman who had not known a man intimately. She went down to the spring, filled her jug, and came up. 17Then the servant ran to meet her and said, “Please let me have a little water from your jug.”
18She replied, “Drink, my lord.” She quickly lowered her jug to her hand and gave him a drink. 19When she had finished giving him a drink, she said, “I’ll also draw water for your camels until they have had enough to drink.” # Lit they are finished drinking 20She quickly emptied her jug into the trough and hurried to the well again to draw water. She drew water for all his camels 21while the man silently watched her to see whether or not the Lord had made his journey a success.
22After the camels had finished drinking, the man took a gold ring weighing half a shekel, and for her wrists two bracelets weighing 10 shekels of gold. 23“Whose daughter are you? ” he asked. “Please tell me, is there room in your father’s house for us to spend the night? ”
24She answered him, “I am the daughter of Bethuel son of Milcah, whom she bore to Nahor.” 25She also said to him, “We have plenty of straw and feed and a place to spend the night.”
26Then the man bowed down, worshiped the Lord, # Ex 4:31 27and said, “Praise the Lord, the God of my master Abraham, who has not withheld His kindness and faithfulness from my master. # Ru 2:20; Ezr 9:9; Neh 9:17 As for me, the Lord has led me on the journey to the house of my master’s relatives.”
28The girl ran and told her mother’s household about these things. 29Now Rebekah had a brother named Laban, # Gn 25:20; 28:2; 29:5 and Laban ran out to the man at the spring. 30As soon as he had seen the ring and the bracelets on his sister’s wrists, and when he had heard his sister Rebekah’s words — “The man said this to me! ” — he went to the man. He was standing there by the camels at the spring.
31Laban said, “Come, you who are blessed by the Lord. # Gn 26:29; Jdg 17:2; Ru 3:10 Why are you standing out here? I have prepared the house and a place for the camels.” 32So the man came to the house, and the camels were unloaded. # Gn 43:24; Jdg 19:21 Straw and feed were given to the camels, and water was brought to wash his feet and the feet of the men with him.
33A meal was set before him, but he said, “I will not eat until I have said what I have to say.”
So Laban said, “Please speak.”
34“I am Abraham’s servant,” he said. 35“The Lord has greatly blessed my master, and he has become rich. He has given him sheep and cattle, silver and gold, male and female slaves, and camels and donkeys. 36Sarah, my master’s wife, bore a son to my master in her # Sam, LXX read his old age, # Gn 21:2 and he has given him everything he owns. # Gn 25:5 37My master put me under this oath: ‘You will not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites in whose land I live 38but will go to my father’s household and to my family to take a wife for my son.’ 39But I said to my master, ‘Suppose the woman will not come back with me? ’ 40He said to me, ‘The Lord before whom I have walked # Gn 17:1; 1Sm 2:30; 1Kg 2:4; 8:23; 2Kg 20:3; Ps 116:9 will send His angel with you and make your journey a success, and you will take a wife for my son from my family and from my father’s household. 41Then you will be free from my oath if you go to my family and they do not give her to you — you will be free from my oath.’
42“Today when I came to the spring, I prayed: Lord, God of my master Abraham, if only You will make my journey successful! 43I am standing here at a spring. Let the virgin who comes out to draw water, and I say to her: Please let me drink a little water from your jug, 44and who responds to me, ‘Drink, and I’ll draw water for your camels also’ — let her be the woman the Lord has appointed for my master’s son.
45“Before I had finished praying silently, # 1Sm 1:13 there was Rebekah coming with her jug on her shoulder, and she went down to the spring and drew water. So I said to her: Please let me have a drink. 46She quickly lowered her jug from her shoulder and said, ‘Drink, and I’ll water your camels also.’ So I drank, and she also watered the camels. 47Then I asked her: Whose daughter are you? She responded, ‘The daughter of Bethuel son of Nahor, whom Milcah bore to him.’ So I put the ring on her nose # Ezk 16:11-12 and the bracelets on her wrists. 48Then I bowed down, worshiped the Lord, and praised the Lord, the God of my master Abraham, who guided me on the right way to take the granddaughter of my master’s brother for his son. 49Now, if you are going to show kindness and faithfulness to my master, # Gn 47:29; Jos 2:14 tell me; if not, tell me, and I will go elsewhere.” # Lit go to the right or to the left
50Laban and Bethuel answered, “This is from the Lord; we have no choice in the matter. # Lit we cannot say to you anything bad or good # Gn 31:24,29; 2Sm 13:22 51Rebekah is here in front of you. Take her and go, and let her be a wife for your master’s son, just as the Lord has spoken.”
52When Abraham’s servant heard their words, he bowed to the ground before the Lord. 53Then he brought out objects of silver and gold, and garments, and gave them to Rebekah. He also gave precious gifts to her brother and her mother. 54Then he and the men with him ate and drank and spent the night.
When they got up in the morning, he said, “Send me to my master.”
55But her brother and mother said, “Let the girl stay with us for about 10 days. # Lit us a few days or 10 Then she # Or you can go.”
56But he responded to them, “Do not delay me, since the Lord has made my journey a success. Send me away so that I may go to my master.”
57So they said, “Let’s call the girl and ask her opinion.” # Lit mouth
58They called Rebekah and said to her, “Will you go with this man? ”
She replied, “I will go.” 59So they sent away their sister Rebekah with the one who had nursed and raised her, # Lit with her wet nurse ; Gn 35:8 # Gn 35:8 and Abraham’s servant and his men.
60They blessed Rebekah, saying to her:
Our sister, may you become
thousands upon ten thousands. # Gn 17:16
May your offspring possess
the gates of their # Lit his enemies. # Gn 22:17
61Then Rebekah and her female servants got up, mounted the camels, and followed the man. So the servant took Rebekah and left.
62Now Isaac was returning from Beer-lahai-roi, # = A Well of the Living One Who Sees Me # Gn 16:14; 25:11 for he was living in the Negev region. 63In the early evening Isaac went out to walk # Or pray, or meditate ; Hb obscure in the field, and looking up he saw camels coming. 64Rebekah looked up, and when she saw Isaac, she got down from her camel 65and asked the servant, “Who is that man in the field coming to meet us? ”
The servant answered, “It is my master.” So she took her veil and covered herself. 66Then the servant told Isaac everything he had done.
67And Isaac brought her into the tent of his mother Sarah and took Rebekah to be his wife. Isaac loved her, and he was comforted after his mother’s death. # Gn 23:1-2
24
A Wife for Isaac
1Abraham was now very old, and the Lord had blessed him in every way. 2Abraham said to his oldest servant, who was in charge of everything he owned, “Put your hand under my leg. 3Make a promise to me before the Lord, the God of heaven and earth. Don’t get a wife for my son from the Canaanite girls who live around here. 4Instead, go back to my country, to the land of my relatives, and get a wife for my son Isaac.”
5The servant said to him, “What if this woman does not want to return with me to this land? Then, should I take your son with me back to your homeland?”
6Abraham said to him, “No! Don’t take my son back there. 7The Lord, the God of heaven, brought me from the home of my father and the land of my relatives. And he promised me, “I will give this land to your descendants.’ The Lord will send his angel before you to help you get a wife for my son there. 8If the girl won’t come back with you, you will be free from this promise. But you must not take my son back there.” 9So the servant put his hand under his master’s leg and made a promise to Abraham about this.
10The servant took ten of Abraham’s camels and left, carrying with him many different kinds of beautiful gifts. He went to Northwest Mesopotamia to Nahor’s city. 11In the evening, when the women come out to get water, he made the camels kneel down at the well outside the city.
12The servant said, “Lord, God of my master Abraham, allow me to find a wife for his son today. Please show this kindness to my master Abraham. 13Here I am, standing by the spring, and the girls from the city are coming out to get water. 14I will say to one of them, ‘Please put your jar down so I can drink.’ Then let her say, ‘Drink, and I will also give water to your camels.’ If that happens, I will know she is the right one for your servant Isaac and that you have shown kindness to my master.”
15Before the servant had finished praying, Rebekah, the daughter of Bethuel, came out of the city. (Bethuel was the son of Milcah and Nahor, Abraham’s brother.) Rebekah was carrying her water jar on her shoulder. 16She was very pretty, a virgin; she had never had sexual relations with a man. She went down to the spring and filled her jar, then came back up. 17The servant ran to her and said, “Please give me a little water from your jar.”
18Rebekah said, “Drink, sir.” She quickly lowered the jar from her shoulder and gave him a drink. 19After he finished drinking, Rebekah said, “I will also pour some water for your camels.” 20So she quickly poured all the water from her jar into the drinking trough for the camels. Then she kept running to the well until she had given all the camels enough to drink.
21The servant quietly watched her. He wanted to be sure the Lord had made his trip successful. 22After the camels had finished drinking, he gave Rebekah a gold ring weighing one-fifth of an ounce and two gold arm bracelets weighing about four ounces each. 23He asked, “Who is your father? Is there a place in his house for me and my men to spend the night?”
24Rebekah answered, “My father is Bethuel, the son of Milcah and Nahor.” 25Then she said, “And, yes, we have straw for your camels and a place for you to spend the night.”
26The servant bowed and worshiped the Lord 27and said, “Blessed is the Lord, the God of my master Abraham. The Lord has been kind and truthful to him and has led me to my master’s relatives.”
28Then Rebekah ran and told her mother’s family about all these things. 29She had a brother named Laban, who ran out to Abraham’s servant, who was still at the spring. 30Laban had heard what she had said and had seen the ring and the bracelets on his sister’s arms. So he ran out to the well, and there was the man standing by the camels at the spring. 31Laban said, “Sir, you are welcome to come in; you don’t have to stand outside. I have prepared the house for you and also a place for your camels.”
32So Abraham’s servant went into the house. After Laban unloaded the camels and gave them straw and food, he gave water to Abraham’s servant so he and the men with him could wash their feet. 33Then Laban gave the servant food, but the servant said, “I will not eat until I have told you why I came.”
So Laban said, “Then tell us.”
34He said, “I am Abraham’s servant. 35The Lord has greatly blessed my master in everything, and he has become a rich man. The Lord has given him many flocks of sheep, herds of cattle, silver and gold, male and female servants, camels, and horses. 36Sarah, my master’s wife, gave birth to a son when she was old, and my master has given everything he owns to that son. 37My master had me make a promise to him and said, ‘Don’t get a wife for my son from the Canaanite girls who live around here. 38Instead, you must go to my father’s people and to my family. There you must get a wife for my son.’ 39I said to my master, ‘What if the woman will not come back with me?’ 40But he said, ‘I serve the Lord, who will send his angel with you and will help you. You will get a wife for my son from my family and my father’s people. 41Then you will be free from the promise. But if they will not give you a wife for my son, you will be free from this promise.’
42“Today I came to this spring. I said, ‘Lord, God of my master Abraham, please make my trip successful. 43I am standing by this spring. I will wait for a young woman to come out to get water, and I will say, “Please give me water from your jar to drink.” 44Then let her say, “Drink this water, and I will also get water for your camels.” By this I will know the Lord has chosen her for my master’s son.’
45“Before I finished my silent prayer, Rebekah came out of the city with her water jar on her shoulder. She went down to the spring and got water. I said to her, ‘Please give me a drink.’ 46She quickly lowered the jar from her shoulder and said, ‘Drink this. I will also get water for your camels.’ So I drank, and she gave water to my camels too. 47When I asked her, ‘Who is your father?’ she answered, ‘My father is Bethuel son of Milcah and Nahor.’ Then I put the ring in her nose and the bracelets on her arms, 48and I bowed my head and thanked the Lord. I praised the Lord, the God of my master Abraham, because he led me on the right road to get the granddaughter of my master’s brother for his son. 49Now, tell me, will you be kind and truthful to my master? And if not, tell me so. Then I will know what I should do.”
50Laban and Bethuel answered, “This is clearly from the Lord, and we cannot change what must happen. 51Rebekah is yours. Take her and go. Let her marry your master’s son as the Lord has commanded.”
52When Abraham’s servant heard these words, he bowed facedown on the ground before the Lord. 53Then he gave Rebekah gold and silver jewelry and clothes. He also gave expensive gifts to her brother and mother. 54The servant and the men with him ate and drank and spent the night there. When they got up the next morning, the servant said, “Now let me go back to my master.”
55Rebekah’s mother and her brother said, “Let Rebekah stay with us at least ten days. After that she may go.”
56But the servant said to them, “Do not make me wait, because the Lord has made my trip successful. Now let me go back to my master.”
57Rebekah’s brother and mother said, “We will call Rebekah and ask her what she wants to do.” 58They called her and asked her, “Do you want to go with this man now?”
She said, “Yes, I do.”
59So they allowed Rebekah and her nurse to go with Abraham’s servant and his men. 60They blessed Rebekah and said,
“Our sister, may you be the mother of thousands of people,
and may your descendants capture the cities of their enemies.”
61Then Rebekah and her servant girls got on the camels and followed the servant and his men. So the servant took Rebekah and left.
62At this time Isaac had left Beer Lahai Roi and was living in southern Canaan. 63One evening when he went out to the field to think, he looked up and saw camels coming. 64Rebekah also looked and saw Isaac. Then she jumped down from the camel 65and asked the servant, “Who is that man walking in the field to meet us?”
The servant answered, “That is my master.” So Rebekah covered her face with her veil.
66The servant told Isaac everything that had happened. 67Then Isaac brought Rebekah into the tent of Sarah, his mother, and she became his wife. Isaac loved her very much, and so he was comforted after his mother’s death.