Tuesday 10 November 2020

Bible Book:

'I will make you swear by the LORD, the God of heaven and earth, that you will not get a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, among whom I live, but will go to my country and to my kindred and get a wife for my son Isaac.' (vs. 3-4)

Genesis 24: 1-9, 62-67 Tuesday 10 November 2020

Psalm 21:1-7


We have moved on a generation from yesterday’s passage, and now it is Abraham’s future daughter-in-law Rebekah who is the focus as she repeats the same journey he made years earlier. In the previous passages about Abraham we read about the difficulties he faced and the times when he got things wrong. But when it comes to Rebekah, the story seems almost too simple. She knew what she had to do and she did it. It certainly shows her strength of character which is apparent throughout her life, but the almost too-perfect account does leave me wanting to know more about her.

And this is so often the case with women in the Bible, we learn how perfect they are as daughters, wives and mothers, but we don’t get to see their real selves with strengths and flaws. We can know of Abraham’s mistakes on his journey, but we need to believe Rebekah’s was the simple journey of a dutiful daughter and future wife. Does this put too much pressure on woman today, meaning they are reluctant to share what’s troubling them because they cannot appear less than perfect?

Fortunately in this case, as the story unfolds we see more of the decisive nature of Rebekah’s character as we learn that it is she, rather than her husband, who will have the greatest impact on the future of their descendants. She is the one who will receive an oracle from God about their sons, and she is the one who ensures Jacob receives the birthright. Her position in the family becomes so important that Jacob later identifies himself as “Rebekah’s son” (Genesis 29:12) with no reference to who his father is.

From this dutiful beginning Rebekah becomes an influential figure and I’m so glad we are able to see her full potential. But there are many women – in the Bible and today – that we continue to underestimate. We need to see them as more than as an adjunct to a man and instead as multi-faceted individuals with strengths and weaknesses. Perhaps then we can finally create a world in which all women are encouraged to achieve their full potential.


To Ponder:

  • Is there a woman in the Bible that you would like to know more about?
  • How can we make sure women realise their full potential today?
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