We all need Vitamin G. Genesis 24 has a nice dose of Vitamin G (God) for us, as we see Abraham’s unnamed servant find a wife for Abraham’s son, Isaac. Let’s look for factors which will help us get more Vitamin G. Students of How to Know God’s Will have received Vitamin G from this chapter.1
- A Compelling Issue The formula presented by this text for determining the will of God will probably not work for deciding what to wear today or what to order for lunch. Our text has a compelling issue. God had promised that through Isaac the nations would be blessed, and to make that happen, he needed a wife, so there was a compelling issue.
- The Right Person to find the right woman. One does not entrust such a task to an irresponsible person. Whoever takes on this mission has to be smart. Able to think on his feet. Perceptive. Poised. Able to handle whatever scenario may come up.
This unnamed servant was a high caliber man before he was selected for this errand. He was “in charge of all Abraham had” (Genesis 24:2). One savvy man. As an example of his forethought, He came up with a “what if.” What if she will not come back with me (24:5)? Then he thought of a potential solution – “Shall I take your son back to your former people and nation” (verse 6)?
- Clear Direction from God is seen through the strong, clear words of Abraham: “Make sure that you do not take my son back there” (verse 6). This was repeated in verse 8. Clear direction.
Abraham believed God would (1) provide the right wife so he (2) told the servant, “You are released from this oath if the woman will not return with you” (this was a “what if” Abraham thought of – he is thinking too).
Evangelical Christians believe the Living God will guide them. God has ways. Marilyn and I recall looking to the Lord about moving from greater Detroit to Seattle in 1987. We began to see from Seattle many places, the name of the city written large on a truck for example. Newspapers carried articles about Seattle. The Seattle Supersonics basketball team were in the playoffs that year. Friends and people we hardly knew mentioned Seattle in conversations. Seattle was blinking at us like a neon sign. God has ways to direct His children. God’s servants can count on Vitamin G.
- Specific Prayer As the unnamed servant’s entourage arrived in the home town of Abraham’s relatives, he prayed a very specific prayer: “I will say such-and-such, if whoever I ask is the right one, she will speak of her willingness to water the camels (verse 14).
- I, Being in the Way After Rebekah – who was the right one – offered to host the unnamed servant and his entourage, the servant was convinced he had found the right woman (and on the first try). He prayed (Do we always pray?). And then the King James beautifully states a spiritual reality: “I being in the way, the Lord led me.” Ah, yes, that important matter of being “in the way,” meaning doing today what I should do today; having the attitudes I should have today. (See also Genesis 24:40).
- Decisive Rebekah Here was a unknown man asking Rebekah to leave her home – the known, the comfortable, the familiar – and go to a different country to marry a man she had never met. Whoa! She must have been in tune with the Lord. She was up for an adventure. Once consulted (it has always struck me as odd that she was only consulted after the decision had pretty much been made; verse 50 & 51), she agreed to go (verse 58).
Many marriages are arranged today. In Asia, parents often do this, and the divorce rate is lower there than in America.
- Single Focus After all agreed that Rebekah should return with the unnamed servant, her parents and her brother Laban appealed to him for ten days before letting her go. With plenty of Vitamin G fueling his response — the servant having thought about this – was eager to go.
All of this added up to a marvelous experience of Vitamin G.
- Bible students have long seen the unnamed servant as representing the Holy Spirit — going into a far country to get a bride (the church universal) for the Master’s Son (Jesus Christ). But that study is not the subject of this article.