God is Setting All Things Right. So I am Blogging Through the Bible in a Year.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

January 19 - Genesis 22-24: Abraham Finds a Mate for Isaac

Today’s Reading: Genesis 22-24

The Message 

English Standard Version

Thought to Guide Your Reading

Trust in God plays a major role in today’s reading.

Summary in 100 Words or Less

God commanded Abraham to offer a sacrifice—Isaac. Abraham arose and went. As Abraham started to kill his son, an angel came, "You have proven your true allegiances! Don’t touch him!"
Sarah died. Abraham bought the cave Machpelah for her body. Isaac and Abraham grieved.
Abraham wanted a God-fearing woman for his son. He tasked his servant to find a wife from Abraham’s relatives. The servant trusted God to help him and found Abraham's grandniece, Rebekah. She and her family served God. They rejoiced when they learned his task. After 10 days, they returned to Abraham. Rebekah' companionship comforted Isaac.

How Today’s Reading Contributes to the Gospel: God is Setting All Things Right

Abraham’s test is to see if his allegiances have changed from God to Isaac.

Many people do not understand why God would want to test Abraham in this way. If God would never think of requiring child sacrifice and gave harsh penalties if someone sacrificed their child (Jeremiah 7:31; Leviticus 20:1-5) why would God command a child sacrifice? Because he wanted to test Abraham's faith that he could become a great nation through God alone. Our allegiance must be to God, even over our family. That may seem simple when God comes to us and asks us to leave our older-than-us family (especially if we do not have a great relationship with them). But it becomes a much harder choice when the sacrifice is your own child (or grandchild). That is why God tested Abraham. When Abraham passed the test God stopped him. He proved himself faithful over all. Could we do a similar act?

Abraham wanted a God-fearing woman for Isaac.

Abraham knew the importance of a woman dedicated to God for his son's mate. He had to plead that God wouldn't destroy the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah because of their unrighteousness. He did not want this to happen to his great nation! To help it start correctly, he asked to have a wife found among the people he knew obeyed God—his family. A great way to start a great nation of disciples is to marry someone who is also a disciple of God. But remember—this was before the Law of Moses. Abraham did not want a ritual follower for his son. He wanted a disciple of God for his son.

Abraham's servant asked God to lead him to the right woman.

This continues the (positive) theme of Genesis: when people trust God to lead their lives, good things happen. The servant asked God to show the right woman who would be a servant. And God did.

Rebekah was chosen because she kind to a stranger, not because she belonged to the right religion.

Rebekah gave some of her water to Abraham's servant. She also, on her own, gave water to his camels. If you know anything about camels, you know they drink water in fits and spurts. They drink gallons all at once and then do not drink for hours or days. She would have to work a long time to give water to ten camels that weren't hers. Her righteousness went beyond the ritual. Men, regardless of religion, godly women serve and serving women are godly. Women, regardless of religion, godly men serve and serving men are godly.

What did you see reading this passage? Questions? Comments? Leave a comment in the section below or on the Sonoma Mountain Parkway Church of Christ Facebook page.

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