|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
24:10-28 Abraham's servant devoutly acknowledged God. We have leave to be particular in recommending our affairs to the care of Divine providence. He proposes a sign, not that he intended to proceed no further, if not gratified in it; but it is a prayer that God would provide a good wife for his young master; and that was a good prayer. She should be simple, industrious, humble, cheerful, serviceable, and hospitable. Whatever may be the fashion, common sense, as well as piety, tells us, these are the proper qualifications for a wife and mother; for one who is to be a companion to her husband, the manager of domestic concerns, and trusted to form the minds of children. When the steward came to seek a wife for his master, he did not go to places of amusement and sinful pleasure, and pray that he might meet one there, but to the well of water, expecting to find one there employed aright. He prayed that God would please to make his way in this matter plain and clear before him. Our times are in God's hand; not only events themselves, but the times of them. We must take heed of being over-bold in urging what God should do, lest the event should weaken our faith, rather than strengthen it. But God owned him by making his way clear. Rebekah, in all respects, answered the characters he sought for in the woman that was to be his master's wife. When she came to the well, she went down and filled her pitcher, and came up to go home with it. She did not stand to gaze upon the strange man his camels, but minded her business, and would not have been diverted from it but by an opportunity of doing good. She did not curiously or confidently enter into discourse with him, but answered him modestly. Being satisfied that the Lord had heard his prayer, he gave the damsel some ornaments worn in eastern countries; asking at the same time respecting her kindred. On learning that she was of his master's relations, he bowed down his head and worshipped, blessing God. His words were addressed to the Lord, but being spoken in the hearing of Rebekah, she could perceive who he was, and whence he came.
Verse 21. - And the man wondering at her - gazing with attention on her (LXX., Vulgate, Gesenius, Furst); amazed and astonished at her (Rosenmüller, Delitzsch, Keil, Lange, Calvin) - held his peace, to wit - i.e. that he might know - silence being the customary attitude for the soul in either expecting or receiving a Divine communication (cf. Leviticus 10:3; Psalm 39:2; Acts 11:18) - whether the Lord had made his journey prosperous or not. This inward rumination obviously took place while the whole scene was being enacted before his eyes - the beautiful young girl filling the water-troughs, and the thirsty camels sucking up the cooling drink. The loveliness of mind and body, both which he desired in Isaac's bride, was manifestly present in Rebekah; but still the questions remained to be determined, Was she one of Abraham's kindred, was she single? and would she follow him to Canaan? - points of moment to the solution of which he now proceeds.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And the man wondering at her,.... At her affability and courteousness to a stranger; at her humility and condescension to take upon her such a service; at her readiness, diligence, and laboriousness in it; and the quick dispatch she made; and at her expressions and conduct being so exactly agreeable to the token he desired to have; and at the providence of God in bringing him to this place so seasonably; and at the damsel, that she should come just at this time, and every way answer his expectations and desires:
held his peace, to wit; or to know, to think and consider further with himself:
whether, or "if"
the Lord had made his journey prosperous or not; or if not; he was musing and saying within himself, surely God had made his journey prosperous; or if not, how was it that such strange surprising circumstances should occur? or what else must be done by him? or what methods must be taken for the future.
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