Page images
PDF
EPUB

for before Eliezer had quite finished speaking, God answered him by sending Rebekah to the well to fill her pitcher, and she did exactly as Eliezer had prayed that she might do.

Harry. – Was Rebekah any relation to Abraham, Grandmama, because he told Eliezer to get a wife for Isaac from his kindred, which means relations, does it not?

Grandm.-Yes, Harry, it does, and we shall see that Eliezer was guided to the right person, as we read farther. After she had drawn water both for himself and camels, Eliezer presented her with a golden earring and two bracelets, and said, “Whose daughter art thou? tell me, I pray thee, is there room in thy father's house for us to lodge in ? And she said unto him, I am the daughter of Bethuel the son of Milcah, which she bare unto Nahor.” Gen. xxiv. 24. When Abraham's servant heard that, he was very much pleased, and thanked God for having thus granted his prayer, saying, "Blessed be the Lord God of my master Abraham, who hath not left destitute my master, of his mercy and his truth: I being in the way, the Lord led me to the house of my master's brethren.” (verse 27.) When Rebekah heard this, she ran home and told her friends, and her brother Laban came out to meet Eliezer, and invited him to go to their house, saying, “ Come in

thou blessed of the Lord; wherefore standest thou without ? for I have prepared the house, and room for the camels." Gen. xxiv. 31. Eliezer accepted his offer, and his camels were fed and taken care of, and he and the men that went with him had water given to them to wash their feet, and meat was placed before them, but Eliezer would not eat until he had told them what he came there for. He did not try to make them think much of himself, as we find some people do, but began by telling them that he was Abraham's servant, and that he was sent to them to get a wife for Isaac from among their family. He then told them what his master had made him promise, and how God had answered his own prayer that He would send the woman whom He had appointed for the wife of Isaac, by sending Rebekah to the well, before he had finished speaking; and begged they would at once give him an answer. When Bethuel and Laban had heard this, they said, “the thing proceedeth hom the core cannot permanence w from the Lord; we cannot speak unto thee bad or good. Behold, Rebekah is before thee, take her and go, and let her be thy master's son's wife, as the Lord has spoken." Gen. xxiv. 50,51. · Harry. I should have thought Bethuel and Laban would not have liked to have sent Rebekah away with a stranger, until they had

found out whether what he said was quite true!

Grandm.--If they had not had very strong faith, Harry, they would not, perhaps, but if God had chosen Rebekah to be · Isaac's wife, He would make it clear to their minds that it was true what Eliezer had told them. They would also see by Eliezer's conduct after they had given their consent, that he was true, as we read, (verse 52.) “When Abraham's servant heard their words, he worshipped the Lord, bowing himself to the ground.” Ho then partook of the refreshments offered to him, and spent the night there, but the next morning he begged them to let him return to his master at once. Laban and his mother

wished to keep Rebekah a little longer with · them, but he again urges them to let him go back to his master, and it was left for Rebekah to decide, and she said, “I will go.” (ver. 58.) So they allowed them to go, and sent her nurse, Deborah with her, and they blessed her, saying, “Thou art our sister, be thou the mother of thousands of millions, and let thy seed possess the gate of those which hate thee.” (Gen. xxiv. 60.)

Harry. But Rebekah had only two sons, Grandmama, and how was she to be the mother of so many ?

Grandm.-They did not mean that she was to have them, but that her descendants would be so numerous; and you must remember that God's promise to Abraham was to be fulfilled through Isaac, who was the child of promise. So Rebekah went away with Eliezer, riding on a camel. Isaac it appears had gone out into the fields to meditate, or as the margin expresses it, “to pray,” and when he looked up, he saw the camels coming towards him, and went to meet them. And when Rebekah was told that it was Isaac whom she saw, she got down from the camel and covered herself with her veil. Isaac then took her to her mother's tent, and she became his wife, and comforted him for the loss of his mother. Isaac was married to Rebekah twenty years before she had any children, but then the Lord answered · Isaac's prayers, and she had twins, Do you remember what their names were, Harry ?

Harry.--Yes, Grandmama, Esau and Jacob; Esáu means red, and he is also called Edom. Jacob signifies “the supplanter."

Grandm.--Very well, my dear, we are told that Esau was a “cunning hunter, a man of the field; and Jacob was a plain man dwelling in tents.” (Gen. xxv. 27. These two sons gave their parents much anxiety from their not having brought them up well, and besides that, from Isaac loving Esau best, while Re

bekah loved Jacob. Parents perhaps may find it difficult to love all their children exactly alike, and of course if some are more obedient and amiable than others, it is natural that they should be more loved, but at the same time, it is very wrong for any parents to have what are called “favorites," and therefore to treat them with greater kindness than the rest, and it is frequently the cause of much unhappiness both to the children and themselves. But to return to our history ;-we read that “Isaac loved Esau because he did eat of his venison:” (Gen. xxv. 28.) which was a reason we should scarcely have expected to have heard of Isaac, who was a good man.

One day when Esau had been out hunting, he returned very tired and hungry, and seeing his brother Jacob preparing some pottage for himself, he asked him to give him some of it, saying, “Feed me, I pray thee, with that same red pottage, for I am faint.” Gen. xxv. 30. We should have supposed that his brother would most readily have given it to him, but we find Jacob making a bargain with him first. “ Jacob said, sell me thy birthright.” “ And Esau said, I am at the point to die, and what profit shall this birthright do to me?” (verses 31, 32.) And Jacob made him swear it to him. Both brothers were much to blame in

« PreviousContinue »