be-thu'-el (bethu'el; "dweller in God"): A son of Nahor and Milcah, Abraham's nephew, father of Laban and Rebekah (Ge 22:23; 24:15,24,47,50; 25:20; 28:2,5). In the last-named passage, he is surnamed "the Syrian." The only place where he appears as a leading character in the narrative is in connection with Rebekah's betrothal to Isaac; and even here, his son Laban stands out more prominently than he--a fact explainable on the ground of the custom which recognized the right of the brother to take a special interest in the welfare of the sister (compare Ge 34:5,21,25; 2Sa 13:20,22). Ant, I, xvi, 2 states that Bethuel was dead at this time.
Frank E. Hirsch