Tucked away in between Isaac’s sacrifice and Sarah’s death is a short insertion that word reached Abraham that Milcah, wife of Abraham’s brother Nahor had borne children. Bethuel, one of Milcah’s sons, had a daughter named Rebekah. This passage foreshadows what it is to come in the days ahead.
After Sarah’s death, Abraham decided it was time to find a wife for Isaac. He called in his most trusted servant and gave him explicit instructions on how to find the right wife for Isaac.
“Put your hand under my thigh, that I may make you swear by the LORD, the God of heaven and God of the earth, that you will not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, among whom I dwell, but will go to my country and to my kindred, and take a wife for my son Isaac.” (Genesis 24:2-4 ESV)
The servant asked if he should bring Isaac to the home country if the woman wouldn’t come with him, but Abraham did not want Isaac to leave Canaan. This was the land God had promised to them. Isaac needed to remain in the promised land.
Abraham assured his servant that God would go before him and make sure that he found the right wife for Isaac. He also let him know that if the woman wouldn’t go with him, then to come back without her, but under no circumstances should Isaac go back to the old country.
The servant vowed to follow Abraham’s wishes and headed to the land where Nahor’s family dwelt.
Rebekah had no idea that any of this was going on. Minding her own business at home, she had no way of knowing that God was in the process of matching her with Isaac, the promised son of Abraham.
Rebekah, Daughter of Bethuel in the Bible: Genesis 22:20-24
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