Genesis 24 Commentary

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Genesis 24:1-5

Abraham has grown old, but his son is not married and has no children of his own. Abraham commands his servant to swear that he will not find a Canaanite wife for Isaac, but rather will go to Haran and find a wife from Abraham’s family there. The servant doubts if this is possible.

Genesis 24:6-9

Abraham tells his servant that Isaac must not go to Mesopotamia where his family lives. Rather, the LORD will guide the servant and lead him to the wife chosen for Isaac. But if no woman is willing to marry Isaac, the servant will not be accountable for refusal.

Genesis 24:10-15

Abraham’s servant loads ten camels with costly gifts and journeys to the city of Haran in Mesopotamia. At the well there, the servant prays for a sign from God. He asks that a woman would give him water and water his camels, and that this would confirm that she was the wife for Isaac.

Genesis 24:16-19

Rebekah comes to the well and fills her jar with water. The servant asks for a drink, and she gives him one, and then offers to water his camels, fulfilling the sign the servant had prayed for.

Genesis 24:20-27

After Rebekah waters the camels, Abraham’s servant asks her who she is. She tells him she is the daughter of Bethuel, the son of Milcah and Nahor. Nahor was Abraham’s brother. The servant praises God for guiding him to Rebekah. He gives her golden presents and asks for lodging.

Genesis 24:28-31

Rebekah tells her family about the stranger and shows the golden jewelry he gifted her. Her brother Laban goes to the servant and welcomes him into their house.

Genesis 24:32-41

At dinner, Abraham’s servant explains his reason for coming to Haran. He tells Rebekah and her family of Abraham’s wealth, that he has been blessed by God. He reveals that he journeyed to Haran to find a wife for Abraham’s son.

Genesis 24:42-49

The servant recaps what happened at the well. He prayed for a sign from God revealing the woman whom Isaac should marry. Rebekah appeared and gave him a drink, then watered the ten camels of Abraham. So, the servant asks if her family will consent to the marriage of Rebekah and Isaac.

Genesis 24:50-54

Laban says that God has ordained these events and that Rebekah should marry Isaac. Abraham’s servant praises God and gives gifts to the family. In the morning he requests they return to Canaan.

Genesis 24:55-61

Laban and his mother ask the servant to let Rebekah stay in Haran for another ten days before leaving, but the servant does not want to delay. They ask Rebekah what she wants, and she decides to leave that very day. Her family gives her a blessing.

Genesis 24:62-67

Isaac is in the southern desert of Canaan. He sees the ten camels returning. Rebekah sees him from a distance and asks who he is. The servant tells her. Isaac goes to greet them, hearing the full story from the servant. He and Rebekah are married, and he is comforted after his mother Sarah’s death.