Summary: A sermon on marriage and other decisions based on Ravi Zachariah's book.
Grandpa John was celebrating his 100th birthday and everybody complimented him on how athletic and well-preserved he appeared. "Gentlemen, I will tell you the secret of my success," he cackled. "I have been in the open air day after day for some 75 years now." The celebrants were impressed and asked how he managed to keep up his rigorous fitness regime. "Well, you see my wife and I were married 75 years ago. On our wedding night, we made a solemn pledge. Whenever we had a fight, the one who was proved wrong would go outside and take a walk."
Love is a many splendored thing and it’s at the center of what we’re talking about today. In honor of Valentine’s day we’re going to be looking at the story of Isaac and Rebekah. People find love in different ways and while Genesis 24 tells one, consider the way described by Ravi Zacharias in a poem.
Slippery ice, very thin,
Pretty girl tumbles in,
Saw a boy on the bank,
Gave a shriek, then she sank.
Boy on hand, heard her shout,
Jumped right in, pulled her out.
Now she’s his, very nice.
But she had to break the ice.
If you didn’t get it I’ll explain it to you later. We’re talking today about love and marriage. But as we look at the story of Isaac and Rebekah we’re also toing to see some elements that are important for a Christian to make a decision. You see the story of Issac and Rebekah is a way to find a spouse, a way that we’re going to see is foreign to our western mind. However we are also going to see within the story elements that we need to make decisions in our lives, characteristics of the people that we need to align ourselves with, and for those of us who are married the things that we should appreciate about our spouses.
Genesis 24:34-51, “So he said, ‘I am Abraham’s servant. The LORD has blessed my master abundantly, and he has become wealthy. He has given him sheep and cattle, silver and gold, menservants and maidservants, and camles and donkeys. My master’s wife Sarah has borne him a son in her old age, and he has given him everything he owns. And my master made me swear an oath, and aid, ‘You must not get a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, in whose land I live, but go to my father’s family and to my own clan, and get a wife for my son.’ Then I asked my master, ‘what if the woman will not come back with me?’ ‘He replied, ‘The Lord, before whom I have walked, will send his angel with you and make your journey a success, so that you can get a wife for my son from my own can and from my father’s family. Then, when you go to my clan, you will be released from my oath even if they refuse to give her to you-you will be released from my oath.’ ‘When I came to the spring today, I said, ‘OP LORD< God of my master Abraham, if you will, please grant success to the journey on which I have come. See, I am standing beside this spring; if a maiden comes out to draw water and I say to her, ‘Please let me dring a litlle water from your jar.” and if she says to me, ‘Drink, and I’ll draw water for your camels too,’ let her be the one the LORD has chosen for my master’s son.’ Before I finished praying in my heart, Rebekah came out, with her jar on her shoulder. She went down to the spring and drew water, and I said to ehr, ‘please give me a drink.’ She quickly lowered her jar from her shoulder and said, ‘Dringk, and I’ll water your camels too.; So I drank, and she watered the camels also. I asked her, ‘Whose daughter are you?’ She said, ‘The daughter of Bethuel son of Nahor, whom Milcah bor to him.’ Then I put the ring in her nose and the bracelets on her arms, and I bowed down and worshiped the LORD. I praise the LORD< the God of my master Abraham, who had led me on the right road to get the granddaughter of my master’s brother for his son. Now if you will show kindness and faithfulness to my master, tell me; and if not, tell me, so I may know which way to turn.’ Laban and Bethuel answered, ‘This is from the LORD; we can say nothing to you one way or the other. Here is REbekah; take her and go, and let her become the wife of your master’s son, as the LORD has directed.”