Jacob’s Journey to Succoth

Genesis 32:1-33:17

Highlights from this Passage

  • God comforts Jacob with his Angels.
  • He prays to God confessing his unworthiness.
  • He sends presents to Esau.
  • He wrestled with the Angel who names him Israel.
  • Esau and Jacob meet, and Esau receives his gifts. 

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Jacob went on his way, and the angels of God met him. When he saw them, Jacob said, “This is God’s army.” He called the name of that place Mahanaim.

Jacob sent messengers in front of him to Esau, his brother, to the land of Seir, the field of Edom. He commanded them, saying, “This is what you shall tell my lord, Esau: ‘This is what your servant, Jacob, says. I have lived as a foreigner with Laban, and stayed until now. I have cattle, donkeys, flocks, male servants, and female servants. I have sent to tell my lord, that I may find favor in your sight.’” The messengers returned to Jacob, saying, “We came to your brother Esau. He is coming to meet you, and four hundred men are with him.” Then Jacob was greatly afraid and was distressed. He divided the people who were with him, along with the flocks, the herds, and the camels, into two companies. He said, “If Esau comes to the one company, and strikes it, then the company which is left will escape.” Jacob said, “God of my father Abraham, and God of my father Isaac, Yahweh, who said to me, ‘Return to your country, and to your relatives, and I will do you good,’ I am not worthy of the least of all the loving kindnesses, and of all the truth, which you have shown to your servant; for with just my staff I crossed over this Jordan; and now I have become two companies. Please deliver me from the hand of my brother, from the hand of Esau; for I fear him, lest he come and strike me and the mothers with the children. You said, ‘I will surely do you good, and make your offspring as the sand of the sea, which can’t be counted because there are so many.’”

He stayed there that night, and took from that which he had with him a present for Esau, his brother: two hundred female goats and twenty male goats, two hundred ewes and twenty rams, thirty milk camels and their colts, forty cows, ten bulls, twenty female donkeys and ten foals. He delivered them into the hands of his servants, every herd by itself, and said to his servants, “Pass over before me, and put a space between herd and herd.” He commanded the foremost, saying, “When Esau, my brother, meets you, and asks you, saying, ‘Whose are you? Where are you going? Whose are these before you?’ Then you shall say, ‘They are your servant, Jacob’s. It is a present sent to my lord, Esau. Behold, he also is behind us.’” He commanded also the second, and the third, and all that followed the herds, saying, “This is how you shall speak to Esau, when you find him. You shall say, ‘Not only that, but behold, your servant, Jacob, is behind us.’” For, he said, “I will appease him with the present that goes before me, and afterward I will see his face. Perhaps he will accept me.”

So the present passed over before him, and he himself stayed that night in the camp.

He rose up that night, and took his two wives, and his two servants, and his eleven sons, and crossed over the ford of the Jabbok. He took them, and sent them over the stream, and sent over that which he had. Jacob was left alone, and wrestled with a man there until the breaking of the day. When he saw that he didn’t prevail against him, the man touched the hollow of his thigh, and the hollow of Jacob’s thigh was strained as he wrestled. The man said, “Let me go, for the day breaks.”

Jacob said, “I won’t let you go unless you bless me.”

He said to him, “What is your name?”

He said, “Jacob”.

He said, “Your name will no longer be called Jacob, but Israel; for you have fought with God and with men, and have prevailed.”

Jacob asked him, “Please tell me your name.”

He said, “Why is it that you ask what my name is?” So he blessed him there.

Jacob called the name of the place Peniel; for he said, “I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved.” The sun rose on him as he passed over Peniel, and he limped because of his thigh. Therefore the children of Israel don’t eat the sinew of the hip, which is on the hollow of the thigh, to this day, because he touched the hollow of Jacob’s thigh in the sinew of the hip.

Jacob lifted up his eyes, and looked, and, behold, Esau was coming, and with him four hundred men. He divided the children between Leah, Rachel, and the two servants. He put the servants and their children in front, Leah and her children after, and Rachel and Joseph at the rear. He himself passed over in front of them, and bowed himself to the ground seven times, until he came near to his brother.

Esau ran to meet him, embraced him, fell on his neck, kissed him, and they wept. He lifted up his eyes, and saw the women and the children; and said, “Who are these with you?”

He said, “The children whom God has graciously given your servant.” Then the servants came near with their children, and they bowed themselves. Leah also and her children came near, and bowed themselves. After them, Joseph came near with Rachel, and they bowed themselves.

Esau said, “What do you mean by all this company which I met?”

Jacob said, “To find favor in the sight of my lord.”

Esau said, “I have enough, my brother; let that which you have be yours.”

Jacob said, “Please, no, if I have now found favor in your sight, then receive my present at my hand, because I have seen your face, as one sees the face of God, and you were pleased with me. Please take the gift that I brought to you, because God has dealt graciously with me, and because I have enough.” He urged him, and he took it.

Esau said, “Let’s take our journey, and let’s go, and I will go before you.”

Jacob said to him, “My lord knows that the children are tender, and that the flocks and herds with me have their young, and if they overdrive them one day, all the flocks will die. Please let my lord pass over before his servant, and I will lead on gently, according to the pace of the livestock that are before me and according to the pace of the children, until I come to my lord to Seir.”

Esau said, “Let me now leave with you some of the people who are with me.”

He said, “Why? Let me find favor in the sight of my lord.”

So Esau returned that day on his way to Seir. Jacob traveled to Succoth, built himself a house, and made shelters for his livestock. Therefore the name of the place is called Succoth.

Jacob Resides with Laban

Genesis 29:9-31:55

Highlights From This Passage

  • Jacob comes to Laban and serves seven years for Rachel.
  • Leah is brought to his bed instead of Rachel.
  • He serveth seven years more for Rachel.
  • Leah conceives and bears four sons.
  • Rachel and Leah being both barren, give their maids to their husband.
  • Leah gives mandrakes to Rachel that Jacob might lie with her.
  • Laban is enriched for Jacob’s sake.
  • Jacob is made very rich.
  • Laban’s children murmur against Jacob.
  • God commands him to return to his country.
  • Rachel steals her father’s idols.
  • Laban follows Jacob.
  • A covenant is made between Laban and Jacob.

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While he was yet speaking with them, Rachel came with her father’s sheep, for she kept them. When Jacob saw Rachel the daughter of Laban, his mother’s brother, and the sheep of Laban, his mother’s brother, Jacob went near, and rolled the stone from the well’s mouth, and watered the flock of Laban his mother’s brother. Jacob kissed Rachel, and lifted up his voice, and wept. Jacob told Rachel that he was her father’s relative, and that he was Rebekah’s son. She ran and told her father.

When Laban heard the news of Jacob, his sister’s son, he ran to meet Jacob, and embraced him, and kissed him, and brought him to his house. Jacob told Laban all these things. Laban said to him, “Surely you are my bone and my flesh.” Jacob stayed with him for a month. Laban said to Jacob, “Because you are my relative, should you therefore serve me for nothing? Tell me, what will your wages be?”

Laban had two daughters. The name of the elder was Leah, and the name of the younger was Rachel. Leah’s eyes were weak, but Rachel was beautiful in form and attractive. Jacob loved Rachel. He said, “I will serve you seven years for Rachel, your younger daughter.”

Laban said, “It is better that I give her to you, than that I should give her to another man. Stay with me.”

Jacob served seven years for Rachel. They seemed to him but a few days, for the love he had for her.

Jacob said to Laban, “Give me my wife, for my days are fulfilled, that I may go in to her.”

Laban gathered together all the men of the place, and made a feast. In the evening, he took Leah his daughter, and brought her to Jacob. He went in to her. Laban gave Zilpah his servant to his daughter Leah for a servant. In the morning, behold, it was Leah! He said to Laban, “What is this you have done to me? Didn’t I serve with you for Rachel? Why then have you deceived me?”

Laban said, “It is not done so in our place, to give the younger before the firstborn. Fulfill the week of this one, and we will give you the other also for the service which you will serve with me for seven more years.”

Jacob did so, and fulfilled her week. He gave him Rachel his daughter as wife. Laban gave Bilhah, his servant, to his daughter Rachel to be her servant. He went in also to Rachel, and he loved also Rachel more than Leah, and served with him seven more years.

Yahweh saw that Leah was hated, and he opened her womb, but Rachel was barren. Leah conceived, and bore a son, and she named him Reuben. For she said, “Because Yahweh has looked at my affliction; for now my husband will love me.” She conceived again, and bore a son, and said, “Because Yahweh has heard that I am hated, he has therefore given me this son also.” She named him Simeon. She conceived again, and bore a son. She said, “Now this time my husband will be joined to me, because I have borne him three sons.” Therefore his name was called Levi. She conceived again, and bore a son. She said, “This time I will praise Yahweh.” Therefore she named him Judah. Then she stopped bearing.

When Rachel saw that she bore Jacob no children, Rachel envied her sister. She said to Jacob, “Give me children, or else I will die.”

Jacob’s anger burned against Rachel, and he said, “Am I in God’s place, who has withheld from you the fruit of the womb?”

She said, “Behold, my maid Bilhah. Go in to her, that she may bear on my knees, and I also may obtain children by her.” She gave him Bilhah her servant as wife, and Jacob went in to her. Bilhah conceived, and bore Jacob a son. Rachel said, “God has judged me, and has also heard my voice, and has given me a son.” Therefore she called his name Dan. Bilhah, Rachel’s servant, conceived again, and bore Jacob a second son. Rachel said, “I have wrestled with my sister with mighty wrestlings, and have prevailed.” She named him Naphtali.

When Leah saw that she had finished bearing, she took Zilpah, her servant, and gave her to Jacob as a wife. Zilpah, Leah’s servant, bore Jacob a son. Leah said, “How fortunate!” She named him Gad. Zilpah, Leah’s servant, bore Jacob a second son. Leah said, “Happy am I, for the daughters will call me happy.” She named him Asher.

Reuben went in the days of wheat harvest, and found mandrakes in the field, and brought them to his mother, Leah. Then Rachel said to Leah, “Please give me some of your son’s mandrakes.”

Leah said to her, “Is it a small matter that you have taken away my husband? Would you take away my son’s mandrakes, also?”

Rachel said, “Therefore he will lie with you tonight for your son’s mandrakes.”

Jacob came from the field in the evening, and Leah went out to meet him, and said, “You must come in to me; for I have surely hired you with my son’s mandrakes.”

He lay with her that night. God listened to Leah, and she conceived, and bore Jacob a fifth son. Leah said, “God has given me my hire, because I gave my servant to my husband.” She named him Issachar. Leah conceived again, and bore a sixth son to Jacob. Leah said, “God has endowed me with a good dowry. Now my husband will live with me, because I have borne him six sons.” She named him Zebulun. Afterwards, she bore a daughter, and named her Dinah.

God remembered Rachel, and God listened to her, and opened her womb. She conceived, bore a son, and said, “God has taken away my reproach.” She named him Joseph, saying, “May Yahweh add another son to me.”

When Rachel had borne Joseph, Jacob said to Laban, “Send me away, that I may go to my own place, and to my country. Give me my wives and my children for whom I have served you, and let me go; for you know my service with which I have served you.”

Laban said to him, “If now I have found favor in your eyes, stay here, for I have divined that Yahweh has blessed me for your sake.” He said, “Appoint me your wages, and I will give it.”

Jacob said to him, “You know how I have served you, and how your livestock have fared with me. For it was little which you had before I came, and it has increased to a multitude. Yahweh has blessed you wherever I turned. Now when will I provide for my own house also?”

Laban said, “What shall I give you?”

Jacob said, “You shall not give me anything. If you will do this thing for me, I will again feed your flock and keep it. I will pass through all your flock today, removing from there every speckled and spotted one, and every black one among the sheep, and the spotted and speckled among the goats. This will be my hire. So my righteousness will answer for me hereafter, when you come concerning my hire that is before you. Every one that is not speckled and spotted among the goats, and black among the sheep, that might be with me, will be considered stolen.”

Laban said, “Behold, let it be according to your word.”

That day, he removed the male goats that were streaked and spotted, and all the female goats that were speckled and spotted, every one that had white in it, and all the black ones among the sheep, and gave them into the hand of his sons. He set three days’ journey between himself and Jacob, and Jacob fed the rest of Laban’s flocks.

Jacob took to himself rods of fresh poplar, almond, and plane tree, peeled white streaks in them, and made the white appear which was in the rods. He set the rods which he had peeled opposite the flocks in the watering troughs where the flocks came to drink. They conceived when they came to drink. The flocks conceived before the rods, and the flocks produced streaked, speckled, and spotted. Jacob separated the lambs, and set the faces of the flocks toward the streaked and all the black in Laban’s flock. He put his own droves apart, and didn’t put them into Laban’s flock. Whenever the stronger of the flock conceived, Jacob laid the rods in front of the eyes of the flock in the watering troughs, that they might conceive among the rods; but when the flock were feeble, he didn’t put them in. So the feebler were Laban’s, and the stronger Jacob’s. The man increased exceedingly, and had large flocks, female servants and male servants, and camels and donkeys.

Jacob heard Laban’s sons’ words, saying, “Jacob has taken away all that was our father’s. He has obtained all this wealth from that which was our father’s.” Jacob saw the expression on Laban’s face, and, behold, it was not toward him as before. Yahweh said to Jacob, “Return to the land of your fathers, and to your relatives, and I will be with you.”

Jacob sent and called Rachel and Leah to the field to his flock, and said to them, “I see the expression on your father’s face, that it is not toward me as before; but the God of my father has been with me. You know that I have served your father with all of my strength. Your father has deceived me, and changed my wages ten times, but God didn’t allow him to hurt me. If he said, ‘The speckled will be your wages,’ then all the flock bore speckled. If he said, ‘The streaked will be your wages,’ then all the flock bore streaked. Thus God has taken away your father’s livestock, and given them to me. During mating season, I lifted up my eyes, and saw in a dream, and behold, the male goats which leaped on the flock were streaked, speckled, and grizzled. The angel of God said to me in the dream, ‘Jacob,’ and I said, ‘Here I am.’ He said, ‘Now lift up your eyes, and behold, all the male goats which leap on the flock are streaked, speckled, and grizzled, for I have seen all that Laban does to you. I am the God of Bethel, where you anointed a pillar, where you vowed a vow to me. Now arise, get out from this land, and return to the land of your birth.’”

Rachel and Leah answered him, “Is there yet any portion or inheritance for us in our father’s house? Aren’t we considered as foreigners by him? For he has sold us, and has also used up our money. For all the riches which God has taken away from our father are ours and our children’s. Now then, whatever God has said to you, do.”

Then Jacob rose up, and set his sons and his wives on the camels, and he took away all his livestock, and all his possessions which he had gathered, including the livestock which he had gained in Paddan Aram, to go to Isaac his father, to the land of Canaan. Now Laban had gone to shear his sheep; and Rachel stole the teraphim that were her father’s.

Jacob deceived Laban the Syrian, in that he didn’t tell him that he was running away. So he fled with all that he had. He rose up, passed over the River, and set his face toward the mountain of Gilead.

Laban was told on the third day that Jacob had fled. He took his relatives with him, and pursued him seven days’ journey. He overtook him in the mountain of Gilead. God came to Laban the Syrian in a dream of the night, and said to him, “Be careful that you don’t speak to Jacob either good or bad.”

Laban caught up with Jacob. Now Jacob had pitched his tent in the mountain, and Laban with his relatives encamped in the mountain of Gilead. Laban said to Jacob, “What have you done, that you have deceived me, and carried away my daughters like captives of the sword? Why did you flee secretly, and deceive me, and didn’t tell me, that I might have sent you away with mirth and with songs, with tambourine and with harp; and didn’t allow me to kiss my sons and my daughters? Now have you done foolishly. It is in the power of my hand to hurt you, but the God of your father spoke to me last night, saying, ‘Be careful that you don’t speak to Jacob either good or bad.’ Now, you want to be gone, because you greatly longed for your father’s house, but why have you stolen my gods?”

Jacob answered Laban, “Because I was afraid, for I said, ‘Lest you should take your daughters from me by force.’ Anyone you find your gods with shall not live. Before our relatives, discern what is yours with me, and take it.” For Jacob didn’t know that Rachel had stolen them.

Laban went into Jacob’s tent, into Leah’s tent, and into the tent of the two female servants; but he didn’t find them. He went out of Leah’s tent, and entered into Rachel’s tent. Now Rachel had taken the teraphim, put them in the camel’s saddle, and sat on them. Laban felt around all the tent, but didn’t find them. She said to her father, “Don’t let my lord be angry that I can’t rise up before you; for I’m having my period.” He searched, but didn’t find the teraphim.

Jacob was angry, and argued with Laban. Jacob answered Laban, “What is my trespass? What is my sin, that you have hotly pursued me? Now that you have felt around in all my stuff, what have you found of all your household stuff? Set it here before my relatives and your relatives, that they may judge between us two.

“These twenty years I have been with you. Your ewes and your female goats have not cast their young, and I haven’t eaten the rams of your flocks. That which was torn of animals, I didn’t bring to you. I bore its loss. Of my hand you required it, whether stolen by day or stolen by night. This was my situation: in the day the drought consumed me, and the frost by night; and my sleep fled from my eyes. These twenty years I have been in your house. I served you fourteen years for your two daughters, and six years for your flock, and you have changed my wages ten times. Unless the God of my father, the God of Abraham, and the fear of Isaac, had been with me, surely now you would have sent me away empty. God has seen my affliction and the labor of my hands, and rebuked you last night.”

Laban answered Jacob, “The daughters are my daughters, the children are my children, the flocks are my flocks, and all that you see is mine! What can I do today to these my daughters, or to their children whom they have borne? Now come, let’s make a covenant, you and I. Let it be for a witness between me and you.”

Jacob took a stone, and set it up for a pillar. Jacob said to his relatives, “Gather stones.” They took stones, and made a heap. They ate there by the heap. Laban called it Jegar Sahadutha, but Jacob called it Galeed. Laban said, “This heap is witness between me and you today.” Therefore it was named Galeed and Mizpah, for he said, “Yahweh watch between me and you, when we are absent one from another. If you afflict my daughters, or if you take wives in addition to my daughters, no man is with us; behold, God is witness between me and you.” Laban said to Jacob, “See this heap, and see the pillar, which I have set between me and you. May this heap be a witness, and the pillar be a witness, that I will not pass over this heap to you, and that you will not pass over this heap and this pillar to me, for harm. The God of Abraham, and the God of Nahor, the God of their father, judge between us.” Then Jacob swore by the fear of his father, Isaac. Jacob offered a sacrifice in the mountain, and called his relatives to eat bread. They ate bread, and stayed all night in the mountain. Early in the morning, Laban rose up, and kissed his sons and his daughters, and blessed them. Laban departed and returned to his place.

Jacob’s Journey to Paddan-Aram

Genesis 28:1-29:8

Highlights From This Passage

  • Isaac forbids Jacob to take a wife of the Canaanites.
  • Esau taketh a wife of the daughters of Ishmael against his father’s will.
  • Jacob sees a ladder reaching heaven.
  • Christ is promised.

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Isaac called Jacob, blessed him, and commanded him, “You shall not take a wife of the daughters of Canaan. Arise, go to Paddan Aram, to the house of Bethuel your mother’s father. Take a wife from there from the daughters of Laban, your mother’s brother. May God Almighty bless you, and make you fruitful, and multiply you, that you may be a company of peoples, and give you the blessing of Abraham, to you and to your offspring with you, that you may inherit the land where you travel, which God gave to Abraham.”

Isaac sent Jacob away. He went to Paddan Aram to Laban, son of Bethuel the Syrian, the brother of Rebekah, Jacob’s and Esau’s mother.

Now Esau saw that Isaac had blessed Jacob and sent him away to Paddan Aram, to take him a wife from there, and that as he blessed him he gave him a command, saying, “You shall not take a wife of the daughters of Canaan;” and that Jacob obeyed his father and his mother, and was gone to Paddan Aram. Esau saw that the daughters of Canaan didn’t please Isaac, his father. So Esau went to Ishmael, and took, in addition to the wives that he had, Mahalath the daughter of Ishmael, Abraham’s son, the sister of Nebaioth, to be his wife.

Jacob went out from Beersheba, and went toward Haran. He came to a certain place, and stayed there all night, because the sun had set. He took one of the stones of the place, and put it under his head, and lay down in that place to sleep. He dreamed and saw a stairway set upon the earth, and its top reached to heaven. Behold, the angels of God were ascending and descending on it. Behold, Yahweh stood above it, and said, “I am Yahweh, the God of Abraham your father, and the God of Isaac. I will give the land you lie on to you and to your offspring. Your offspring will be as the dust of the earth, and you will spread abroad to the west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south. In you and in your offspring, all the families of the earth will be blessed. Behold, I am with you, and will keep you, wherever you go, and will bring you again into this land. For I will not leave you until I have done that which I have spoken of to you.”

Jacob awakened out of his sleep, and he said, “Surely Yahweh is in this place, and I didn’t know it.” He was afraid, and said, “How awesome this place is! This is none other than God’s house, and this is the gate of heaven.”

Jacob rose up early in the morning, and took the stone that he had put under his head, and set it up for a pillar, and poured oil on its top. He called the name of that place Bethel, but the name of the city was Luz at the first. Jacob vowed a vow, saying, “If God will be with me, and will keep me in this way that I go, and will give me bread to eat, and clothing to put on, so that I come again to my father’s house in peace, and Yahweh will be my God, then this stone, which I have set up for a pillar, will be God’s house. Of all that you will give me I will surely give a tenth to you.”

Then Jacob went on his journey, and came to the land of the children of the east. He looked, and saw a well in the field, and saw three flocks of sheep lying there by it. For out of that well they watered the flocks. The stone on the well’s mouth was large. There all the flocks were gathered. They rolled the stone from the well’s mouth, and watered the sheep, and put the stone back on the well’s mouth in its place. Jacob said to them, “My relatives, where are you from?”

They said, “We are from Haran.”

He said to them, “Do you know Laban, the son of Nahor?”

They said, “We know him.”

He said to them, “Is it well with him?”

They said, “It is well. See, Rachel, his daughter, is coming with the sheep.”

He said, “Behold, it is still the middle of the day, not time to gather the livestock together. Water the sheep, and go and feed them.”

They said, “We can’t, until all the flocks are gathered together, and they roll the stone from the well’s mouth. Then we will water the sheep.”

Jacob Obtains His Father’s Blessing

Genesis 27

Highlights From This Passage

  • Jacob gets the blessing from Esau by his mother’s counsel. 
  • Esau by weeping moves his father to pity him. 
  • Esau hates Jacob and threatens his death. 
  • Rebekah sends Jacob away.

†††††††

When Isaac was old, and his eyes were dim, so that he could not see, he called Esau his elder son, and said to him, “My son?”

He said to him, “Here I am.”

He said, “See now, I am old. I don’t know the day of my death. Now therefore, please take your weapons, your quiver and your bow, and go out to the field, and get me venison. Make me savory food, such as I love, and bring it to me, that I may eat, and that my soul may bless you before I die.”

Rebekah heard when Isaac spoke to Esau his son. Esau went to the field to hunt for venison, and to bring it. Rebekah spoke to Jacob her son, saying, “Behold, I heard your father speak to Esau your brother, saying, ‘Bring me venison, and make me savory food, that I may eat, and bless you before Yahweh before my death.’ Now therefore, my son, obey my voice according to that which I command you. Go now to the flock and get me two good young goats from there. I will make them savory food for your father, such as he loves. You shall bring it to your father, that he may eat, so that he may bless you before his death.”

Jacob said to Rebekah his mother, “Behold, Esau my brother is a hairy man, and I am a smooth man. What if my father touches me? I will seem to him as a deceiver, and I would bring a curse on myself, and not a blessing.”

His mother said to him, “Let your curse be on me, my son. Only obey my voice, and go get them for me.”

He went, and got them, and brought them to his mother. His mother made savory food, such as his father loved. Rebekah took the good clothes of Esau, her elder son, which were with her in the house, and put them on Jacob, her younger son. She put the skins of the young goats on his hands, and on the smooth of his neck. She gave the savory food and the bread, which she had prepared, into the hand of her son Jacob.

He came to his father, and said, “My father?”

He said, “Here I am. Who are you, my son?”

Jacob said to his father, “I am Esau your firstborn. I have done what you asked me to do. Please arise, sit and eat of my venison, that your soul may bless me.”

Isaac said to his son, “How is it that you have found it so quickly, my son?”

He said, “Because Yahweh your God gave me success.”

Isaac said to Jacob, “Please come near, that I may feel you, my son, whether you are really my son Esau or not.”

Jacob went near to Isaac his father. He felt him, and said, “The voice is Jacob’s voice, but the hands are the hands of Esau.” He didn’t recognize him, because his hands were hairy, like his brother Esau’s hands. So he blessed him. He said, “Are you really my son Esau?”

He said, “I am.”

He said, “Bring it near to me, and I will eat of my son’s venison, that my soul may bless you.”

He brought it near to him, and he ate. He brought him wine, and he drank. His father Isaac said to him, “Come near now, and kiss me, my son.” He came near, and kissed him. He smelled the smell of his clothing, and blessed him, and said,

“Behold, the smell of my son
    is as the smell of a field which Yahweh has blessed.
God give you of the dew of the sky,
    of the fatness of the earth,
    and plenty of grain and new wine.
Let peoples serve you,
    and nations bow down to you.
Be lord over your brothers.
    Let your mother’s sons bow down to you.
Cursed be everyone who curses you.
    Blessed be everyone who blesses you.”

As soon as Isaac had finished blessing Jacob, and Jacob had just gone out from the presence of Isaac his father, Esau his brother came in from his hunting. He also made savory food, and brought it to his father. He said to his father, “Let my father arise, and eat of his son’s venison, that your soul may bless me.”

Isaac his father said to him, “Who are you?”

He said, “I am your son, your firstborn, Esau.”

Isaac trembled violently, and said, “Who, then, is he who has taken venison, and brought it to me, and I have eaten of all before you came, and have blessed him? Yes, he will be blessed.”

When Esau heard the words of his father, he cried with an exceedingly great and bitter cry, and said to his father, “Bless me, even me also, my father.”

He said, “Your brother came with deceit, and has taken away your blessing.”

He said, “Isn’t he rightly named Jacob? For he has supplanted me these two times. He took away my birthright. See, now he has taken away my blessing.” He said, “Haven’t you reserved a blessing for me?”

Isaac answered Esau, “Behold, I have made him your lord, and all his brothers I have given to him for servants. I have sustained him with grain and new wine. What then will I do for you, my son?”

Esau said to his father, “Do you have just one blessing, my father? Bless me, even me also, my father.” Esau lifted up his voice, and wept.

Isaac his father answered him,

“Behold, your dwelling will be of the fatness of the earth,
and of the dew of the sky from above.
You will live by your sword, and you will serve your brother.
It will happen, when you will break loose,
that you will shake his yoke from off your neck.”

Esau hated Jacob because of the blessing with which his father blessed him. Esau said in his heart, “The days of mourning for my father are at hand. Then I will kill my brother Jacob.”

The words of Esau, her elder son, were told to Rebekah. She sent and called Jacob, her younger son, and said to him, “Behold, your brother Esau comforts himself about you by planning to kill you. Now therefore, my son, obey my voice. Arise, flee to Laban, my brother, in Haran. Stay with him a few days, until your brother’s fury turns away— until your brother’s anger turns away from you, and he forgets what you have done to him. Then I will send, and get you from there. Why should I be bereaved of you both in one day?”

Rebekah said to Isaac, “I am weary of my life because of the daughters of Heth. If Jacob takes a wife of the daughters of Heth, such as these, of the daughters of the land, what good will my life do me?”

Ishmael’s Death and His Descendants

Genesis 25:12-18

Highlights from this Passage

  • Ishmael dies.
  • His descendants are recorded.

Now this is the history of the generations of Ishmael, Abraham’s son, whom Hagar the Egyptian, Sarah’s servant, bore to Abraham. These are the names of the sons of Ishmael, by their names, according to the order of their birth: the firstborn of Ishmael, Nebaioth, then Kedar, Adbeel, Mibsam, Mishma, Dumah, Massa, Hadad, Tema, Jetur, Naphish, and Kedemah. These are the sons of Ishmael, and these are their names, by their villages, and by their encampments: twelve princes, according to their nations. These are the years of the life of Ishmael: one hundred thirty-seven years. He gave up his spirit and died, and was gathered to his people. They lived from Havilah to Shur that is before Egypt, as you go toward Assyria. He lived opposite all his relatives.

Isaac and Abimelech

Genesis 26:1b-33

Highlights from this Passage

  • God renews his promise to Isaac.
  • Abimelech blames Isaac for denying his wife.
  • The Philistines hate Isacc because of his riches.
  • God comforts Isaac.

†††††††

Isaac went to Abimelech king of the Philistines, to Gerar. Yahweh appeared to him, and said, “Don’t go down into Egypt. Live in the land I will tell you about. Live in this land, and I will be with you, and will bless you. For I will give to you, and to your offspring, all these lands, and I will establish the oath which I swore to Abraham your father. I will multiply your offspring as the stars of the sky, and will give all these lands to your offspring. In your offspring all the nations of the earth will be blessed, because Abraham obeyed my voice, and kept my requirements, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws.”

Isaac lived in Gerar. The men of the place asked him about his wife. He said, “She is my sister,” for he was afraid to say, “My wife”, lest, he thought, “the men of the place might kill me for Rebekah, because she is beautiful to look at.” When he had been there a long time, Abimelech king of the Philistines looked out at a window, and saw, and, behold, Isaac was caressing Rebekah, his wife. Abimelech called Isaac, and said, “Behold, surely she is your wife. Why did you say, ‘She is my sister?’”

Isaac said to him, “Because I said, ‘Lest I die because of her.’”

Abimelech said, “What is this you have done to us? One of the people might easily have lain with your wife, and you would have brought guilt on us!”

Abimelech commanded all the people, saying, “He who touches this man or his wife will surely be put to death.”

Isaac sowed in that land, and reaped in the same year one hundred times what he planted. Yahweh blessed him. The man grew great, and grew more and more until he became very great. He had possessions of flocks, possessions of herds, and a great household. The Philistines envied him. Now all the wells which his father’s servants had dug in the days of Abraham his father, the Philistines had stopped, and filled with earth. Abimelech said to Isaac, “Go away from us, for you are much mightier than we.”

Isaac departed from there, encamped in the valley of Gerar, and lived there.

Isaac dug again the wells of water, which they had dug in the days of Abraham his father, for the Philistines had stopped them after the death of Abraham. He called their names after the names by which his father had called them. Isaac’s servants dug in the valley, and found there a well of flowing water. The herdsmen of Gerar argued with Isaac’s herdsmen, saying, “The water is ours.” So he called the name of the well Esek, because they contended with him. They dug another well, and they argued over that, also. So he called its name Sitnah. He left that place, and dug another well. They didn’t argue over that one. So he called it Rehoboth. He said, “For now Yahweh has made room for us, and we will be fruitful in the land.”

He went up from there to Beersheba. Yahweh appeared to him the same night, and said, “I am the God of Abraham your father. Don’t be afraid, for I am with you, and will bless you, and multiply your offspring for my servant Abraham’s sake.”

He built an altar there, and called on Yahweh’s name, and pitched his tent there. There Isaac’s servants dug a well.

Then Abimelech went to him from Gerar with Ahuzzath his friend, and Phicol the captain of his army. Isaac said to them, “Why have you come to me, since you hate me, and have sent me away from you?”

They said, “We saw plainly that Yahweh was with you. We said, ‘Let there now be an oath between us, even between us and you, and let’s make a covenant with you, that you will do us no harm, as we have not touched you, and as we have done to you nothing but good, and have sent you away in peace.’ You are now the blessed of Yahweh.”

He made them a feast, and they ate and drank. They rose up some time in the morning, and swore an oath to one another. Isaac sent them away, and they departed from him in peace. The same day, Isaac’s servants came, and told him concerning the well which they had dug, and said to him, “We have found water.” He called it “Shibah”. Therefore the name of the city is “Beersheba” to this day.

When Esau was forty years old, he took as wife Judith, the daughter of Beeri the Hittite, and Basemath, the daughter of Elon the Hittite. They grieved Isaac’s and Rebekah’s spirits.