Deceit, Hatred, and the Thirst for Revenge
It must truly have been a home divided. A father that adored his oldest son and a mother who clearly favored the younger. Twins sons born is Isaac and Rebekah who even in the womb fought for supremacy with the younger even attempting to pull the older back into the womb.
Rebekah had been given the promise by God that Jacob, the youngest son would be blessed more than his brother and that his brother would serve him. This was obviously told to Jacob, for Jacob attempted to take matters in his own hands and for the price of a bowl of lentil stew and some bread, he bought the birthright from his brother.
Growing old with his eyesight dimmed from age, Isaac called to Esau saying to him: “My son.” And he answered him, “Here I am.” Then he (Isaac) said, “Behold now, I am old, I do not know the day of my death, Now therefore, please take your weapons, your quiver and your bow, and go out to the field and hunt game for me. And make me a savory food such as I love, and bring it to me that I may eat, that my soul may bless you before I die” (Genesis 27:1b – 4).
Isaac was ready to pass the blessing of the birthright to his oldest son which was in keeping with the Patriarchal system that had been in place since the time of Adam.
But in a house full of deceit and intrigue were allegiances are divided, little is done without others seeing or hearing and Isaac calling his first born to bless him and pass the birthright to him was seen and heard by Rebekah.
In our last post, we learned that Jacob tried to take matters in his own hands, and instead of letting God work out the details, took matters into his own hands and stole the birthright from his brother over a few pieces of bread and a bowl full of lentil stew.
Rebekah, also failed to rely on God to follow through on His promise to her, took matters into her own hands by stealing the birthright away from her older son, the rightful heir. You can read the story in Genesis 27:1-40. It is a sad story that brought despair and hatred to the very family though which Christ would one day be born.
Verse 40 of chapter 27 states it so plainly when it says: “So Esau hated Jacob because of the blessing with which his father blessed him, and Esau said in his heart, “The days of mourning for my father are at hand; then I will kill my brother Jacob.”
These words were told to Rebekah and she in turn tells her beloved Jacob to flee to the land of her childhood to her brother Laban’s home and there stay until the fury of your brother subsides (see Genesis 27:42-45).
Chapter 28 opens with Isaac calling Jacob and further blessing him and charging him to not take a wife among the Canaanite but instead go to your mother’s people and take a wife from among them. Under the threat of death Jacob leaves and never again does he see his mother.
In our next post, we will see how Jacob was blessed while living in foreign land and of the Jacob’s return and the family reunion of Jacob and Esau.