The Bible is full of wonderful stories about how God worked through certain individuals to insure that His master plan for humanity would continue along the path that He had established in eternity past. A great many of those people are spelled out by name and those names had significant meaning in Biblical days. However, in quite a few instances He used certain folks that seemed to be rather insignificant in the great scheme of things but actually played a major role in keeping things moving in the direction that He desired. And I am convinced that He is still using people today to further that plan and will ultimately bring it to an end at some point in eternity future. Some are well-known in different circles but I would say the majority of them are unknown to us by name. The focus of this “No-Name” series will be on a number of those Biblical characters that filled the role God had for them but we were never given their name. And this evening we will start with our first one, Abraham’s Servant.
Most of the us are familiar with the story of Abraham and how he was selected by God to become the father of a great nation. The Bible says that Abraham believed God and it was accounted to him as righteousness. In other words, his faith and trust was in God. We remember how He promised Abraham and Sarah in their old age that they would have a son and how Sarah laughed to herself. After Isaac was born and grew into a young man Abraham obeyed God by being willing to offer his son on the sacrificial altar at God’s direction. We know God stayed his hand and made a covenant with him that his offspring would be as the sands of the sea and the stars in the sky. Many other stories could be recounted about Abraham but our story is not about him.
After Sarah died and Abraham was nearing the time of his final days on earth he decided it was time to find a wife for Isaac. It was imperative that she be a young woman from his relatives in the land he left and not from Canaan where he lived. However, at his age he was unable to travel so he decided to use someone he fully trusted and this was his head servant who was responsible for all of his affairs. So Abraham called his servant to him and had him swear an oath that he would go to Abraham’s homeland and search for a wife for Isaac but never to take Isaac back there. This is where our story begins.
Abraham’s servant (No-Name) did indeed swear the oath as requested by Abraham then immediately made the necessary preparations for his journey and set out for the land of Abraham’s family. He took with him ten camels and numerous other goods that could be offered as gifts in return for hospitality shown. When he arrived at his destination he stopped near a well that was used by the local women to draw water. It was near the late evening time and he knew the women would be arriving very soon. After having the camels kneel down there he lifted up a prayer to God asking for a confirmation sign for the woman who God had set aside to be Isaac’s wife. His request was that when he asked for a small drink of water the young woman would give him water to drink and then water his camels also. Before he finished his prayer, Rebekah showed up with her water jar on her shoulder. The Bible tells us that she was the daughter of Betheul who was the son of Milcah who was the wife of Nahor who was Abraham’s brother. If I read this right, she would have been Abraham’s brother’s granddaughter. She was Abraham’s grand niece. Looks to me like she would certainly be a relative.
To continue with the story we see that Rebekah did exactly what No-Name had requested in his prayer. She gave him water and then watered his camels. In other words, God had answered his prayer. No-Name then gave to Rebekah a gold ring and two bracelets and asked her if there was room at her father’s house for he and his party to lodge. And she answered in the affirmative. No-Name then again prayed to God with thankfulness in his heart that God had dealt with him in loving kindness and Had granted his request. If we read the remainder of the story in Genesis 24 we will find that Rebekah agrees to return to the land of Canaan with No-Name and when Isaac went to meditate in the fields he saw the camels in the distance and then meets Rebekah. Isaac takes Rebekah back to his mother’s tent and there she becomes his wife.
There are a lot more details in the story that I have not covered but the paraphrase version is a good account of what happened. So what is so important about the involvement of Abraham’s servant? Well, let’s first take a look at what kind of man he was. First of all we see that he was the oldest of the servants. Obviously he was well-respected by Abraham and was very loyal to his master. He apparently was a believer in Jehovah God and he was a praying man. He was an obedient man and He was a kind man. But his name has not been mentioned so what is the big deal?
Here it is. God had No-Name in the right place at the right time to play a major role in the fulfilment of His covenant with Abraham. And at the same time to fulfill the prophesy of the coming of the Messiah out of this great nation. The very One that would become the final sacrifice for the sins of the people and for all those who accept Him. No-Name helped make this possible by bringing a wife to Isaac who would later become the mother of Jacob who would later be renamed to Israel who would later be the father of twelve sons that would become the heads of the twelve tribes of Israel from which the Messiah would come. The covenant and prophesy would be fulfilled because No-Name was an obedient servant.
I wonder how many No-Names are out there today?