The twenty-fourth chapter of Genesis provides a detailed account of Isaac's marriage, which reflects the customs and practices still prevalent in the East. Rather than consulting directly with his son, the most interested party, Abraham seeks the counsel of Eliezer, the elder and trusted steward of his household, to find a suitable wife for Isaac, the heir of the promise. Eliezer is bound by a solemn oath to faithfully carry out this mission and is sent on a long journey to Mesopotamia, among Abraham's kindred.
Embarking on his mission with ample provisions for the trip, Eliezer arrives safely at the city of Nahor. He positions himself by a well outside the city gate, where it was customary for women to gather for water, a practice that continues in the region to this day. The illustration beautifully portrays him seated by the well's curb, with his camels in the distance. Amidst the significance of his task, Eliezer's piety shines through as he offers a heartfelt prayer, seeking divine guidance. His plea is that the young woman who responds kindly to his request for water be the one destined by the Lord to become Isaac's wife.
Indeed, Eliezer's prayer is answered when the first maiden he encounters, Rebekah, the daughter of Bethuel, Abraham's nephew, fulfills his request and even goes beyond in her graciousness. She possesses all the qualities Eliezer deems necessary for Isaac's wife: a pleasing exterior, a kind disposition, and the approval of God.
Upon returning home, Rebekah shares the extraordinary encounter with her family, and Laban, her brother, hastens to bring Eliezer to their house. Eliezer is warmly welcomed and provided for, but he refuses to partake in food until he explains the purpose of his journey and how the Lord answered his prayer, gaining the consent of Bethuel and Laban for Rebekah's marriage to Isaac. He emphasizes the importance of their kindness and faithfulness to his master's request, displaying his outstanding intelligence and loyalty, mirroring the faithfulness of his master, Abraham.
In this timeless narrative, the account of Isaac's marriage showcases the reverence for tradition and the faith in divine guidance that characterized the culture of the East during ancient times. The story of Eliezer's mission is a testament to his unwavering loyalty and devotion to his master, Abraham, and serves as a remarkable demonstration of his steadfast piety and trust in the providence of God.