Genesis 24:59
And they sent away Rebekah their sister, and her nurse, and Abraham's servant, and his men.
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(59) Their sister.—Bethuel may have had other sons, though Laban only is mentioned.

Her nurse.—How dear Deborah was, first to Rebekah, and afterwards to Jacob, may be seen by the lamentation at her death (Genesis 35:8).

Genesis 24:59. Rebekah and her nurse — Deborah, as appears from chap. Genesis 35:8; where we learn that she was held in great esteem, as indeed nurses in general were in ancient times, both in Asia and in Greece.24:54-67 Abraham's servant, as one that chose his work before his pleasure, was for hastening home. Lingering and loitering no way become a wise and good man who is faithful to his duty. As children ought not to marry without their parents' consent, so parents ought not to marry them without their own. Rebekah consented, not only to go, but to go at once. The goodness of Rebekah's character shows there was nothing wrong in her answer, though it be not agreeable to modern customs among us. We may hope that she had such an idea of the religion and godliness in the family she was to go to, as made her willing to forget her own people and her father's house. Her friends dismiss her with suitable attendants, and with hearty good wishes. They blessed Rebekah. When our relations are entering into a new condition, we ought by prayer to commend them to the blessing and grace of God. Isaac was well employed when he met Rebekah. He went out to take the advantage of a silent evening, and a solitary place, for meditation and prayer; those divine exercises by which we converse with God and our own hearts. Holy souls love retirement; it will do us good to be often alone, if rightly employed; and we are never less alone than when alone. Observe what an affectionate son Isaac was: it was about three years since his mother died, and yet he was not, till now, comforted. See also what an affectionate husband he was to his wife. Dutiful sons promise fair to be affectionate husbands; he that fills up his first station in life with honour, is likely to do the same in those that follow.The servant's return with Rebekah. So plain an interposition of Providence admits of no refusal on the part of those who revere the Lord. Bethuel now appears as a concurring party. Laban, as the full brother of Rebekah, has a voice in the disposal of her hand; but the father only has the power to ratify the contract. The patriarch's servant first bows in acknowledgment to the Lord, who had now manifested his approval of the choice he had made, and then proceeds to distribute costly gifts to the bride, and to her brother and mother. Now at length the thankful guest partakes of the fare set before him along with his entertainers, and after the night's repose requests to be dismissed. "A few days;" perhaps a week or ten days. The mother and brother naturally plead for a little time to prepare for parting with Rebekah. They could not expect the servant, however, to stay months.

"Inquire at her mouth." This is the only free choice in the matter that seems to be given to Rebekah. Her consent may have been modestly indicated, before her family ratified the contract. It is plain, however, that it was thought proper that the parents should receive and decide upon a proposal of marriage. The extent to which the maiden's inclinations would be consulted would depend very much on the custom of the country, and the intelligence and good feeling of the parents. In later times the custom became very arbitrary. Rebekah's decision shows that she concurred in the consent of her relatives. "And her nurse." Her name, we learn afterward Genesis 35:8, was Deborah. The nurse accompanied the bride as her confidential adviser and faithful attendant, and died in her service; a beautiful trait of ancient manners. The blessing consists in a boundless offspring, and the upper hand over their enemies. These are indicative of a thin population, and a comparatively rude state of society. "And her damsels." We here learn, again, incidentally, that Rebekah had more female attendants than her nurse.

53. And the servant brought forth jewels of silver, and … gold—These are the usual articles, with money, that form a woman's dowry among the pastoral tribes. Rebekah was betrothed and accompanied the servant to Canaan. Her nurse was Deborah, by comparing Genesis 35:8. In this corrupt family, the mother and the nurse are two distinct persons; but in Abraham’s pious family there was no such principle or practice. See Genesis 21:7. And they sent away Rebekah their sister,.... Not in a pet or angry humour, but with good will; they agreed she should go, and took their leave in a very honourable and affectionate manner. This is to be understood of her brother Laban, and of other brethren and sisters she might have; though by the connection of the words with the preceding, they seem to design her brother and mother, who spoke last; and probably all her relations are meant, who call her their sister, because so nearly related to them:

and her nurse: who had been her nurse in former times, as Aben Ezra observes, in her infancy, for whom she had a particular affection, as is often the case; her name was Deborah, as appears from Genesis 35:8,

and Abraham's servant, and his men; who were dismissed in an handsome manner by the family.

And they sent away Rebekah their sister, and her nurse, and Abraham's servant, and his men.
59. their sister] Laban is thus referred to as the head of the family; cf. “your daughter” in Genesis 34:8.

her nurse] i.e. her special personal attendant; cf. Genesis 29:24; Genesis 29:29. The name of the nurse appears in Genesis 35:8 as Deborah.

and his men] The servant’s retinue, mentioned in Genesis 24:32; see note on Genesis 24:10.After receiving their assent, the servant first of all offered thanks to Jehovah with the deepest reverence; he then gave the remaining presents to the bride, and to her relations (brother and mother); and after everything was finished, partook of the food provided.
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