Recalling the moment she walked down the aisle, my heart beating out of my chest, her eyes like deer in the headlights. About a third of the way up the aisle we make eye contact and the smiling face and sparkle of her eyes returns. My heart briefly stops and then proceeds to melt. The collective “ahhh” emanates across the room from the guests as the most beautiful gal on the planet floats towards me.
A few days later I would discover the entire time my wife and her father were in the back of the church waiting, as well as the trip down the aisle, he was cracking jokes and it was all she could do to keep a straight face. It probably wasn’t until my own daughter was born that I realized how much that moment was bearing down on my soon to be father-in-law. The fear of my failing her, the uncertainty of our futures all at risk with this unknown and untested young fellow.
Returning to Rebecca and Genesis 24 after the encounter at the well Eliezer prays again “Blessed be the Lord God of my master Abraham, who hath not left destitute my master of his mercy and his truth: I being in the way, the Lord led me to the house of my master’s brethren.” There was no chest pounding or ball spiking, no claims to “I did it, I found her”….there was humility. Eliezer is not a natural born Hebrew and yet he is worshipping the Lord God YHVH. Learning from Abraham and grafting himself into the ways of YHVH.
Now it’s time to meet the soon to be in-laws, the first is the brother. “And Rebekah had a brother, and his name was Laban (means white): and Laban ran out unto the man, unto the well. And it came to pass, when he saw the earring and bracelets upon his sister’s hands, and when he heard the words of Rebekah his sister, saying, Thus spake the man unto me; that he came unto the man; and, behold, he stood by the camels at the well. And he said, Come in, thou blessed of the Lord; wherefore standest thou without? for I have prepared the house, and room for the camels.”
Laban claims for himself that which belongs to his father, offers up flattery and angles to acquire gain without relationship. 2 Corinthians 11:13-15 “For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.”
This is the televangelist, word of faith, prosperity movement mentality that has invaded christendom. Jesus addresses the money changing (or grubbing) Pharisees in Matthew 23.27 “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness.” Laban, The Pharisees and the televangelists are all the same.
Verse 22 tells us of the gifts: “And it came to pass, as the camels had done drinking, that the man took a golden earring of half a shekel weight, and two bracelets for her hands of ten shekels weight of gold” The Hebrew shekel appears to have been 160 grains in the Troy measurement system, or 0.3646 Troy ounce, from the coins that have been found. The nose ring would have been about 0.2 ounce and the bracelets about 36.5 ounces. In 2013 gold reached an all-time high of $1794.10 an ounce, making the gift given here worth more than $65,800! No wonder they caught Laban’s eye.
Remember if you will from part 2 that I was broke. Broke as a joke. So broke I couldn’t pay attention. My car was nicknamed “The Ratmobile” as it was a hideous rust bucket with one door welded shut so it didn’t fall off. I was far from able to hoist a bridal price such as the on Abraham had given via Eliezer. I was doing good to post the cost of the engagement ring which looked more like a grain of sand than a diamond.
There is something more than just the outward offerings to seeing the depth of the person with whom you are dealing and that comes through conversation and experiencing life together. When meeting the in-laws they have not had the benefit of the conversations and the time spent together to see these qualities. We in verse 50 Eliezer gets permission to take Rebecca to Isaac “Then Laban and Bethuel answered and said, The thing proceedeth from the Lord: we cannot speak unto thee bad or good.” Of note too, here again, Laban is answering the request.
Another attempt at garnering more of the travelers wealth comes in verse 55 “And her brother and her mother said, Let the damsel abide with us a few days, at the least ten; after that she shall go. And he said unto them, Hinder me not, seeing the Lord hath prospered my way; send me away that I may go to my master.” Eliezer can see the scheming and games Laban was beginning and said he would have none of it.
Many believers want the blessings of YHVH and like the in-laws they want to drag their feet on the obedience to YHVH. They are looking to claim the riches of Yeshua’s salvation while denying the source of their existence, that being the Torah. I too lived like that for many years under the Greco-Roman theosophy. I could quote all sorts of fancy lines and scriptures laden with separation theology. When the truth of Romans 12:2 jumped from the page: “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”
The only way I can know what the perfect will of YHVH is to renew my mind. I have to undo what the world has done to my understanding of YHVH through his Word. And both meanings of the word “Word” applies here. Conforming is following the herd into the Greco-Roman influenced religious system which denies the Torah and breaks YHVH’s commands. These again are the lamps and the oil of the 10 virgins.
Rebecca finally makes it to her destination at the Well of Oath and to her husband to be. “And Rebekah lifted up (was taken in) her eyes (by the vision), and when she saw Isaac, she lighted (fell) off the camel. (the girl swooned) For she had said unto the servant, What man is this that walketh in the field to meet us? (who is that Hunk!) And the servant had said, It is my master: therefore she took a vail, and covered herself.”
Hebrew women didn’t normally wear veils, it was also not some local custom to wear veils or a requirement of modesty. We do not read of Sarah wearing a veil on a daily basis. The only customary use of a veil among Israelites had to do with wedding and betrothal procedures. Rebecca was letting Isaac know that she was the one the Father had chosen for him that she had consented to be his wife, she was willingly entering the betrothal.
Are you entering into your relationship to YHVH willing to seperate yourself from the world? I am not talking about working for your salvation, I am saying, are you willing to follow the marriage covenant of YHVH? Saying yes to Yeshua for salvation is the engagement, walking out the commitment and living the rest of you life in His house is the marriage.