November 16, 2009

Into the Tent

Genesis 24:61-67

Isaac brought her into the tent of his mother Sarah.
Genesis 24:67


Just as Abraham had to choose carefully in finding a grave for Sarah, he had to be careful in selecting a wife for Isaac. The marriage of his son also belonged to Abraham’s new obligations to the Lord. Not just any girl would do—and certainly not a local woman who was caught up in the pagan practices of Canaan. Isaac’s wife had to come from “back home,” but that wasn’t a matter of “keeping everything within the family.” When Rebekah left her home and abandoned her father’s house and all her familiar surroundings, she surrendered herself to a new future.

At a moment’s notice, Rebekah was asked to follow in Abraham’s footsteps, to become a disciple of the new way along with Isaac. They shared Sarah’s tent. Rebekah’s tent would be filled with Esau and Jacob’s laughter. Later she too would be buried in the cave alongside Sarah. In life and in death, Rebekah belonged to God and to no one else.

Years later Rebekah’s daughters-in-law Rachel and Leah would also leave home to join “the way of God” alongside Jacob (see Genesis 29-31).

Following Jesus is no less costly, for he asks us to love him first, even more than our loved ones. But he builds a secure home, filled with joy and nourishment that lasts forever. Come, then, into the “tent” Christ has built.

Thank you, Lord, for making me your disciple. Help me to be faithful and true to your call, in my living and dying, and to welcome others into your family. In Jesus, Amen.

About the author — Arie C. Leder

Dr. Arie C. Leder is the Martin J. Wyngaarden Senior Professor of Old Testament Studies at Calvin Theological Seminary in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He previously served as pastor at Ebenezer Christian Reformed Church, Trenton, Ontario, and with Christian Reformed World Missions in Latin America. He teaches courses on the Pentateuch and on historical books of the Old Testament.

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