The New Life Mission

Sermons

Subject 24 : Sermons for Those Who Have Become Our COWORKERS

[24-51] (Genesis 24:47-67) We Are the Spiritual People Who Are Married to the Lord

(Genesis 24:47-67)
“‘Then I asked her, and said, ‘Whose daughter are you?’ And she said, ‘The daughter of Bethuel, Nahor’s son, whom Milcah bore to him.’ So I put the nose ring on her nose and the bracelets on her wrists. And I bowed my head and worshiped the LORD, and blessed the LORD God of my master Abraham, who had led me in the way of truth to take the daughter of my master’s brother for his son. Now if you will deal kindly and truly with my master, tell me. And if not, tell me, that I may turn to the right hand or to the left.’ Then Laban and Bethuel answered and said, ‘The thing comes from the LORD; we cannot speak to you either bad or good. Here is Rebekah before you; take her and go, and let her be your master’s son’s wife, as the LORD has spoken.’ And it came to pass, when Abraham’s servant heard their words, that he worshiped the LORD, bowing himself to the earth. Then the servant brought out jewelry of silver, jewelry of gold, and clothing, and gave them to Rebekah. He also gave precious things to her brother and to her mother. And he and the men who were with him ate and drank and stayed all night. Then they arose in the morning, and he said, ‘Send me away to my master.’ But her brother and her mother said, ‘Let the young woman stay with us a few days, at least ten; after that she may go.’ And he said to them, ‘Do not hinder me, since the LORD has prospered my way; send me away so that I may go to my master.’ So they said, ‘We will call the young woman and ask her personally.’ Then they called Rebekah and said to her, ‘Will you go with this man?’ And she said, ‘I will go.’ So they sent away Rebekah their sister and her nurse, and Abraham’s servant and his men. And they blessed Rebekah and said to her:
‘Our sister, may you become
The mother of thousands of ten thousands;
And may your descendants possess
The gates of those who hate them.’
Then Rebekah and her maids arose, and they rode on the camels and followed the man. So the servant took Rebekah and departed. Now Isaac came from the way of Beer Lahai Roi, for he dwelt in the South. And Isaac went out to meditate in the field in the evening; and he lifted his eyes and looked, and there, the camels were coming. Then Rebekah lifted her eyes, and when she saw Isaac she dismounted from her camel; for she had said to the servant, ‘Who is this man walking in the field to meet us?’ The servant said, ‘It is my master.’ So she took a veil and covered herself. And the servant told Isaac all the things that he had done. Then Isaac brought her into his mother Sarah’s tent; and he took Rebekah and she became his wife, and he loved her. So Isaac was comforted after his mother’s death.”
 
 
Today we have read a portion of the Scripture passage from the Book of Genesis chapter 24. Although today’s Scripture passage is only a portion of the chapter, we are able to know the entire account from this passage.
 
 
Abraham’s Servant Went to Find Isaac’s Wife
 
Isaac had reached the age of marriage and Abraham was trying to get his son married. And so he commanded his old servant, saying, “I am now living in the Land of Canaan, so go to the place that I used to live and bring back a wife for my son Isaac.” Abraham called his most trusted servant who was the oldest and most faithful among all his servants and made him swear an oath in the name of God. Abraham then commanded this servant to bring a bride for his son Isaac. This bride could not be from the daughters of the Canaanites but only from among the direct descendants of the household that he had left a long time ago.
This faithful servant followed Abraham’s command. He packed many gifts on his master’s camels and headed for the home country of his master. Honestly, there was nothing this servant knew about the home country of Abraham. Because his master commanded him to go there, he believed that God would surely fulfill what his master asked of him. Thus, he believed in God.
After a long journey he at last arrived at the home country of Abraham, but it was not an easy task to find a wife for Isaac in this large foreign land. Having arrived at a watering well, he tried to drink some water to quench his thirst. But he did not have the means to draw out this water. Right then, a young woman came near him and he asked her to draw this water for him. But this young woman, as he was watching, after she had given him water, proceeded to water to his camels as well. Having observed this, this old servant remembered that He had just prior prayed to God, saying, “I believe that some woman who offered me water to quench my thirst and also water my animals, will be the life partner that You have chosen for Isaac.” It is a normal thing that when someone is thirsty asks for water, water would be given. There is no reason that such generosity would be extended to his animals as well. Nevertheless, this young woman gave water to not only this servant but also to his animals that he had brought along with him. This happened exactly in the manner that he had prayed to God.
And so, this servant of Abraham gave thanks to God in his heart saying, “God has allowed me to meet this young woman,” and he then asked this young woman, “Whose daughter are you?” The young lady answered, “I am Rebekah, the daughter of Bethuel, the son of Nahor, that Milcah bore him.” Nahor was the brother of Abraham. They were of the same household. Thus, God allowed this servant to meet a descendant of the same household as Abraham, and had Abraham’s son marry a direct descendant of Abraham’s father. In the Bible, we can find many cases of consanguineous marriages. Marriage between Abraham and Sarah was a typical example. Why then did God make the people of faith marry someone from their own household? It was to defend their faith. If they were married to Gentile spouses, their faith would have instantly perished away. In this manner, there is a deeper underlying meaning in the things that God does. Of course, the Israelite people nowadays don’t do this anymore, but during the Old Testament times they would intermarry within their direct families.
Abraham’s servant was so excited that he had met a suitable potential wife for Isaac that he gave a golden nose ring and two golden bracelets to Rebekah. Rebekah then asked this servant to come with her to her home for there was plenty enough to feed his animals at her house. And when he arrived at Rebekah’s house, her family welcomed Abraham’s servant just as she had said it would be. The old servant then spoke in front of this family, saying, “I will not eat until I have told you about my errand. Honestly, the reason why I have come all this way is to uphold my master’s request.” And he proceeded to explain the circumstances leading up to this point. Bethuel, Nahor’s son, listened quietly and noticed that this servant was speaking of his uncle Abraham, a brother of his father Nahor. And so, he was preparing to serve a lavish meal when this servant asked again, “Please give me a definite answer. I want to take your daughter as my master’s daughter-in-law. Please give me a definitive answer regarding this.” When he heard this, Bethuel said, “How can we answer for her?” and he suggested that they bring his daughter Rebekah and ask her directly. And so they asked Rebekah directly and she said that she would go with this servant. As soon as Rebekah gave her consent, Abraham’s servant said, “Then, let’s leave right away.”
When we look at the Bible, there are many accounts that are impossible to comprehend with the human mind. Today’s Scripture passage is like that. Here a complete stranger approached someone’s daughter and asked to take her to become his master’s daughter-in-law. And when this daughter gave her consent, the stranger said that he would take her immediately. Naturally Bethuel became dumbfounded at this and said, “No” at first. He said that he would let her go after she spent about ten more days with her family. But then Abraham’s servant then suggested that they ask Rebekah about this. What was Rebekah’s answer? She said that she would go with the servant immediately. And so the family could not do anything about this but to give their blessings and send Rebekah off. Through this process, Abraham’s son Isaac came to meet his wife Rebekah. This is the synopsis of today’s Scripture passage.
 
 
We Should Believe in the Righteousness of God and Follow after Him
 
What do we discover in today’s Scripture passage? Rebekah believing in a stranger and following after him can be said to be the story of our spiritual lives. It is not a story in history, but it tells us about the spiritual lives of our forebears of the faith and at the same time it speaks of God’s Providence.
Here, a woman named Rebekah said that she would follow after Abraham’s servant. But how was Rebekah able to do this? Of course, humanly speaking, it may not be easy to understand, but we are able to realize through today’s Scripture reading that this account speaks about the matter of believing in the Lord and following after Him.
Then, why did this young woman Rebekah follow after this unknown servant? Abraham’s servant gave Rebekah a pair of gold bracelets and a golden nose ring for drawing water for him and also for his camels. And he went to her house and they agreed with each other about her marriage to Isaac. He then opened up his treasure box and he gave jewelry of silver, jewelry made from gold, and clothing to Rebekah. He also gave precious things to her brother and to her mother. Rebekah probably thought to herself, “A person this rich—this is pretty good.”
A long time ago in Israel, if a man were to take a wife, he had to have accumulated about this much wealth. A person could not get married just because of his physical appearance. When a man wanted to take a woman from some family, he had to pay a dowry to the bride’s household. He had to pay a dowry and impeccably endow her from head to toe. And to top this he had to provide a home where they could live in together and he needed to have an ample amount of wealth.
In the eyes of the flesh, it can be construed that Rebekah followed after this servant of Abraham because of these possessions. Then, how about you and me? We have lived on this earth for a long time now. Then, at one point, we met the Lord. Our Lord met with us, and He gave us the gift of the water of baptism, the blood of the Cross and the Holy Spirit which bears all our sins. He then asked us to follow Him.
Dear fellow believers, what does this all mean? It means that as Rebekah followed after Abraham’s old servant because of this treasure, we also, after we met the Lord, followed after Him because of the gift that He provided. Truly, our Lord who met us has given us the blessing of the remission of sins through the gospel of the water and the Spirit. He has blotted out all of our sins, and He also has given us the honor of becoming the children of God. Also, He has given us the Holy Spirit to come live in our hearts. He has given us His protection and blessings and He has also prepared Heaven for us. When our Lord tells us, “Follow me,” we also leave that place that we have lived in so far without looking back and follow after the Lord like Rebekah did. Because of the Lord who is our bridegroom and the spiritual treasures that the Lord has given us, we resolutely without any second thoughts follow after our Lord.
As I was looking at this Scripture passage, I could not help but think how surprised and dumbfounded her family must have felt when Rebekah said that she would follow after Abraham’s servant immediately. And her family that let her go was quite amazing. Think about it. How can you say that you would follow someone immediately after just meeting? Abraham’s servant stayed just that night at Rebekah’s house, and the very next morning he left with Rebekah. Anyway, Rebekah followed after this servant in order to get married without having ever seen her husband to-be’s face. Nevertheless, she listened to the old servant who said, “Our lord has many things such as these” and observed the good character of the other servants that had come along with this older servant.
 
 
By Faith in the Righteousness of the Lord We Can Cast Away Everything of This World and Follow after Him
 
It is the same for us who live in this present age. Can we cast away everything one morning after we wake up and follow after the Lord? There are many more people among us who are not able to do this than those who are able to. Nevertheless, after I met the Lord, I immediately left and followed after Him. The Lord blotted out all of my sins. He saved me by giving me the remission of sins and He has given me the glory of heaven. Besides this, He has granted me the righteousness of God and the privilege of becoming His child. He has also given me a life through which I can be His servant who can do the righteous work for Him. Is there any reason why I should not follow after Him?
To be honest, before I met the Lord, I had nothing to do other than to eat three meals a day. I couldn’t do anything worthwhile because I did not know about the righteousness of God back then. Nevertheless, the Lord came to this earth for a person such as myself, and He was baptized in the Jordan River for me and He bore all of my sins and eradicated them all. He was nailed to the Cross and received the judgment for my sins. Why then would I have any second thoughts about my worldly life at all? I am sure that you are like me. Please be aware that to be able to cast everything away and to wholeheartedly follow after God and His gospel is true spirituality and true faith.
What happens when a man and a woman get married? The bride’s family says that their daughter is better, and the groom’s family says that it is their loss. It’s always a haggle over that.
Then, how about us? Don’t we sometimes maybe think as we follow the Lord, “Even though we do follow the Lord, the Lord is a bit insufficient for us and we are better than Him?” Let’s really think about this. Between the Lord and us, who is superior? The scales tip heavily in His favor, does it not? However, God who is the Bridegroom has given us we who are the insufficient brides, everything that we want or need. He has endowed us with gold, silver, and every wedding gift and He has completely adorned us with all precious things. Truly, our Lord has blotted out all of our sins. He has received all of the judgment in our place. Also, He has given us the power to become the children of God. He has given us the Holy Spirit and the Kingdom of Heaven. He has anointed us with grace so that we can live a life of righteousness on this earth. He has become our Shepherd so that He can lead us in the right path. We are not lacking or in want of anything at all. The Lord has taken responsibility for everything and He has done everything for us. And so, we do not have anything to be hesitant about. As Rebekah resolutely followed after the servant of Abraham, we also must confidently follow after the Lord as well.
In today’s Scripture passage, Rebekah actually followed after the servant of Abraham. She can be seen to be childish and imprudent in a way, but when we see her resolute act there must have been faith in her heart. She must have thought, “This servant treats me this honorably, and if this servant is this way then how great might the master be?” She thought that if the servant was this faithful; his master is certainly going to be much greater than the servant. Actually, Abraham was one of the wealthiest men in his time. His son, Isaac, was also a very wealthy man. He could do anything or provide anything he was asked. Isaac, in obtaining his wife, sent many servants and precious gifts and endowed everything. So, Rebekah believed in this husband to be without ever setting eyes on him.
It is the same with our Lord. Our Lord has endowed you and me with everything that we need, and he has anointed us with infinite grace. Our Lord was born on this earth, was baptized, died on the Cross; rose again from the dead, ascended back to Heaven, sent us the Holy Spirit and continually watches over us. He has blessed us in this manner. Truly, our Lord has given us a wedding gift which does not perish. This gift is the Truth of the water, the blood and the Holy Spirit. And so, we follow after the Lord without hesitation. There is no reason at all for us to be reluctant to follow Him.
 
 
We Should Not Be Indecisive in Following after the Lord
 
In following after the Lord, we can often think that we are the only ones that are serving Him and that we are getting the wrong end of the stick. But this is not true. If we properly comprehend the grace that our Lord has anointed us with, we are able to understand that it is far greater than any of our losses and we will not act proudly but give thanks to the Lord. And we will think that the Lord is entitled and worthy to lead us. Truly the Lord is the only One who is qualified to do this. Anyone who thinks that they are suffering great loss by following after the Lord does not know Jesus Christ well enough. He is truly our Savior, and the One who has perfectly cleansed us from all of our sins. He is the Bridegroom who was adorned us with every precious gift so that we are not lacking as the people of God.
And so, there is no need for us to think that we are being disadvantaged in anyway. There is no reservation in my heart at all in following after the Lord. If we really know the love of the Lord properly, there is no hesitation if we are people who know and believe in the Truth of the water and the Spirit. If we are told to follow after the Lord, we boldly follow after Him. Truly, our Lord gives us everything we need, and He provides grace to us and constantly watches over us. He always gives more to us than He ever receives from us. There is no hindrance at all for us in following after our Bridegroom, Jesus Christ. Today’s Scripture passage teaches us this.
 
 
A Servant of God Must Do As God Commands
 
The servant of Abraham who had left to find a suitable wife for Isaac was truly a very old man. Nevertheless, he completely followed the words of Abraham. And he prayed that things would turn out as his master had commanded him, and God sent the woman who was to be the future daughter-in-law of Abraham and allowed them to meet without any particular problems. This turned out so easily because it was the will of God. Therefore, a faithful servant should carry out the work as the master has commanded him or her to do no matter how difficult and impossible that task might seem. Full obedience to the master is the duty and obligation of these servants. This old servant faithfully fulfilled his task as a servant, and so God blessed him and fulfilled things in the way that the servant desired. This was the faith of this old servant and the work that he had accomplished.
It is the same for you and me. If we are the servants of God, we must completely do everything our Master, commands us to do. At this time, we are proclaiming the blessings of the Lord, according to God’s will to the entire world. What happens if people are not receptive to the gospel we are preaching? If we have proclaimed it to them, but they have not received it, then there is nothing more that we can do for them. Just because they do not accept it, should we then try to distort the gospel of the Lord using human ways and means? We cannot do that. We would rather do nothing at all if it meant that we were to distort the gospel and do what the Lord has not commanded us to do.
A true servant is a person who simply does what his master orders him to do. A truly faithful servant does exactly as his master commands him to do. A long time ago, faithful servants in the household of a nobleman would truly put their lives on the line in service. This means that they did whatever their master commanded them to do. You and I are the people of God and we are His servants. Therefore, we must obey the Lord as He has commanded us to do and we cannot change some parts of the gospel just because the people of this world do not receive this gospel of the water and the Spirit which we have been preaching. If we were to preach such a distorted gospel, who will believe in it? They may believe in that false gospel temporarily but they will soon fall away. However, as we are the ones proclaiming the gospel of the Lord exactly the way it is, many people are hearing this genuine gospel and coming to believe in it. Although the number of people that can be seen with our eyes may not seem to be many, but from a spiritual standpoint, there are an incredible number of believers in this genuine gospel. There are truly a lot of people who have received our mission books. They have come to believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. God told our forefather of faith, Abraham, that He would make his descendants to be as numerous as the stars in the sky, and I believe that He will absolutely do this.
Some people ask, “There were so many people who have never heard of the gospel of the water and the Spirit for such a long time. If this gospel is true, then what will happen to those people who have never heard about this gospel?” This is between them and God, and we are responsible for ourselves.
Our hearts are at peace. Those who will leave us will leave and those who will be united and work together with us will be together with us forever. I mean, there is no use for us to detain or dissuade those who are going to leave us, saying, “Don’t leave, please, don’t leave.” Those who are going to leave must leave. Someone who does not believe in the gospel of the righteousness of God must go back to the world.
Dear fellow believers, let’s say, among the saints that you are working with, there is someone who does not believe in the gospel of righteousness and just goes out of his way to expose your flaws. Judas Iscariot was like that. He followed after Jesus but he tried to detect Jesus’ faults. Let’s think who among your friends or family, are the ones who just strive to catch you at fault. Would it be better for them to stay with you, or leave you? Just thinking about this makes me sick. There is no need to be together with someone like this.
 
 
God Only Desires That the Gospel of the Water and the Spirit Be Proclaimed
 
I am a servant of God. I don’t want to be anything else. I only want to proclaim the gospel of the water and the Spirit to the entire world. We are preaching the gospel of the Lord by the internet and by literature ministry, that is, through printed and electronic media. Over fifteen thousand people each day are meeting with this true gospel. This is truly incredible. I wish that the number of hits on our website would increase a bit more, but even this is quite tremendous. I believe that these books will be placed in the hands of those who really need them and that they will all receive the remission of their sins.
Recently, a Brazilian who used to be in a Pentecostal Church sent his testimony of salvation, saying that he had come to comprehend the gospel Truth and received the remission of sins. The pastor of his former church would only approve of those who spoke in tongues as having received the Holy Spirit, but in his eyes his former church appeared to be a group of sorcerers with evil spirits. But after reading our books, they contained things that were totally different than what he formerly believed in. He read through the books twice and he received remission of sins by believing in this genuine Truth. Halleluiah!
You and I are not living in some unimportant existence in which our souls become ill and die, but we are able to live a meaningful, precious and blessed life while experiencing eternal glory through our Lord. You and I can have confidence before God. Of course, there is this fear in my heart that this gospel will not be proclaimed to everyone, but I do believe that the gospel of the Lord will continue to be proclaimed vigorously.
If a servant regards what his master has entrusted him with as being his own property, then he is a thief. Even though something is not his, he believes that he has a right to use it. If someone takes something that isn’t his and decides to take ownership of it, then this person is a thief? A true servant is someone who lives his life for his master. A faithful servant takes good care of what his master has briefly entrusted him with. In like fashion, our New Life Mission website is everything to us. Our Lord will prevent those who attempt to take it as their own from doing so.
Spiritually speaking, you and I are all ‘Rebekahs.’ God the Father sent Jesus Christ to this earth and has adorned us with the gospel of the water and the Spirit. He has glorified us and He has commanded us to follow Him. In response to this voice of the Lord, we must immediately say, “I will follow after You.” Rebekah turned her back on her family that she loved and went to meet her husband Isaac. And she went to her future husband, gave birth to her children, served her husband and also acted as a master to the servants. Did she yearn to return to her father’s house? No. If we live out our faith as Rebekah did, then we will not desire to return to our past life. We desire to follow after the Lord who has glorified us without lacking anything. I give thanks to our Lord.