What does Genesis 24:6 mean?
ESV: Abraham said to him, “See to it that you do not take my son back there.
NIV: Make sure that you do not take my son back there,' Abraham said.
NASB: Then Abraham said to him, 'Beware that you do not take my son back there!
CSB: Abraham answered him, "Make sure that you don't take my son back there.
NLT: No!' Abraham responded. 'Be careful never to take my son there.
KJV: And Abraham said unto him, Beware thou that thou bring not my son thither again.
Verse Commentary:
Abraham has asked his servant to swear to find a wife for his son Isaac among his extended family back in his old homeland. The servant has asked what to do if a woman cannot be found who is willing to live in Canaan. Should Isaac move to Abraham's old homeland to live in order to be married to one of the women of his extended family? That's a reasonable question, since Abraham is so absolutely set on Isaac marrying a woman from that region.

Here Abraham makes his position clear: in no uncertain terms, Isaac cannot be allowed to go to Mesopotamia. In fact, Abraham instructs the servant not to take Isaac back to that land. Isaac's place is in the Promised Land of Canaan. This is the home of Abraham's future offspring—period. Isaac must not be allowed to leave and, by implication, risk settling outside of Canaan among Abraham's extended family.

Abraham has established why this mission is so critical. Isaac must not marry into a Canaanite family and thus be assimilated into the Canaanite people. This is a spiritual issue, not a racial one: Abraham does not want to risk the identity of Abraham's descendants as God's chosen ones. But Isaac also must not return to Abraham's people and settle outside of the land of promise, which would also risk the family's loss of identity as those who belong to God.

Only one path would work: Isaac must marry a woman from Abraham's people and also live in the land of promise as a people living among, but separate from, the Canaanites.
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 4/22/2024 7:52:00 AM
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