Genesis 27 (ESV)
When Isaac was old and his eyes were dim so that he could not see, he called Esau his older son and said to him, “My son”; and he answered, “Here I am.” 2 He said, “Behold, I am old; I do not know the day of my death. 3 Now then, take your weapons, your quiver and your bow, and go out to the field and hunt game for me, 4 and prepare for me delicious food, such as I love, and bring it to me so that I may eat, that my soul may bless you before I die.” 5 Now Rebekah was listening when Isaac spoke to his son Esau. So when Esau went to the field to hunt for game and bring it, 6 Rebekah said to her son Jacob, “I heard your father speak to your brother Esau, 7 ‘Bring me game and prepare for me delicious food, that I may eat it and bless you before the Lord before I die.’ 8 Now therefore, my son, obey my voice as I command you. 9 Go to the flock and bring me two good young goats, so that I may prepare from them delicious food for your father, such as he loves. 10 And you shall bring it to your father to eat, so that he may bless you before he dies.” 11 But Jacob said to Rebekah his mother, “Behold, my brother Esau is a hairy man, and I am a smooth man. 12 Perhaps my father will feel me, and I shall seem to be mocking him and bring a curse upon myself and not a blessing.” 13 His mother said to him, “Let your curse be on me, my son; only obey my voice, and go, bring them to me”. . . Continue Reading
Genesis 25:27-28 says, “When the boys grew up, Esau was a skillful hunter, a man of the field, while Jacob was a quiet man, dwelling in tents. 28 Isaac loved Esau because he ate of his game, but Rebekah loved Jacob.”
Later in Genesis 25, Esau sells his birthright to Jacob for some lentil stew (I know, right?) and now in Genesis 27, Jacob appears to “steal” his blessing.
We certainly see Genesis 25:28 on display in Genesis 27 when Isaac calls Esau “My son” (Genesis 27:1) while Rebekah calls Jacob “her son” (Genesis 27:6).
But looking again back to Genesis 25, when Rebekah conceived and “the children struggled within her”, she called out to God and asked why this was happening to her. The Lord said, “Two nations are in your womb, and two peoples from within you shall be divided; the one shall be stronger than the other, the older shall serve the younger” (Genesis 25:23-24).
So while Rebekah is clearly manipulating the family by going behind Isaac’s back (and his desires for Esau to receive a blessing), she also knows what the Lord told her and with that information, orchestrates the events to ensure “the older”, Esau will serve “the younger”, Jacob.
Because Isaac’s vision was impaired, in order for Jacob, who was a smooth man (Genesis 27:11), to receive the blessing from Isaac, he “had to” pretend to be Esau who when he was born, “came out red, all his body like a hairy cloak, so they called his name Esau” (Genesis 25:25). Esau was so hairy that Rebekah took the skins of young goats and put them on his hands and the smooth part of his neck (Genesis 27:16).
Now that’s a hairy cloak!
What’s interesting about this story is it appears that Rebekah is the “bad guy” and poor Isaac and Esau are being cheated. But is it not Isaac who has forgotten what the Lord has said regarding “the older will serve the younger?” Was it not Esau who sold his birthright for lentil stew (Genesis 25:33) and made life bitter for Isaac and Rebekah in Genesis 26:35?
Since the decision to give a blessing is Isaac’s to give, and because Isaac is thinking about his death and is going to bless Esau after he brings him food, she in her mind does what she needs to do to fix Isaac’s wrongdoing so that what the Lord promised is fulfilled.
But what is in her mind, even with good intentions to follow God, is actually a lack of faith and trust that if the Lord said something is going to happen, if He promises something to be a certain way, He does not need her (or us) to manipulate, lie, deceive or do anything else to make it happen. Rebekah did not have to deceive anyone for God’s will to happen.
So it isn’t that Jacob stole Esau’s blessing. Isaac should not have tried to give what the Lord determined was Jacobs to Esau and go against what God promised.
Oh that I would keep this close to my heart as I walk with God.
Thank you for reading my daily online journal today. Far from commentaries these are just my initial thoughts after reflecting on what I’ve read from a chapter in God’s Word each morning. This not only helps me apply what I’ve read because I’m reflecting and sharing instead of only reading but it also allows me to encourage others to prayerfully consider doing the same.
In His Care,