Genesis 24:6, "And Abraham said unto him, Beware
thou that thou bring not my son thither again."
This morning, much of life varies from one's perspective.
Two people can look at an identical object (like a painting) and
walk away with completely different ideas of what they saw and
how to describe it. Sometimes, the description or report
of what they experienced do not contradict one another but focus
on a particular aspect that stood out to them. However,
even though the complexity of people's personalities can lead to
varied perspectives, there are some subjects that do not allow
for variance of perspective. This intolerance of
perspective on subjects stems from the fact that God has uttered
"His perspective" if you will. For instance, debate today
rages over issues like homosexuality, divorce, abortion, and
other modern social "questions." Yet, God has plainly
stated that these subjects are not a matter of perspective.
Rather, He calls homosexuality an abomination (Leviticus 18:22),
states His hatred for divorce (Malachi 2:16), and declares the
sanctity of life beginning in the womb (Jeremiah 1:5, Psalm
51:5). These social debates should not be considered a
matter of perspective. They are a matter of moral purity,
and God has clearly laid the commandments forth for us to
Our study verse sits in the midst of one of the richest Old
Testament chapters for types, shadows, and pictures. The
story of Genesis 24 is Abraham sending his eldest servant to the
"old home country" to find a wife for his son Isaac. This
servant eventually finds Rebekah at the well, meets her brother
Laban and the rest of the family, presents Rebekah with gifts,
and delivers her back to Canaan. The end of the chapter is
a beautiful scene of Isaac and Rebekah being joined together as
man and wife and the beginning of what the Bible describes as a
very loving marriage. While there are many rich pictures
set within this chapter, for the sake of time, we will briefly
mention the overarching them and move into the application of
our verse. The overarching theme of this story is the
purpose, direction, and providence of the Lord in sending out
His gospel servants to search for the bride. Unlike the
story, the bride of Christ is already His and will be with Him
without the aid of the gospel minister, but the minister's
burden is to seek her out to invite her to come unto her Husband
in Canaan's Land to visit with Him, abide with Him, and rest
One of the greatest challenges of the gospel minister in his
functions is to answer the question, "Am I going the right way?"
We may ask that question about what we are to preach from week
to week, where we are to go when invited, or even where we
should be labouring in a pastoral way. Every duty that a
minister has, there can be that nagging question, "Am I doing it
right? Is this the right course?" Many times, we
petition the Lord, "What wilt Thou have me to do?" We ask
in prayer for guidance for the sermon to preach, the people to
preach to, and the right way to go about it.
The servant on this occasion asks Abraham a question about the
task before him. He is being charged with one of the
gravest responsibilities that a servant could have (finding the
master's son's wife), and he wants to fully know how far his
responsibility lies. The question is, "What if she won't
come? Do I bring Isaac to her?" Abraham's response
is the verse before us. The short version is unequivocally
"no, that is not an option." Under no circumstances was
Isaac to be taken out of Canaan to Ur of the Chaldees or the
region of Mesopotamia. It is that thought that should
charge the minister today in his duties before his Master in
Notice that Abraham's response includes the word "again" in it.
He tells the servant not to bring Isaac there "again."
That statement says that Isaac has been there before but is not
to be there anymore. Under no circumstances was the
servant given liberty to affect such a thing. Later in
verse 8, Abraham clearly states that the woman's unwillingness
to go with him cleared him in the matter, and he reiterates the
point of not bringing Isaac to that place again. So, the
servant's request elicits a strong warning from his master, and
the repeated warning shows us the gravity by which Abraham
prohibited this action. What is the point today? How
should such a warning effect the gospel minister in his actions
and decisions today?
In the story, Isaac is symbolic and representative of Christ,
and the Father (Abraham) has strictly forbidden the ministry
from bringing Christ down to the people. Rather, the
minister is to seek to encourage the people up to Christ (in a
fellowship way). He is searching for Rebekah to tell her
about the husband that she does not yet know about. He
desires to adorn her with earrings and bracelets from the
Husband that she has not yet seen. Furthermore, he desires
leadership by the Spirit to find the woman that is willing to
give extra time and service by not only giving him water but
also willing to "go the extra mile" (hungering and thirsting
In today's culture, unfortunately, we see far too often the
reverse mindset. Instead of encouraging people to go where
their Husband is (Canaan's Land - the church), they are catering
Christ to where the people are. Instead of proclaiming the
finished work of Christ with Him triumphantly sitting upon His
throne in heaven, they bring Him back down in their preaching -
crucifying Him afresh - by declaring an unfinished work of
salvation that Christ did not accomplish. Furthermore,
they conform the church's look to however it best pleases the
people. If something will help "draw them in," then they
will unflinchingly do it in the name of Christ. Such
behaviour is bringing Christ back down rather than encouraging
people up the mountain and through the strait gate to visit with
Christ where He is.
So, the perspective by many today is that the doctrine,
practice, and order of the church should cater to the people
rather than the people honour and obey the dictates of Christ.
Some will even proudly say that they have a "better perspective"
on what real Christianity is all about. Their new way of
"the living and fluid church" has finally overtaken that
outdated manner of worship that is so dry and dead. Such
behaviour and way of thinking flies contrary to what Abraham
told his servant and what the Lord requires of His servants
today. The encouragement of the Lord's people to visit
with Christ should be done honestly, fervently, and prayerfully.
However, there is a line that cannot be crossed. We cannot
bring Christ there. We must go up to Him. The church
- and what she believes and stands for - cannot be handled in
"any way that we wish." We can only obey the command of
the Master to search out the wife and bring her to His Son.
Since so often today people are catered to rather than
encouraged to obey the Saviour, what would one expect the end
product to be? What happens when parents cater to their
children rather than commanding their children to obey them and
follow the rules of the house? The end result is spoiled
children that expect their parents to do what they say.
The end result of our scenario is spoiled Christians that expect
the church and her ways to revolve around them. One of the
great contagions of our day is that people's schedules are
catered to far too often. People do not bat an eye anymore
when a vacation takes them away from the house of God.
People mind less than they did before when matters of life (that
do not pertain to health issues and things of that nature) take
the place of regular worship in the schedule of life. Our
lives should revolve around our service to God, and since public
worship is a must (John 4:22-24), then we must have our lives
revolve around church. Yet, too many have church revolving
around their lives.
Abraham considered it unconscionable to bring Isaac to
Mesopotamia, and we should consider it unconscionable today to
do things that dishonour Christ. By dishonouring Him, we
bring Him down (symbolically) by what we do and say. Our
doctrine should extol the position that He occupies. Our
practice should properly adorn our doctrine and further beautify
the position of Christ. Our order and conduct should show
forth that we appreciate His gifts and desire to meet with Him.
Lose any of those things, and we act like a woman that would not
have followed the servant back to Isaac. However, by doing
these things, we act honourably like Rebekah and enjoy sweet
times with our Husband Jesus in the land of rest. Contrary
to modern man’s thinking, spiritual matters such as these are
not a matter of perspective. God requires them.
May we go to where He is in fellowship, and may every moment
with Him be the sweetest times of our lives.