“For Your Camels Also”

On July 9, Pastor Jim preaches on Genesis 24:10-14.

I’ve always liked this story. It’s about the arranged marriage of Isaac, son of Abraham and Sarah, to Rebekah, daughter of Bethuel. We are not told the name of Rebekah’s mother, though we are told of her friend and “nurse” Deborah.

Now that I have grown children, arranged marriage makes more and more sense though my kids have yet to request my services. Think about it, wouldn’t you like to choose your child’s mate?

Anyway, Abraham is too old for matchmaking so he entrusts the job to his head servant, who leaves Canaan and travels north into modern day Turkey. It’s a tall order for the servant. He must convince an unknown young woman to leave her life behind, travel hundreds of miles to marry, sight unseen, some guy named Isaac, never to return. His master is counting on him. Isaac is counting on him. He loads 10 camels with gold and silver and clothing to sweeten the deal and heads out, eventually stopping at a well, the ancient world’s answer to “Match.com.”

Following that old custom of “When all else fails, pray,” the servant asks God for help. Oddly he even gives God some help. “O Lord, God of my maters Abraham…I am standing here by the spring of water, and the daughters of the townspeople are coming out to draw water. Let the girl whom I shall say, ‘Please offer your jar that I may drink.” and who shall say, ‘Drink, and I will water your camels’  let her be the one…”

The servant pulled himself from his prayer, took a deep breath and walked over to a beautiful young woman with a jar on her shoulder. He asked her for a drink. Guess what she said?

A thirsty camel can drink 20 gallons of water. The servant had 10 camels. Wow.