23 November 2012

Genesis 24:22-49

"Speak on" (v. 33)


The lengthy speech in this passage (verses 34-39) tells us nothing new because it has all been said before. To our eye it appears to be lengthy, but in the ancient world they would have thought very differently.

To be able to speak competently, with authority and intelligibly was to people a sign of good education and training. Listeners paid attention not only to what was being said, but to the way it was being spoken. The purpose of this long speech is to impress Rebekah's relatives with God's visible guidance, without passing over the material benefits, and so to force them to the only possible conclusion.

To Ponder

  • How does this passage affect you?
  • Do you find it hard to listen to many words?
  • How does God guide you?

Bible notes author

The Revd Richard Teal

Richard Teal is a Methodist minister currently serving as chair of the Cumbria Methodist District. He has a deep interest in ecumenical relationships, Church growth and liturgy.