What does Genesis 24:49 mean?
ESV: Now then, if you are going to show steadfast love and faithfulness to my master, tell me; and if not, tell me, that I may turn to the right hand or to the left.”
NIV: 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.'
NASB: So now if you are going to deal kindly and truthfully with my master, tell me; and if not, tell me now, so that I may turn to the right or the left.'
CSB: Now, if you are going to show kindness and faithfulness to my master, tell me; if not, tell me, and I will go elsewhere."
NLT: So tell me — will you or won’t you show unfailing love and faithfulness to my master? Please tell me yes or no, and then I’ll know what to do next.'
KJV: And now if ye will deal kindly and truly with my master, tell me: and if not, tell me; that I may turn to the right hand, or to the left.
Verse Commentary:
Abraham's servant finally reaches the end of his story. He has made his case for why they should agree to allow Rebekah to return with him to Canaan and marry Abraham's son Isaac. First, Abraham and, by extension, Isaac, are blessed by God and extremely wealthy. Second, the Lord had shown the servant that Rebekah was the girl appointed to marry Isaac by meeting the servant's test exactly. Finally, the Lord had guided the servant straight to Abraham's immediate family. Clearly, this is meant to be.

So the servant asks the question, perhaps with a bit of manipulation: Are you going to show steadfast love and faithfulness to my master? He uses the same language he has used to describe how God has treated Abraham. Will Abraham's family members also treat him with kindness and good faith? If not, they should tell him so that he can take his search elsewhere.

Their positive response in the next verse may have been hasty, as the following verses will show. It would have been difficult to say no to the servant's question after hearing his remarkable story, but perhaps Laban and his father were not yet fully ready to let her go.
Verse Context:
Genesis 24:28–59 describes how Abraham's servant, confident he has found God's intended woman for Abraham's son, approaches Rebekah's family to ask for her hand in marriage to Isaac. After being welcomed into their household, the servant tells, in great detail, the story of how God has lead him to Rebekah and their home. Rebekah's father and brother quickly agree that they must allow this marriage to happen. After a bit of negotiation the next morning about when Rebekah will travel to Canaan, Rebekah agrees to leave that very day.
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 4/22/2024 9:02:04 AM
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