READ: Genesis 27 and 28
BACKGROUND: The book of Genesis begins telling us about Jacob even before he is born! Chapter 25 tells us that his mother, Rebekah, was concerned about her pregnancy. The LORD responded by explaining that the twin boys she carried would become great nations and that the first born son would serve the second born – a complete reversal of the honor held by firstborn sons in this culture. So important was this “second son” that the details of his life fill the remaining half of the book of Genesis. Readers will come to know Jacob very well – both his faith and his failures! We can learn so much about what not to do from Jacob, and yet at the same time, place him in the Hall of Faith Fame! Jacob – liar, deceiver, conniver, usurper, schemer……by the grace of God, becomes Israel – the father of a nation!
27:1 – Isaac is about 137 years old and suffers from poor vision. Feeling he may be near the end of his life, he wants to give his blessing to his son.
3 – Isaac decides to give the blessing to Esau although he knows God has chosen the younger son and knows Esau has already sold his birthright, completely ignoring it’s significance.
13 – Rebekah, rather than trusting God, takes matters into her own hands and says she will take the blame for the scheme she has devised for Jacob.
18 – 29 – Jacob has many chances to tell the truth. He doesn’t! He lives up to the meaning of his name: Liar!
41 – Esau, upon discovering he has missed the blessing, plots to kill Jacob.
42 – Rebekah warns Jacob to flee and in doing so, loses her son to a foreign land. Most likely she never saw her favorite son again…a consequence of her lying scheme.
28:17 – Jacob has a vision of Jesus: “The gate of heaven.”
20 – Jacob declares his faith in God and his commitment to serve Him!
THINK: When Jacob flees for his life and heads to the safety of Haran, he is probably on his own for the very first time! We can be pretty certain that up to this point, he has been under the care of a very protective mother. She seems to have made most of his important life decisions for him – for better or worse! Although far from perfect, Jacob’s family was a family of faith. Undoubtedly, Jacob knew the story of his grandfather Abraham and God’s promise to make him a great nation. I hope Isaac told his little boys about the miracles he witnessed firsthand. But, coming from this great family and knowing all he did about God, it seems Jacob had never really committed his own life! How amazing is it to read in Chapter 28 verse 20: “Then Jacob made a vow…the LORD will be my GOD!” Somewhere in the middle of a cold desert night, Jacob met God himself. He experienced for the first time a personal relationship with the living God – an experience so powerful that he places his future completely in God’s hands!
ASK: Am I going to church or bible studies or youth group because my family or friends attend? Do I need to be sure my faith is my own? Have I experienced a time when I gave my life to Jesus Christ and made a commitment to live for him?
Written By: Deb Howard