GENESIS – CHAPTER 24
THE STORY OF ELIEZER, THE SERVANT OF ABRAHAM, GOING TO MESOPOTAMIA WITH A COMMISSION TO FIND A PROPER WIFE FOR ISAAC, (ABRAHAM’S SON), IS SUCH A BEAUTIFUL ONE, WE WANT TO TAKE IT VERSE BY VERSE, AND TRY TO CALL YOUR ATTENTION TO THE TYPE SET FORTH IN IT, OF THE HOLY GHOST, AND HIS DEALING WITH THE GENTILE BRIDE OF CHRIST. YOU WILL SEE THAT ABRAHAM TYPES THE ETERN-AL GOD, IN HIS, (GOD’S) OFFICE AS FATHER OF ALL CREATION, SEEKING A WIFE FOR HIS SON. READ THE ARTICLE PRAYERFULLY TO SEE WHAT EACH CHARACTER OF THIS STORY TYPES IN THIS AGE OF GRACE. WE SPEAK ALSO, OF THE THREE WASHINGS FOR THE BRIDE OF CHRIST, MINISTERING SPIRITS, GOD’S HELPERS IN CREATION, AND MANY THINGS THAT WILL ENCOURAGE YOUR HEARTS AS YOU READ.
In a day when so many preachers and individuals are saying that we no longer have any need for the Old Testament part of the Bible, I still find many beautiful types set forth in it that pertain to the Gentile bride of the Lord Jesus Christ. One of which, I would like for us to look at together at this time.
CALL OF ABRAHAM
In the 24th chapter of Genesis we read the account of Abraham sending his eldest servant back to his homeland to choose a bride for his son Isaac. Abraham had left his kinfolks and departed from Ur of the Chaldees, with his father Terah, Sarai, his wife, and his nephew, Lot. They had started out with the thought of going to the land of Canaan; but when they reached Haran, they stayed there until after the death of Terah. It was at that particular time that you started following the events of Abraham’s life. Of course we realize that his name had not been called Abraham at that time, for he was still called Abram until he was renamed, (by God), at the age of ninety-nine. Nevertheless, at the time of his father’s death, when they were still dwelling in Haran, the commission, and the promise from God, was called to Abraham’s attention. God had said to him, “Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee; And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: And in thee shall all the families of the earth be blessed. So Abram departed, as the Lord had spoken unto him, and Lot went with him: and Abram was seventy-five years old when he departed out of Haran. Abram took Sarai, his wife, and Lot, his brother’s son, and all their substance that they had gathered, and the souls that they had gotten in Haran: and they went forth to go into the land of Canaan; and into the land of Canaan they came. “At that time, the Canaanites were dwelling in the land, but the Lord appeared unto Abram, again, and said, “Unto thy seed will I give this land.” This was the land that God had led Abram to. Although he had finally arrived in the land that he was to possess, he did not settle there at that time, for after he had built an altar, and worshipped the Lord, he journeyed on Southward: and finally wound up in Egypt, because of a famine that was in the land by that time.
Most of you are familiar with the events that transpired between that time and the time of our text, therefore, I will not go into all the details, but just enough to bring our thinking up to where we will begin this message. By the time they returned to the land of Canaan, the herds and flocks of Abram and Lot had grown to such proportions that they could no longer dwell together. That is when Lot chose to dwell in the plain of Jordan with his eyes toward Sodom, for he saw that the land was well watered and like a paradise. Abram had said to Lot, if you go to the right, then I will go to the left, or if you go to the left, then I will go to the right, so when Lot chose to go toward Sodom. Abram dwelled in the land of Canaan. It was after the separation of the two, that God appeared to Abram again and enlarged upon the promise that he had made to him before. This time, he said, All the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed forever. And I will make thy seed as the dust of the earth: so that if a man can number the dust of the earth, then shall thy seed also be numbered. “Arise, walk through the land in the length of it and in the breadth of it. for I will give it unto thee.” Remember now, Abram still does not have a seed to inherit the promise that God has just recomfirmed to him, and he is getting to be an old man, and beyond that, he knows that his wife is barren, but he does not question God about it at this time. Later, however, Abram did question the Lord about his heir, and reminded the Lord that the only heir he had at that time was of the servants born in his house, but God assured him that his heir would come forth from his own loins, By this time, Sarai, Abram’s wife, had conceived an idea of how to get her husband an heir, and she gave her handmaid to her husband to be his wife. As most of you know, it was from this union that Ishmael was born, and even though he was a son of Abraham, this still did not produce the seed that God had determined would be Abram’s heir. God, however, did promise to make of Ishmael a great nation, and said that twelve princes would come from him. We see the proof of that promise in the daily news from the Middle East, for it is his seed that continues to harass Israel in that great land controversy, along with other descendants of Abraham. When Abram was 99 years old, and Sarai was 89, the Lord appeared unto him to reconfirm the promise that he had made unto him. It was at this time that God changed his name from ABRAM to ABRAHAM, which means, “Father of the Multitude.” Then God changed SARAI’S name to SARAH, which means, PRINCESS, and gave Abraham the covenant of circumcision. God, then, told Abraham that Sarah would bear him a son, and that he should call his name Isaac, and God said, “I will establish my covenant with him for an everlasting covenant, and with his seed after him.”
BIRTH OF ISAAC
The following year, when Abraham was 100 years of age, and his wife, Sarah, was 90, she gave birth to the promised son, which they named Isaac, as the Lord had instructed. Sarah lived to the age of 127 years, and when she died, Abraham purchased the cave of Machpelah from Ephron, one of the children of Heth, for a burying place for her. The Bible tells us that the cave was before Mamre, which is Hebron, in the land of Canaan. When Sarah died, their son Isaac was age 37, and still not married. Finding Isaac a wife seemed to be the next thing that Abraham was concerned about after burying Sarah. That brings us to the 24th chapter of Genesis. where we find Abraham, calling his eldest servant, (Eliezer), to his side, and requiring him to take an oath that he will not take a wife for Isaac, from the daughters of the Canaanites, but instead, he was to return to Abraham’s country, (back to the land of the Chaldees), and choose a wife from among Abraham’s kindred. We believe this to be one of the most beautiful types of the plan of God, that has been unfolding through the ages, of how God sent the Holy Ghost to the Gentile people, for the purpose of taking a bride from among them, for His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, (and we are not speaking of a 2nd person in a trinity when we refer to the Son of God, for we understand that these are titles that apply to the office work of the one true God, who is spirit. Actually, when we are speaking in terms of the Son of God, it is more proper just to say Jesus, for that is the name that applies to the flesh of the God man). This fulfills prophecy, for we read in Acts, chapter 15:13-17, where James says that what Peter has told them about God taking a people from among the Gentiles for his name agrees with the prophets. We are living in a day when the term, “The Bride of Christ, is understood by most every professing Christian, to be those who the Lord Jesus will come for when the time of the Gentiles has run its course, but this term was unknown to those first apostles and elders in the I beginning.
THE SERVANT DEPARTS
Let us begin at the 10th verse of Genesis, chapter 24, where we find this beautiful type. The oath has been taken already, and the servant is preparing to make his departure for the journey back to the land of the Chaldeans. Verse 10, “And the servant took ten camels of his master.” Everything that Eliezer took was of his master, and not his own. This corresponds exactly, with what Jesus said about sending another Comforter, who would not speak of himself, but would take the things of his, and show them unto his disciples, John 14:16-17, 15:26, 16:13-15. We see here in this verse that the servant did not take any of his own possessions, for this had to set a perfect type. Therefore we can say that, whatever God is, that was in Christ, can we not? “The servant took ten of his master’s camels, and departed; for all the goods of his master were in his hand: and he arose and went to Mesopotamia, unto the city of Nahor ” This was right in the area that Abraham had come from. “And he made his camels to kneel down without the city by a well of water at the time of the evening, even the time that women go out to draw water.” We learned, from the previous verses, that the servant had said to Abraham, “I am willing to go, but, suppose the woman of my choice will not come here with me, shall I take your son there?” In other words, shall I take him for her to see, in the hope that she will change her mind? Abraham said, no, my son is not to go there. “The Lord God of heaven which took me from my father’s house, and from the land of my kindred, and which spake unto me, and that sware unto me, saying, “Unto thy seed will I give this land;” he shall send his angel before thee, and thou shalt take a wife unto my son from thence. And if the woman will not be willing to follow thee, then thou shalt be clear from this my oath: only bring not my son thither again. That sets a beautiful type, for we Gentiles have never known Christ after the flesh, as the Jewish disciples who followed him. We have only known him by the spirit.
This is a beautiful setting here. This young lady was not to know her future husband by the size of his stature, nor by the color of his hair, nor by his voice, or anything else, other than the report of the servant. Isn’t that the way it has been with the Gentile bride? She has had to take the report of a servant, as to what her future husband is like. She will not see the bridegroom until time for the wedding. Notice the prayer of the servant as he stood there waiting for the right young lady to come for water. Abraham has told him that the Lord would go with him, to guide and direct his way. We could paraphrase Abraham’s words something like this. “Eliezer, you go on and carry out my instructions, and if the Lord is in this, he will guide you to the right person, and if he is not in it, you just come on home, you will be released from the oath.” Abraham was a man of faith, and he was fully convinced that the Lord would lead his servant to the right spot. That is why he could speak as he did.
This is Eliezer’s prayer. Verse 12, O Lord god of my master Abraham, I pray thee, send me good speed this day, and shew kindness unto my master Abraham. Behold, I stand here by the well of water: and the daughters of the men of the city come out to draw water: and let it come to pass, that the damsel to whom I shall say, “Let down thy pitcher, I pray thee, that I may drink;” and she shall say, “Drink, and I will give thy camels drink also: “Let the same be she that thou hast appointed for thy servant Isaac; and there-by shall I know that thou hast shewed kindness unto my master. The servant prayed to the God of his master, Abraham, as he waited by the well. You may say, “why did he go out there and wait by the well?” First, let me say this, the Holy Ghost, (which is the Spirit of the God that Eliezer prayed to), knows the customs and habits of every people, in every age, and I am convinced that the servant of Abraham, took time to acquaint himself with the customs of the people of Mesopotamia, before he left on his journey. Therefore, it was easy for the spirit of God to lead him to this well of water, since he knew that the young ladies of the city would be coming there to draw water, in the evening. He did not bother to go around knocking on doors, asking, if there was a young lady there that wanted to get married. His camels needed water, and he knew that he could use a good drink himself. He would use this as a reason for conversing with those who came to draw water. He was relying on the fact that the one chosen by the Lord, would be very friendly and hospitable. He did not want to carry on a long conversation with every one that came, so he put out a fleece that would let him know right away, whether to carry the conversation further or not. That is exactly the way it is when the Holy Ghost reaches out to lost mankind with his convict ing ability, if He does not get proper response from the person, there is no further communication. That soul that is hungry for God, will say the right thing, when it is wooed by the Holy Ghost. We are not trying to make the Holy Ghost, another person of the Godhead, by using a parallel like this. We hope you realize that God used natural people in the events of the Old Testament, to set a type of something that He was going to do in the spirit, later on. Therefore, when we use these types, we must keep the type on the natural side, and that which it is a type of, on the spiritual side.
Now, notice the attitude and response of this young lady. She set a perfect example, or type, of what the true people of God are like. All that the servant asked for was a little drink of water for himself, but she quickly saw the need, (the camels needed a drink also), and volunteered to draw water for all of the camels. Brothers and sisters: ten thirsty camels can drink a lot of water. This gave Eliezer plenty of opportunity to observe the young lady, and decide how he would go about making his mission known to her. He was satisfied that she was the one that God had chosen, but he still had the responsibility of telling her why he had come there.
ELIEZER SETS A TYPE
Remember now, this servant, Eliezer, is the type of the Holy Ghost, that is selecting a bride for Jesus. Just as Eliezer went to a foreign land, taking nothing of his own personal possessions, to find a bride for Isaac, (the son of promise), so. also, is the Holy Ghost in a foreign land, among the Gentiles, selecting a bride for Jesus. This is a sight unseen affair. She must accept the offer by faith, on the basis of what the servant tells her about the potential bridegroom. Just as Isaac was not to go there himself, but was to have the bride brought to him, so is it with the Lord Jesus. He is not going to come here, in corporal body, to select himself a bride. The bride will make her choice, based upon the testimony of what she has heard, and then she will arise, and go to him. Another thing we notice here that sets a beautiful picture, Abraham wanted his son to have a wife from his same race of people. He said to Eliezer, “you must swear to me that you will not take a wife for my son from among these Canaanites.” When we carry this to the spiritual side, we are no longer speaking of creeds, and color of skin, nor of any particular geographical area, but this speaks of those who have the same faith. Let me say that a little different. Christ will be married to a Gentile bride that has a measure of the same spirit that he is. That is what the kinward connection is here. It is a kinward spirit that causes Christ to accept her in the end. The Gentile bride will be made up of people from all over the world who have that kinward spirit.
THE SERVANT MEETS REBEKAH
We find here, that, before the servant had finished praying, the young damsel had arrived. Verse 15, “And it came to pass, before he had done speaking, that, behold, Rebekah came out, who was born to Bethuel, son of Milcah, the wife of Nahor, Abraham’s brother, with her pitcher upon her shoulder.” (She was Isaac’s cousin.) “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.” This is not the kind of well you would let a bucket down into, on the end of a rope. It is a very large well that is walled up, with steps leading down into it. A person must walk down the steps of such a well, dip their pitcher, or bucket, into the water, then come back up. That is why we said earlier, that watering ten camels was quite a job. I am sure it took quite a lot of time, as well as patience, to get the job done. 17, “And the servant ran to meet her, and said, Let me, I pray thee, drink a little water of thy pitcher.” (He has just presented his fleece before her. Notice the confirmation.) “And she said, Drink, my lord: and she hasted, and let down her pitcher upon her hand, and gave him drink.” (She took the pitcher down off her shoulder and presented it to Eliezer, in a way that he could drink from it.) 19, “And when she had done giving him drink, she said, I will draw water for thy camels also, until they have done drinking. 20, And she hasted, and emptied her pitcher into the trough, and ran again unto the well to draw water, and drew for all his carnets. 21, “And the man wondering at her held his peace, to learn whether the Lord had made his journey prosperous or not.” PRAISE GOD! Brothers and sisters: I can just imagine how his heart felt right at that time, seeing the thing he had just finished asking for, right there before him. Did any of you ever put a fleece out, and ask God to do something as a vindication that He was in what you felt like you were to do? If you have, and if it came about just as you asked for it, then you know something of the thrill that Eliezer felt in his soul. If we can visualize the joy and happiness that this brought to Eliezer, then we can also visualize the joy and happiness that is felt when the Holy Ghost comes to woo a lost Gentile sinner into the saving grace of God and that person responds in the same way Rebekah did. It was Jesus that said, “I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance. Luke 15:7, 10. It makes the Holy Spirit feel good, when a lost sinner responds to his call.
GIFTS PRESENTED TO REBEKAH
Eliezer realized that his trip was not in vain, for his fleece had come to pass just exactly as he had asked for it to be. He saw every little detail worked out perfectly, so far. Now it is time for him to act on his part. The girl has convinced him, by her response, and conduct, that she is the one, chosen by God, to be the wife of Isaac. Watch what happens next. 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.” He gave her a gold earring, and bracelets from that which he had brought with him. This gold did not come from the area where the girl lived. It came from where Abraham and Isaac lived. This is not cheap gold, and though it is carnal jewelry, it all typifies something. This gold speaks of something of value, something precious. The trip did not tarnish it. Its value remained the same. This speaks of deity. It speaks of where it came from. She could tell by looking at it, whether it was worth anything or not. All of this was for a type. When we come to verse 23, we find the man walking up to Rebekah with the earring and bracelets in his hand, ready to reward her for the way she had responded to his request. He knew she did not have to do what she had done. It was all a very generous gesture on her part. This was the quality he was looking for in the woman that was to be Isaac’s wife. Therefore, he realized that he was going to have to ask for her. I can see him, as he begins to slip the bracelets over her hands, wondering what her response will be, to the questions he is going to ask. You can imagine, also, what this is doing for her. This is the first time in her life, that she has ever been offered anything like this.
THIS SPEAKS OF THE GIFTS OF THE SPIRIT
There is nothing else in the entire scriptures, that this typifies as clearly as it does the gifts of the Holy Ghost. This points exactly to what Paul said in 1 Cor. 12:7, But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to EVERY MAN to profit withal. Naturally, this does not apply to the man of the world, nor to the church world, in general, but it does apply to those who have truly been born of the Spirit of God. Some people will say they do not know what gift they have. I have always said this, if He is in there, he will manifest Himself, somewhere, from time to time. If you will just follow my little story, we will see it we cannot see something in this. We will read verse 23, where the servant actually approaches Rebekah. He said, “Whose daughter art thou? Tell me, I pray thee: is there room in thy father’s house for us to lodge in?” Now he had other servants with him, but none of them were servants of authority. They were all subject to him. This would be a type of the angels of God, that work in conjunction with the working of the Holy Spirit among us. They are the ministering spirits, according to what we read in Hebrews 1:13-14, “But to which of the angels said he at any time, Sit on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool? Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?” Now, we can see that all of this fits into this beautiful picture, as God sets a type of the Gentile bride of Christ. This servant, Eliezer, was the head servant, the one of authority, who had the responsibility of carrying out the mission, and all the others were to assist him in doing so. He was the one that was commissioned to speak on behalf of his master, and when he asked the question, the young lady answered, 24, “I am the daughter of Bethuel the son of Milcah, which she bare unto Nahor, 25, She said moreover unto him, We have both straw and provender enough, and room to lodge in.” In other words, Yes, we have plenty of room, and everything necessary for your men and camels. I will introduce you to my family. 26, “And the man bowed down his head and worshipped the Lord.” I can just picture the man in my mind. His heart was full of gratitude to the Lord for making this, much dreaded task, successful. He probably did not shout, or pray loudly, but he gave thanks to the God of his master, Abraham. We all know that, this mission would not have been proper under normal circumstances, for, according to the custom it was the responsibility of the parents to select a proper wife for their son. Therefore, if there had been a people there in Cannan for Abraham to choose from he would have made the choice himself, but he was well stricken in years, and unable to make the trip back to his homeland. That is why it was necessary to send his servant. It is wonderful to watch God work circumstances to cause men to fulfill his plan and purpose. Brothers and sisters: Abraham was the very beginning of God’s great plan, worked out through types and shadows. The setting of our text was necessary, to set the proper type, of how God, in his office as Father of all creation, would send the Holy Ghost into the world, to choose a bride for His only begotten Son.
Jesus, (the Son of Promise, Isa. 9:6), is to have a bride delivered to him by the Holy Ghost. Isaac, (Abraham’s son of promise, Gen. 17:16-19), had his bride delivered to him by Eliezer, the servant, who was a type of the Holy Ghost. It all fits together to make a beautiful picture. I pray that the Lord will enable each of you to see this as I do. It thrills me to see God work circumstances that cause people to fulfill his will. Notice the words of Eliezer as he gave thanks to God for helping him. 27, “And he said, Blessed be the Lord God of my master Abraham, who hath not left destitute my master of his mercy and his truth: I being in the way, the Lord led me to the house of my master’s brethren.” This goes to show that the bride of Jesus Christ will not be kinward flesh, but of kinward spirit. Flesh wise, it would be Jewish, for the genealogy of Jesus, the Christ, goes back. through David to Abraham. According to the flesh, he was a Jew, but we understand by the spirit that his blood was neither Jew nor Gentile, for the bloodline comes from the father of the child, and the Father of Jesus was the Holy Ghost, Matt. 1:18, 20. Verse 28, “And the damsel ran, and told them of her mother’s house these things, 29, And Rebekah had a brother, and his name was Laban: and Laban ran out unto the man, unto the well. 30, And it came to pass, when he saw the earring and bracelets upon his sister’s hands, and when he heard the words of Rebekah his sister, saying, Thus spake the man unto me; that he came unto the man: and, behold, he stood by the camels at the well.”
WHAT HOLY GHOST DOES
You will notice that by the time her brother found out what was taking place, Rebekah already had the earring and the bracelets. She had already accepted the gifts before she informed the family of what was happening. Isn’t that the way it has been with most of us. We were busy with our denominational routine, not knowing very much about anything beyond that, then, the Holy Ghost came on the scene, captured our attention, and when we responded properly, he gave gifts unto us. Do you see the beautiful type that is set forth here? Praise God, when the Holy Ghost came among the Gentiles, over 1900 years ago, for the purpose of calling out a bride for Jesus Christ, he came with gifts. These gifts did not originate among the Gentiles, just as the gifts of gold did not come from the regions of Mesopotamia. Abraham had acquired the gold in the land of Canaan, in the regions where he had his abode. He sent them to the future bride of his son from where he was. As Laban looked at his sister, he couldn’t help but notice that she was different. This is a picture of how the Holy Ghost came to the Gentiles in the beginning of God’s process of selecting a Gentile bride. We see in Romans 12, and in 1 Corinthians, as well as many other places in the Bible, that wherever the Holy Ghost established a group of believers in that first age, the group, which became known as the church, (the bride), was always decked with the gifts of the Spirit. The gifts did not originate in a Gentile setting though, for they had already been manifested in another place. They had already been processed. God was cutting the Jews off, and giving the gifts to the Gentiles. The girl standing there with the gifts, set a type of the Gentile church in her original acceptance of the gospel, which made her a part of this great plan of God. Let us observe Laban’s reaction now, 31, “And he said, Come in, thou blessed of the Lord; Wherefore standest thou without? for I have prepared the house, and I room for the camels. 32, And the man came into the house: and he ungirded his camels, and gave straw and provender for the camels, and water to wash his feet, and the men’s feet that were with him.” This is a picture of the Gentiles accepting the Holy Spirit into their society. As the Holy Spirit was accepted into the Gentile society, (Now please understand the illustration, for this sets a type.) that group, or nation, benefited, and was blessed, as long as the Holy Ghost was among them. If you want further proof, just look at some of the history from 25 years ago and back, how the Gentile people began to straighten up, and change their way of living, when the Holy Ghost came into their midst. No, he did not come to take all of those people, but to take out of them a people for his name, a selected group for the bride of Christ. The presence of the Holy Ghost, changed the whole social process of Gentile people, even those who did not become christians. The presence of this servant did something, right there in the home of Rebekah. There was something going on in that home. A kinward relationship was felt. This home was to benefit by this as long as it remained to be a home.
ELIEZER TELLS HIS MISSION
For almost 2000 years Gentiles have benefited by the fact that God sent the Holy Spirit, (the comforter), to them, to woo them, for the purpose of calling out a bride from their midst. These nations could not help but recognize the display of the power of God, and they had respect, to a certain degree, for that which was of God among them. In verse 33 we see that they set meat before the servant. That shows that they had accepted him into their society, and they were making him feel at home, in their home. He was a man that was dedicated to his master, and proved it by his next words, for he said, “I will not eat, until I have told mine errand.” Laban gave him permission to speak of his mission, and he related the whole story to the family. He began by telling them how the Lord had blessed his master, Abraham, with flocks, and herds, and silver, and gold, menservants, and maidservants, as well as camels and asses. Then he told them how Sarah had bare a son to Abraham when he was old, and how that Abraham had given all of his substance into the hands of Isaac. After that, he related to them how that he had been required to take an oath concerning the choosing of a bride for Isaac. He then told them of his prayer to God, and how the prayer was answered, which brings the story up to the point as to why he is in their home. I believe that while he was speaking, he was carefully observing their reactions, and weighing the situation at hand. We also find that he was a blessing to the home, and not just enjoying their blessing him. After he finished telling his story, he asked for their decision. Verse 50, “Then Laban and Bethuel answered and said, the thing proceedeth from the Lord: we cannot speak unto thee bad or good. 51, Behold, Rebekah is before thee, take her, and go, and let her be thy master’s son’s wife, as the Lord hath spoken.” The man had evidently made a good impression on the young lady’s family, for they answered as he had hoped they would. Then Eliezer bowed his head once again and worshipped the Lord. Afterwards, he brought forth jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and garments, which he distributed to Rebekah and her family. Verse 53 refers to them as precious things. In this gesture, we see the servant blessing the family of Rebekah. Even though she is the one he came for, the whole family benefited by his presence. That is the very way a home is blessed when one member receives the Holy Ghost, and the rest of the family does not fight against his presence. After giving gifts to Rebekah and her family, the servant and all the men with him began to eat and drink of that which was set before them. The men stayed all night, then, rose up in the morning, and the servant said, “Send me away unto my master. This is where we find that they evidently enjoyed his presence in their home. Notice verse 55, “And her brother and her mother said, Let the damsel abide with us a few days, at the least ten; after that she shall go.” In other words, they said, “It is alright with us for Rebekah to go, but why does it have to be so soon? You ought to wait at least ten days, before starting out on a journey like that.” I believe they enjoyed having this fellow around. They probably thought “It is going to be lonely around here when you take Rebekah and leave.” Brothers and sisters: I believe this old Gentile world is going to be a lonely place to live, as the Spirit of God moves out. When Eliezer left, he was going to take something with him. Likewise, when the Spirit of God departs from the Gentiles, He is going to take something with him, (THE BRIDE OF CHRIST), and the place is never going to be the same again. Now notice verse 56, The man has fulfilled his purpose in being there, and he does not feel that there would be any purpose in his staying longer. I imagine he was getting a little anxious to return, now that the Lord had made his journey prosperous, therefore, he said to them, “Hinder me not, seeing the Lord hath prospered my way; send me away that I may go to my master. 57, And they said, “We will call the damsel, and inquire at her mouth.” It was her choice to make, not theirs. How true that is with every Gentile soul that has been called to be a part of the bride of Christ. it is their choice to make. As individuals, every person that is called of God, has to make their own choice, as to whether they are willing to follow Him or not. 58, And they called Rebekah, and said unto her, Wilt thou go with this man? In other words, will you go with this man, to marry a man that you have never seen? Will you go off on such a long journey, knowing that we will never see you anymore? She said, I WILL GO.
When she said, I WILL GO, she was still wearing those bracelets and earring, that the man had given to her. She did not have to ask mother, nor anyone else, if she could take them with her, for they had been given to her at the well before the man was introduced to the family. 59, “And they sent away Rebekah, their sister, and her nurse, and Abraham’s servant, and his men. 60, 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.” That is exactly what she became, the mother of thousands of millions. Her children have been scattered all over the world, since those words were spoken to her that day. Now when this young lady made the choice, to forsake her family and friends, and cut loose from all ties in Mesopotamia, to be the wife of a man that she had never seen, she became an image, a symbol or type of every Gentile soul, who, by faith, has made the same choice after being wooed by the Holy Ghost. To be in the bride of Christ, a person must be willing to forsake all, leaving all of the old life behind, to follow Him. 61, “And Rebekah arose, and her damsels, and they rode upon the camels and followed the man: and the servant took Rebekah, and went his way.”
MINISTERING TO THE DAMSEL
Brothers and sisters: this is a large caravan heading out for the long journey back to the land of Canaan. Therefore, I believe, if we can look at the picture right, the young lady does not have on a wedding garment, as she embarks on the journey. She is dressed for camel riding, she is portraying her true self, but, after being out for three or four days, she, no doubt, began to get dusty, so that her appearance showed signs of being on a journey; away from home. This set a type of what the church would be like, after leaving that first age. It portrays her identity through the ages. Somewhere in her luggage though, Rebekah has the wedding garment that she is going to present herself to Isaac in. She does not travel in her wedding garment. I can picture, in my mind, those long days and nights of that journey back to Canaan. Those servants that had gone with Eliezer, would set up tents at night, one tent for Rebekah and her damsels, and then they would set up tents around that special tent for themselves. I can see them sitting there with their swords, keeping them good and sharp. to guard against attacks from the Bedouin tribes that love to invade the camps of travelers. This all typifies the angels of the Lord that are encamped round about them that fear him, Psa. 34:7. These angels, according to the apostle Paul in his letter to the Hebrews, are sent forth as ministering spirits to them who believe God and trust in his promises. They administer the promises of God to his believing children, and protect them in their earthly journey through life. That is what these men who went with Eliezer were commissioned to do on behalf of Rebekah, the chosen bride to be. They had many miles to travel, and during that trip, Rebekah was not portrayed as a bride to the natural eye, although, I am sure that in their minds they could see her as what she was destined to be, the wife of Isaac. I am just as sure that the angels of God are looking upon this little Gentile bride in these last days, and seeing her as what she will be one day soon. Praise God! I believe that time is near. Conditions, world wise, point to the fact that the Spirit of God is taking his leave from the Gentile people. He will soon return to the Jews once again, and this time, they will receive him, for they will no longer be blinded for the sake of the Gentiles, Romans 11:7, 25.
THE LAST DAY
Now, returning to our text, finally, the 7th day of the journey had arrived. I do not know if it was 7 days or not. It could have been 7 weeks, but we will just use the number 7 here, and you will see why, as we go along. I imagine Rebekah would ask Eliezer, each day, “How much farther?” He had traveled the road, and, therefore, knew the approximate distance traveled each day. He knew how many days it took him to come, and by that, he could tell her, each night, how far they had traveled that day, and how many more days it would take to reach home.
SEVEN CHURCH AGES
All through the Bible we find types that point to 7 Gentile church ages. Therefore, we believe with all our hearts, that there are seven dispensational days of God’s plan of redemption, both for humanity, and for the earth itself, and that seventh day is definitely the millennium. No, doubt, on this particular morning, she knew that this would be the day for them to arrive at their destination, in the evening time. Of course, they still had a few more miles of dusty riding, so she did not put on her wedding garment that morning, but I can see her putting it in a certain place in her luggage, where it will be easy to get hold of when evening comes. She is going to need it then. I doubt that she has been wearing the jewels that were presented to her by the servant before she left home, but I am certain that she had them placed in her luggage so that she could get to them when she dressed for the bridegroom. That is exactly what the Holy Ghost is leading the bride of Christ to do here in these last few years of this 7th church age dispensation. Everything is being placed and positioned for the eventual hour when the little Gentile bride will begin to shed her old attire and get dressed up in her evening attire, her wedding gown. Remember, she makes herself ready when the time comes, Rev. 19:7. As evening came on, and the sun started sinking in the West, (which is a type of God’s dealing with the Gentiles, coming to a close), 62, “Isaac came from the way of the well Lahairoi; for he dwelt in the south country. 63, And Isaac went out to meditate in the field AT THE EVENTIDE.” This, to me, is a picture that shows action or movement on the part of the bridegroom. Remembering when Eliezer had left home, he probably began to feel like it could be time for them to return. The fact that he arose, and went out to this certain place, shows action on his part. It shows that he is looking for something, and the fact that he is meditating, shows that he is planning something. He has gone to a certain place. Let me ask you this, why would he go to a certain place to meditate? This was in the south country, but it was not in the front yard, of where his tent was. He has gone for a walk. He has got out of sight of something. He is out in the field. Let me say this, here, before going on. “Timewise, and condition wise, we are at the end. Time is running out for this 7th church age. Evening time is upon us, and the spirit of God is definitely moving toward the Jewish people. God, by His Spirit, has made the choice. He is beginning to act on his part. We know it is all planned by God to fulfill the scripture of the revelation of the Messiah to the Jewish nation. Climaxing this evening time, Isaac is moving, walking, meditating. He has gone to a certain place to do his meditating. It is while he is walking from that certain place that he lifted up his eyes and saw the camels coming. If we can see this in its typified manner, it lets us know, he had to have a reason for going to that particular place to pray. It was not that he expected to find his future wife there, but there was a reason for him going there to pray. His heart must have been drawn there. To me, this sets a picture, a pattern. He lifted up his eyes and saw the camels coming. He saw the camels, before he saw the girl. They were larger than she. Eliezer had left with ten camels, and we do not know how many her father added to the train, but, nevertheless, there is a camel train on the horizon. In his heart, he has been expecting this. As he looked up and saw them coming, I believe he could tell by the walk of those familiar camels, that this was the event he had been waiting for. He probably recognized the jingle of the bells on the camels that had left home with Eliezer. About the time he saw the camels, Rebekah saw him, verse 64, “Rebekah lifted up her eyes, and when she saw Isaac, she lighted off the camel. 65, For she had said unto the servant. What man is this that walketh in the field to meet us? And the servant had said, It is my master: therefore she took a vail, and covered herself.” You can rest assured that while Rebekah was inquiring of the servant about Isaac, he had watched the train long enough that he was sure it was the one he was looking for. He knew there was a wife for him there in that train. That is what he had waited for, the time when she would come to him. He knew there had to be certain things, and certain days, accomplished, before this event would take place, but, now, the time has arrived, and it is no surprise to him. It was just as he had expected. I believe that the Lord Jesus Christ is awaiting this Gentile bride. He sees the conditions here in this old world of the Gentiles, and I believe that he has identified its makeup, the way things are shaping up and closing out as the end approaches. It was the camels that were carrying Isaac’s bride, that he recognized, before he recognized the people, or saw the bride. Likewise it will be what is carrying the bride of Christ, that he will recognize first. Shame on people who think that they know every camel. Leave that to the bridegroom. When Isaac had identified the camels, and knew whose camels they were, that is when he started toward them. I imagine he was saying in his heart, “Praise God, the waiting is almost over.” It was at that particular time that Rebekah asked Eliezer, “Who is the man that is walking in the field to meet us?” When Eliezer answered, “That is my master,” Rebekah slid right off that camel and covered her face with a vail. What did she get off of the camel for? She could have covered her face with a veil without getting down from the camel. Praise God, Brothers and sisters: this is beautiful. This is the time when she puts on her attire for the wedding. She did not dress herself for the wedding until after the bridegroom was identified to her. As soon as the bridegroom was identified to her, she covered her face and began to dress herself. She began making herself ready. She knew what time it was then. Praise God! I have always said that there will have to be something going on in the world among us Gentiles, that will let us know what time it is, something that will let the little Gentile bride know when to make the final preparations. I believe with all my heart that every Holy Ghost filled Gentile person that has journeyed through time, has done so, with the consciousness that there is going to be a wedding to climax the journey. Certainly there have been days in the hot desert sun, (spiritually speaking), when it was not enjoyable, riding on a camel all day long, and certainly, the journey has not been pleasant every moment. but the thing that has kept that Gentile bride riding, is the knowledge of what she is going to meet at the end of her journey.
BRIDE OF CHRIST FROM EVERY AGE
Naturally, we are not talking about a geographical journey, but a journey through time, with a certain destination before us. Just as Rebekah veiled herself, so that no one else could look at her, now that she belonged to Isaac, so also, is the bride of Christ covering herself with the Word of God, in order not to be exposed. I believe we have just about reached the veiling time of the journey. Please try to understand as we make this parallel with Rebekah and the Gentile bride of Christ, that the bride of Christ is not just one person, or one particular age, but it includes all of those from every age since the church had its beginning in the book of Acts. If you try to confine our remarks to one particular age, you will not get the picture put together right. When Rebekah left home on her journey, she symbolized the church as it had its beginning from the day of Pentecost. We all understand that there were many separations in families, as certain members of those families came in contact with the Holy Ghost, and decided to follow Him, as Rebekah did Eliezer.. Her dusty journey through the desert, symbolizes the church, (the bride of Christ), as she came through the dark ages, and then on out through the reformers until she has just about reached the end of her journey. Her wedding day is just about to dawn.
MEETING IN THE AIR
Let us read these last two verses of this chapter, and then, I want you to catch my illustration. 66, “And the servant told Isaac all things that he had done. 67, “And Isaac brought her into his mother Sarah’s tent, and took Rebekah, and she became his wife; and he loved her, and Isaac was com-forted after his mother’s death.” (Isaac was forty years old when he took Rebekah to be his wife. His mother had been dead three years.) Just as Isaac came from the south country where he dwelt, and met the bride, (Rebekah), out in the field, I believe that Jesus Christ is just about ready to leave the mercy seat, and when he does, he definitely will come to meet the bride portrayed as a bridegroom. The world will not see him when he comes to meet the bride, for according to 1 Thessalonians 4:13-17, that meeting will be in the air. Let us read that scripture together. 13-17, “But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.” After that, the apostle Paul added these words, “Wherefore, comfort one another with these words.”
WHO MAKES THE FINAL PREPARATION
Now, here is what I want you to see. All of the bride people from every age will be there for that meeting in the air, but it is the living element of that bride which must make the final preparations, as Rebekah symbolized when she dressed herself for the wedding and put on the bracelets and earring which had been given to her, at her first meeting with Eliezer at the well. What she put on display was the gifts that she had with her all the time. She had them with her all the time, but there was no need to display them on that long, hot journey. I am sure, though, that she left home looking very nice as she went out from her family and friends. It was during the journey that she put the gifts away, but kept them handy, where she could get to them when the time came. “I hope you are seeing this.” When the church started out in that first age, she was adorned with all of the gifts of the spirit, (1 Cor. 12:1-10), but somewhere along the journey through time, the gifts of the spirit have been laid aside. However, I am fully persuaded, that when she makes her final preparation for the wedding, she will have those same gifts operating that she started out with, almost two thousand years ago. She will have every gift in its proper place. Everything will be shining beautifully, reflecting the true Holy Ghost, the deity of the Lord Jesus Christ. I believe that she will be arrayed in fine linen, (according to Rev. 19:7-8), clean and white. It has been right here all the time. It is just that she reaches a place in the ending of her earthly journey, (as the sun is sinking in the west), that she knows how to properly adorn herself. The adornment has been present all the time, but it is put on in the evening time, when the journey is almost over.
NATURAL TYPES SPIRITUAL
Brothers and sisters: let me reemphasize something before going on in the message lest there be some who will miss the thought. Remember, anytime we make a spiritual application from a natural type, you will have things happening in one day of time in the type, that will take many months or years for the spiritual application to actually fulfill the type. For instance, Rebekah dressed herself and displayed the gifts that had been given to her by Eliezer, (Eliezer being a type of the Holy Ghost), in just a few minutes of time, making herself ready to meet Isaac, the bridegroom. In a spiritual application pertaining to the Gentile bride of the Lord Jesus Christ, this process is spread out over a period of time, and we are not going to set any certain number of days, weeks, months or years for this adorning process with her. Just as Rebekah received her information and instructions from the servant, Eliezer, who was guiding her on her journey, so will the bride of Christ receive her information and instructions from the Holy Ghost, the one who is guiding her. That does not mean that you should stop listening to preachers and expect God to reveal everything to you by his spirit directly, as some have dared to do in this hour. That is how many people have gotten themselves into trouble, spiritually. They have become puffed up with pride, and many have been heard to say, “Bless God, I don’t need anyone to tell me what to do, I get my instructions from the Holy Ghost.” To that, I will just have to say, “Yes, and if you persist in an attitude of rebellion like that, you have pronounced your own judgment, for the Bible makes it very clear that God has set a five fold ministry in the church for the purpose of leading the church, (the bride of Christ), into perfection,” Eph. 4:11-15. Many who profess to be in the bride of Christ, are so spiritually blind, that they have no concept of what being led by the Spirit of God is. First of all, a person must have a right attitude, then, you must have a teachable spirit. God’s true children are not haughty and proud, with a striving attitude, always thinking, only of themselves. The Bible teaches that the people of God, (the people who have the spirit of God in them), are a humble people, people who are concerned for the welfare of others. Let me read you a few verses from the 3rd chapter of Colossians. These are instructions given to this group of christians by the apostle of that first church age, the apostle Paul, 12-17. “Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering; Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye. And above all these things put on charity, (love), which is the bond of PERFECTNESS. And let the peace of God RULE IN YOUR HEARTS, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful. Let the word of God dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in Psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.”
WHO IS LEADING YOU?
When we have been truly born again, we will not reject such an admonition from a man of God, and we will recognize that this IS part of God’s leading us by his spirit. We must have an ear to hear, and a receptive mind and spirit, in order for the Holy Ghost to lead us. Then, that leading may come through any one of many avenues, but there is one thing for sure, if it is the Holy Ghost leading, it will never lead you contrary to the word of God, or cause you to do or say anything hateful or ugly. We need to examine ourselves, and our motives, to see if we are in harmony with the word of God.
THAT KINWARD SPIRIT
We pointed out earlier in the message how that Abraham wanted the wife of his son to be taken from among his kinfolk, back in Mesopotamia. The reason for that was that those Canaanites characterized evil things. In type, this shows that the bride of Christ, must come from a people who have a kinward spirit, with him. Once that spirit is inside of the person, it puts that person in communication with whatever the Holy Ghost, (which is typified by the servant Eliezer), commands, asks, requires or etc. The person does not set up a rebellious disposition against the very one that came to get them. That is characterized in the way Rebekah responded to the approach of Continued from page 5 Eliezer at the well. It is also characterized in the way that she invited the servant into her parents home, also, in the way she relied on that servant to protect, and inform her on the journey. She relied on that servant the whole time, right to the end of the journey, and I am sure he kept a close watch on her, for he had an obligation to fulfill. The Holy Ghost, (characterized by this servant), has a dispensational objective, as he is sent forth, by God, into the Gentile world, for the purpose of calling out a chosen people, who will bear the name of Jesus Christ. He is faithful in his work, and every born again, child of God, down through the ages has fully relied on the fact that it takes the Holy Ghost to guide him in his earthly journey. We will say also, just as Rebekah, no doubt, questioned Eliezer, about many things, as they journeyed, the child of God does not hesitate to question, (in his prayer life and meditation), the one who is leading him, about the things that are on his mind. I am sure that Rebekah asked many questions about Isaac, the one she was going to marry, for remember, it was not Eliezer that she was going to wed, neither is it the Holy Ghost that we are going to wed, it is the Lord Jesus Christ. Let me say again, we are not talking about the 2nd and 3rd persons of a trinity. The bridegroom of this Gentile bride is to be the God man himself; God, manifested in fleshly, human form. He came into the world, manifested in the form of human flesh, bearing the likeness of man, that he, by the grace of God should taste death for every man, or as the writer of Hebrews said, “But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man. –
In this little story of Genesis 24, we have such a beautiful picture, it ought to help us better understand some things about the bride of Christ that is typed here. I can just see them as they traveled over this desert, on such a long journey. The oasis, and the water holes were few, and far between, but that servant knew where everyone of them was, for he had traveled that road before. When, and wherever they found such a place, I am sure they stopped to refresh themselves. That is the way it has been with the church, (the bride of Christ), down through the ages of time as she traveled her earthly journey. There have been many revivals that have furnished her with a chance to be refreshed, a chance to get a fresh drink from that fountain which never runs dry. Many of us have been privileged to be in some of those great revivals, and we have read of others that took place before our time, but I wonder how many of us have ever stopped to think, or wonder, just what it was like during the dark ages, when just about all of the gospel light had been snuffed out, and there were no places for a hungry soul to go for a time of refreshing? Though some may think they have had it rough, I am persuaded that we are living in a day when the price of being identified with Christ, has been less than ever before. I am talking about the price that some have had to pay for their faith since the day of Pentecost almost two thousand years ago in the way of trials, tribulations, persecutions, and even martyrdom. The cost has been great to keep this gospel light burning for you and I. Therefore, we ought not take too much for granted, but we should be thankful to God for the truth that we have, and cherish it with all our hearts.
FROM DARK AGES TO GOD’S BATH TUB
As the church began to emerge from the dark ages, in the early years of the reformation, I doubt if there was much said about being prepared as a bride, but rather, the emphasis was placed mainly on being saved, believing on the Lord Jesus Christ, and having their sins forgiven. But, brothers and sisters; we are living in a day when there is much talk about a future wedding between the Lord Jesus Christ and the church, even among the denominational assemblies. I believe that is because we are approaching a time factor which ; places emphasis on the church being adorned as a bride. Of course there will be people in the bride from the former church ages, but it is the living element
of that pride, that has the privilege, as well as the responsibility, of climbing into God’s bathtub, and being washed with the water by the word. We read, in the 5th chapter of Ephesians, that the Lord Jesus is going to present the church to himself, a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. One of these days, (and I believe, very soon), that last Gentile soul, who will make up the complete Gentile bride, will come in. When that takes place, the journey will just about be over, and the little bride will be anxiously awaiting the moment when she will lay eyes upon the one she has been waiting to see at the end of the journey. She, realizing that it is almost time for the wedding will begin to be more concerned about being clean, and she will want to make certain that she puts on powder and perfume to make her smell nice, (speaking spiritually of course). A bride, in the natural, who is preparing herself for her wedding, before she gets dressed, she will get into a tub, and bathe herself, making sure that she gets rid of every offensive odor, then she will dress for the wedding. Now, I ask you, if that be true in the natural, how much more true it should be in the spiritual?
THREE WASHINGS FOR CHRIST’S BRIDE
The bride of Christ, who is to be a queen, sitting by her husband on his throne, will certainly realize her need for the bath that he, (Christ), has prepared for her, to wash away those offensive odors of the spirit, such as jealousy, pride, envy, selfishness, etc. His bride will not be guilty of allowing herself to give off these offensive odors of the spirit. I would like to point out at this time, that there are three washings for the bride of Christ. First, she is washed in the blood that was shed for her at Calvary. That washing is accomplished when a person believes with all their heart, that the sacrifice Jesus made at Calvary is sufficient for them, as an individual. That is when you are cleansed from the sin of UNBELIEF. Just as the apostle Paul said in Hebrews 9:22, “WITHOUT THE SHEDDING OF BLOOD, THERE IS NO REMISSION.” Therefore, the Lord Jesus paid the price for the sin of unbelief with his own blood, and all who believe that he paid their personal sin debt for unbelief are cleansed from that sin of condemnation, for a person cannot BELIEVE, AND DISBELIEVE AT THE SAME TIME. The one cancels out the other.
The second washing is by water according to the formula in Acts 2:30, where the apostle Peter used the keys to the kingdom of heaven, committed to him by the Lord Jesus, Matt. 16:19, and unlocked the way, for those souls to enter in. When they believed the things concerning Jesus, who was crucified, 50 days previous to this particular day, and cried out to Peter and the other apostles, WHAT SHALL WE DO? We find the apostle Peter answering them like this, “REPENT, AND BE BAPTIZED EVERY ONE OF YOU IN THE NAME OF JESUS CHRIST FOR THE REMISSION OF SINS, (notice, it says SINS), AND YE SHALL RECEIVE THE I GIFT OF THE HOLY GHOST.” This washing in water could never cleanse a person from the sin of unbelief, (only the shed blood can do that), but, after a person has believed, they are baptized in water for the remission of the sinful deeds they have committed
In the flesh, because of inherited nature. The washing of the body in water when we are baptized, does not put the virtue in the water. The virtue, (the act that makes you clean), is in the obedience of submitting to it. As we find in 1 Peter 3:21, it is the answer of a good conscience toward God, The baptism in water, (as we said before), is for the remission of those sinful deeds of the flesh, for all of the wrong things that we have done, said, and allowed. Let us read a few verses of Paul’s writings to the church at Corinth, 1 Cor. 6:9-11. “Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you: BUT YE ARE WASHED, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified IN THE NAME OF THE LORD JESUS, AND BY THE SPIRIT OF OUR GOD.” These are not my words, they are taken right from the Holy Scriptures, which were written by the inspiration of the Holy Ghost. I do not say these things for the purpose of accusing those who are guilty of many of the deeds mentioned here, but rather, to help those who are guilty, and are looking for God’s way out, God’s remedy, or cure, for our sinful nature. If you have never been baptized properly, then you cannot claim the full benefits of God’s great salvation. In other words, you have not fully believed, for we do not have the privilege of leafing through the Bible and picking out what we will believe, and rejecting the rest. The child of God will believe everything that is written in the inspired word of God, and he will not continuously search the scriptures, looking for portions that are not inspired, as some have been known to do in this hour.
We will now speak of the third washing, or cleansing process, for the bride of Christ. We have already mentioned the fact that the Lord Jesus is washing his bride to be, (the church of the living God), with the waters of his word, according to Paul’s words in Ephesians 5:26. This is a bathing in the revelated word of God. It is for the purpose of straightening out our thinking, our attitude, our personality, so that we give off a sweet smelling savour to God. Whoever refuses to take this third washing, which is for the cleansing of the spirit, getting rid of the smudges and smears of our former Babylonian teachings, will not be present at the marriage supper of the Lamb. Do not bother to say, “I believe my way is just as good as yours,” for this is not a question of my way, and your way. It is a matter of bringing our lives in line with God’s one perfect way. it was never necessary for God to make an alternate route to the kingdom of heaven, or into the kingdom of God, for his one way is perfect, and all whom he has foreknown will find that way, and walk in it.
MOVING RIGHT ON SCHEDULE
Just as Eliezer led Rebekah right to the very place, and at the exact time for her to meet Isaac, the Holy Ghost, (typified by the servant Eliezer), working through the five fold ministry will accomplish the very same thing on behalf of the bride of Christ. Through the ministry, the Holy Ghost will lead this little Gentile bride all the way to the end of her earthly journey, right to the place, and at exactly the right time. Many times we hear remarks to the effect that, the bride of Christ is not where she ought to be. Now, I ask you, is God a failure? Did he not inspire his apostle to write, in Rom. 8:29-30, “For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also GLORIFIED?” Is that not the word of God? I believe that everything is running right on schedule, and that we are nearing the end of the journey. It is the end of the journey that I want to deal with now, for a little while. We have seen what the young girl, (Rebekah), typified. We have seen what Eliezer, (the servant), typified, and we see what the servants that were with him typified, (angels, ministering spirits that are encamped about those who love God), or for the benefit of you who enjoy checking the scriptures, let me read Psalms 34:7-9, “The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them, O taste and see that the Lord is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him. O fear the Lord, ye his saints: for there is no want to them that fear him.” Of course, we have already read Heb. 1:14, that speaks of the same thing. It is not that I preach angels, or anything like that. My purpose here is to show you that every child of God that has ever purposed to follow truth has had trials and tests in their life, that have, at times, seemed almost impossible to bear, but, those ministering spirits have been sent from the presence of God to watch over that person, and deliver him. Those ministering angels, (which are spirit beings), work in conjunction with the Holy Ghost, as he chooses, and leads to perfection, the bride of Christ. These are things that many people have trouble understanding. They will say, “What are angels? What is the Holy Ghost? It is because they try to materialize everything, that they do not understand. Take, for instance. In the beginning, when God said, “Let us make man in our image,” even trinitarians will tell you that there had to be more there than just God the Father. Where they miss the picture though, is in believing that the others present were God, the Son, and God, the Holy Spirit, as they say it. Brothers and sisters: it is pitiful for people to think of God in that way. When God did act, it says, “In the image of God created he him: male and female created he them.” God created a spirit , being, when he created man, as we read there in Genesis 1:27. That is how he was like God. At that time, the man did not even have a material body. God fashioned a body for the man that he had already created, from the dust of the earth. Then, later, he took a rib from Adam and fashioned a body for the woman, which he brought to Adam to be his helpmate.
LET US MAKE MAN
When God speaks, as He did in Gen. 1:26, in plural terms, it does not mean that He is speaking to the Holy Ghost on one side, and the Son on the other, each as a person. When He speaks in plural terms like that, He is including his angelic family, for He doesn’t do anything without committing His laws, His ways, His plans into the hands of angelic beings to carry out. Even when Jesus, the God man himself, who absolutely had power to walk on the water, to raise the dead, multiply the loaves and fishes, etc., in order to set a perfect example, and to keep everything in proper order, when He had been tempted and tried by the devil after fasting for 40 days, it was angels that came and ministered to Him. He had just finished defeating the devil on every hand, by using the word of God against him, and we know that He had power to change things, so why did angels come to minister to Him? It is because they are ministering spirits. This very episode, set an example for us, who would be tested and tried later. Jesus did not come on earth to carry out some personal plan of his own, from a human standpoint. He came for the purpose of being a walking tabernacle of the great Jehovah God. He said, “I do nothing of myself, I came to do the will of my Father.” How beautiful it would be today, if children of God would just realize, it is not man that we should be trying to please, not the head of some denomination, but God himself. If we have the Holy Ghost inside of us, we should not be trying to please anyone except the one who has redeemed us unto himself. The only way we can please Him is to seek the will of God according to His word.
JESUS – OUR EXAMPLE
Jesus was tempted in every way that we are tempted. Do not think His temptation was of the spirit life inside. No, it was His flesh that was being tempted, and I want you to know that He did not use any power against the Devil, that we do not have available to us. He confessed the word of God for his defense on every count. That was a part of the example he set before us. He later said, (in the 14th chapter of John, verse 12), “The works that I do shall he do also.” Who? He that believeth on me, (Jesus). He set the example before us, and now He expects us to follow that example, as we endeavor to please the Father.
Now, as to what we were saying about angelic beings. They have always worked in the plan of God. Show me anywhere in the Bible where God ever spoke, made a move, or manifested himself in any way, and I will show you, somewhere in that story there angelic beings recognized. They may not have been seen in theophany form, but, somewhere, they are there. Even the apostle Paul, wrote to the Hebrews, “For if the word spoken by angels was steadfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompense of reward: How shall we escape, if we neglect so great a salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him.” What did He mean, the word spoken by angels? The angels do not preach.
What was he referring to? Here it is. Heb. 1:1-2, “God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in times past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things.” What Paul was actually saying was, when the prophets of old spoke, that was the words of angelic beings, for they did not speak in their own name. They spoke, in the person of God himself. On and on we could go on this. Take, for instance, when the body of Jesus was lying there dead, if He has power over death, hell, and the grave, what were angels doing there when he arose? It goes to show that whatever God does, he does it through angels. God made the angels to have power over spiritual forces. As I said earlier, I can just see those servants who went with Eliezer, every night they would draw their swords out and sharpen them. What did all of this point to? The angels of God watching over his little church. Did not Jesus say, “And upon this rock I will build my church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. Lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.” With those ministering spirits, (angelic beings), on guard, the gates of hell can not prevail against the church. They will guard it all the way to the end of the journey. Even though we realize that we are nearing the end of this earthly journey, and there is soon going to be a wedding, we all know that the wedding we are looking forward to, is not going to take place down here on earth. That is not the picture that I want you to see here in this beautiful type. What I want each of you to realize is that, every character in this natural story exemplifies something pertaining to the bride of Christ in her earthly journey. Isaac, Eliezer, Rebekah, the other servants, all working in conjunction with the plan of God, each one doing their part to bring a prepared bride to the bridegroom.
GIFTS – PRECIOUS THINGS
When Rebekah was still back there in her home land where Eliezer gave her the bracelets and earring as well as other gifts, I am sure those gifts spoke to her parents, and others of her home. These were not cheap gifts. They were of pure gold, precious things. Each of these gifts typified gifts that come from another realm. As these gifts were bestowed upon Rebekah by Eliezer, they typified the gifts of the Spirit of God that were bestowed upon that little bride church there in the first age. Just as Rebekah received these gifts while she was still right there at home, so, also, did the bride church in the first age. But, then, the church begins a journey through time, and as she progressed through time, the gifts seemed to fade out of the picture, but they did not fade out of the plan of God. All this is fitting the type exactly. You could not imagine Rebekah, riding a camel day after day in her wedding dress. It would have been so dusty, and sweaty, that would have been some sight to behold. By the time she reached Isaac, she would have looked, and smelled, more like a skid row bum than a beautiful bride. Imagine her, in a dirty, wrinkled, and stinking dress, walking up and falling into the arms of this man who is waiting for her. What a picture, no forethought, no preparation. Is that the kind of picture you get from this story? Whatever your vision is that is just about how much you will see here. It is true, the writer did not go into much detail, but you have to read between the lines in a story like this. Even though she was not wearing her wedding gown, and the gifts from the servant, I believe that, as they neared the end of the journey, she began to put all these things in a place where they would be easy to reach. I believe she had been making plans, so that she knew ahead of time, just exactly what she would do as they approached the end of the journey. I do not believe she had to ask Eliezer, then, “what should I put on?” No, when she saw Isaac walking to meet them, she slid right down from that old camel and began to get ready for the meeting. I imagine those servants had her tent set up in very short order, and I believe Eliezer had already told her, this is the last day. We will be reaching our destination about sundown. That caused her to be alert, and watching, as they reached home country, as they neared the end.
LAODICEA BROUGHT A CHANGE
Ever since this Laodicean church age started, we have heard the cry, it is almost time for the church to go home. Song after song has been written proclaiming that, there is going to be a wedding. Why? It is because the little church of the Lord Jesus Christ is moving toward the climax of her journey, the time when she is definitely going to be married, wedded to the one that she has been perfected for. As we move closer to the end, you can expect to see the Holy Ghost working through the five fold ministry in such a way that the bride will know exactly where she is in her journey. She will know exactly when to make her final preparations. I believe we are definitely living in the evening time, and that the bride people ought to be alert, watching the signs of the times, and longing for the soon return of our heavenly bridegroom. I believe there was definitely a type set in the fact that Isaac chose that particular time to go for a walk in the field, and that he looked up to see the camel train coming, and that he began walking to meet it. I do not believe he would have walked out to meet just any old camel train that might happen to be passing through the country. There had to be something about that camel train that caused him to recognize it as belonging to him, and the fact that it shows action, decision on the part of Isaac, it lets me know that, in the mind and plan of God, it requires action on God’s part. It is not that Jesus appears on earth to add the finishing touches, but in order for Jesus, (which is exemplified in Isaac), to be characterized by Isaac’s actions, I believe, then, and only then, will the five fold ministry that we speak so much about, come fully into their place. I do not believe Isaac would have noticed that camel train if it had not been for the fact that they were completing their journey, and he knew it was time for it. I will say this also, God is the one that knows how long this Gentile church has been on her journey, and how much longer it will be before she reaches the end. It is all in his great plan. He has every day numbered, and only he knows who that Gentile soul is, that will complete the bride of Christ. If there is to be something in the endtime, characterized by the exampleship of Isaac being in the field, meditating, with his eyes and ears tuned to pick up something that is coming from afar, as well as knowing what he will do in response, I believe it leaves no doubt that God, himself, will definitely do something here in the end of the age, that will fulfill the type set by Isaac. Whatever it is, it will cause the church to make the final preparations, she will be absolutely clean and wrinkle free, by the time of the great climax. It has only been here in the past few years, that emphasis has been placed on the church being washed and made clean.
FROM LUTHER UNTIL NOW
When Luther came on the scene, the church did not even have a vision of being washed by the word. That was not their theme. Their great emphasis was, THE JUST SHALL LIVE BY FAITH. The people in that hour saw the coming of the Lord to be in the far off future. It was the same with Calvin, and almost all of the other leaders of the reformation. Very little was said, or even thought, about the church being perfected. It was not until the days of the Wesley revivals, that men began to catch a glimpse of the fact that the church should be clean, and live a sanctified life. Even then, I doubt if there was much preaching from Ephesians 4 & 5 and other such scriptures that speak of the church being washed and made ready for the coming of the Lord. It was not until the pentecostal age arrived, that people began to feel like the church, in her journey through time, was nearing a climax. From that time, until now, men have promoted every kind of an idea under the sun, concerning the rapture of the bride, what is to take place prior to the rapture, and immediately following. Through the years, people have actually set dates for certain things to take place, and proceeded to build their whole lives around their particular school of thought, only to wind up disappointed, and scattered to the four winds. when it failed to materialize.
Down through the years, preachers have gone to their theological schools, and have built their great organizations, and studied every conceivable theory on prophecy, without ever realizing that a man does not receive revelation of the scriptures, by being taught in a seminary. These same preachers would hold large meetings, and preach on a prophetic subject such as the seventy weeks of Daniel, Armaggeddon, or the Millennium, and everyone would think it was just wonderful. You would hear them saying, “Wasn’t that good? I just love the way he presents those things,” and they didn’t know a bit more when he had finished, than they did before he came. Another one would come along and preach the same subject, a different way, and get the same response. Those who heard them didn’t know if they were both right, both wrong, or what, they just thought it all sounded wonderful. Men were appraised more for their speaking ability, than for what they had to say. It didn’t matter, too much, what was said, for the little bride was still a long way from home, and the real issue had not yet come. But, in the end, as the Lord begins to express action on his part turning his attention in the direction from which the bride is coming, he will start moving toward her. He doesn’t care about all those Bible schools, and what they have pumped into the minds of people. This is the day of REVELATION. Those who know God, know him by revelation, and not from a Bible school somewhere. Even though we are living in a revelatory age, carnal ideas and opinions are still running rampant. Nevertheless, as we have said before, this all works as a separating factor, and the little bride will come through it all, spotless.
GOD’S END TIME PREACHERS
There has been much said about preachers, but God is going to lay his hand on some men, and cause every last one of them to see things alike. They will see every issue eye to eye. That means they will see everything as God sees it, or as God wants it to be seen. When it comes to sin, they will all see eye to eye. It will not be dealt with as in former days, when every denomination had a different idea about how to handle it. We are nearing the end of the journey where there must be unity and we all know, there can not be unity when everyone has a different idea about how God would have certain situations handled. That is like trying to build a house, and every carpenter that comes on the job, tears it to pieces. You never would get it put together, would you? God is a master builder though and His building will not be wrecked here in the end. Every piece will fit together perfectly and let me point this out, God uses men in his great building program, men who are able to work together in harmony. Brothers and sisters, is of a contrary nature and attitude and not able to work in harmony with others, will not be a part of God’s end time ministry, for everything we read in the Bible about such, points to the fact that every true man of God will see things the same way and work together in harmony in order to get the Bride church looking in the right direction. You will not have one man pulling one way and the next man another. That is for Babylon, not the bride of Christ. By the same token, all of this fuss about equal rights is for Babylon also. There is no place in the bride of Christ for such squabbling over issues pertaining to the Gay liberation, women’s rights and such like. The true people of God know that God hates perversion of every kind and that there is no such thing, according to the word of God, as making room for homosexuals in the church. How ridiculous for people to actually think like that when the Bible clearly teaches that God destroyed whole cities because of such debauchery. There will be no place in the church for any such. God has a great furnace to burn all such when their cup of iniquity is full. I will sound a like-warning to this generation of young people with their long haired men and their patched blue jeans. There is nothing humble about all this. It is a spirit of rebellion that is driving you and unless you repent, there will be a place in God’s great furnace for you too. No, I am not saying that God would burn you for having long hair or for wearing patched, faded bluejeans. The Lord knows that many little children and even teenagers, as well as adults, have had to wear such as that when they did not have any better to wear but they did not have this rebellious spirit on them causing them to look and act like animals. May God have mercy on this bunch of young people of our day who have disgraced God and all his righteous principles with the things that they do while claiming to seek God. The day is coming when God will rip them all apart. He will do them like he did the Jews when he had them carried to Babylon. He let those Babylonian soldiers come in and rip their clothes off of them and they were carried away with their hind parts showing. He will not let all this continue forever without requiring a price to be paid. You say, “God is full of love and mercy,” and I will have to say, “yes, he is, but he hates perversion and rebellion.” He will not burn one group of people because of such and then turn right around and build his church on something just like it. You may be proud of the fact that you are a hippie but do not try to get God to put his approval on it. He will not. If Isaac had looked and dressed like some of you, Rebekah wouldn’t have known whether it was a man or a woman that she saw walking in the field. I thank God, she did not have to wonder about that. She said to Eliezer, “who is the man walking in the field to meet us?” She did not have to confine her words to, “Who is the person?”, as it is in our day. I sometimes wonder if the main objection to the term, MAN and WOMAN, is not because of the fact that we are living in a day when you cannot tell one from the other. Can you imagine Rebe-kah and Isaac looking like some of these things we see out here today? I believe Rebekah wanted to look her very best when she met Isaac. He did not look like a bum either.
GOD WILL VINDICATE
Rebekah got dressed when she found out who was coming to meet her. I believe the bride of the Lord Jesus Christ will respond in like manner, when she begins to recognize that ministry that has God’s true vision in their hearts. We have many in the world today who say, “Oh, that Is when God sent his prophet.” Let me say, he started something when he sent his prophet. That was typified in the fact that Isaac looked up and saw the camels and then began to express action on his part, but if you can see what I see, once that little woman saw him and knew who he was, the action expressed on the part of each one did not stop until there was a wedding. I will have to say, as much as I respect and honor what God, by his word and through the Holy Ghost has done in our day, the climax is not coming about because there is a prophet coming back from the dead. It will not be because people have their books and tape recorded messages of the prophet either. It will be because every mouth, mind and heart of the people of God are in unison to the point where it will be complete singularity of purpose, motive and desire. Everything will be with love, respect and loyalty to God, without personal motive. I am sure most of you will remember reading in the letter written to the Corinthian church, how the apostle Paul rebuked them for their carnality and instructed them in ways of righteousness. He then clinched it in chapter 14, verse 37, by saying, “If any man think himself to be a prophet or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things that I write unto you are the commandments of the Lord.” He did not say, “We will take this to the Bishop for a ruling.” That is the way it is done in Babylon but not in the church of the living God. It is just plain carnality on the part of these poor souls who are looking for Brother Branham to come back from the dead to perfect the bride and give her rapturing faith. There is no provision in the word of God for any such foolishness. Brother Branham will be resurrected but it will not be before the apostle Paul, Peter, James and John and all the others who have held this word of God to be precious. Most of those who believe such foolishness, do so because they have been taught wrong by those of their number who have assumed roles of authority, teaching for the commandments of God, the doctrines of men. These carnal teachers have gone all over the world preaching their church order, along with their other private interpretations of the message and purpose of God’s prophet. Therefore, I want to say this, those same people are heard to say that this church, Faith Assembly, is dead but I believe those of you who are spiritual know that the articles in the more than 70 Contenders we have published did not come from a dead church. We are called dead by some and fanatics by others, but those who are able to recognize God’s vindication, are beginning to see that God is vindicating what we teach here. Through the years, I have stood for 7 full years of the 70th week of Daniel yet to be allotted to God’s dealing with the Jews, and I still stand for it that way. I have also, in the face of much ridicule and criticism for not believing the message, stood for the fact that God would not let time run out for the Gentile Bride in 1977, fulfilling the many ideas and projections of so many. God will not vindicate those date setters for that would be contrary to his word. We will recognize the times and seasons as they approach by what we know from the word of God but never for the purpose of making any long range predictions and setting dates for God to move in. Furthermore, I have never accepted any of the many versions of the seven thunders that are being circulated among the followers of Brother Branham’s teaching. I am still waiting for Jesus, that mighty angel of Rev. 10:1, to reveal the thunders to us. When He does come down, in angelic form, with the little book of redemption in his hand, open, then, and only then, will the message of the seven thunders be revealed. All these other versions will have run their course by then and those teachers of such, will have been marked by the bride of Christ. Rom. 16:17-18.
THE TRUE SHEPHERD
As we approach the end, the bride of Christ is not looking for more statements of men to dress herself in, she is only interested in that which is typed by fine linen, clean and white, and that is the undefiled, revelated, word of God. She has taken the words of the apostle Paul, 1 Cor. 2:5, “That our faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.” The power of God is revealed and vindicated through His word, in the mouth of true believers. I will have to say, there are conditions coming upon this old world, very soon, that will really put people to the test. That is when you will see the hand of God reaching out to deliver his true people. He will protect them and guide them to the end of their journey. Everything that has been characterized in this story of Isaac and Rebekah is soon to have its fulfillment climaxed. Every person who is filled with the Holy Ghost, living here at the end of the age, is a part of that little church that is typed by Rebekah in this story. It is the spirit in all such people that will cause them to know when the journey is over and because they have had confidence in that spirit, trusting him to lead them, they will know how to conduct themselves, where to go and what to do. On the other hand, all those who have held to their strange doctrines, running all over the place looking for a preacher that would preach it the way they wanted to hear it, will be left with nothing to hold on to, and the hireling will be gone. Only a true shepherd will stand by the flock protecting them from the wolves when the going gets rough. The Lord Jesus Christ is the true shepherd and bishop of our souls and he is exemplified in his true ministry. That ministry will stick with you until the end. Let me read you a few verses from the 10th chapter of John’s gospel, verses 11-16, “I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep. But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep. The hireling fleeth because he is an hireling, and careth not for the sheep. I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep.
AND AM KNOWN OF MINE. As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep. And OTHER SHEEP I HAVE, WHICH ARE NOT OF THIS FOLD: THEM ALSO I MUST BRING, AND THEY SHALL HEAR MY VOICE; AND THERE SHALL BE ONE FOLD, AND ONE SHEPHERD.” Isaac was not like he was because of the girl. She didn’t make him act the way he did. He acted like that because that was his nature. The nature that he portrayed was a godly nature. The objective of God was that Isaac portray the nature of Jesus Christ. This glorified God for he was a chosen son. He was to Rebekah what Jesus is to the church. That which she dressed herself up with was furnished to her by Isaac for he was the heir of his father, Abraham. It was all purchased and given to her, but she had to put it on. That is the beauty of it all. Where the scripture says that the bride of Christ will be arrayed in fine linen, that speaks of the best money can buy, for in ancient days, that was the costliest of all materials. Very few women even had the privilege of being married in fine, imported linen.
DECKED – WITH WHAT?
I will say this, in closing, this movement will not deck them-selves with the genuine gifts, furnished by the Spirit of God. They will deck themselves with all kinds of carnal statements of men and then, in their proudness, they will act like God is obligated to accept them. He will not. Do you think God would let that kind of a woman rule the world in the millennium? God forbid! We would be better off with Roman Catholicism in charge. I know some of you will say, “Brother Jackson, I don’t like to hear you talk like that,” and you seem offended but I remember when some of you were sitting under the ministry of the prophet. He could plaster those denominational preachers and bishops up one side and down the other, calling the Roman Catholic Church a whore and her denom-inational offsprings, harlots and you would sit right there and yell, “AMEN, PREACH IT BROTHER,” until you were hoarse, but now that you are guilty of the same thing, (leaving the word of God), you have become very sympathetic and easily offended. You harp on the fact that we should love everyone but that which you display is a far cry from the kind of love that the Bible speaks of. It is that same old deceptive spirit that has plagued the church all through the ages. Some of you who harp on love all the time are like a bunch of children playing in a mudhole, getting themselves and you really need is a good kick. There are just some things you ought not play with in a mudhole. When the bride of Christ is already gone in the rapture, there will still be preachers here, preaching church order.
Brothers and sisters, I do not enjoy talking like this but there is not enough time left for us to beat around the bush. It is time to wake up. I pray that this little message will help to encourage some of you who may have become weary in the journey. Just remember, our leader, the Holy Ghost, knows the way home and the bridegroom will be in His place watching, ready to meet us when we get close to home. AMEN.