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Author Topic: A Journey Thru Genesis  (Read 2595 times)

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Olde Tymer

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Re: A Journey Thru Genesis
« Reply #169 on: May 15, 2019, 09:38:24 am »
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● Gen 24:3c-4 . . that you will not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites among whom I dwell, but will go to the land of my birth and get a wife for my son Isaac.

The words "land of my birth" can also mean "to my country and to my relatives." That is exactly how the steward understood them because that is how he will narrate Abraham's instructions in Gen 24:38.

I just bet Abraham was fully aware of the fate of the men of God who married the daughters of men back in the early parts of Genesis. Those men of God all died in the Flood right along with their impious wives.

The influence of a non God-fearing spouse could prove fatal to Isaac's future. If he's going to serve and worship his dad's god, then he is going to have to marry a girl who fully appreciates and supports the prophecies regarding Abraham's progeny.

Spouse hunting demands a level head and cold steel discernment or there is real risk in ending up like Solomon, one of the greatest of God's men, who was ruined by his marriages to women who didn't share his religious beliefs. (1Kgs 11:1-10)

● Gen 24:5-6 . . And the servant said to him: What if the woman does not consent to follow me to this land, shall I then take your son back to the land from which you came? Abraham answered him: You must not, for any reason, take my son back there!

I think Abraham knew only too well just how much like sheep men are. When they fall in love, they'll literally sacrifice their lives to keep a woman; which is exactly what Jacob did. Rachel was a good girl; but she cost Jacob fourteen years of his life away from home in a foreign land with a bad influence: uncle Laban.

Suppose Isaac went up north and feasted his glims on Rebecca? Well, up ahead we're going to find out that she was young, cute, and filled out in all the right places. I've seen what that does to men. I worked with a married man once who kept a young love on the side. He often used his wages to buy that girl jewelry while his wife and two little kids were housed in a ramshackle rental unit.

It was too risky to let Isaac go up there. He might be tempted to remain with Rebecca if she refused to live so far off from her family. Isaac's future was in the land deeded to Abraham on oath; not up there in Mesopotamia; and his bride's place was with him and Yhvh; not with her family and Laban's idols.

● Gen 24:7 . .The Lord, the God of heaven, who took me from my father's house and from my native land, who promised me on oath, saying "I will assign this land to your offspring" He will send His angel before you, and you will get a wife for my son from there.

The identity of "His angel" is interesting. It's not referred to as one of His angels; just His angel. Jacob knew His angel as Yhvh; the divine benefactor he encountered on the way north during his flight from Esau. (Gen 28:12-15, Gen 48:17)


NOTE: I sincerely believe that God Himself has never even once been to the Earth in person. He stays put, secluded in a sort of forbidden city somewhere apart from the cosmos and His business down here is conducted by a supreme celestial being who has the authority to speak for God, to speak as God, and to be respected as God. This supreme celestial being is curious in that it is capable of appearing in a fully functioning human body, viz: a living avatar. (eg. Gen 18:1-33, Ex 24:9-11, John 1:18)

● Gen 24:8-10a . . And if the woman does not consent to follow you, you shall then be clear of this oath to me; but do not take my son back there. So the servant put his hand under the thigh of his master Abraham and swore to him as bidden. Then the servant took ten of his master's camels

Nobody is quite sure exactly when camels were domesticated. The earliest depiction of them in relief and cuneiform text as beasts of burden and transportation is sometime around 1100 BC.

● Gen 24:10b . . and set out, taking with him all the bounty of his master;

The servant will need to demonstrate to the bride, and to the bride's family, that she'll be well taken care of. The servant of course didn't take along everything Abraham owned in total, but merely an adequate representation of his abundant wealth; which by inheritance, would all be Isaac's some day; and, by association, his future wife's too.

Additional men accompanied the servant (Gen 24:32) who were very likely all armed (Gen 14:14); not only for the caravan's protection, but for the bride's as well. No doubt included among the camel's burdens were tents, victuals, provender, water, and appropriate accommodations for the bride's comfort on the journey back to Canaan. It was at least five hundred miles from Hebron up to Abraham's people in Mesopotamia, so the return trip couldn't possibly be made in a single day on camels and would necessitate overnight bivouacs in rugged country.

● Gen 24:10c . . and he made his way to Aram-naharaim, to the city of Nahor.

The Greek translation renders naharaim in dual form meaning, "two rivers", and from that arose the name Mesopotamia-- the land between the two rivers. Some feel that the name naharaim really means "the land along the river" or "the land within the river".

It's a territory bounded approximately on the east by an imaginary north/south line drawn from Ar Raqqah Syria to Urfa Turkey. The southern and western borders are delineated by the Euphrates as it runs from Ar Raqqah Syria towards Gaziantep Turkey: an area within which at one time lay the kingdom of Mitanni. This is called Naharain in the Egyptian texts, and Naharima in the El-Armana letters.

The details of the journey are passed over. It would have been fun to hear about the caravan's adventures. How they had to dodge a flock of ostriches that ran out in the road, and maybe how a lion came around at night and spooked everybody, or how one of the men fell asleep at the wheel and his camel ran off the road and hit a tree; stuff like that. But Genesis has priorities; and the journey's details were not one of them. In a blink, the caravan arrives; a trip that took maybe two weeks or so; and Rebecca rapidly becomes the prime focus. This chapter, after all, about the bride; rather than the groom.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: A Journey Thru Genesis
« Reply #170 on: May 16, 2019, 08:30:46 am »
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● Gen 24:11 . . He made the camels kneel down by the well outside the city, at evening time, the time when women come out to draw water.

"evening time" is from an ambiguous word that indicates any time between high noon and sunset as opposed to morning which can indicate any time between sunrise and high noon.

● Gen 24:12 . . And he said: O Lord, God of my master Abraham, grant me good fortune this day, and deal graciously with my master Abraham:

This steward was truly a God-fearing man, and truly faithful to the one who sent him on this errand. His prayer is not self centered, but centered upon the best interests of his master's son. Incidentally, this is the very first prayer recorded in the Bible of any individual clearly requesting providence.

● Gen 24:13-14 . . Here I stand by the spring as the daughters of the townsmen come out to draw water; let the maiden to whom I say "Please, lower your jar that I may drink" and who replies "Drink, and I will also water your camels"-- let her be the one whom You have decreed for Your servant Isaac. Thereby shall I know that You have dealt graciously with my master.

This man didn't beat around the bush, nor begin reading from a siddur, nor a missal, nor did he chant by rote, nor blather in tongues. He gets right down to business and spells out his concerns in plain language. Let me say something very clearly: If you are the kind of person who has to pray in tongues because you don't have enough command of your own native language to express yourself in any other way, then maybe you should go back to school for a while.

Of great interest is the steward's apparent lack of concern regarding the prospective bride's looks. Only God truly knew who would be right for Isaac, and Abraham's steward is not going to select a bride for his master's son like as if she's flesh on the line the way the sons of God did back in Gen 6:2. No; she must be hand-picked by God alone because He alone knows what's in a heart. If the girl that God chooses for Isaac is attractive; well that will be a bonus, but absolutely not the deciding factor.

● Gen 24:15 . . He had scarcely finished speaking, when Rebecca-- born to Bethuel, the son of Milcah the wife of Abraham's brother Nahor --came out with her jar on her shoulder.

As fortune would have it, the very first girl to arrive is Becky. Although she's related to Abraham, at this point Abraham's steward doesn't know who she is yet. In fact he's probably expecting to conduct many tiresome interviews; testing one girl after another until the right one shows up.

● Gen 24:16a . .The maiden was very beautiful,

Some chafe at that passage and refuse to believe Genesis is talking about Becky's physical assets. However, later on, in Gen 26:6-7, Isaac will attempt his dad's old trick and say Becky is his sister; in order to save his skin. The reason Isaac gives for the lie is he believed the men of Gerar would be tempted to kill him because Becky was attractive. It is highly unlikely pagan men would take Becky away from Isaac just because she had a beautiful personality. As a rule, ancient men didn't fight over the nice girls; they battled for the alluring ones.

● Gen 24:16b . . a virgin

Becky is three girls in one: a maiden, a virgin, and a virgin. What the heck you say? How is she two virgins?

The word for "virgin" in 24:16 is bethuwlah (beth-oo-law') which can indicate a virgin, a bride; and also a city or state. Technically, bethuwlaw doesn't necessarily indicate a girl who's never slept with a man. The primary denotation is chronological, and the word simply indicates a mature young woman of marriageable age whether she is married or not; e.g. Joel 1:8, where a bethuwlah laments the husband of her youth.

● Gen 24:16c . . whom no man had known.

That kind of wording says that Becky is not only all grown up, but she's a bethuwlah who still has her virginity. We have before us a gorgeous peach, not living with a man, neither has ever slept with a man.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: A Journey Thru Genesis
« Reply #171 on: May 17, 2019, 07:34:22 am »
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● Gen 24:16d . . She went down to the spring, filled her jar, and came up.

The "spring" in this case was a small pool of water fed by an aquifer, which is different than an artesian well; they gush, while aquifers seep.

Some of the shafts of ancient man-made wells in that part of the world resemble mini open-pit mines; with steps hewn into the sides to facilitate access to the water for dipping jars and buckets. Becky's spring was likely constructed like that.

● Gen 24:17a . .The servant ran toward her

The Hebrew word for "ran" is the same word used in Gen 18:2 and 18:7 to describe Abraham's movement when the three men appeared in his camp. Abraham was about 99 years old at the time and it's very doubtful he was able to move his legs all that fast. It's far more likely he just hastened.

In any case, it was nevertheless essential that Abraham's steward not waste any time because Becky had strong legs and would surely be gone away home in a blink.

● Gen 24:17b . . and said: Please, let me sip a little water from your jar.

It's amazing that a gorgeous young girl like Becky would allow a total stranger to approach her without protest or without screaming for help. Was she na´ve? Was she foolish?

Well . . maybe in that day, and around her town, you could trust people. But it would not be wise to do that in some parts of New York or Los Angeles. A seemingly honest appeal for assistance could very well be a distraction while an accomplice sneaks up behind you.

Although Becky arrived first, ahead of the other girls, by now there may have been several others milling around the spring because that was the time of day for them to be there. In groups, they could all watch out for each other. Genesis doesn't tell about any of the others though because the spotlight is totally on Isaac's future bride.

● Gen 24:18a . . Drink, my lord: she said,

The Hebrew word for "lord" is 'adown (aw-done') and is suitable for courteously addressing a male superior; whether actual or assumed; viz: fathers, aged men, kings, husbands, and/or God.

● Gen 24:18b . . and she quickly lowered her jar upon her hand and let him drink.

The word for "quickly" is from mahar (maw-har') which means: to be liquid or flow easily; viz: nimble (the opposite of that would be the sluggishness of molasses in January) and implies to act promptly. I really like the way Becky responded. When people do things grudgingly, they often stonewall, perform slowly, and drag their feet just to show you they're annoyed. But Becky didn't hesitate. She gave water to the man whole-heartedly, sharply, and immediately.

Whether she actually let him drink out of her hand is doubtful. Lowering the jar upon her hand merely indicates it was previously up on her shoulder or maybe on top of her head. Becky probably just supported it from underneath with one hand while tilting the top with the other so the contents would pour out and Abraham's steward could slack his thirst.

● Gen 24:19-20 . .When she had let him drink his fill, she said: I will also draw for your camels, until they finish drinking. Quickly emptying her jar into the trough, she ran back to the well to draw, and she drew for all his camels.

Flo-Jo Becky-- flying all over the place like a US Navy SEAL trainee in hell week. No time to waste if she was going to water all those camels before dark.

The Arabian camel can drink more than twenty gallons of water in one sitting when it's very thirsty. I hope that man gave them some water earlier because he had ten camels and Becky could be hauling as much as 200 gallons. If her pitcher held five gallons, the weight would be about 41 pounds of water for each one of the forty trips she would have to make down and back up out of that spring. Wow that girl was fit! Well, she did it-- and all without any grousing about it.

● Gen 24:21 . .The man, meanwhile, stood gazing at her, silently wondering whether The Lord had made his errand successful or not.

That man must have been totally blown away. The very thing about which he prayed barely five minutes ago was occurring right before his eyes and all so brisk and sudden too. This was just too easy and just too unbelievable. Could this really be of The Lord? He dared not let himself enjoy any success yet until he knew for sure.

●  Gen 24:22 . .When the camels had finished drinking, the man took a gold nose-ring weighing a half-shekel, and two gold bands for her arms, ten shekels in weight.

The word for "nose-ring" is nexem (neh'-zem) which just means ring, or jewel. Without a modifier, there is no way of knowing for sure if the ring is for the nose or the ear. However, in verse 47 up ahead, Abraham's steward will say he installed the ring in Becky's nose.

The half shekel was a unit of weight and a media of exchange in those days. It weighed about 6.019 grams which is equal to about 92.87 grains. Typical .22 caliber lead bullets weigh approximately 40 grains apiece, so it would take at least two and a third of them to equal the weight of the ring. That's really not much, but if it's stuck in your nose or hanging on your ear I guess it would become noticeable after a while.

The combined weight of the two bands was ten shekels, which is twenty times the weight of the ring; or about 1,857 grains; which is equivalent to forty-six .22 cal lead bullets.

1,857 grains + 93grains = 1,950 grains; which is equivalent to 4.06 troy ounces of gold. ( a troy ounce is equal to 480 grains) As of May 17, 2019 the commodity value of gold was roughly 1,286 dollars US per troy ounce. So to date, Becky's gold, in commodity value, was worth roughly 5,221 dollars US. (4,661 Euro)
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Olde Tymer

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Re: A Journey Thru Genesis
« Reply #172 on: May 18, 2019, 07:52:20 am »
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● Gen 24:23-25 . . Pray tell me; he said: whose daughter are you? Is there room in your father's house for us to spend the night? She replied: I am the daughter of Bethuel the son of Milcah, whom she bore to Nahor. And she went on: There is plenty of straw and feed at home, and also room to spend the night.

That did it. The identity of Becky's family was the final chop that felled the tree. Abraham's steward had no more doubts about the Lord's providence. At this point, he put the ring in Becky's nose and the bands on her arms.

● Gen 24:26-27 . .The man bowed low in homage to The Lord and said: Blessed be The Lord, the God of my master Abraham, who has not withheld His steadfast faithfulness from my master. For I have been guided on my errand by The Lord, to the house of my master's kinsmen.

How utterly astounded Becky must have been that this stranger would give her all that gold for doing nothing more than watering him and his camels; and then his prayer to boot.

I'm guessing that at this point, Becky began to suspect that something was up. There were men with Abraham's steward who were no doubt all intently observing this scene and gauging Becky's reactions throughout the whole incident. Looking at them, looking at the man, looking at his camels loaded down with all manner of stuff, and that there were more saddled camels than men to ride them; I think Becky began to get nervous because right then she took off out of there for home like a United passenger with scarcely seconds to spare to catch their connection from Chicago to Seattle.

● Gen 24:28 . .The maiden ran and told all this to her mother's household.

Becky told the story to her mom's side of the family, which suggests that her dad Bethuel may have kept a concubine as well as a wife.

Here's a possible scenario of what happened next.

Becky's mom (whose name isn't given) has become anxious-- it's getting late, and her baby hasn't returned yet with the evening water supply.

Then, WHAM! as sudden and unexpected as a California earthquake: an excited, out of breath Becky-girl comes crashing through the door with a shriek and a squeal; dropping her jug on the floor with a thud, sloshing water over the floor, accompanied by the incomprehensible jabbering of a flock of magpies-- gasping for air, lungs burning; she spits her tale as arms flash with gold, and the ring in her nose sparkles like a glimmering salmon lure every time she turns her head; which is quite often.

At first, in dazed silence, everyone is paralyzed and nobody moves.

Then, BOOM! the whole place erupts and people start scrambling. Chairs get knocked over, tables bumped out of their places, lamps teeter, and doors slam with the whump and concussion of incoming mortar rounds. People out in the courtyard are barking orders to the servants at the tops of their voices; as everyone bolts off from ground-zero in ten different directions like panicked North Koreans making emergency preparations to put Kim Jong-Un up for the night.

Meanwhile, Becky's brother Laban (who just happens to be infected with a severe case of unbridled avarice) ignites the afterburners and sails out the door at Mach 2 on his way to fetch Abraham's steward.

● Gen 24:29-30a . . Now Rebecca had a brother whose name was Laban. He ran out to the man at the spring when he saw the nose-ring and the bands on his sister's arms, and when he heard his sister Rebecca say: Thus the man spoke to me.

There's no record that Laban ever actually met Abraham in person, but Bethuel surely must have talked about him around the dinner table-- how the god of Noah had called uncle Abram to leave Mesopotamia and head south to the frontier. And caravans arriving from Egypt surely passed through Abraham's region, picking up news and information about the great sheik's exploits and the fact that Abraham's camp was very large; a community of at least a thousand people.

Then; Shazaam! Abraham's steward seemingly materializes out of nowhere-- totally unexpected like Forrest Gump's friend Jenny after a long absence --with samples of Abraham's prosperity. That must have been really exciting: akin to news from early-day Texas oilfields.

● Gen 24:30b-31a . . He went up to the man, who was still standing beside the camels at the spring. He said: Come in, O blessed of The Lord;

The word for "Lord" is actually  YHVH and is the very name of deity the steward used in his prayer.

Laban didn't actually worship Yhvh nor serve Him either. The steward's god was Yhvh; so for now, Yhvh would be Laban's god too. Becky's brother was a clever Machiavellian manipulator. By feigning respect for the steward's god; Laban no doubt hoped it would work to advantage. Later we're going to discover that Laban's own personal religion was actually idolatry. He kept a supply of divine figurines in his home-- little statuettes called teraphim.

● Gen 24:31b . . why do you remain outside, when I have made ready the house and a place for the camels?

Unlike Abraham's home, where Abraham ruled supreme, the daddy in Becky's home doesn't seem to have much voice or power in it. Bethuel's son, is the principle spokesman. He and his mom together seemed to run the place. Some husbands are happy with that kind of an arrangement so what the hey, if it works for them? It could be too that the daddy's health was not all that good and so he preferred letting his family manage the home.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: A Journey Thru Genesis
« Reply #173 on: May 19, 2019, 07:30:31 am »
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● Gen 24:32 . . So the man entered the house, and the camels were unloaded. The camels were given straw and feed, and water was brought to bathe his feet and the feet of the men with him.

In those days, when somebody "entered the house" they actually entered a gateway into a courtyard bordered by living quarters and stables.

Who took care of the animals? Probably servants. Which would indicate that Bethuel had done pretty well for himself in life. His home was spacious enough to shelter the servant and his detachment; plus he had enough provender and bedding for at least ten camels.

Hmmmm. Makes one curious why Becky was out there fetching water. Why did she have to do it if they had servants? Well, I don't think she really had to; but Isaac's future bride was no narcissistic prima donna: she was one of those people who don't mind pitching in and getting their hands dirty. Privileged or no privileged; that girl was something.

● Gen 24:33a . . But when food was set before him, he said: I will not eat until I have told my tale.

Always one for business, the man got straight to the point.

● Gen 24:33b . . He said: Speak, then.

Who was it said: speak? Well, the nearest antecedent is Laban. You know, that boy reminds me of Sonny Corleone; the eldest brother in Mario Puzo's book "The Godfather". Sonny was headstrong, outspoken, and a slave to his passions; just like ol' Laban.

● Gen 24:34 . . I am Abraham's servant: he began.

I think it's commendable that this man, so far from home, didn't introduce himself by his own name but rather by the name of the one whom he represented.

● Gen 24:35 . .The Lord has greatly blessed my master, and he has become rich: He has given him sheep and cattle, silver and gold, male and female slaves, camels and burros.

I love the way this man gives credit to Yhvh for Abraham's good fortune rather than to idols, heathen deities, dumb luck, brute force, fortuitous circumstance, and/or Abraham's business skills.

It was important that the man tell Becky's family about Abraham's religion, and about his wealth, because in a moment he's going to drop a 2,000 pound bunker buster that will change their lives forever.
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Bladerunner

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Re: A Journey Thru Genesis
« Reply #174 on: May 19, 2019, 09:24:55 pm »
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● Gen 24:32 . . So the man entered the house, and the camels were unloaded. The camels were given straw and feed, and water was brought to bathe his feet and the feet of the men with him.

In those days, when somebody "entered the house" they actually entered a gateway into a courtyard bordered by living quarters and stables.

Who took care of the animals? Probably servants. Which would indicate that Bethuel had done pretty well for himself in life. His home was spacious enough to shelter the servant and his detachment; plus he had enough provender and bedding for at least ten camels.

Hmmmm. Makes one curious why Becky was out there fetching water. Why did she have to do it if they had servants? Well, I don't think she really had to; but Isaac's future bride was no narcissistic prima donna: she was one of those people who don't mind pitching in and getting their hands dirty. Privileged or no privileged; that girl was something.

● Gen 24:33a . . But when food was set before him, he said: I will not eat until I have told my tale.

Always one for business, the man got straight to the point.

● Gen 24:33b . . He said: Speak, then.

Who was it said: speak? Well, the nearest antecedent is Laban. You know, that boy reminds me of Sonny Corleone; the eldest brother in Mario Puzo's book "The Godfather". Sonny was headstrong, outspoken, and a slave to his passions; just like ol' Laban.

● Gen 24:34 . . I am Abraham's servant: he began.

I think it's commendable that this man, so far from home, didn't introduce himself by his own name but rather by the name of the one whom he represented.

● Gen 24:35 . .The Lord has greatly blessed my master, and he has become rich: He has given him sheep and cattle, silver and gold, male and female slaves, camels and burros.

I love the way this man gives credit to Yhvh for Abraham's good fortune rather than to idols, heathen deities, dumb luck, brute force, fortuitous circumstance, and/or Abraham's business skills.

It was important that the man tell Becky's family about Abraham's religion, and about his wealth, because in a moment he's going to drop a 2,000 pound bunker buster that will change their lives forever.
_


Unbelievable

Blade
1 Cor 15:3-4.."For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:"

Acts 17:11.."These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so."
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patrick jane

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Re: A Journey Thru Genesis
« Reply #175 on: May 19, 2019, 09:28:30 pm »
It spices up our lives Blade !!! Hang in there brother.
Hearing, believing and trusting the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross; His death, burial and resurrection for the forgiveness of sins, the gospel of our salvation, and repenting, seals us with that Holy Spirit of Promise. The Lord is not slack concerning His promise. 2 Peter 3:9 KJV - 1 Corinthians 15:1-4 KJV - Ephesians 1:10-14 KJV - Romans 10:9-10 KJV - Romans 10:13 - Romans 10:17 - Ephesians 1:7 KJV - Colossians 1:14 KJV -


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Olde Tymer

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Re: A Journey Thru Genesis
« Reply #176 on: May 20, 2019, 07:36:54 am »
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● Gen 24:36a . . And Sarah, my master's wife, bore my master a son in her old age

Curiously, he doesn't mention Sarah's passing. But then, the Scriptures don't record every word that people ever spoke-- just excerpts really. Back in verse 30, Becky's entire experience at the spring is recounted in a very simple phrase: "Thus the man spoke to me."

If Becky wasn't listening before, you can just bet your equity line that her little ears perked up like a
NORAD radar station at the mention of Abraham's son. And not just a son, but a son born in Sarah's old age; which would mean that Abraham's boy was relatively young, or at least age-appropriate for her liking-- and maybe available too.

Americans don't take marriage serious enough. It was life or death in those days. Ancient women didn't have the advantages of education, special rights, open promiscuity, and independence like the women in twenty-first century America. Family life was all that really mattered to the women of old. It was their career goal and it was their old age security. Single women were failures and most likely headed for poverty. And some even felt it was an evidence of Divine disfavor to become an old maid-- which only served to aggravate their despair even more. So when those women got married and/or had a baby; it was a very big cause for celebration.

● Gen 24:36b . . and he has assigned to him everything he owns.

It's no doubt obvious by now to everyone in the house where the servant is going with his narrative. Why else would he tell of the son's inheritance if not to impress Becky's family in order to secure her for the son's bride?

● Gen 24:37-41 . . Now my master made me swear, saying: You shall not get a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites in whose land I dwell; but you shall go to my father's house, to my kindred, and get a wife for my son. And I said to my master: What if the woman does not follow me?

. . . He replied to me: The Lord, whose ways I have followed, will send His angel with you and make your errand successful; and you will get a wife for my son from my kindred, from my father's house. Thus only shall you be freed from my adjuration: if, when you come to my kindred, they refuse you--only then shall you be freed from my adjuration.

The "kindred" who might refuse the servant, includes the potential bride herself because Abraham said so at Gen 24:8.

In the ancient East, daughters were often given in arranged marriages without their consent. And normally, if Becky's kin were to say she was going to marry Isaac, well then she was going to marry Isaac and that was the end of discussion. Up ahead, we'll see that very fate befall Becky's nieces: Rachel and Leah.

But Abraham didn't want Isaac's bride to be purchased. No. In this case, Abraham broke with tradition and mandated the prospective bride herself cast the deciding vote. So if Becky refuses, the servant can't be blamed for dereliction of duty; and nobody is going to handcuff Becky and ship her off to Palestine via FedEx. Abraham wants her to come down there of her own volition; and if not, then he'll look elsewhere . . . and no hard feelings about it.

● Gen 24:42-48 . . This portion is pretty much what went on before except that in this version, the family is told how Becky came to have the nose ring and the arm bands.

Becky hadn't known till just now that the servant prayed for special providence prior to her arrival at the spring-- the part concerning drinking the maiden's water, and her serving the camels. Becky must have been totally astonished to think that the actual True God led that man, not just to her doorstep, but right smack dab to her footsteps. Wow!

But she had no say in the negotiations at this point. Proposals were made to the senior members of the family in those days, not to the girl.

● Gen 24:49-51 . . And now, if you mean to treat my master with true kindness, tell me; and if not, tell me also, that I may turn right or left. Then Laban and Bethuel answered: The matter was decreed by Yhvh; we cannot speak to you bad or good. Here is Rebecca before you; take her and go, and let her be a wife to your master's son, as the Lord has spoken.

Actually Bethuel himself didn't say anything. Laban spoke in proxy for him in the same way that the steward was now speaking as Abraham in Isaac's best interests. Bethuel and Laban may have had a quiet pow-wow off to the side and then Laban came forward and announced their decision.

At this point, Becky would have normally become legally engaged to marry Isaac. But Abraham would not permit the marriage to be set in stone until the girl actually consented for herself. So it's not over yet.

● Gen 24:52 . .When Abraham's servant heard their words, he bowed low to the ground before the Lord.

Abraham's steward is one of the most pious men in the Bible, and people like him can be very influential for God. If you've ever been in the presence of someone like him you know what I'm saying. All the prayers I learned as a child were rote; just a memorized litany of chant-like mantras. The first time I overheard someone pray candidly, from the heart, it was very moving.

● Gen 24:53 . .The servant brought out items of silver and gold, and garments, and gave them to Rebecca; and he gave presents to her brother and her mother.

The gifts were a good-faith token that the servant meant what he said; and I've no doubt that had Becky ultimately refused, he would not have demanded them back.
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Re: A Journey Thru Genesis
« Reply #177 on: May 21, 2019, 08:25:03 am »
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● Gen 24:54-55 . .Then he and the men with him ate and drank, and they spent the night. When they arose next morning, he said: Give me leave to go to my master. But her brother and her mother said: Let the maiden remain with us some ten days; then you may go.

Their request was reasonable. After all, this was all so sudden. They didn't even have a chance to announce the engagement nor organize a bridal shower. Becky's friends would all want to come over to the house and ooo and ahhh the jewelry and go nuts over the exotic fashions from Canaan. And they would all want to give her one last hug and wish blessings on her new life. What's so wrong with that? There's nothing wrong with that; but Abraham's wishes have to take priority in this matter. (cf. Luke 9:61-62)

● Gen 24:56-57a . . He said to them: Do not delay me, now that The Lord has made my errand successful. Give me leave that I may go to my master.

Abraham probably had a pretty good idea how long his servant should be gone; and if the return was delayed, Abraham might begin to become anxious and wonder what was going on up there in Haran what with no internet email, telephones, HAM radio, telegraph, nor even any way to send a post card back home.

Becky has now agreed to be Isaac's bride. She made that decision the moment she accepted clothing and jewelry that were offered to her in Isaac's name. The big question now is: how much longer does she wish to remain a maiden before becoming a married woman with a home of her own?

● Gen 24:57b-58 . . And they said: Let us call the girl and ask for her reply. They called Rebecca and said to her: Will you go with this man? And she said: I will.

Exactly what so strongly motivated Becky to agree to leave home on such short notice is open to speculation. Some feel it was because, unknown to the writer of Genesis, she had been praying for The Lord's providence in this very matter of finding the right man. The events of the previous evening were enough to convince Becky that this was truly divine providence; and she wasn't about to procrastinate now and louse up her chances for God-given happiness and security. That man was leaving, and the soon-to-be Mrs. Isaac ben Abraham was not going to miss her ride; uh-uh, no way!

● Gen 24:59a . . So they sent off their sister Rebecca

The word for "sister" is from 'achowth (aw-khoth') and isn't limited to siblings. It applies to all manner of female kin-- sisters, daughters, aunts, nieces; even to a lover, as in Song 4:9-12.

You can imagine the flurry that went on in that house getting Becky's bags packed on such short notice. You can bet there was no joy around there that morning. An air of sadness marked her departure. Everyone was no doubt well aware they would likely never see Becky ever again. In those days, when somebody moved 500 miles away, they might just as well have gone to Pluto.

● Gen 24:59b . . and her nurse along with Abraham's servant and his men.

The word for "nurse" is from yanaq (yaw-nak') and implies wet nursing. This may be an indication that, for reasons unspecified, Rebecca's mom was unable to breast feed her children. In Mesopotamia, wet nurses frequently had the additional duties of bringing up the child and acting as their guardian; viz: a nanny. The nurse (whose name is Deborah; Gen 35:8) was probably either Becky's first choice as personal assistant, or Deborah herself just couldn't part with her little Becky and volunteered to go along as a chaperon. It's not unusual for mentors, like Helen Keller's tutor Anne Sullivan, to become permanently bonded and dedicated to their charges.

● Gen 24:60 . . And they blessed Rebecca and said to her: O sister! May you grow into thousands of myriads; may your offspring seize the gates of their foes.

That prophetic bon voyage was undoubtedly an acknowledgement of the promises God made to Abraham following the Akedah (Gen 22:15-18). Abraham's steward spent the night in Becky's home; and while eating dinner and chatting, no doubt shared many wonderful events from Abraham's and Isaac's lives to which Becky's family must have listened just as spellbound as all of us who study Genesis in our own day and age.

The Akedah surely must have been to them almost beyond belief that God would ask Abraham to sacrifice the very son in whom all the promises would be fulfilled. No wonder Becky was so ready to go. She just had to get on down there and see this man in whom God had taken such a particular interest.

● Gen 24:61a . .Then Rebecca and her maids arose, mounted the camels, and followed the man.

The word for "maids" is from na'arah (nah-ar-aw') and means a young, underage girl. A Bible maid is just a lass, not really a grown up adult woman. She could be a pre teen or a late teen and any age in between. It wasn't unusual for a woman from a family of means to have a retinue of young girls in attendance. Becky's maids possibly were the children of her home's adult servants.

Then too, young girls were often indentured into maid service. Sometimes it was because of parental greed, but often it was because the family was in poverty and desperate. In the last decade alone, many families in Afghanistan were forced to sell their children just to survive the Taliban ruin of their country. Sometimes young girls were fortunes of war in Becky's day and could be bought and sold at market; for example the Jewish damsel in 2Kgs 5:1-3 who helped Naaman get his leprosy cured.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: A Journey Thru Genesis
« Reply #178 on: May 22, 2019, 08:14:52 am »
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● Gen 24:61b . . So the servant took Rebecca and went his way.

The 500 mile trip to Isaac's camp, which must have taken at least two weeks, was a great opportunity for Rebecca to become familiar with the manager of her spouse's goods. People bond well under hardship and under close knit circumstances. In the years to come, the friendship and trust that developed en route with Rebecca and the man, would really come in handy after she took over Isaac's home. We can easily guess what the primary topic of conversation was on the way back-- Mr. Isaac.

"Oh, do tell me more about him. What's his favorite food? His favorite color? When's his birthday? Has he been a playboy, dating lots of girls? Is he mellow or is he thin-skinned and easily angered? What does he do in his spare time? How tall is he? Does he have many pet peeves? What color is his hair and eyes? How old is he? Does he have a sense of humor? Would he get upset if I burned the toast? Is he affable and approachable? Is he reasonable? Is he despotic? Is he generous with his money, or a miserly tight wad? Do you really think he will like me?"

All those things, and lots, lots more, are very important to most brides and I have no doubt that Rebecca pried a great many things out of Abraham's steward concerning her Isaac. By the time they arrived, all of Becky's anxieties and fears about her future husband were resolved, and she was in love with that man before even meeting him for the very first time.

You know, Becky only had the steward's word that there really was an Isaac. She herself had never seen him, her family had never seen him, in fact no one in her whole town had ever seen him. What if the entire story were a big hoax and the man was not telling the truth. Perhaps he was a smooth con man who actually had in mind to sell Becky into slavery down in Egypt.

The farther and farther she got from home, the more danger Becky was in. The land was strange and hostile, Becky had no friends and no one to turn to if she might try an escape. She was in fact trusting her very life to an almost complete stranger. (cf. Php 1:6)

But that man's speech and his bearing were powerfully persuasive. He was able to convince Becky that he was genuinely Abraham's steward and that there really was an Isaac waiting for her at trail's end. Becky left home with one stranger to marry yet another stranger. But by the time they arrived, Abraham's trusty steward had proved himself to Becky that her escorts were all trustworthy men and only meant good by her.

● Gen 24:62 . . Isaac had just come back from the vicinity of Beer-lahai-roi, for he was settled in the region of the Negeb.

Beer-lahai-roi was the source of water where Hagar met God for the very first time; and her experience caused the well to be named the way it was in Gen 16:13-14.

Hagar's water source became not only somewhat of a holy monument, but also an important watering hole for people with flocks and herds down there in the Negev; thanks to a runaway slave girl.

● Gen 24:63a . . And Isaac went out walking in the field toward evening

The precise location of this field is uncertain. Since Isaac's ranch was in the Negev, near Hagar's well, that might be where this next scene occurred.

There lacks a consensus opinion among Jewish scholars as to the precise meaning of the Hebrew word laasuwach, which is translated "walking" in some Bibles; and "meditate" in others. The JPS rendering, "walking" is based upon the Arabic saha. Tradition has it that Isaac was out in the field for reflection and prayer. What might he be praying about?

Well, most likely about his impending marriage to a mail-order bride. If Rebecca was at all nervous, you can bet Isaac was just as nervous himself. These two were going to be joined at the hip for the rest of their lives and they had yet to even meet.

● Gen 24:63b-64a . . and, looking up, he saw camels approaching. Raising her eyes, Rebecca saw Isaac.

I've heard the wording suggests a simultaneous meeting of the eyes. Isaac saw Rebecca just when she saw him. Rebecca couldn't be positive at that moment the man she saw was her future husband; but one thing Isaac knew: his dad's servant didn't leave home with female passengers. One of those women out there on the camels had to be meant for him.

● Gen 24:64b . . She alighted from the camel

Suspecting that the man up ahead just might be her future husband, Rebecca took no chances of getting off on the wrong foot with impropriety. She could always get back up on the camel if it turned out the man wasn't her Isaac; but just in case. . .
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Olde Tymer

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Re: A Journey Thru Genesis
« Reply #179 on: May 23, 2019, 07:59:44 am »
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● Gen 24:65a . . and said to the servant: Who is that man walking in the field toward us? And the servant said: That is my master.

Well; the man approaching was much too young to be Abraham, and there was only one other person on the whole planet that Abraham's servant would ever call his master-- the heir apparent.

● Gen 24:65b . . So she took her veil and covered herself.

Becky's veil was a full body wrap, similar to a burqa; not just a stylish hijab or a cute little semi-transparent scarf in front of her face. In Akkadian, the bride on her wedding day was called kallatu kutumtu, (the veiled bride).

Also, in Akkadian; she was called pussumtu, (the veiled one), which means the same as kallatu, (bride). In that day, Rebecca's veil had both symbolic and socio-legal significance.

It was an unmistakable signal to Isaac that among all those ladies riding along with his dad's servant that day; the burqa-ette was to be his wife.

This meeting is interesting. We spent quite a bit of time viewing the character, the background, and the beauty of a really outstanding young woman in the beginning of this chapter. But it's all under wraps now in the presence of the groom. Becky is doing absolutely nothing to attract Isaac at this point. In fact, Isaac can't even see past the veil to what a gorgeous package of womanhood that Becky really is.

The anonymous steward who went north to speak with Becky on Isaac's behalf, will now speak with Isaac on Becky's behalf. Thus, Abraham's steward will be an ambassador for both Isaac and Rebecca; and when he's done, Becky will know all she needs to know at this point about Isaac, and Isaac will know all he needs to know at this point about Rebecca; even before they meet each other for the very first time.

● Gen 24:66 . .The servant told Isaac all the things that he had done.

The steward's responsibility was to canvas Abraham's kin for a bridal candidate, engage the girl to marry Isaac, gain her consent to leave home, and then transport her safely back to Palestine. Next hurdle: Isaac's acceptance of the candidate. The marriage still isn't set in concrete yet until Isaac meets Becky and voluntarily accepts her to be his wife.

But this phase of the romance is out of the steward's jurisdiction. It's not his responsibility to make the couple like each other. He only had to bring them together. (cf. John 6:44)

● Gen 24:67a . . Isaac then brought her into the tent of his mother Sarah,

That tent was once Abraham's home. His choice to donate it for Becky's temporary quarters was very thoughtful, and must have meant a lot to her; since at this point, Becky was far from home, family, and friends; and her future was in doubt. Meeting one's future in-laws can prove a bit scary for some. To be given Sarah's tent was a very good indication that Isaac's dad was pleased, and that the girl was okay by him.

She, and her nurse, and her maidens would live in the donated  domicile until such a time as the marriage was performed, or (if Isaac didn't like her) until she was sent back home. There's more to marriage than just business; after all, marriage is a union of two people-- and people have feelings. It's one thing to do your duty, but it's quite another to feel loved-- and marriage really ought to have some love in it after all.

● Gen 24:67b . . and he took Rebecca as his wife.

The literal of that verse is: he took Rebecca and she became his wife. The meaning of "he took" Rebecca, is that Isaac accepted her. The meaning of "she became his wife" is that Rebecca accepted Isaac. So that the marriage was between two people who truly accepted each other; rather than between two people who were stuck with each other. It turned out that those two went together like a pair of old shoes: quite literally a match made in heaven.

● Gen 24:67c . . Isaac loved her,

The word for "love" is from 'ahab (aw-hab') and means: to have affection for. This instance is only the second time in the first twenty-four chapters of Genesis where that word appears. The other was in chapter 22, just prior to the Akedah, when God asked Abraham to "Take your son, your favored one, Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the heights that I will point out to you."

So Isaac genuinely loved Rebecca as a person just as much as Abraham had loved Isaac as a son. Their union wasn't just another arranged marriage like so many of the others in that day; but was truly a romance.

● Gen 24:67d . . and thus found comfort after his mother's death.

All too often, men experience very little happiness with their mothers during boyhood. A callous mom can easily become a boy's worst influence, and permanently warp his attitude towards women for the remainder of his life; even leading to male frigidity.

But Isaac's mom wasn't like that at all. Sarah was not only a good mother to Isaac, but she was also a really good buddy too. In spite of her domineering personality, Sarah and Isaac had somehow managed to become good friends; and her loss left a big hole in his heart. It would take a very special girl to repair that hole. Well, Rebecca was just the one to do it. She not only replaced Sarah in the matriarchy, but she also replaced Sarah as the female buddy in Isaac's life.


NOTE: Wasn't that a good story? Joseph's story is pretty good too. You know: Genesis is no country for a drudge. Only people with a heart can truly appreciate this book. For anybody else; it's just academic fodder for a bull session.
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Re: A Journey Thru Genesis
« Reply #180 on: May 23, 2019, 10:44:27 pm »
.
● Gen 24:65a . . and said to the servant: Who is that man walking in the field toward us? And the servant said: That is my master.

Well; the man approaching was much too young to be Abraham, and there was only one other person on the whole planet that Abraham's servant would ever call his master-- the heir apparent.

● Gen 24:65b . . So she took her veil and covered herself.

Becky's veil was a full body wrap, similar to a burqa; not just a stylish hijab or a cute little semi-transparent scarf in front of her face. In Akkadian, the bride on her wedding day was called kallatu kutumtu, (the veiled bride).

Also, in Akkadian; she was called pussumtu, (the veiled one), which means the same as kallatu, (bride). In that day, Rebecca's veil had both symbolic and socio-legal significance.

It was an unmistakable signal to Isaac that among all those ladies riding along with his dad's servant that day; the burqa-ette was to be his wife.

This meeting is interesting. We spent quite a bit of time viewing the character, the background, and the beauty of a really outstanding young woman in the beginning of this chapter. But it's all under wraps now in the presence of the groom. Becky is doing absolutely nothing to attract Isaac at this point. In fact, Isaac can't even see past the veil to what a gorgeous package of womanhood that Becky really is.

The anonymous steward who went north to speak with Becky on Isaac's behalf, will now speak with Isaac on Becky's behalf. Thus, Abraham's steward will be an ambassador for both Isaac and Rebecca; and when he's done, Becky will know all she needs to know at this point about Isaac, and Isaac will know all he needs to know at this point about Rebecca; even before they meet each other for the very first time.

● Gen 24:66 . .The servant told Isaac all the things that he had done.

The steward's responsibility was to canvas Abraham's kin for a bridal candidate, engage the girl to marry Isaac, gain her consent to leave home, and then transport her safely back to Palestine. Next hurdle: Isaac's acceptance of the candidate. The marriage still isn't set in concrete yet until Isaac meets Becky and voluntarily accepts her to be his wife.

But this phase of the romance is out of the steward's jurisdiction. It's not his responsibility to make the couple like each other. He only had to bring them together. (cf. John 6:44)

● Gen 24:67a . . Isaac then brought her into the tent of his mother Sarah,

That tent was once Abraham's home. His choice to donate it for Becky's temporary quarters was very thoughtful, and must have meant a lot to her; since at this point, Becky was far from home, family, and friends; and her future was in doubt. Meeting one's future in-laws can prove a bit scary for some. To be given Sarah's tent was a very good indication that Isaac's dad was pleased, and that the girl was okay by him.

She, and her nurse, and her maidens would live in the donated  domicile until such a time as the marriage was performed, or (if Isaac didn't like her) until she was sent back home. There's more to marriage than just business; after all, marriage is a union of two people-- and people have feelings. It's one thing to do your duty, but it's quite another to feel loved-- and marriage really ought to have some love in it after all.

● Gen 24:67b . . and he took Rebecca as his wife.

The literal of that verse is: he took Rebecca and she became his wife. The meaning of "he took" Rebecca, is that Isaac accepted her. The meaning of "she became his wife" is that Rebecca accepted Isaac. So that the marriage was between two people who truly accepted each other; rather than between two people who were stuck with each other. It turned out that those two went together like a pair of old shoes: quite literally a match made in heaven.

● Gen 24:67c . . Isaac loved her,

The word for "love" is from 'ahab (aw-hab') and means: to have affection for. This instance is only the second time in the first twenty-four chapters of Genesis where that word appears. The other was in chapter 22, just prior to the Akedah, when God asked Abraham to "Take your son, your favored one, Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the heights that I will point out to you."

So Isaac genuinely loved Rebecca as a person just as much as Abraham had loved Isaac as a son. Their union wasn't just another arranged marriage like so many of the others in that day; but was truly a romance.

● Gen 24:67d . . and thus found comfort after his mother's death.

All too often, men experience very little happiness with their mothers during boyhood. A callous mom can easily become a boy's worst influence, and permanently warp his attitude towards women for the remainder of his life; even leading to male frigidity.

But Isaac's mom wasn't like that at all. Sarah was not only a good mother to Isaac, but she was also a really good buddy too. In spite of her domineering personality, Sarah and Isaac had somehow managed to become good friends; and her loss left a big hole in his heart. It would take a very special girl to repair that hole. Well, Rebecca was just the one to do it. She not only replaced Sarah in the matriarchy, but she also replaced Sarah as the female buddy in Isaac's life.


NOTE: Wasn't that a good story? Joseph's story is pretty good too. You know: Genesis is no country for a drudge. Only people with a heart can truly appreciate this book. For anybody else; it's just academic fodder for a bull session.
_


You and Ted need to get together?

Blade
1 Cor 15:3-4.."For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:"

Acts 17:11.."These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so."
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Olde Tymer

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Re: A Journey Thru Genesis
« Reply #181 on: May 24, 2019, 07:09:36 am »
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● Gen 25:1 . . Abraham took another wife, whose name was Keturah.

According to 1Chrn 1:32, Ms. Keturah wasn't really a full-fledged wife as Sarah had been, but was a wife of a different color altogether. She was a piylegesh (pee-leh'-ghesh) which means: a mistress or a paramour; viz: a concubine. So that Gen 25:1 really should be translated: "Abraham took another woman"

It was considered okay in those days for men to sire children by concubines and nobody seemed to think much of it. But at Abraham's age!? Wow! Earlier, at Gen 17:17, Abraham considered himself much to old to father a child; and in truth, he was.

"By faith Abraham, even though he was past age-- and Sarah herself was barren --was enabled to become a father because he considered him faithful who had made the promise. And so from this one man, and he as good as dead, came descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as countless as the sand on the seashore." (Heb 11:11-12)

Not only was Sarah miraculously made fertile in her old age, but so was her husband Abraham. In fact his libido, and his fertility, were so well repaired that the old boy couldn't leave the ladies alone even after he was more than 140 years old! So the comment at Gen 24:1 wasn't meant to convey the idea that Abraham lacked vigor.

● Gen 25:2-4 . . She bore him Zimran, Jokshan, Medan, Midian, Ishbak, and Shuah. Jokshan begot Sheba and Dedan. The descendants of Dedan were the Asshurim, the Letushim, and the Leummim. The descendants of Midian were Ephah, Epher, Enoch, Abida, and Eldaah. All these were descendants of Keturah.

According to a web site called Mr. Showbiz, Tony Randall, the Odd Couple sitcom star, became a first-time father at age seventy-seven in May of 1997 when his wife, then twenty-seven-year-old Heather Harlan, gave birth to their daughter Julia. A second baby came in June 98. Mr. Randall would have been ninety-eight when the first one graduated from college in 2019 had he lived.

Others have brought children into the world during their later years too-- e.g. Clint Eastwood, Charlie Chaplin, and Cary Grant. Anthony Quinn had his thirteenth child at the age of eighty-one. Some men can father children late in life; although it's very risky. The chances for schizophrenia and other birth defects increase as men get older.

Keturah's age is uncertain. But she was obviously young enough to have children; and in that day, women retained their strength pretty far up into life. However, by the time Sarah was ninety, she was past menopause.

Where did Abraham find Keturah? Was she an Egyptian like Hagar? Was she maybe a local Canaanite; possibly from Ephron's clan, the guy who sold Abraham a plot for Sarah's cemetery? No. If Abraham wouldn't let Isaac marry a women of Canaan, then he sure wasn't going to sleep with one himself. Was she from Haran; Rebecca's home town? Nobody really knows and it doesn't even matter anyway. None of Keturah's children would share in the ownership of Eretz Israel-- only Isaac's progeny. It all went to him by Divine fiat.

● Gen 25:5 . . Abraham willed all that he owned to Isaac;

Abraham had already willed all that he owned to Isaac even before any of Keturah's boys were born. The servant told Becky's family so back in chapter 24. This verse is just to make sure nobody forgets that Isaac is the only son that really matters.

● Gen 25:6a . . but to Abraham's sons by concubines Abraham gave gifts while he was still living,

When Ishmael was cut loose back in chapter 21, there was no mention of gifts. In fact, they left home with hardly anything at all. Apparently, later on, Ishmael returned to visit his dad on occasion and Abraham eventually compensated him for the loss of his firstborn rights. Abraham's generosity towards his sons was a right thing to do.

"If anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for his immediate family, he has denied the faith and is worse than an infidel." (1Tim 5:8)

Rather than stipulate his sons' inheritances in a written will, Abraham took care of them all while he was still alive; probably to make sure there was no squabbling over his estate in probate after he was dead and thereby possibly jeopardizing Isaac's future.

● Gen 25:6b . . and he sent them away from his son Isaac eastward, to the land of the East.

The "land of the East" is a general name for Arabia, which stretched away to the southeast and east of the point where Abraham resided in the south of Palestine. The northern part of Arabia, which lay due east of Palestine, was formerly more fertile and populous than now.

Sending someone away is not really the same as driving them off; but more like a send-off; viz: a bon voyage (e.g. Gen 24:59). It's far more likely Abraham helped them all get settled outside of Canaan rather than leave them to the whims of fate. Once settled into their own territories, the other boys would be less inclined to muscle in on Isaac's turf or freeload off him in the event they fell onto hard times.
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by Ted T.
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Last post May 23, 2019, 10:58:18 pm
by patrick jane

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