Abraham is asked by God to sacrifice his first-born son, Isaac. I find it a bit interesting here; when told of the plan to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah, Abraham was quick to negotiate — to say the city should be saved if only a few righteous were found. Yet when asked to sacrifice his son, he acquiesces seemingly willingly.
So he takes Isaac up the mountain, assuring his son who is (rightfully) suspicious that it will all work out. Abraham builds an altar and fire, places his bound son on top of it, and is about to do as asked when he’s mercifully stopped.
As far as tests go, that one’s pretty brutal.
Then we move forward again, and Sarah has died. Abraham buries her and establishes for himself a de facto claim to the land.
Then Abraham decides he needs to find himself a wife for his son. So he sends off his servant to find a girl from his tribe rather than letting Isaac marry a local girl. So off the servant goes, and stops at a well. He prays for a suitable young woman to appear, that if she offers him water and waters his camels, she will be the one to take back to Isaac and lo and behold here comes Rebekah. Can I just say, I only WISH dating were that easy? ‘Cause y’all, I have been praying for years to find my soulmate and I got nothing to show for it. Maybe I need to hang out at more wells? Perhaps obtain a camel?
Right. Not the point here. Moving on.
Rebekah, from what little is told of her, seems lovely and suitable and so he finds her family and begins dealing with Laban, her brother. The servant relays his business and tells his tale of prayer and the appearance of Rebekah and Laban seems quite glad to negotiate for his sister’s marriage to Isaac, sight unseen.
Yet, I find it interesting here that it’s not entirely a done deal. Because although the servant deals primarily with Laban, yet before he leaves the call Rebekah and ask her if she is willing to go, and she answers yes.
Now of course we can’t know to what extent that was a formality, but it’s included that she was asked, she was given the opportunity to refuse. She didn’t. Unlike Sarah, who seemed to be dragged along on Abraham’s journey, she actually chose to take this next step. And so she becomes Isaac’s wife.