Just a Cog in a Wheel

Genesis 24 in total is a very interesting event in the fulfillment of God’s promises to Abraham. At the end of verse 27 of chapter 24, the servant of Abraham on task to find a wife for Isaac said, “as for me, the Lord has led me on the journey to…

Abraham finally got the promised son, Isaac, when he was 100. Not the son he had first fathered, trying to “help” God. But the son that God had promised in unprecedented circumstances, unnatural timing, but still in the natural way with his wife, Sarah. Sarah has now died, and Isaac is of marrying age. They are living in tents in Canaan, the land of God’s promise. Abraham wanted him to have a wife from his people back in his homeland. So, he assigns his servant to go “home” and find a suitable wife for Isaac. He made this servant give him a deep oath of promise. That practice was gripping under the thigh. The strongest bone, the strongest muscle, strongest tendon, it was a way to say, I won’t break this or that.

Now, I was thinking about this and that servant

  1. Abraham gave the instruction and he would ultimately get descendants, heirs of the promise of God that would carry on the promise of God – Good for Him
  2. Isaac would get a wife – Good for Him
  3. But the Servant – what’s in it for HIM?
    • The Journey with the Lord
    • the Fulfillment of his task
    • the Joy of just being a Cog in a wheel in something bigger than Him
    • A story to tell in Eternity

What’s a “cog in a wheel”?

American Heritage Dictionary says “someone or something that is small in significance in an operation or organization

Fairlex Partner Idioms says small or mundane, could be underappreciated, or unacknowledged in a large enterprise

Do you ever feel that way? Genesis 24:2 Abraham said to his servant, the elder of his household who managed all he owned… So this IS a guy who is important and does a lot… but we don’t even know his NAME. Yet, the “machine” that would fulfill Genesis 12’s promises to Abraham – name great – family – land – has a “gear” that has a “tooth” “a cog” that is this Servant. Without his work, no wife for Isaac, no children, no Jacob, no Israel, the people that become the birthing nation of the Messiah. Certainly God will do what God will do, but this Cog, keeps them involved. And so this unnamed, insignificant cog, goes, follows, and meets a girl named Rebekah, and in v27 he states the way of the cog in the wheel, “as for me…”. Many of us try and make our own way for fulfillment, make a name… but as for me…

  • The Lord has led me on the journey

Wow, there is a sermon here, but this is just a devotion. The Lord is at work. This servant, this cog, asks Abraham and God a series of clarifying questions. A lot of “what if” scenarios are laid out. “What is she won’t come?” “Should I take Isaac there?” NO – Abraham has trust in the God he knows personally because Abraham as been on a journey with the Lord. v7 The LORD – YHWH – any time you see all caps in the scripture it is speaking of God’s covenant name. So when Moses tells us this story, he is talking to God’s people and reminding them that this is the God he met in the burning bush, the I AM. And so Abraham tells this cog in the wheel, the God who took me from… who spoke to me… swore to me… HE… He will send his angel before… if she is unwilling then you are free from this oath. In other words, I trust God, and if I’ve missed God, then you are free, but I Trust God to prepare the way for fulfillment of his promises.

  • The Lord has LED me – nachah = bring, brought, lead, guide I’m just a cog in the wheel… there are powers behind this wheel. I’m just a tooth, not the wheel, I’m part of the wheel, but not the machine, I’m part of it, but I’m not the power behind it, I’m just doing my part

In verse 12 this servant prays to the source, the LORD and asks make this happen for me today and show kindness to Abrham…. And he asks for very clear signs so he can be sure and follow and do his part. And it says that before he even finished praying, there was Rebekah. Now, I’m not saying nor expecting that God always does what I want, but God does always answer. And v21 says he silently watched to see whether or not the Lord had made his journey a success.

  • As for me, the LORD has led me on the JOURNEY to

the journey – derek = road, distance, journey, manner. A tooth on a machine wheel can’t get anywhere alone. A cog just goes WITH the wheel, in the machine, under the power, for the purpose. The cog is always just on a journey.

  • The LORD has led me on THE journey TO

notice two significant cog-like words THE and TO. This is not just ANY journey, but THE journey. And not just ANYWHERE but TO a destination. There is specificity to the journey the Lord leads us on. There is a reason, a destination… we are part of something he is doing. It is not just a decoration, but an instrument for God’s reckoning, we are on a mission.

Rebekah, meets him, hears him, and runs to tell her mother’s household, and this grateful cog in a wheel begins v27, “Blessed be the LORD, the God of my master Abraham, who has not withheld his kindness and faithfulness from my Master – notice the focus again on the work of God FOR those he serves. And As For Me

If we,who are just a cog in the wheel, will look we CAN find joy. Joy comes from… we already said it, but let’s refocus – the Joy for the Cog in the wheel comes from…

  • The Journey with the LORD – even if it seems like we aren’t going anywhere, or doing anything special, we ARE WITH the LORD. That’s Joy
  • The Joy of fulfillment of the tasks given. Not the Joy of who knows, or recognition for accomplishment, but of finishing the task… it was FOR the LORD anyway
  • The Joy of being even an insignificant cog in the wheel. Each cog is important, so we join in the work, on the wheel, part of the machine, enabled by the power, for the greater purpose.
  • And then the Joy of the Story we will tell in Eternity – no one may know here. This guy is unnamed in scripture, and surely never got to see much of the result of his work, but I believe he went into eternity a man who knew and trusted the LORD and he will have a story when I meet him in Heaven one day

On my, that unnamed servant. He believed in the LORD – He believed it was By Him and For Him. He praised the Lord and the Lord’s blessing of others through him. He cultivated and welcomed being a Cog in an Eternal Wheel.

Don’t be discouraged by anything that is unrecognized nor insignificant in your service, trusted servant – God has blessed you and included you in an amazing eternal story

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