Genesis 24 - The Call

Genesis 24  •  5 min. read  •  grade level: 8
The Call
It has pleased God to give us in Abraham's history the fundamental principles of faith, in all the relations of man with God on the ground of pure grace, without law.
In chapter 22 we have a most complete reference to Christ and His death, as the Lord Himself shows in John 8:5656Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad. (John 8:56). Abraham offers up his son Isaac, and receives him back again through death "in a figure." Heb. 11:1919Accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a figure. (Hebrews 11:19). This act represents in type the resurrection of Christ, who becomes, as Isaac was, the heir of all the goods of His Father, which He can now share with His bride. In this way Rebekah becomes a type of the Church, and, in answering the call, she is an example for each and every Christian.
Scripture exalts the Person of Christ, whether His fullness be portrayed in type and shadow, as in the Old Testament, or in Himself, as the sent One of the Father, as seen in the New, God manifest in flesh, dwelling amongst us here in this world.
In this chapter, Eliezer, a type of the Holy Ghost, is sent by Abraham to procure a bride for his only son. Isaac does not go himself, nor does Christ return from heaven to choose a bride. The bride must go to the land of promise.
As we trace Eliezer's path from the father's house to that distant land, and then escorting the bride back again across a lonely country, we see the features of the Holy Spirit's work, and the way in which a soul is conducted under His guidance. All the goods of his master are under his control, but they all belong to Isaac who is the heir. Notice how he was cast upon God from beginning to end, how he made known the greatness and glories of Isaac, giving Rebekah, in the jewels and presents, a foretaste of the joyous portion that lay before her. When the blessing is known, thanksgiving springs up from the gladdened heart of the servant, and is followed by the manifestation of entire and exclusive devotion to his master's interest and service. He will not eat until he has told his errand. Do we not learn in this a leading principle in the Holy Spirit's operations? He does not act independently; all He does, and all He communicates, is by and from the Scriptures of truth, and according to what is written therein.
As we follow the servant thus, we see the purpose of God carried out by the Holy Spirit, and we become familiar with the ways of Him, who takes of the things of Christ and shows them unto us. At the same time He unfolds to us God's way of dealing with us, preparing our path and leading us into all truth, as we journey on to that blessed moment when we shall hear the Bridegroom's voice.
It is good to hear and to feel that God Himself is making everything ready beforehand, so that we have only to follow on in a path prepared by Him. But Rebekah herself must be tested. A proposition of delay is raised. Granted that she is to be for Isaac in the end, is it necessary that she should be for him now? Is there not room for an intervening period, during which the servant's guidance may be refused (and he surely grieved), while Rebekah weakly yields to the claims of nature, kindred and the world? Will Rebekah consent to this? What about the "ten days"? She has heard, has believed the servant's report concerning him, whom, not having seen, she loves. She judges Isaac worthy of a full and instant surrender of herself to the leading of his devoted servant.
Beloved brethren, is there not a proposition of delay likewise made in our case? Granted that we are to be fully for our risen Lord, when resting with Him in glory, what about the possible "ten days" of our sojourn in the scene of His past sorrow and present rejection? Very touchingly He told the Father (John 17), "I am glorified in them." Shall we not, under the constraint of His love, with Rebekah-like decision and promptitude, yield ourselves up to the present guidance and control of the Holy Spirit, whose office it is to glorify the Lord Jesus? He will surely do this in and by us if we do not oppose and grieve Him. It may well occur to our hearts in this connection, that Abraham's servant did not, could not, tell Rebekah how Isaac had "poured forth his soul unto death" that she might live and be his.
May our hearts, beloved brethren, impel us to this blessed, instant subjection, while we await His very near coming for us! For we have not only the bright prospect of heaven before us, but the Lord says, "Surely I come quickly." He Himself is coming to take us into the Father's house. The Spirit says, "Come." What is the spontaneous response of our hearts? Does not the Bride say, "Come"? Have we individually the bridal affections, produced by the Holy Spirit, which can join in the Spirit's cry, and say, "Even so, come, Lord Jesus"? May it be so with us! As it has been said by another, "The Christian who is not spiritual, but rather worldly, has a sorrowful lot; if his heart hangs back from following the Lord, he is unhappy; the spiritual things which ought to have constituted his joy, produce reproaches in his heart when he turns towards them. But we have the grace of Him who calls us, and who leads us, if we are faithful, in a uniform path, `for His name's sake.'" And how bright the future, to be forever with the Lord! W. Lowe