The Dating Game television show debuted in 1965 with host Chuck Barris. One year after the Bible and prayer was kicked out of public education in the United States, the first orchestrated match maker series was formed. While I don’t remember much about the contestants on this show, I do recall Barris often trying to embarrass guests to entertain audiences. The first mention of match making in the Bible occurs in Genesis 24.
And you shall swear by the Lord, the God of heaven and earth, that you will not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, among whom I have settled, 4 But you shall go to my country and to my relatives and take [a]a wife for my son Isaac. 5 The servant said to him, But perhaps the woman will not be willing to come along after me to this country. Must I take your son to the country from which you came? – Genesis 24:3-5.
Perhaps, Abraham learned from the trials of his nephew Lot. Rather than allow Isaac to choose his own wife for himself, Abraham gives his trusted servant specific instructions on where to find a potential wife. Worried about letting down Isaac, Eliezer speaks up about the what if’s? This second guessing prepares Eliezer’s thoughts on the best way to find Isaac a wife.
And he said, O Lord, God of my master Abraham, I pray You, cause me to meet with good success today, and show kindness to my master Abraham. 13 See, I stand here by the well of water, and the daughters of the men of the city are coming to draw water. 14 And let it so be that the girl to whom I say, I pray you, let down your jar that I may drink, and she replies, Drink, and I will give your camels drink also—let her be the one whom You have selected and appointed and indicated for Your servant Isaac [to be a wife to him]; and by it I shall know that You have shown kindness and faithfulness to my master. 15 Before he had finished speaking, behold, out came Rebekah, who was the daughter of Bethuel son of Milcah, who was the wife of Nahor the brother of Abraham, with her water jar on her shoulder, Genesis 24:12-15.
Subsequently, Eliezer turns his concerns and doubt into a prayer listed in the passage above. This prayer serves as a screening process for any candidate who doesn’t meet Abrahah’s high standards. Based upon Moses’ account, as soon as Eliezer finishes his initial prayer, Rebekah magically comes forth like a Hollywood movie. May today’s featured passage help you see that God’s timing can reveal Mr. and Mrs. Right.
by Jay Mankus