Genesis 25 vs. 27-34 with Betty

 27 And the boys grew: and Esau was a cunning hunter, a man of the field; and Jacob was a plain man, dwelling in tents.

28 And Isaac loved Esau, because he did eat of his venison: but Rebekah loved Jacob.

29 And Jacob sod pottage: and Esau came from the field, and he was faint:

30 And Esau said to Jacob, Feed me, I pray thee, with that same red pottage; for I am faint: therefore was his name called Edom.

31 And Jacob said, Sell me this day thy birthright.

32 And Esau said, Behold, I am at the point to die: and what profit shall this birthright do to me?

33 And Jacob said, Swear to me this day; and he sware unto him: and he sold his birthright unto Jacob.

34 Then Jacob gave Esau bread and pottage of lentiles; and he did eat and drink, and rose up, and went his way: thus Esau despised his birthright.

K.J.V. Bible Text

My Thoughts:

My thoughts here are several.  First I think Esau was very foolish to stay away in the back country so long that he was nearly starving when he returned.  Jacob, who demanded the birthright in return for a bowl of stew, seems to be a very cunning individual.  What went on between those brothers that would cause Jacob to wish to strip his brother of the rights of being firstborn as payment for a simple bowl of stew? And why did Esau sell his birthright for so little?  I understand that he felt he was starving, but surely he was not so close to death that he had to give in to his brother on this extreme demand.  Was there nowhere else he could find food?

In the end I have to accept that I was not there and for whatever reason, this is what Esau did.  Without reading any further however, I can guess that Esau will someday come to rue his decision.

Betty Killebrew

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Genesis 25 vs. 19-26 with Betty

Jacob and Esau

19 And these are the generations of Isaac, Abraham’s son: Abraham begat Isaac:

20 And Isaac was forty years old when he took Rebekah to wife, the daughter of Bethuel the Syrian of Padanaram, the sister to Laban the Syrian.

21 And Isaac intreated the Lord for his wife, because she was barren: and the Lord was intreated of him, and Rebekah his wife conceived.

22 And the children struggled together within her; and she said, If it be so, why am I thus? And she went to enquire of the Lord.

23 And the Lord said unto her, Two nations are in thy womb, and two manner of people shall be separated from thy bowels; and the one people shall be stronger than the other people; and the elder shall serve the younger.

24 And when her days to be delivered were fulfilled, behold, there were twins in her womb.

25 And the first came out red, all over like an hairy garment; and they called his name Esau.

26 And after that came his brother out, and his hand took hold on Esau’s heel; and his name was called Jacob: and Isaac was threescore years old when she bare them.

K.J.V. Bible Text

My Thoughts:

Today’s reading begins the story of the children of Isaac, Abraham’s son by his wife Sarah, and Rebekah, the wife Abraham’s servant brought to Isaac from Abraham’s native country.

I learned here that Isaac was forty years old when he married Rebekah and I was surprised.  When Abraham sent his servant to find a wife for Isaac, somehow I just assumed that he was a man, only recently grown.  I pictured him in my mind as being about twenty.  Here I learn that he must have already been a mature man.

Apparently, Rebekah went childless for twenty years because it says in this reading that Isaac prayed for her to become pregnant. His prayer was answered but he was then 60 years old—20 years after their marriage.

Rebekah felt jostling within her.  When she inquired of the Lord, he told her there were two nations in her womb that would be separated and that the older would serve the younger.

Just as the lord had said, Rebekah gave birth to twins; the first Esau was hairy all over.  His brother Jacob came out with his hand grasping Esau’s heel.

I have peeked ahead.  We will be reading more about these twin brothers tomorrow.

Betty Killebrew

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Genesis 25 vs. 12-18 with Betty

Ishmael’s Sons

 12 Now these are the generations of Ishmael, Abraham’s son, whom Hagar the Egyptian, Sarah’s handmaid, bare unto Abraham:

13 And these are the names of the sons of Ishmael, by their names, according to their generations: the firstborn of Ishmael, Nebajoth; and Kedar, and Adbeel, and Mibsam,

14 And Mishma, and Dumah, and Massa,

15 Hadar, and Tema, Jetur, Naphish, and Kedemah:

16 These are the sons of Ishmael, and these are their names, by their towns, and by their castles; twelve princes according to their nations.

17 And these are the years of the life of Ishmael, an hundred and thirty and seven years: and he gave up the ghost and died; and was gathered unto his people.

18 And they dwelt from Havilah unto Shur, that is before Egypt, as thou goest toward Assyria: and he died in the presence of all his brethren.

My Thoughts:

I read only a short amount for today’s reading because there are natural breaks in the scripture that I try to observe. In the part of Genesis Chapter 25 that I read today, there is an account of the family line of Ishmael, Abraham’s son by Hagar the Egyptian handmaid.

Ishmael had a dozen sons who all became tribal rulers.  Those rulers and their decendants settled near the eastern border of Egypt and according to a more modern bible translation “lived in hostility toward all the tribes related to them.”

You may recall that even before Ishmael was born it was prophesied to Hagar that he would lead a hostile life.  This apparently carried on through generations as Ishmael’s descendants increased in number.

Betty Killebrew

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Genesis 25 vs. 1-11 with Betty

The Death of Abraham

1Then again Abraham took a wife, and her name was Keturah.

2 And she bare him Zimran, and Jokshan, and Medan, and Midian, and Ishbak, and Shuah.

3 And Jokshan begat Sheba, and Dedan. And the sons of Dedan were Asshurim, and Letushim, and Leummim.

4 And the sons of Midian; Ephah, and Epher, and Hanoch, and Abidah, and Eldaah. All these were the children of Keturah.

5 And Abraham gave all that he had unto Isaac.

6 But unto the sons of the concubines, which Abraham had, Abraham gave gifts, and sent them away from Isaac his son, while he yet lived, eastward, unto the east country.

7 And these are the days of the years of Abraham’s life which he lived, an hundred threescore and fifteen years.

8 Then Abraham gave up the ghost, and died in a good old age, an old man, and full of years; and was gathered to his people.

9 And his sons Isaac and Ishmael buried him in the cave of Machpelah, in the field of Ephron the son of Zohar the Hittite, which is before Mamre;

10 The field which Abraham purchased of the sons of Heth: there was Abraham buried, and Sarah his wife.

11 And it came to pass after the death of Abraham, that God blessed his son Isaac; and Isaac dwelt by the well Lahairoi.

K.J.V.Bible Text

My Thoughts:

After Sarah’s death, Abraham took another wife, Keturah.  The scripture here mentions that Keturah bore six children for Abraham and tells something about the descendants of the children she bore.

It is interesting to me that although Abraham left everything he owned to Isaac upon his death, while he was still living he gave gifts to the sons of his concubines and sent them to the east away from his son Isaac.

In those times, I’m sure it was customary for the eldest to inherit all that belonged to the father, and more particularly, children born of a wife would be assured of an inheritance while the children of the concubines would not.  It seems that Abraham was very fair in giving gifts to the children who would not inherit and in sending them away so that there would be no conflict between them and Isaac after his death.

Abraham died after living a hundred and seventy-five years.  He was buried by his two sons, Isaac and Ishmael, in a cave in the field Abraham had purchased from the Hittites.  They buried him alongside Sarah for whom Abraham had purchased the burial place.

I am pleased by the implication that Ishmael, son of the handmaid, and Isaac, Sarah’s son were apparently both involved in the burial of their father even though there had been contention between the two mothers and two sons in the past.

Betty Killebrew

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Genesis 24, vs. 62-67 with Betty

 62 And Isaac came from the way of the well Lahairoi; for he dwelt in the south country.

63 And Isaac went out to meditate in the field at the eventide: and he lifted up his eyes, and saw, and, behold, the camels were coming.

64 And Rebekah lifted up her eyes, and when she saw Isaac, she lighted off the camel.

65 For she had said unto the servant, What man is this that walketh in the field to meet us? And the servant had said, It is my master: therefore she took a vail, and covered herself.

66 And the servant told Isaac all things that he had done.

67 And Isaac brought her into his mother Sarah’s tent, and took Rebekah, and she became his wife; and he loved her: and Isaac was comforted after his mother’s death.

K.J.V. Bible Text

My Thoughts:

Today’s reading is short because I wanted to separate the beginning of Rebekah’s journey with Abraham’s servant (which we read about yesterday)  from this portion of the story which is about her arrival.

One evening Isaac looked up and saw camels approaching.  Rebekah also looked up and saw Isaac and then alighted from her camel.  Learning who Isaac was from the servant, she covered herself with her veil.

When Abraham’s servant told Isaac what he had done to procure him a wife, Isaac brought her into his mother’s tent and married her.

It must have been love at first sight.

The scripture says that he loved Rebekah and was comforted after his mother’s death.

It is particularly pleasing to read this, knowing that the marriage was done under the direction of the Lord.  When I think about it, I think that in reality there was no chance that something done with the blessing of the Lord  would turn out any differently.

Betty Killebrew

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Chapter 24, vs. 52-61 with Betty

 47 And I asked her, and said, Whose daughter art thou? And she said, the daughter of Bethuel, Nahor’s son, whom Milcah bare unto him: and I put the earring upon her face, and the bracelets upon her hands.

48 And I bowed down my head, and worshipped the Lord, and blessed the Lord God of my master Abraham, which had led me in the right way to take my master’s brother’s daughter unto his son.

49 And now if ye will deal kindly and truly with my master, tell me: and if not, tell me; that I may turn to the right hand, or to the left.

50 Then Laban and Bethuel answered and said, The thing proceedeth from the Lord: we cannot speak unto thee bad or good.

51 Behold, Rebekah is before thee, take her, and go, and let her be thy master’s son’s wife, as the Lord hath spoken.

52 And it came to pass, that, when Abraham’s servant heard their words, he worshipped the Lord, bowing himself to the earth.

53 And the servant brought forth jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and raiment, and gave them to Rebekah: he gave also to her brother and to her mother precious things.

54 And they did eat and drink, he and the men that were with him, and tarried all night; and they rose up in the morning, and he said, Send me away unto my master.

55 And her brother and her mother said, Let the damsel abide with us a few days, at the least ten; after that she shall go.

56 And he said unto them, Hinder me not, seeing the Lord hath prospered my way; send me away that I may go to my master.

57 And they said, We will call the damsel, and enquire at her mouth.

58 And they called Rebekah, and said unto her, Wilt thou go with this man? And she said, I will go.

59 And they sent away Rebekah their sister, and her nurse, and Abraham’s servant, and his men.

60 And they blessed Rebekah, and said unto her, Thou art our sister, be thou the mother of thousands of millions, and let thy seed possess the gate of those which hate them.

61 And Rebekah arose, and her damsels, and they rode upon the camels, and followed the man: and the servant took Rebekah, and went his way.

K.J.V. Bible Text

My Thoughts:

As soon as Bethuel and Laban agreed to the marriage, Abraham’s servant bowed to the ground to thank the Lord.

He then made rich presents of jewelry and clothing to Rebekah and other costly gifts to her brother and her mother.  Then he and his men ate and drank and spent the night.

The next morning the servant wanted to be gone with Rebekah immediately to return to Abraham. Her family wished her to remain with them ten days before going.  The matter was left to Rebekah and she agreed to go. Her family blessed her and sent her and her nurse with the servant.

How strange it seems in this time that in those days a young woman would be willing to set off for an unknown country to marry a man she had never met and to travel there in the company of a group of strange men. Rebekah must have had great faith that she was following the will of the Lord when she embarked on this great adventure.

Betty Killebrew

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Genesis 24, vs. 47-51 with Betty

47 “I asked her, ‘Whose daughter are you?’

“She said, ‘The daughter of Bethuel son of Nahor, whom Milkah bore to him.’

“Then I put the ring in her nose and the bracelets on her arms, 48 and I bowed down and worshiped the LORD. I praised the LORD, the God of my master Abraham, who had led me on the right road to get the granddaughter of my master’s brother for his son. 49 Now if you will show kindness and faithfulness to my master, tell me; and if not, tell me, so I may know which way to turn.”

50 Laban and Bethuel answered, “This is from the LORD; we can say nothing to you one way or the other. 51 Here is Rebekah; take her and go, and let her become the wife of your master’s son, as the LORD has directed.”

My Thoughts:

In today’s reading,  Abraham’s servant continues his visit with Laban, brother of Rebekah.

Although earlier in the chapter, Rebekah’s relationship to Abraham was described, it is clarified for me here when the scripture says explicitly that Rebekah was the granddaughter of Abraham’s brother.  This close kinship made her a desirable woman to become the wife of Isaac.

The servant asks Laban if he will show faithfulness to Abraham and  allow Rebekah to go to Canaan with him.

Laban, Rebekah’s brother and Bethuel, her father,  acquiesced immediately because the arrangement was according to the Lord’s direction.

It seems to me that it is always much better and simpler for us to follow the Lord’s directives.

Betty Killebrew

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Genesis 24, vs. 32-46 with Betty

 32 And the man came into the house: and he ungirded his camels, and gave straw and provender for the camels, and water to wash his feet, and the men’s feet that were with him.

33 And there was set meat before him to eat: but he said, I will not eat, until I have told mine errand. And he said, Speak on.

34 And he said, I am Abraham’s servant.

35 And the Lord hath blessed my master greatly; and he is become great: and he hath given him flocks, and herds, and silver, and gold, and menservants, and maidservants, and camels, and asses.

36 And Sarah my master’s wife bare a son to my master when she was old: and unto him hath he given all that he hath.

37 And my master made me swear, saying, Thou shalt not take a wife to my son of the daughters of the Canaanites, in whose land I dwell:

38 But thou shalt go unto my father’s house, and to my kindred, and take a wife unto my son.

39 And I said unto my master, Peradventure the woman will not follow me.

40 And he said unto me, The Lord, before whom I walk, will send his angel with thee, and prosper thy way; and thou shalt take a wife for my son of my kindred, and of my father’s house:

41 Then shalt thou be clear from this my oath, when thou comest to my kindred; and if they give not thee one, thou shalt be clear from my oath.

42 And I came this day unto the well, and said, O Lord God of my master Abraham, if now thou do prosper my way which I go:

43 Behold, I stand by the well of water; and it shall come to pass, that when the virgin cometh forth to draw water, and I say to her, Give me, I pray thee, a little water of thy pitcher to drink;

44 And she say to me, Both drink thou, and I will also draw for thy camels: let the same be the woman whom the Lord hath appointed out for my master’s son.

45 And before I had done speaking in mine heart, behold, Rebekah came forth with her pitcher on her shoulder; and she went down unto the well, and drew water: and I said unto her, Let me drink, I pray thee.

46 And she made haste, and let down her pitcher from her shoulder, and said, Drink, and I will give thy camels drink also: so I drank, and she made the camels drink also.

My Thoughts: 

Today’s reading is rather long, but it is very simple.  In this part of Chapter 24 Abraham’s servant tells Laban, Rebekah’s brother,  that Abraham is now a wealthy man with a son borne by Sarah in her old age.  He describes his mission to procure a wife for Abraham’s son from the land of Abraham’s father.

The servant also told Laban about his prayer for assistance in locating the wife and how Rebekah showed up before he had finished the prayer and did all that he had asked the Lord to have the girl do as a sign that she was the one.

It occurs to me that the servant had demonstrated by giving Rebekah gold that his master was a man of means. Laban must have been pleased to be told that Rebekah had been chosen by God himself to be the wife of the son of a wealthy man.

Betty Killebrew

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Genesis 24, vs. 22-31 with Betty

 22 And it came to pass, as the camels had done drinking, that the man took a golden earring of half a shekel weight, and two bracelets for her hands of ten shekels weight of gold;

23 And said, Whose daughter art thou? tell me, I pray thee: is there room in thy father’s house for us to lodge in?

24 And she said unto him, I am the daughter of Bethuel the son of Milcah, which she bare unto Nahor.

25 She said moreover unto him, We have both straw and provender enough, and room to lodge in.

26 And the man bowed down his head, and worshipped the Lord.

27 And he said, 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.

28 And the damsel ran, and told them of her mother’s house these things.

29 And Rebekah had a brother, and his name was Laban: and Laban ran out unto the man, unto the well.

30 And it came to pass, when he saw the earring and bracelets upon his sister’s hands, and when he heard the words of Rebekah his sister, saying, Thus spake the man unto me; that he came unto the man; and, behold, he stood by the camels at the well.

31 And he said, Come in, thou blessed of the Lord; wherefore standest thou without? for I have prepared the house, and room for the camels.

K.J.V. Bible Text

 My Thoughts:

I’m not sure whether the servant paid Rebekah with the gold he gave her or whether it was a present.  Either way, however, the presentation of gold was a certain way to establish himself as a person of some importance.

His request for lodging had a great likelihood of being honored because of the gold he provided, but the servant did not take the success of his mission for granted.

He immediately bowed down and worshipped the Lord, thanking Him for being faithful to his promises to Abraham.

When Rebekah’s brother Laban saw the gold that the servant had given the girl, he went down to the spring and offered him hospitality.

I imagine that the servant  felt very satisfied that he had found a girl who would fit his purpose with so little difficulty.   It is unlikely, however that he realized that all these many years later the event would still provide a lesson to us that obstacles are removed from our way when we go about the work of the Lord.

Betty Killebrew

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Genesis 24 vs. 10-21 with Betty

 10 And the servant took ten camels of the camels of his master, and departed; for all the goods of his master were in his hand: and he arose, and went to Mesopotamia, unto the city of Nahor.

11 And he made his camels to kneel down without the city by a well of water at the time of the evening, even the time that women go out to draw water.

12 And he said O Lord God of my master Abraham, I pray thee, send me good speed this day, and shew kindness unto my master Abraham.

13 Behold, I stand here by the well of water; and the daughters of the men of the city come out to draw water:

14 And let it come to pass, that the damsel to whom I shall say, Let down thy pitcher, I pray thee, that I may drink; and she shall say, Drink, and I will give thy camels drink also: let the same be she that thou hast appointed for thy servant Isaac; and thereby shall I know that thou hast shewed kindness unto my master.

15 And it came to pass, before he had done speaking, that, behold, Rebekah came out, who was born to Bethuel, son of Milcah, the wife of Nahor, Abraham’s brother, with her pitcher upon her shoulder.

16 And the damsel was very fair to look upon, a virgin, neither had any man known her: and she went down to the well, and filled her pitcher, and came up.

17 And the servant ran to meet her, and said, Let me, I pray thee, drink a little water of thy pitcher.

18 And she said, Drink, my lord: and she hasted, and let down her pitcher upon her hand, and gave him drink.

19 And when she had done giving him drink, she said, I will draw water for thy camels also, until they have done drinking.

20 And she hasted, and emptied her pitcher into the trough, and ran again unto the well to draw water, and drew for all his camels.

21 And the man wondering at her held his peace, to wit whether the Lord had made his journey prosperous or not.

K.J.V. Bible Text

My Thoughts:

 After yesterday’s reading, I was thinking what a hard task Abraham had given his trusted servant.  Imagine if someone sent you to a far country to pick out a wife for someone else!  How would you choose the right woman?

The servant must have known that on his own this would be an impossible task because he asked the Lord for help in his task

He asked the Lord to send a girl to the well who would not only agree to draw water for him but would offer to draw water for his camels as well.

Before he had finished praying, Rebekah came out with her jar on her shoulder.

Rebekah was a beautiful virgin and when the servant saw her, he hurried to apply his test.  When Rebekah gave him water and also offered to draw water for his camels, the servant knew she was the woman he was to choose.

Have you ever had an experience where you asked God for help and he answered you immediately?  I know I have many, many times.  Sometimes I pray for something as trivial as help finding lost keys.  At one time, I used to feel guilty about asking God for something so simple.  Then one day I was thinking about the endless, unfathomable eternity of time available to God.  Not only that, God is everywhere at all times.  I now believe that no prayer can be so big God won’t answer it and no prayer can be so small that he will ignore it.

As Abraham trusted God in all things, I too trust him to grant whatever I need.

Betty Killebrew

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