Genesis 24:64-65 – And Rebekah lifted up her eyes, and when she saw Isaac, she dismounted from the camel and said to the servant, “Who is that man, walking in the field to meet us?” The servant said, “It is my master.” So she took her veil and covered herself.
In the story of Isaac and Rebekah, we see a great example that, even though it was written around 4000 years ago, can be used even in our lives today and how dating and marriage should be carried out in a godly fashion. The timelessness of God’s word never ceases to amaze me.
Relating this story to our lives today, here’s a helpful process that I would say is great to follow as you think about marriage or as you coach your kids who are preparing for marriage:
- Start with Godly friendship. Those who date or marry just for looks are going to be sorely disappointed as the years go by or will simply dissolve the marriage because they don’t look like the same person anymore. Marriage is for a lifetime and starting as friends who truly enjoy each other’s company will certainly have a greater likelihood of being those who want to stay together and follow this path God has for them.
- Intentionally date each other (versus casual dating). Intentional dating looks like this: It’s exclusive, it honors the person and their support network, it’s overt and not covert, it’s non-sexual, and the intent is to find a spouse. This means being up front with your intentions for each other, not dating other people when you’re exclusively dating one person, becoming friends and getting to know their family and friends, and dating just long enough to know this is the person God has for you and not prolonging the process.
- Go through pre-marital counseling. Once you’ve made a decision that this is likely the person God has for you to marry, get the help of a couple who’s been there. Whether this is something formal within your church, or asking an older, godly, wise couple if they’d be willing to mentor you as you head towards marriage, since you haven’t been married before, they will have lessons from their own lives and things you’ve likely not considered. This couple can also help keep you accountable in sexual purity leading up towards marriage.
- As the kids say, “Put a ring on it”. If you’re a man, save up money, buy a nice ring that you can afford, and plan a special time to ask the woman you love to marry you. As you’ve gotten to know her family and friends, getting them in on it and asking her dad for his blessing is extra bonus points.
- Probably the day a girl thinks about most in her life is her wedding day and this is the beginning of the covenant relationship between husband and wife, a covenant that lasts until the day one of them dies. Upon making this covenant, there is then consummation, which is sexual intimacy and becoming “one flesh” as it says earlier in Genesis.
- Finally, ongoing, lifelong actions of repenting, learning, worshipping, and loving each other. The covenant starts on your wedding day but continues until the day one or both of you meet the Lord face-to-face in death.
What do we learn about the ability of God to provide a godly spouse from this story of Isaac and Rebekah?
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