What does Genesis 24:4 mean?
ESV: but will go to my country and to my kindred, and take a wife for my son Isaac."
NIV: but will go to my country and my own relatives and get a wife for my son Isaac."
NASB: but you will go to my country and to my relatives, and take a wife for my son Isaac.'
CSB: but will go to my land and my family to take a wife for my son Isaac."
NLT: Go instead to my homeland, to my relatives, and find a wife there for my son Isaac.'
KJV: But thou shalt go unto my country, and to my kindred, and take a wife unto my son Isaac.
NKJV: but you shall go to my country and to my family, and take a wife for my son Isaac.”
Verse Commentary:
In the previous verse, Abraham asked his most trusted servant to swear an oath. This promise was to not allow his son Isaac to take a wife from among the local, Canaanite women. Apparently afraid that he might die before Isaac could be married, Abraham further asks his servant to swear to find a wife for Isaac among the women of Abraham's old homeland and extended family.

Why is Abraham so urgent about this request? He is aware of God's promise to make from him a great people who will belong to the Lord. This promise from God was also to give Abraham's offspring the land of Canaan, as their own possession. He apparently does not want Isaac to marry a Canaanite woman and to begin to assimilate into the Canaanite people as one of them. He is concerned, even in this first generation, that God's people maintain a separate and distinct identity from the people of the land of Canaan.

Later, the Israelites will be officially commanded by God not to intermarry with the people of the land of Canaan (Deuteronomy 7:1–4). Then, as now, the issue has nothing to do with race. Rather, the concern is over faith—avoiding the particularly wicked practices of the Canaanite people.
Verse Context:
Genesis 24:1–9 describes an urgent conversation between Abraham and his most trusted servant. Abraham is asking the servant to swear an oath to find a wife for Isaac from among his own people in Mesopotamia. The servant must not allow Isaac either to marry into a Canaanite family or to leave the promised land of Canaan. With the understanding that he will be released from the oath if no young woman will agree to return with him, the servant swears to find Isaac a wife.
Chapter Summary:
Abraham asks his most trusted servant to travel to his former homeland to find a wife for his son Isaac. Swearing to do so, the servant arrives at the city of Nahor and asks the Lord to show him which young women is appointed for Isaac. Finding Rebekah, the very granddaughter of Abraham's brother Nahor, the servant reveals the reason for his journey to her family. Her father Bethuel and brother Laban agree to allow Rebekah to travel to Canaan and marry Isaac, which she does.
Chapter Context:
Genesis 24 takes place a few years after Sarah has died. Abraham becomes urgent to find Isaac a wife, not among the women of Canaan, but from his own people back in Mesopotamia. His trusted servant, sent to accomplish this mission with the help of the Lord, eventually returns with Rebekah, the granddaughter of Abraham's own brother. Isaac is married to her at the age of 40. Abraham's death is recorded in the following chapter.
Book Summary:
The book of Genesis establishes fundamental truths about God. Among these are His role as the Creator, His holiness, His hatred of sin, His love for mankind, and His willingness to provide for our redemption. We learn not only where mankind has come from, but why the world is in its present form. The book also presents the establishment of Israel, God's chosen people. Many of the principles given in other parts of Scripture depend on the basic ideas presented here in the book of Genesis. Within the framework of the Bible, Genesis explains the bare-bones history of the universe leading up to the captivity of Israel in Egypt, setting the stage for the book of Exodus.
Accessed 7/21/2024 1:28:17 PM
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