Do you believe it is tough to be a female in our society? Do you believe men have advantages that women do not? If so, are you thankful for what women do have? Are you thankful for what females in our society do not have to endure?
Rebekah was a young, unmarried female living in Mesopotamia. One day she went to the spring to draw water and she drew water for a strange man who was at the spring. As you read what happened next, think about the drastic change that suddenly occurred in Rebekah’s life. Would this happen in our society?
Gen. 24:29 Now Rebekah had a brother whose name was Laban; and Laban ran outside to the man at the spring.
Gen. 24:30 When he saw the ring and the bracelets on his sister’s wrists, and when he heard the words of Rebekah his sister, saying, “This is what the man said to me,” he went to the man; and behold, he was standing by the camels at the spring.
Gen. 24:31 And he said, “Come in, blessed of the LORD! Why do you stand outside since I have prepared the house, and a place for the camels?”
Gen. 24:32 So the man entered the house. Then Laban unloaded the camels, and he gave straw and feed to the camels, and water to wash his feet and the feet of the men who were with him.
Gen. 24:33 But when food was set before him to eat, he said, “I will not eat until I have told my business.” And he said, “Speak on.”
Gen. 24:34 So he said, “I am Abraham’s servant.
Gen. 24:35 “The LORD has greatly blessed my master, so that he has become rich; and He has given him flocks and herds, and silver and gold, and servants and maids, and camels and donkeys.
Gen. 24:36 “Now Sarah my master’s wife bore a son to my master in her old age, and he has given him all that he has.
Gen. 24:37 “My master made me swear, saying, ‘You shall not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, in whose land I live;
Gen. 24:38 but you shall go to my father’s house and to my relatives, and take a wife for my son.’
Gen. 24:39 “I said to my master, ‘Suppose the woman does not follow me.’
Gen. 24:40 “He said to me, ‘The LORD, before whom I have walked, will send His angel with you to make your journey successful, and you will take a wife for my son from my relatives and from my father’s house;
Gen. 24:41 then you will be free from my oath, when you come to my relatives; and if they do not give her to you, you will be free from my oath.’
Gen. 24:42 ¶ “So I came today to the spring, and said, ‘O LORD, the God of my master Abraham, if now You will make my journey on which I go successful;
Gen. 24:43 behold, I am standing by the spring, and may it be that the maiden who comes out to draw, and to whom I say, “Please let me drink a little water from your jar”;
Gen. 24:44 and she will say to me, “You drink, and I will draw for your camels also”; let her be the woman whom the LORD has appointed for my master’s son.’
Gen. 24:45 ¶ “Before I had finished speaking in my heart, behold, Rebekah came out with her jar on her shoulder, and went down to the spring and drew, and I said to her, ‘Please let me drink.’
Gen. 24:46 “She quickly lowered her jar from her shoulder, and said, ‘Drink, and I will water your camels also’; so I drank, and she watered the camels also.
Gen. 24:47 “Then I asked her, and said, ‘Whose daughter are you?’ And she said, ‘The daughter of Bethuel, Nahor’s son, whom Milcah bore to him’; and I put the ring on her nose, and the bracelets on her wrists.
Gen. 24:48 “And I bowed low and worshiped the LORD, and blessed the LORD, the God of my master Abraham, who had guided me in the right way to take the daughter of my master’s kinsman for his son.
Gen. 24:49 “So now if you are going to deal kindly and truly with my master, tell me; and if not, let me know, that I may turn to the right hand or the left.”
Gen. 24:50 ¶ Then Laban and Bethuel replied, “The matter comes from the LORD; so we cannot speak to you bad or good.
Gen. 24:51 “Here is Rebekah before you, take her and go, and let her be the wife of your master’s son, as the LORD has spoken.”
Gen. 24:52 ¶ When Abraham’s servant heard their words, he bowed himself to the ground before the LORD.
Gen. 24:53 The servant brought out articles of silver and articles of gold, and garments, and gave them to Rebekah; he also gave precious things to her brother and to her mother.
Gen. 24:55 But her brother and her mother said, “Let the girl stay with us a few days, say ten; afterward she may go.”
Gen. 24:56 He said to them, “Do not delay me, since the LORD has prospered my way. Send me away that I may go to my master.”
Gen. 24:57 And they said, “We will call the girl and consult her wishes.”
Gen. 24:58 Then they called Rebekah and said to her, “Will you go with this man?” And she said, “I will go.”
Gen. 24:59 Thus they sent away their sister Rebekah and her nurse with Abraham’s servant and his men.
Gen. 24:60 They blessed Rebekah and said to her,
“May you, our sister,
Become thousands of ten thousands,
And may your descendants possess
The gate of those who hate them.”
Gen. 24:61 Then Rebekah arose with her maids, and they mounted the camels and followed the man. So the servant took Rebekah and departed.
Gen. 24:62 ¶ Now Isaac had come from going to Beer-lahai-roi; for he was living in the Negev.
Gen. 24:63 Isaac went out to meditate in the field toward evening; and he lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, camels were coming.
Gen. 24:64 Rebekah lifted up her eyes, and when she saw Isaac she dismounted from the camel.
Gen. 24:65 She said to the servant, “Who is that man walking in the field to meet us?” And the servant said, “He is my master.” Then she took her veil and covered herself.
Gen. 24:66 The servant told Isaac all the things that he had done.
Gen. 24:67 Then Isaac brought her into his mother Sarah’s tent, and he took Rebekah, and she became his wife, and he loved her; thus Isaac was comforted after his mother’s death.
Put yourself in Rebekah’s place. Rebekah was living life safe in her father’s house. One day a stranger arrived unannounced. The next day she left her family, never to see them again, and went with this stranger to become the wife of a man she had never met. What was this like for Rebekah? What was it like to travel to a foreign land under the care of a complete stranger? What was it like to become the wife of a man she had never met? We know the end of the story and we know it ended well, but when Rebekah left home, how confident was she that it was going to end well?
Would this happen to your sister or your daughter? If you are a female, would this happen to you? Being a female certainly has some disadvantages in our society; for example, females need to worry about physical safety in ways that males do not. However, being a male also has its disadvantages. There is nothing wrong with identifying the disadvantages we face in life; but as we go through life, it is helpful to be thankful for what we do not have to endure. Genesis 24 gives us a glimpse into what it was like being a female in Mesopotamia 4,000 years ago and perhaps this should encourage us that being a female in our society is not so bad after all.
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