1 Abraham was old, and well advanced in age. The LORD had blessed Abraham in all things. 2Abraham said to his servant, the elder of his house, who ruled over all that he had, “Please put your hand under my thigh. 3I will make you swear by the LORD, the God of heaven and the God of the earth, that you shall not take a wife for my son of the daughters of the Canaanites, among whom I live. 4But you shall go to my country, and to my relatives, and take a wife for my son Isaac.”
5 The servant said to him, “What if the woman isn’t willing to follow me to this land? Must I bring your son again to the land you came from?”
6 Abraham said to him, “Beware that you don’t bring my son there again. 7The LORD, the God of heaven—who took me from my father’s house, and from the land of my birth, who spoke to me, and who swore to me, saying, ‘I will give this land to your offspring—he will send his angel before you, and you shall take a wife for my son from there. 8If the woman isn’t willing to follow you, then you shall be clear from this oath to me. Only you shall not bring my son there again.”
9 The servant put his hand under the thigh of Abraham his master, and swore to him concerning this matter. 10The servant took ten of his master’s camels, and departed, having a variety of good things of his master’s with him. He arose, and went to Mesopotamia, to the city of Nahor. 11He made the camels kneel down outside the city by the well of water at the time of evening, the time that women go out to draw water. 12He said, “LORD, the God of my master Abraham, please give me success today, and show kindness to my master Abraham. 13Behold, I am standing by the spring of water. The daughters of the men of the city are coming out to draw water. 14Let it happen, that the young lady to whom I will say, ‘Please let down your pitcher, that I may drink,’ then she says, ‘Drink, and I will also give your camels a drink,’—let her be the one you have appointed for your servant Isaac. By this I will know that you have shown kindness to my master.”
15 Before he had finished speaking, behold, Rebekah came out, who was born to Bethuel the son of Milcah, the wife of Nahor, Abraham’s brother, with her pitcher on her shoulder. 16The young lady was very beautiful to look at, a virgin. No man had known her. She went down to the spring, filled her pitcher, and came up. 17The servant ran to meet her, and said, “Please give me a drink, a little water from your pitcher.”
18 She said, “Drink, my lord.” She hurried, and let down her pitcher on her hand, and gave him a drink. 19When she had finished giving him a drink, she said, “I will also draw for your camels, until they have finished drinking.” 20She hurried, and emptied her pitcher into the trough, and ran again to the well to draw, and drew for all his camels.
21 The man looked steadfastly at her, remaining silent, to know whether the LORD had made his journey prosperous or not. 22As the camels had done drinking, the man took a golden ring of half a shekel#24:22 A shekel is about 10 grams or about 0.35 ounces. weight, and two bracelets for her hands of ten shekels weight of gold, 23and said, “Whose daughter are you? Please tell me. Is there room in your father’s house for us to stay?”
24 She said to him, “I am the daughter of Bethuel the son of Milcah, whom she bore to Nahor.” 25She said moreover to him, “We have both straw and feed enough, and room to lodge in.”
26 The man bowed his head, and worshiped the LORD. 27He said, “Blessed be the LORD, the God of my master Abraham, who has not forsaken his loving kindness and his truth toward my master. As for me, the LORD has led me on the way to the house of my master’s relatives.”
28 The young lady ran, and told her mother’s house about these words. 29Rebekah had a brother, and his name was Laban. Laban ran out to the man, to the spring. 30When he saw the ring, and the bracelets on his sister’s hands, and when he heard the words of Rebekah his sister, saying, “This is what the man said to me,” he came to the man. Behold, he was standing by the camels at the spring. 31He said, “Come in, you blessed of the LORD. Why do you stand outside? For I have prepared the house, and room for the camels.”
32 The man came into the house, and he unloaded the camels. He gave straw and feed for the camels, and water to wash his feet and the feet of the men who were with him. 33Food was set before him to eat, but he said, “I will not eat until I have told my message.”
Laban said, “Speak on.”
34 He said, “I am Abraham’s servant. 35The LORD has blessed my master greatly. He has become great. The LORD has given him flocks and herds, silver and gold, male servants and female servants, and camels and donkeys. 36Sarah, my master’s wife, bore a son to my master when she was old. He has given all that he has to him. 37My master made me swear, saying, ‘You shall not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, in whose land I live, 38but you shall go to my father’s house, and to my relatives, and take a wife for my son.’ 39I asked my master, ‘What if the woman will not follow me?’ 40He said to me, ‘The LORD, before whom I walk, will send his angel with you, and prosper your way. You shall take a wife for my son from my relatives, and of my father’s house. 41Then you will be clear from my oath, when you come to my relatives. If they don’t give her to you, you shall be clear from my oath.’ 42I came today to the spring, and said, ‘The LORD, the God of my master Abraham, if now you do prosper my way which I go— 43behold, I am standing by this spring of water. Let it happen, that the maiden who comes out to draw, to whom I will say, “Please give me a little water from your pitcher to drink,” 44then she tells me, “Drink, and I will also draw for your camels,”—let her be the woman whom the LORD has appointed for my master’s son.’ 45Before I had finished speaking in my heart, behold, Rebekah came out with her pitcher on her shoulder. She went down to the spring, and drew. I said to her, ‘Please let me drink.’ 46She hurried and let down her pitcher from her shoulder, and said, ‘Drink, and I will also give your camels a drink.’ So I drank, and she also gave the camels a drink. 47I asked her, and said, ‘Whose daughter are you?’ She said, ‘The daughter of Bethuel, Nahor’s son, whom Milcah bore to him.’ I put the ring on her nose, and the bracelets on her hands. 48I bowed my head, and worshiped the LORD, and blessed the LORD, the God of my master Abraham, who had led me in the right way to take my master’s brother’s daughter for his son. 49Now if you will deal kindly and truly with my master, tell me. If not, tell me, that I may turn to the right hand, or to the left.”
50 Then Laban and Bethuel answered, “The thing proceeds from the LORD. We can’t speak to you bad or good. 51Behold, Rebekah is before you. Take her, and go, and let her be your master’s son’s wife, as the LORD has spoken.”
52 When Abraham’s servant heard their words, he bowed himself down to the earth to the LORD. 53The servant brought out jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and clothing, and gave them to Rebekah. He also gave precious things to her brother and her mother. 54They ate and drank, he and the men who were with him, and stayed all night. They rose up in the morning, and he said, “Send me away to my master.”
55 Her brother and her mother said, “Let the young lady stay with us a few days, at least ten. After that she will go.”
56 He said to them, “Don’t hinder me, since the LORD has prospered my way. Send me away that I may go to my master.”
57 They said, “We will call the young lady, and ask her.” 58They called Rebekah, and said to her, “Will you go with this man?”
She said, “I will go.”
59 They sent away Rebekah, their sister, with her nurse, Abraham’s servant, and his men. 60They blessed Rebekah, and said to her, “Our sister, may you be the mother of thousands of ten thousands, and let your offspring possess the gate of those who hate them.”
61 Rebekah arose with her ladies. They rode on the camels, and followed the man. The servant took Rebekah, and went his way. 62Isaac came from the way of Beer Lahai Roi, for he lived in the land of the South. 63Isaac went out to meditate in the field at the evening. He lifted up his eyes and looked. Behold, there were camels coming. 64Rebekah lifted up her eyes, and when she saw Isaac, she got off the camel. 65She said to the servant, “Who is the man who is walking in the field to meet us?”
The servant said, “It is my master.”
She took her veil, and covered herself. 66The servant told Isaac all the things that he had done. 67Isaac brought her into his mother Sarah’s tent, and took Rebekah, and she became his wife. He loved her. So Isaac was comforted after his mother’s death.
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A Wife for Isaac
1Abraham was now very old, and the Lord had blessed him in every way. 2Abraham said to his oldest servant, who was in charge of everything he owned, “Put your hand under my leg. 3Make a promise to me before the Lord, the God of heaven and earth. Don’t get a wife for my son from the Canaanite girls who live around here. 4Instead, go back to my country, to the land of my relatives, and get a wife for my son Isaac.”
5The servant said to him, “What if this woman does not want to return with me to this land? Then, should I take your son with me back to your homeland?”
6Abraham said to him, “No! Don’t take my son back there. 7The Lord, the God of heaven, brought me from the home of my father and the land of my relatives. And he promised me, “I will give this land to your descendants.’ The Lord will send his angel before you to help you get a wife for my son there. 8If the girl won’t come back with you, you will be free from this promise. But you must not take my son back there.” 9So the servant put his hand under his master’s leg and made a promise to Abraham about this.
10The servant took ten of Abraham’s camels and left, carrying with him many different kinds of beautiful gifts. He went to Northwest Mesopotamia to Nahor’s city. 11In the evening, when the women come out to get water, he made the camels kneel down at the well outside the city.
12The servant said, “Lord, God of my master Abraham, allow me to find a wife for his son today. Please show this kindness to my master Abraham. 13Here I am, standing by the spring, and the girls from the city are coming out to get water. 14I will say to one of them, ‘Please put your jar down so I can drink.’ Then let her say, ‘Drink, and I will also give water to your camels.’ If that happens, I will know she is the right one for your servant Isaac and that you have shown kindness to my master.”
15Before the servant had finished praying, Rebekah, the daughter of Bethuel, came out of the city. (Bethuel was the son of Milcah and Nahor, Abraham’s brother.) Rebekah was carrying her water jar on her shoulder. 16She was very pretty, a virgin; she had never had sexual relations with a man. She went down to the spring and filled her jar, then came back up. 17The servant ran to her and said, “Please give me a little water from your jar.”
18Rebekah said, “Drink, sir.” She quickly lowered the jar from her shoulder and gave him a drink. 19After he finished drinking, Rebekah said, “I will also pour some water for your camels.” 20So she quickly poured all the water from her jar into the drinking trough for the camels. Then she kept running to the well until she had given all the camels enough to drink.
21The servant quietly watched her. He wanted to be sure the Lord had made his trip successful. 22After the camels had finished drinking, he gave Rebekah a gold ring weighing one-fifth of an ounce and two gold arm bracelets weighing about four ounces each. 23He asked, “Who is your father? Is there a place in his house for me and my men to spend the night?”
24Rebekah answered, “My father is Bethuel, the son of Milcah and Nahor.” 25Then she said, “And, yes, we have straw for your camels and a place for you to spend the night.”
26The servant bowed and worshiped the Lord 27and said, “Blessed is the Lord, the God of my master Abraham. The Lord has been kind and truthful to him and has led me to my master’s relatives.”
28Then Rebekah ran and told her mother’s family about all these things. 29She had a brother named Laban, who ran out to Abraham’s servant, who was still at the spring. 30Laban had heard what she had said and had seen the ring and the bracelets on his sister’s arms. So he ran out to the well, and there was the man standing by the camels at the spring. 31Laban said, “Sir, you are welcome to come in; you don’t have to stand outside. I have prepared the house for you and also a place for your camels.”
32So Abraham’s servant went into the house. After Laban unloaded the camels and gave them straw and food, he gave water to Abraham’s servant so he and the men with him could wash their feet. 33Then Laban gave the servant food, but the servant said, “I will not eat until I have told you why I came.”
So Laban said, “Then tell us.”
34He said, “I am Abraham’s servant. 35The Lord has greatly blessed my master in everything, and he has become a rich man. The Lord has given him many flocks of sheep, herds of cattle, silver and gold, male and female servants, camels, and horses. 36Sarah, my master’s wife, gave birth to a son when she was old, and my master has given everything he owns to that son. 37My master had me make a promise to him and said, ‘Don’t get a wife for my son from the Canaanite girls who live around here. 38Instead, you must go to my father’s people and to my family. There you must get a wife for my son.’ 39I said to my master, ‘What if the woman will not come back with me?’ 40But he said, ‘I serve the Lord, who will send his angel with you and will help you. You will get a wife for my son from my family and my father’s people. 41Then you will be free from the promise. But if they will not give you a wife for my son, you will be free from this promise.’
42“Today I came to this spring. I said, ‘Lord, God of my master Abraham, please make my trip successful. 43I am standing by this spring. I will wait for a young woman to come out to get water, and I will say, “Please give me water from your jar to drink.” 44Then let her say, “Drink this water, and I will also get water for your camels.” By this I will know the Lord has chosen her for my master’s son.’
45“Before I finished my silent prayer, Rebekah came out of the city with her water jar on her shoulder. She went down to the spring and got water. I said to her, ‘Please give me a drink.’ 46She quickly lowered the jar from her shoulder and said, ‘Drink this. I will also get water for your camels.’ So I drank, and she gave water to my camels too. 47When I asked her, ‘Who is your father?’ she answered, ‘My father is Bethuel son of Milcah and Nahor.’ Then I put the ring in her nose and the bracelets on her arms, 48and I bowed my head and thanked the Lord. I praised the Lord, the God of my master Abraham, because he led me on the right road to get the granddaughter of my master’s brother for his son. 49Now, tell me, will you be kind and truthful to my master? And if not, tell me so. Then I will know what I should do.”
50Laban and Bethuel answered, “This is clearly from the Lord, and we cannot change what must happen. 51Rebekah is yours. Take her and go. Let her marry your master’s son as the Lord has commanded.”
52When Abraham’s servant heard these words, he bowed facedown on the ground before the Lord. 53Then he gave Rebekah gold and silver jewelry and clothes. He also gave expensive gifts to her brother and mother. 54The servant and the men with him ate and drank and spent the night there. When they got up the next morning, the servant said, “Now let me go back to my master.”
55Rebekah’s mother and her brother said, “Let Rebekah stay with us at least ten days. After that she may go.”
56But the servant said to them, “Do not make me wait, because the Lord has made my trip successful. Now let me go back to my master.”
57Rebekah’s brother and mother said, “We will call Rebekah and ask her what she wants to do.” 58They called her and asked her, “Do you want to go with this man now?”
She said, “Yes, I do.”
59So they allowed Rebekah and her nurse to go with Abraham’s servant and his men. 60They blessed Rebekah and said,
“Our sister, may you be the mother of thousands of people,
and may your descendants capture the cities of their enemies.”
61Then Rebekah and her servant girls got on the camels and followed the servant and his men. So the servant took Rebekah and left.
62At this time Isaac had left Beer Lahai Roi and was living in southern Canaan. 63One evening when he went out to the field to think, he looked up and saw camels coming. 64Rebekah also looked and saw Isaac. Then she jumped down from the camel 65and asked the servant, “Who is that man walking in the field to meet us?”
The servant answered, “That is my master.” So Rebekah covered her face with her veil.
66The servant told Isaac everything that had happened. 67Then Isaac brought Rebekah into the tent of Sarah, his mother, and she became his wife. Isaac loved her very much, and so he was comforted after his mother’s death.
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