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Genesis 24

24
Isaac and Rebekah
1Abraham was now an old man. God had blessed Abraham in every way.
2-4Abraham spoke to the senior servant in his household, the one in charge of everything he had, “Put your hand under my thigh and swear by God—God of Heaven, God of Earth—that you will not get a wife for my son from among the young women of the Canaanites here, but will go to the land of my birth and get a wife for my son Isaac.”
5The servant answered, “But what if the woman refuses to leave home and come with me? Do I then take your son back to your home country?”
6-8Abraham said, “Oh no. Never. By no means are you to take my son back there. God, the God of Heaven, took me from the home of my father and from the country of my birth and spoke to me in solemn promise, ‘I’m giving this land to your descendants.’ This God will send his angel ahead of you to get a wife for my son. And if the woman won’t come, you are free from this oath you’ve sworn to me. But under no circumstances are you to take my son back there.”
9So the servant put his hand under the thigh of his master Abraham and gave his solemn oath.
10-14The servant took ten of his master’s camels and, loaded with gifts from his master, traveled to Aram Naharaim and the city of Nahor. Outside the city, he made the camels kneel at a well. It was evening, the time when the women came to draw water. He prayed, “O God, God of my master Abraham, make things go smoothly this day; treat my master Abraham well! As I stand here by the spring while the young women of the town come out to get water, let the girl to whom I say, ‘Lower your jug and give me a drink,’ and who answers, ‘Drink, and let me also water your camels’—let her be the woman you have picked out for your servant Isaac. Then I’ll know that you’re working graciously behind the scenes for my master.”
15-17It so happened that the words were barely out of his mouth when Rebekah, the daughter of Bethuel whose mother was Milcah the wife of Nahor, Abraham’s brother, came out with a water jug on her shoulder. The girl was stunningly beautiful, a pure virgin. She went down to the spring, filled her jug, and came back up. The servant ran to meet her and said, “Please, can I have a sip of water from your jug?”
18-21She said, “Certainly, drink!” And she held the jug so that he could drink. When he had satisfied his thirst she said, “I’ll get water for your camels, too, until they’ve drunk their fill.” She promptly emptied her jug into the trough and ran back to the well to fill it, and she kept at it until she had watered all the camels.
The man watched, silent. Was this God’s answer? Had God made his trip a success or not?
22-23When the camels had finished drinking, the man brought out gifts, a gold nose ring weighing a little over a quarter of an ounce and two arm bracelets weighing about four ounces, and gave them to her. He asked her, “Tell me about your family? Whose daughter are you? Is there room in your father’s house for us to stay the night?”
24-25She said, “I’m the daughter of Bethuel the son of Milcah and Nahor. And there’s plenty of room in our house for you to stay—and lots of straw and feed besides.”
26-27At this the man bowed in worship before God and prayed, “Blessed be God, God of my master Abraham: How generous and true you’ve been to my master; you’ve held nothing back. You led me right to the door of my master’s brother!”
28And the girl was off and running, telling everyone in her mother’s house what had happened.
29-31Rebekah had a brother named Laban. Laban ran outside to the man at the spring. He had seen the nose ring and the bracelets on his sister and had heard her say, “The man said this and this and this to me.” So he went to the man and there he was, still standing with his camels at the spring. Laban welcomed him: “Come on in, blessed of God! Why are you standing out here? I’ve got the house ready for you; and there’s also a place for your camels.”
32-33So the man went into the house. The camels were unloaded and given straw and feed. Water was brought to bathe the feet of the man and the men with him. Then Laban brought out food. But the man said, “I won’t eat until I tell my story.”
Laban said, “Go ahead; tell us.”
34-41The servant said, “I’m the servant of Abraham. God has blessed my master—he’s a great man; God has given him sheep and cattle, silver and gold, servants and maidservants, camels and donkeys. And then to top it off, Sarah, my master’s wife, gave him a son in her old age and he has passed everything on to his son. My master made me promise, ‘Don’t get a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites in whose land I live. No, go to my father’s home, back to my family, and get a wife for my son there.’ I said to my master, ‘But what if the woman won’t come with me?’ He said, ‘God before whom I’ve walked faithfully will send his angel with you and he’ll make things work out so that you’ll bring back a wife for my son from my family, from the house of my father. Then you’ll be free from the oath. If you go to my family and they won’t give her to you, you will also be free from the oath.’
42-44“Well, when I came this very day to the spring, I prayed, ‘God, God of my master Abraham, make things turn out well in this task I’ve been given. I’m standing at this well. When a young woman comes here to draw water and I say to her, Please, give me a sip of water from your jug, and she says, Not only will I give you a drink, I’ll also water your camels—let that woman be the wife God has picked out for my master’s son.’
45-48“I had barely finished offering this prayer, when Rebekah arrived, her jug on her shoulder. She went to the spring and drew water and I said, ‘Please, can I have a drink?’ She didn’t hesitate. She held out her jug and said, ‘Drink; and when you’re finished I’ll also water your camels.’ I drank, and she watered the camels. I asked her, ‘Whose daughter are you?’ She said, ‘The daughter of Bethuel whose parents were Nahor and Milcah.’ I gave her a ring for her nose, bracelets for her arms, and bowed in worship to God. I praised God, the God of my master Abraham who had led me straight to the door of my master’s family to get a wife for his son.
49“Now, tell me what you are going to do. If you plan to respond with a generous yes, tell me. But if not, tell me plainly so I can figure out what to do next.”
50-51Laban and Bethuel answered, “This is totally from God. We have no say in the matter, either yes or no. Rebekah is yours: Take her and go; let her be the wife of your master’s son, as God has made plain.”
52-54When Abraham’s servant heard their decision, he bowed in worship before God. Then he brought out gifts of silver and gold and clothing and gave them to Rebekah. He also gave expensive gifts to her brother and mother. He and his men had supper and spent the night. But first thing in the morning they were up. He said, “Send me back to my master.”
55Her brother and mother said, “Let the girl stay a while, say another ten days, and then go.”
56He said, “Oh, don’t make me wait! God has worked everything out so well—send me off to my master.”
57They said, “We’ll call the girl; we’ll ask her.”
They called Rebekah and asked her, “Do you want to go with this man?”
58She said, “I’m ready to go.”
59-60So they sent them off, their sister Rebekah with her nurse, and Abraham’s servant with his men. And they blessed Rebekah saying,
You’re our sister—live bountifully!
And your children, triumphantly!
61Rebekah and her young maids mounted the camels and followed the man. The servant took Rebekah and set off for home.
62-65Isaac was living in the Negev. He had just come back from a visit to Beer Lahai Roi. In the evening he went out into the field; while meditating he looked up and saw camels coming. When Rebekah looked up and saw Isaac, she got down from her camel and asked the servant, “Who is that man out in the field coming toward us?”
“That is my master.”
She took her veil and covered herself.
66-67After the servant told Isaac the whole story of the trip, Isaac took Rebekah into the tent of his mother Sarah. He married Rebekah and she became his wife and he loved her. So Isaac found comfort after his mother’s death.
24
Isaac and Rebekah
1Now Abraham was old, advanced in age,#Literally “going in the days” and Yahweh had blessed Abraham in everything. 2And Abraham said to his servant, the oldest of his house, who had charge of all he had, “Please put your hand under my thigh 3that I may make you swear by Yahweh, the God of heaven and the God of earth, that you will not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites in whose midst I am dwelling, 4but that you will go to my land and to my family, and take a wife for my son, for Isaac.” 5And the servant said to him, “Perhaps the woman will not be willing to follow#Literally “to go after” me to this land—must I then return your son to the land from whence you came?” 6Abraham said to him, “You must take care#Literally “let it be careful to you” that you do not return my son there. 7Yahweh, the God of heaven who took me from the house of my father and from the land of my family, and who spoke to me and swore to me, saying, ‘to your offspring I will give this land,’ he will send his angel before you, and you shall take a wife for my son from there. 8And if the woman is not willing to follow#Literally “to go after” you, then you shall be released from this oath of mine—only you must not return my son there.” 9Then the servant put his hand under the thigh of Abraham his master, and he swore to him concerning this matter. 10And the servant took ten camels from his master’s camels, and he went with all kinds of his master’s good things in his hand. And he arose and went to Aram-Naharaim, to the city of Nahor. 11And he made the camels kneel outside the city at the well of water, at the time of evening, toward the time the women went out to draw water.12And he said, “O Yahweh, God of my master Abraham, please grant me success today and show loyal love to my master Abraham. 13Behold, I am standing by the spring of water, and the daughters of the men of the city are going out to draw water. 14And let it be that the girl to whom I shall say, ‘Please, offer your jar that I may drink’ and who says, ‘Drink—and I will also water your camels,’ she is the one you have chosen for your servant, for Isaac. By her I will know that you have shown loyal love to my master.” 15And it happened that before he had finished speaking, behold, Rebekah—who was born to Bethuel, son of Milcah, the wife of Nahor, the brother of Abraham—came out, and her jar was on her shoulder. 16Now the girl was very pleasing in appearance. She was a virgin; no man had known her. And she went down to the spring, filled her jar, and came up. 17And the servant ran to meet her. And he said, “Please, let me drink a little of the water from your jar.” 18And she said, “Drink, my lord.” And she quickly lowered her jar in her hand and gave him a drink. 19When#Or “And” she finished giving him a drink she said, “I will also draw water for your camels until they finish drinking.” 20And she quickly emptied her jar into the trough and ran again to the well to draw water. And she drew water for all his camels. 21And the man was gazing at her silently to know if Yahweh had made his journey successful or not. 22And it happened that as the camels finished drinking the man took a gold ring of a half shekel in weight and two bracelets for her arms, ten shekels in weight, 23and said, “Please tell me, whose daughter are you? Is there a place at the house of your father for us to spend the night?” 24And she said to him, “I am the daughter of Bethuel, son of Milcah, whom she bore to Nahor.” 25Then she said to him, “We have both straw and fodder in abundance, as well as a place to spend the night.” 26And the man knelt down and worshiped Yahweh. 27And he said, “Blessed be Yahweh, God of my master Abraham, who has not withheld#Or “abandoned” his loyal love and his faithfulness from my master. I was on the way and Yahweh led me to the house of my master’s brother.” 28Then the girl ran and reported these things to the household of her mother.
29Now Rebekah had a brother, and his name was Laban. And Laban ran out to the man toward the spring. 30And when he saw the ring and the bracelets on the arms of his sister and heard the words of Rebekah his sister, who said, “Thus the man spoke to me,” he went to the man. And behold, he was standing with the camels at the spring. 31And he said, “Come, O blessed one of Yahweh. Why do you stand outside? Now I have prepared the house and a place for the camels.” 32And the man came to the house and unloaded the camels. And he gave straw and fodder to the camels, and water to wash his feet and the feet of the men who were with him. 33And food was placed before him#Literally “And it was placed before him” to eat. And he said, “I will not eat until I have told my errand.”#Literally “I have spoken my word” And he said, “Speak.” 34And he said, “I am the servant of Abraham. 35Now Yahweh has blessed my master exceedingly, and he has become great. He has given to him sheep and cattle, silver and gold, male slaves and female slaves, and camels and donkeys. 36And Sarah, the wife of my master, has borne a son to my master after her old age. And he#That is, Abraham has given to him all that he has. 37And my master made me swear, saying, ‘Do not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites in whose land I am living. 38But you shall go to the house of my father, and to my family, and you shall take a wife for my son.’ 39And I said to my master, ‘Perhaps the woman will not follow#Literally “go after” me.’ 40And he said to me, ‘Yahweh, before whom I have walked, shall send his angel with you and will make your journey successful. And you shall take a wife for my son from my family, and from the house of my father. 41Then you shall be released from my oath, when you come to my family. And if they will not give a woman to you, then you will be released from my oath.’ 42Then today I came to the spring, and I said, ‘O Yahweh, God of my master Abraham, if you would please make my journey successful,#Literally “if there is you making successful my journey” upon which I am going. 43Behold, I am standing by the spring of water. Let it be that the young woman who comes out to draw water and to whom I say, “Please give me a little water to drink from your jar,” 44let her say to me, “Drink; I will also draw water for your camels,” she is the woman whom Yahweh has appointed for the son of my master.’ 45I had not yet finished speaking to myself#Or “to my heart” when, behold, Rebekah was coming out with#Or “and” her jar on her shoulder. And she went down to the spring and drew water. And I said to her, ‘Please give me a drink.’ 46And she hastened and let down her jar from her shoulder#Literally “from upon her” and said, ‘Drink, and I will give a drink to your camels also.’ Then I drank and she gave a drink to the camels also. 47Then I asked her and said, ‘Whose daughter are you?’ And she said, ‘The daughter of Bethuel, son of Nahor, whom Milcah bore to him.’ And I put the ring on her nose and the bracelets on her arms. 48And I knelt down and worshiped Yahweh, and I praised Yahweh, the God of my master Abraham, who led me on the right way, to take the daughter of the brother of my master for his son. 49So now, if you are going to deal loyally and truly#Literally “if there is you doing loyal love and faithfulness” with my master, tell me. And if not, tell me, so that I may turn to the right or to the left.”#An idiom for “so that I might know what to do” 50Then Laban and Bethuel answered, and they said, “The matter has gone out from Yahweh; we are not able to speak bad or good to you. 51Here is Rebekah before you. Take her and go; let her be a wife for the son of your master as Yahweh has spoken.” 52And it happened that when the servant of Abraham heard their words he bowed down to the ground to Yahweh. 53And the servant brought out silver jewelry and gold jewelry, and garments, and he gave them to Rebekah. And he gave precious gifts to her brother and to her mother. 54And he and the men who were with him ate and drank, and they spent the night. And they got up in the morning, and he said, “Let me go to my master.” 55And her brother and her mother said, “Let the girl remain with us ten days or so; after that she may go.” 56And he said to them, “Do not delay me. Now, Yahweh has made my journey successful. Let me go. I must go to my master.” 57And they said, “Let us call the girl and ask her opinion.”#Literally “her mouth” 58And they called Rebekah and said to her, “Will you go with this man?” And she said, “I will go.” 59So they sent away Rebekah their sister, and her nurse, and the servant of Abraham and his men. 60And they blessed Rebekah and said to her, “You are our sister; may you become countless thousands; and may your offspring take possession of the gate of his enemies.” 61And Rebekah and her maidservants arose, and they mounted the camels and followed#Literally “went after” the man. And the servant took Rebekah and left.
62Now Isaac was coming from the direction of Beer-Lahai-Roi. And he was living in the land of the Negev. 63And Isaac went out to meditate in the field early in the evening,#Literally “at the turning of evening” and he lifted up his eyes and saw—behold, camels were coming. 64And Rebekah lifted up her eyes and saw Isaac. And she got down from the camel. 65And she said to the servant, “Who is this man walking around in the field to meet us?” And the servant said, “That is my master.” And she took her#Or “the” veil and covered herself. 66And the servant told Isaac all the things that he had done. 67And Isaac brought her to the tent of Sarah his mother. And he took Rebekah, and she became his wife. And Isaac loved her and was comforted after the death of his mother.