Now Isaac had returned from Beer-lahai-roi and was dwelling in the Negeb. And Isaac went out to meditate in the field toward evening. And he lifted up his eyes and saw, and behold, there were camels coming. And Rebekah lifted up her eyes, and when she saw Isaac, she dismounted from the camel and said to the servant, “Who is that man, walking in the field to meet us?” The servant said, “It is my master.” So she took her veil and covered herself. And the servant told Isaac all the things that he had done. Then Isaac brought her into the tent of Sarah his mother and took Rebekah, and she became his wife, and he loved her. So Isaac was comforted after his mother’s death.
Abraham took another wife, whose name was Keturah. She bore him Zimran, J……All these were the children of Keturah. Abraham gave all he had to Isaac. But to the sons of his concubines Abraham gave gifts, and while he was still living he sent them away from his son Isaac, eastward to the east country.
Comment: We are obviously coming to the end of Abraham’s life. Isaac comes back from his own area to the centre of his father’s small ’empire’. He meets Rebekah and takes her to the tent of his now dead mother, indicating that she would now be the major female figure in what was to become his empire. Just so that we realize that Abraham was no plaster saint, like David, that other great figure in Jewish history, we see that Abraham, although in a sense faithful to Sarah, had a number of side line attachments. We know of his second wife Keturah and his time with Hagar but at the end of the section the word concubines (plural) shows that he was a worldly important guy in his time. Not that this is excusable (as I see it) but although the Bible gives us a ‘black and white’ way to live, we live in the grey! This reminds us to keep our living clean by God’s standards, but He is a forgiving God, and uses whom He chooses. There are rules for forgiveness!
Prayer: Thank You that You are a forgiving God and that You somehow get Your will done in spite of us.