Chapter 24 of the book of Genesis. Now, as you know, of course, we spoke from this same chapter this morning, I may speak from it three or four more times in the next, uh, two or three weeks, but at least tonight, we want to speak again from this same chapter. And our theme tonight, we want to take a look at Isaac and Rebekah as a picture of Christ and His bride. "Isaac And Rebekah As A Picture Of Christ And His Bride," from Genesis chapter 24.
As we said this morning, (referring back to the morning service there in Africa) the chapter is such a long one, we won't read the whole thing again tonight, but we'll read a verse here and there and give you the story, I'm sure that all of you have read this story and you know the general background of it anyway.
Now, as we begin to look at this story here of a bride for Isaac in Genesis chapter 24, we are thinking of it as Isaac and Rebekah: a picture of Christ and His bride.
First, we notice the father, who is clearly a type of God the Father. Abraham, in other words, the father of Isaac is clearly a type of God the Father. And we notice here that the father sends out the servant, and the servant is a picture of the Holy Spirit, to seek a bride for his son Isaac. Now, you remember, of course, this morning we applied this servant to a faithful servant of the Lord, a man. But in this case tonight, in this type tonight, we want to apply it to the Holy Spirit. It fits both ways. So, here we see the father, Abraham, a type of God the Father, sends out the servant, a type of the Holy Spirit to seek a bride for his son Isaac who is certainly a type of Christ.
If we look at Matthew chapter 22, we want to read a verse there. Matthew chapter 22, as we begin to think of this first point that we've raised in this comparison between Isaac and Rebekah and Christ and His Church.
Matthew 22:2 "The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son,
3 And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come.
4 Again, he sent forth other servants, saying, Tell them which are bidden, Behold, I have prepared my dinner: my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage.
5 But they made light of it, and went their ways, one to his farm, another to his merchandise:
6 And the remnant took his servants, and entreated them spitefully, and slew them.
7 But when the king heard thereof, he was wroth: and he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city.
8 Then saith he to his servants, The wedding is ready, but they which were bidden were not worthy.
9 Go ye therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage.
10 So those servants went out into the highways, and gathered together all as many as they found, both bad and good: and the wedding was furnished with guests.
11 And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment:
12 And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless.
13 Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
14 For many are called, but few are chosen."
Now, as we think about this in connection with our main text tonight, we see that there's quite a good comparison here between the two because this parable of the marriage feast is obviously a parable applicable to God the Father as the great King, setting up a marriage feast for His Son. And then, the Jews rejected it, as you can see here in this parable. He sent forth His armies and destroyed their city. And then, sent out the angels or His messengers, His servants to call others, the Gentiles in other words, to the wedding feast. And so, this fits in very well with our theme for this evening, but we won't take time to go into that parable in complete detail.
But I must tell you this little joke, that I always think of when I read that fourteenth verse, "Many are called, but few are chosen." There was a little boy who'd been to Sunday school and his mother was asking him after he got back from Sunday school, what the lesson was that day. He thought and he thought and he thought and he never could think of what it was and finally he remembered. He said, "Mama, I know what the Sunday school lesson was about this morning."
He said, "The subject was, ‘Many are cold, but few are frozen.'" And, of course, that fits a lot of these modern day churches, doesn't it? In fact, many, many are cold, but few are frozen.
But as we continue to think here of the father sending out the servant, the Holy Spirit to seek a bride for his son Isaac, a type of Christ; it fits, as I said, with this parable there in Matthew 22:2, and again in John 6:44, we have a good reference to look at in the New Testament.
Look at John 6:44. This is something that a lot of modern day churches don't pay much attention to, but it's in the Bible. And it means what it says and it says what it means. "No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day."
Now, you say, "What does that mean?" Well, I'm not sure if I know all of what it means. But I do know this, I know it means that we can't just go out there in our own power and win them to the Lord. I know it means that. And it means more than that as well. Because it clearly says here that unless the servant, the Holy Spirit goes out there and draws them, unless the Father which hath sent me draw him, that a man can't come to God.
And so, this again fits in with this picture that we have here in the twenty-fourth chapter of Genesis, of the father sending out the servant, a type of the Holy Spirit, to seek a bride for his son Isaac. Now, if he had not sent that servant up there, then Rebekah would never have become Isaac's bride, would she? You say, "Well, I don't understand that." Well, I don't understand all of it either, but I know it's that way. It's plain enough, isn't it?
There's another thing though that we need to remember. "The grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men," the Scripture says. So, we can't just say, "Now, well, we're just going to go out here and—and, uh, look for this little select group." Because it's our job to preach the gospel to the whole world. But it's God's job to send the Spirit to draw them to Himself, isn't it? That's His business. But these modern churches seem to have it turned all around backwards and they think that they can go out there with their gimmicks and their programs and their high pressure, arm twisting salesmanship and draw them to the Lord.
And it won't work. It just doesn't draw them to God; it draws them to the preacher, it draws them to the church maybe, but it does not draw them to God and it doesn't build a real church. It just builds a group, a congregation. But the father here sent out the servant, the type of the Holy Spirit, to seek a bride. And that Holy Spirit is still seeking the bride today for the Son.
Going a step further, we notice here that the servant recounts the riches, and I mentioned this this morning, the servant recounts the riches and glory of the father and of the son to whom he, the father hath given all things. Read there with me in, uh, thirty-sixth verse of this chapter 24. In fact, let's start reading there at verse 35. "And the Lord hath blessed my master greatly," this is the servant now, speaking, type of the Holy Spirit in our lesson tonight, "the Lord hath blessed my master greatly, and he is become great," tells about the greatness of the Lord in other words, in our type, "and he hath given him flocks, and herds, and silver, and gold, and menservants, and maidservants, and camels, and asses."
Our Father owns the cattle of a thousand hills, "the wealth of all the mines," as the song says. It's all true, isn't it? "And Sarah my master's wife bare a son to my master when she was old: and unto him hath he given all the he hath." Everything has been given to Jesus, including all those who will believe in Him. They've been given to Jesus. And there's no way that one of those who will believe in Him is possibly going to be lost after believing in Him. Just can't be done, because the Father's given them to Him. The ones who would believe in Him. So, the servant here, recounts the riches and glory of the father, that is of God in our type tonight, and of the son, that is Jesus, to whom the father, God, has given all things.
Now, if we look in Matthew 11:27, we see a reference to this that fits very well there. Matthew 11:27 says: "All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him."
In other words, it all comes back to this same thing that we keep preaching to you time after time after time. The same thing we keep saying on visitation every time we visit somebody. There's only one way to God and Jesus is that way, isn't He?
He's the way. "All things have been given to Him," as He said here. "All things are delivered unto me." And He says, "No man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, except the Son, and he to whom the Son will reveal him." Jesus is the way, the only way. There is no other way. There never has been another way. There never will be another way. He's the way, the only way.
From the first man that was ever saved until the last man that's saved just before the final trumpet, they've all been saved the same way. Not one has ever been saved any other way. Not one soul has ever been saved except by grace through faith in the shed blood of Jesus Christ. Nothing else will do the job. Nothing else will bring about that forgiveness of sin and that fitting us for the presence of the Father, except the grace of God worked in our hearts by grace through faith in Jesus Christ.
If we look again at Matthew 28, we find another good reference on this. I'm sure that most of you could quote this one to us, "And Jesus came and spake unto them saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth." The Father has given all things to the Son. "Even all power," as it says there in Matthew 28:18.
Again, in Luke 10:22, we find another good reference, where the Scripture says, "All things are delivered to me of my Father: and no man knoweth who the Son is, but the Father; and who the Father is, but the Son, and he to whom the Son will reveal him.."
So, again we see, no way that anybody can ever know the Father, except by His being revealed to Him through the Son. It's impossible. Any other way, any other means, any other pathway, any other route to heaven is not there, it's just not there. There's only one, and He's the way. The only way.
In John chapter 3, verse 35, we find a further reference in connection with this. John 3:35 says: "The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand."
So, let me tell you, brother and sister, anybody that thinks they're going to get to heaven any way except by Jesus Christ, they're in for a shocking surprise, a rude awakening; because they'll never make it. If they're expecting baptism, if they're expecting sprinkling when they were a baby, if they're expecting their idiotic ideas of hypercalvinism to save them because they've been elected and therefore they're going to make it no matter what, they're going to split hell wide open, because there's no way to get there except by receiving Christ. Jesus is the only way, and they'll never make it any other way.
"The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand."
The salvation of men is entirely in the hands of Jesus. The matter of bringing men to Christ is in the hands of Jesus. The means of me (in my own power) bringing men to God does not exist. Salvation is of the Lord, and is in the hands of Jesus Christ, the ONLY Saviour.
If we look at Ephesians chapter 1 -- let's look there at verse 15 and following verses there. Let's read there, beginning at verse 15.
Ephesians 1:15-23 "Wherefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus, and love unto all the saints,
16 Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers;
17 That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him:
18 The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,
19 And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power,
20 Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places,
21 Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come:
22 And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church,
23 Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all."
Now, that covers the whole story, doesn't it? There's just no way, except through Jesus. If you're depending on denominational teaching to get you to heaven, if you're depending on sprinkling or good works or lack of evil works or anything else to get you to heaven, it just won't work. There is just one way. The only way to heaven, the only way to God, is through Jesus Christ, as it shows us continually and repeatedly, all the way through the Scriptures, even in the Old Testament by types and shadows.
If we look again in John chapter 16, we find another good reference to read on this matter. Look at the gospel of John, chapter 16, beginning with verse 13 and reading through verse 15.
John 16, verses 13 through 15. Now, notice we said that the servant recounts the riches and glory of the father and of the son to whom he, the father hath given all things. Another thing we want to call to your attention in connection with this thought is that the servant speaks not of himself. The Holy Spirit doesn't speak of Himself. He does not glorify Himself. The Holy Spirit glorifies Christ. We see that clearly recorded beginning with verse 13. These three verses right here completely knock the props out from under the charismatics.
Reading John 16:13 we see: "Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.
14 He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you.
15 All things that the Father hath are mine: therefore said I, that he shall take of mine, and shall shew it unto you.
16 A little while, and ye shall not see me: and again, a little while, and ye shall see me, because I go to the Father."
And the way the charismatics tell it, you'd think that the Holy Spirit was the only thing that mattered. And we don't need Jesus anymore, don't need God the Father anymore. That's all that matters is the Holy Spirit. And that completely contradicts everything said in these verses here, doesn't it? And everything said in a lot of other places in the Scripture as well.
Going on, remember now, the servant speaks not of himself, even the Holy Spirit doesn't glorify himself, he doesn't speak of himself. He speaks of what? Of Jesus and the glorious plan of redemption that God has prepared for all those who will believe. This is such a marvelous plan that even the angels would like to "look into" it. Ten thousand times ten thousands and thousands of angels will someday join with us, though they don't even understand all about redemption, because the plan of redemption wasn't made for them.
And the Scripture clearly indicates that the angels do not entirely understand it. Yet, even those angels will one day join with these thousands and thousands and thousands of the saved and sing, "worthy is the Lamb. Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive honor and riches and power and glory." Because even the angels will have a little glimpse, a little inkling of the greatness and the glory and the majesty of this marvelous plan of redemption that God has made for man. And it's all in His Son, Jesus Christ.
Let us go a step further now. Remember, the servant is a type of the Holy Spirit.
Notice the third thing here: the servant, the type of the Holy Spirit, brought great and marvelous things to the prospective bride as told in our story in Genesis 24. Look over there in verse 22, here's this sweet little country girl -- and she comes out to the well to draw water. She is a beautiful young thing and here's this strange man there who speaks to her and she speaks to him. And it all works out exactly according to God's plan. This stranger gives her these marvelous gifts, these wonderful things. Things perhaps she'd never seen before, because he gave her the earring of gold and he gave her also the golden bracelets.
These were precious things, perhaps this little country girl had never seen or ever owned before. And he gave her these precious things. Great things were brought by the servant, the type of the Spirit. These precious things were brought and given to the prospective bride, as we read here in verse 22: "And it came to pass, as the camels had done drinking, that the man took a golden earring of half a shekel weight, and two bracelets for her hands of ten shekels weight of gold."
That would be quite a lot of gold even today. It has been estimated that it would be about five and a half or six ounces of gold, which would be a lot of gold just for bracelets and earrings.
The servant, in other words, as we see here, enriches the bride with what? With his own gifts to her? Of course not! He enriches the bride with gifts from the bridegroom, doesn't he? These are gifts from the bridegroom or from the bridegroom's father, that the servant gives to her. These were not personal gifts from him to her, but rather gifts from the bridegroom and or the bridegroom's father.
If we look over in Galatians chapter 5, we find a reference in the New Testament that fits very well with our theme.
Looking at Galatians 5:22-23, these gifts are some of the great gifts brought by the servant (type of the Holy Spirit), to the prospective bride, the one whom He is drawing to be the bride of the bridegroom. In other words, the one whom He is drawing to salvation. "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law." So, this compares with the precious gifts that the servant brought to the bride.
Going a step further now to step number four and we have seven steps in this again this evening, the young Rebekah was a virgin. Pure and beautiful. Now you think about that for a minute. The young Rebekah was a virgin, pure and beautiful, as also shall be the bride of Christ, His church. These rotten, false professors and these rotten, unsound people, even if they are truly saved, are not going to be part of the bride. The bride's going to be pure and spotless, washed in the blood of the lamb.
Look at verse 16 here in Genesis 24, describing Rebekah, the picture of the bride of Christ, the church. "And the damsel was very fair to look upon, a virgin, neither had any man known her: and she went down to the well, and filled her pitcher, and came up." So the bride here, this prospective bride for Isaac, this bride that was being selected for Isaac by the servant, the type of the Holy Spirit, was a virgin, pure and beautiful.
And so also shall be the bride of Christ, as we see in II Corinthians chapter 11. These people that have all kinds of false doctrines, they're not going to be part of the bride, they're not even part of the true Church. Oh, there will be some of them in heaven if they've got enough true doctrine to get there by the blood of Christ, but they won't be part of the bride. They'll lose out on the greatest possible reward, to be part of the bride of the glorious King of Kings and Lord of Lords, the Creator of the Universe.
Look here in II Corinthians 11, verse 2, where it tells us about the church. "For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband," and that one husband, of course, is Jesus, our Isaac. "For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ." Pure, undefiled and beautiful in the eyes of the bridegroom.
Going on a step further with the story of Rebekah and Isaac, we notice that Rebekah, the young virgin, chose freely, at the instigation of the servant, the type of the Holy Spirit, to submit herself to Isaac. And that's what a person has to do today to be saved, isn't it? They've got to choose freely, at the wooing of the Holy Spirit, at the instigation of the Holy Spirit, they've got to choose freely, to submit themselves to our Isaac, a type of Christ, as His bride. We see she chose this freely.
Think about this for a minute. She chose this freely, to submit herself to Isaac as his bride, though she had never seen or known him before. She had never seen him. She could only see him with the eye of faith. But she knew about some of his glory because this servant had told her about him. She knew about these precious gifts he'd already sent to her. She knew about the wealth and power of his father, but she'd never seen Isaac! She had never seen him or known him and yet she chose freely to submit herself to Isaac as his bride.
Look at verse 58. You will see that she made a willing choice. "And they called Rebekah, and said unto her, Wilt thou go with this man? And she said, I will go." Now, that was her decision, wasn't it? Her final decision, submitting herself to Isaac to be his bride, though she'd never seen or known him. And that's the way it is with a person when he gets saved today, isn't it? When one gets saved today, they've got to choose to submit themselves to Jesus Christ, the great bridegroom, though we've never seen Him, except with the eye of faith; though we've never known Him, except with the eye of faith, yet we must choose freely to submit to Him as our Lord.
Look at John again, John chapter 20, and read verse 29 with me. John 20:29. (This is one of the most touching verses in all of the Bible.) "Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed." Oh, Thomas had missed the great blessing of believing in the resurrection just by faith, hadn't he? He'd missed that great blessing and yet, Jesus used this as an occasion to encourage the rest of us, for He said these wonderful words in verse 25, "Blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed."
If we look again in I Peter chapter 1, First Peter chapter 1, there is a very good reference here. First Peter chapter 1, verse 8, fits perfectly with what we're talking about. The first epistle of Peter chapter 1, verse 8. Here, Peter is speaking about the Lord Jesus Christ and His appearing, and he says this, "Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory." I can see Rebekah, when they asked her, as we read to you there in verse 58, and they said, "Wilt thou go with this man?" And she said, "I will go."
I can see her just dancing a little jig of joy and happiness there, thinking about this wonderful bridegroom that she's going to meet. She's never seen him, she's heard him described, she's heard about him, she's never known him, never seen his face, but she already sees him with the eye of her faith. And no doubt, she sees him as a handsome, young fellow, rushing out to meet her and sweeping her up in his arms; which is just about what happened when they came to each other.
Step number six, Rebekah, a type of Christ's bride, the church, was to be fruitful; as the church should be also. Notice here in verse 60 of chapter 24 of Genesis -- this is her family here sending her away with this strange man to meet her bridegroom whom she'd never met or seen before or known. "And they blessed Rebekah, and said unto her, Thou art our sister, be thou the mother of thousands of millions, and let thy seed possess the gate of those which hate them." And that prophecy has certainly been fulfilled, hasn't it?
That blessing that was pronounced here and recorded in Scripture, has certainly been fulfilled to a large degree, even though it was said by this family of Rebekah, who were not really in the "special family," except through Rebekah. They were not in the special family in the lineage of Christ, except through Rebekah! And, of course, through their distant relationship to Abraham. But she was to be fruitful, just as the church should be also.
You know, the Scripture says that if we go out weeping, bearing precious seed, we shall doubtless come again in the evening, bearing precious sheaves. It teaches that if we go out in the morning bearing the seed, we will come back later bearing precious sheaves or bearing fruit in other words. And this Rebekah, this blessing that they pronounced on Rebekah, is a picture of the fact that the church itself should also be fruitful.
And now the last step, number seven, the servant, a type of the Holy Spirit, brings the prospective bride safely to his master. They weren't laid upon by robbers who might have made her fail to arrive at the bridegroom. And that kind of thing happened a lot in those days, you know. There was no failure at all, when the Holy Spirit finds one who submits to the Lord, there's no chance at all that he won't make it all the way to the bridegroom, is there? No chance at all!
The servant, the type of the Holy Spirit, brings the prospective bride safely to his master, after a long journey. That fits in very well with our type, doesn't it? After a long journey, we're going to meet our bridegroom. He's far away from us now. We've never seen Him, except by the eye of faith. We've never known Him, except by the eye of faith. But He's waiting for us and we're going to meet Him one of these days.
And the servant, the Holy Spirit is going to keep us safe, we're sealed by the power of the Holy Spirit, unto the day of redemption. Meaning unto the day when our body itself will be redeemed as well as our soul or spirit, which is already redeemed. We're sealed by the Holy Spirit unto that day. So after a long journey, the bridegroom comes to receive the bride. The bridegroom comes out to meet the bride.
This is typical, of course, of the church waiting for the coming of Christ. We're waiting for Him to come to meet us, aren't we? We're waiting for Him to come to take us. Rebekah lifted up her eyes and saw Isaac coming. Let's read that in verses 63 and 64. "And Isaac went out to meditate in the field at the even-tide: and he lifted up his eyes and saw, and, behold, the camels were coming. And Rebekah lifted up her eyes, and when she saw Isaac, she lighted off the camel." She jumped off the camel and got ready to meet the bridegroom! And I'll tell you now, I have no doubt that the camels are coming -- yes, the camels are coming!
You can laugh about it all you want to, but the camels are coming and we're going to meet the bridegroom soon. The camels are coming. We need to get off the camel and get ready to meet the Lord, because He's coming. He's coming out to meet us. Let's read as our last reference from Titus.
Remember now, we said the camels are coming. The bridegroom is coming out to meet us in the field.
Titus 2:11-15 "For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men,
12 Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;
13 Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;
14 Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.
15 These things speak, and exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no man despise thee. "
So, the camels are coming and it's time for us to be ready to meet the bridegroom because He's on His way to meet us.
Let us pray. Our Father, we thank You for the Scripture. We thank You for the fact that one can read the same verse five hundred times, and each time it means more than it did the first time. We thank You for the fact that every word was put there for a purpose, and that we can depend upon this and base our lives and our eternal destiny on this. Help us to stand faithful to the Word. Help us to be ready as the camels are coming now and the bridegroom is drawing near. For we ask in His name, Amen."
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