17:15: “To acquit the guilty and convict the innocent—both are an abomination to the Lord.” Isaac justified the guilty [Esau], and was punished with blindness, while Rebekah justified the innocent (Gen. Rabbah 65:6). The negative light in which Bethuel’s family is cast stresses Rebekah’s good qualities, for her ethical level was not harmed by the environment in which she was raised ( see Gen. Rabbah 60:7–9). cit.). Rabbah 7:2:3). Rebekah, however, replied (v. 25): “[…] and also room to spend the night”—you can spend many nights in our house. Abraham is dead, Isaac’s eyes are dim and he sits in his house, and Jacob has fled from Esau. Another midrashic etymology states that four couples are buried there: Adam and Eve, Abraham and Sarah, Isaac and Rebekah, and Jacob and Leah (BT Eruvin 53a). Accordingly, she was deserving to have all twelve tribes come forth from her (Gen. Rabbah 63:6). and Gen. Rabbah 63:9). He did not heed his mother’s advice to remain with Laban “until your brother’s fury subsides” (ibid. Make tasty dishes for your father, that he may eat and bless you before he dies.” Jacob, who was well-versed in the Torah she-bi-khetav: Lit. He bequeathed all that he possessed to Isaac, and took this writ and gave it to his servant (whom the A type of non-halakhic literary activitiy of the Rabbis for interpreting non-legal material according to special principles of interpretation (hermeneutical rules).midrash calls “Eliezer"). He killed Nimrod and took the garment from him, and thereby he, too, became a mighty “hunter” (Gen. 10:9). Once again the text is clear. Esau apparently wants Rebekah to feel responsible for Jacob’s death, since she took an active part in the theft of her firstborn’s blessing. We know from Genesis 17 that Sarah was 90 when she gave birth to Isaac, making him 37 at her death. These midrashic expositions stress the close similarity between Sarah and Rebekah. "order." May you grow into thousands of myriads.” Rebekah’s infertility was intended to show the non-Jewish nations that their prayers go unanswered: the prayers by her family were of no avail, and she had children only after Isaac prayed for her (Cant. 21 Later, Isaac prayed to the LORD on behalf of his wife, because she was barren. cit.). 12 And he said, “O Lord, God of my master Abraham, grant me success today, I pray thee, and show steadfast love to my master Abraham. Immediately (v. 67) “Isaac then brought her into the tent of his mother Sarah” (Gen. Rabbah 60:16). As you may know, the authors of the NT wrote in Koine Greek, which was the lingua franca of their day. The girl’s wisdom in this episode represents Jerusalem’s glory in the years preceding its destruction. Isaac was married to Rebecca when he was 40-years-old (Genesis 25:20). Although her family and those among whom she lived were deceitful, she was not adversely influenced by her surroundings, but grew up as “a lily among thorns.” She was the recipient of special blessings: the well water rose up to her, the dough she kneaded was blessed, the cloud was visible over her tent, and the Sabbath candles burned from one Sabbath eve to the next. Various midrashim tell how the members of Rebekah’s family attempted to interfere with the servant’s mission by delaying, or even preventing, her going with him, but God frustrated their designs (see Gen. Rabbah 60:12).. In the midrashic telling, Rebekah was born at the same time that Isaac, who was then twenty-six years old, was bound on the altar (Lit. cit.). The second understanding portrays the Matriarchs as meant to provide their husband’s pleasure and meet their needs. 30 When he saw the ring, and the bracelets on his sister’s arms, and when he heard the words of Rebekah his sister, “Thus the man spoke to me,” he went to the man; and behold, he was standing by the camels at the spring. How do they come up with these ages, you ask? How can a girl who is 3 years and 3 days old go fetch water for the camels?! Eliezer made his choice of the maiden conditional on his asking to drink water and her offering to draw water for his camels, as well. cit.). So off went the servant on his mission. Rather, Jacob took one to offer the Paschal sacrifice, and the other to prepare a dish for his father. Since her bier did not go out in public, the Torah did not mention her death, and merely alluded to it in Gen. 35:8: “Deborah, Rebekah’s nurse, died” (Pesikta de-Rav Kahana, Zakhor, ed. They answer that Esau knew his wives’ doings [i.e., their idolatrous actions] and therefore preferred to have his mother keep his garments. The latter had also been present in Sarah’s tent, thus showing that Rebekah continued in the way of Sarah. 15 Before he had done speaking, behold, Rebekah, who was born to Bethu′el the son of Milcah, the wife of Nahor, Abraham’s brother, came out with her water jar upon her shoulder. The Rabbis further deduced from this narrative that a bride who comes without a blessing is forbidden to her husband, as if she were menstrually impure. cit. It reveals male thinking about pregnancy and demonstrates insensitivity to the woman’s condition both in the time of her infertility and during her pregnancy. Rabbah loc. The Rabbis disagree as to the age of Rebekah at the time of her marriage to Isaac. In the midrashic understanding of Rebekah’s family giving food to Eliezer, they put before him a bowl of poisoned food, thinking to steal his money. When Abraham thought that his only son and heir was about to die, God had brought his future wife into the world, and the people of Israel would be built from their offspring. In a. effort to justify their prophet's behavior, they turn to a somewhat twisted version of the story of Isaac and Rebekah in which it is claimed that the two were married when he was 40 and she was at the tender age of 3.