Journey Through The Scriptures

The Life of Isaac

Lesson 1: A Bride for Isaac, Part 1

(Scripture to Read: Genesis 24:1–33)

Of the three great patriarchs of Israel, Isaac undoubtedly did not have as dynamic or forceful a personality as his famous father, Abraham, or his famous son, Jacob. Isaac was even a passive player in the most wellknown incident of his life-the day when Abraham took him up Mount Moriah on what is now the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, bound him, and laid him on an altar in obedience to God (Genesis 22).

Interestingly, Isaac's reaction to coming within a knife's edge of dying was not recorded, though the ancient rabbis point out that it was one in a spirit of sacrifice with his father Abraham. But we can infer from his later life that this dramatic event strengthened his faith in God. Indeed, Isaac was a person of faith like his father and his son, even though like them, his faith was expressed in the midst of human flaws and mistakes. Isaac is an example of someone who, like most of us, is called upon simply to remain faithful even when not given a leading role to play.

Study Questions

  1. We studied Isaac's birth in our lessons on Abraham. Review Genesis 21:1-8 and note again the joy at Isaac's birth. How did his very name reflect his parents' joy?
  2. Why did Abraham make his servant take a solemn vow not to take a wife for Isaac from among the Canaanites (Genesis 24:1-9)?
  3. Abraham's servant also displayed faith in his search for Isaac's wife, and God heard his prayer (Genesis 24:12-14). Why do you think the answer came so quickly?
  4. Tell in your own words what Rebekah's eagerness to help a stranger reveals about her attitude and character as the woman who would stand beside Isaac in their life of faith.
  5. Can you describe Rebekah's family relationship to Abraham from the information given in verse 15 (see also verse 48 and Genesis 11:29)?

Something to Think About

It is hard for us today to imagine Isaac trusting someone else to choose his wife. But God also asks us to trust Him each day, in ways large and small that we do not always understand, and He is worthy of our faith!

Abraham's servant would not even eat until he had accomplished his mission. Compare his diligence to your own commitment to carry out important tasks others have entrusted to you.