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Genesis 27:1-46 - Sin Soup - Part 2
Last week we began chapter 27 and ended with Rebekah setting her son Jacob up in this intricate plot to get dads blessing. We now continue with vs. 13...
Vs. 13-29 - “ His mother said to him, “My son, let the curse fall on me. Just do what I say; go and get them for me.”
So he went and got them and brought them to his mother, and she prepared some tasty food, just the way his father liked it.
Then Rebekah took the best clothes of Esau her older son, which she had in the house, and put them on her younger son Jacob.
She also covered his hands and the smooth part of his neck with the goatskins.
Then she handed to her son Jacob the tasty food and the bread she had made.
He went to his father and said, “My father.”
“Yes, my son,” he answered. “Who is it?”
19 Jacob said to his father, “I am Esau your firstborn. I have done as you told me. Please sit up and eat some of my game, so that you may give me your blessing.”
Isaac asked his son, “How did you find it so quickly, my son?” “The Lord your God gave me success,” he replied.
Then Isaac said to Jacob, “Come near so I can touch you, my son, to know whether you really are my son Esau or not.”
Jacob went close to his father Isaac, who touched him and said, “The voice is the voice of Jacob, but the hands are the hands of Esau.” He did not recognize him, for his hands were hairy like those of his brother Esau; so he proceeded to bless him. “Are you really my son Esau?” he asked.
“I am,” he replied.
Then he said, “My son, bring me some of your game to eat, so that I may give you my blessing.”
Jacob brought it to him and he ate; and he brought some wine and he drank. Then his father Isaac said to him, “Come here, my son, and kiss me.”
So he went to him and kissed him. When Isaac caught the smell of his clothes, he blessed him and said,
“Ah, the smell of my son is like the smell of a field that the Lord has blessed.
May God give you heaven’s dew and earth’s richness— an abundance of grain and new wine.
May nations serve you and peoples bow down to you.
Be lord over your brothers, and may the sons of your mother bow down to you.
May those who curse you be cursed and those who bless you be blessed.”
So the ruse works and he secures the blessing. But boy, for awhile there it was touch and go! So let’s look at a very important point.
Notice that Jacob’s got no problem pulling God into this deal. No problem naming God as one of his accomplices here. And it is this bringing in the name of God so casually and so quickly that it lets you know where this guys at. We need to be so very careful in the body of Christ today on this point.
Now Isaac is questioning this whole deal a little, but he gives into the ruse because he’s not walking by faith, he’s walking by sight.
Important detail here I want us to get, and it's a very powerful picture that we’ll close with.
Notice in vs. 15 that Rebekah has Jacob put on Esau’s garments? And Isaac smells the garments in vs. 27? Jacob secures the blessing of his father by putting on the clothes of the firstborn. Now stash that away for later.
Now again Isaac here is a little skeptical - You’ve got the VOICE of Jacob, but you FEEL like Esau and you SMELL like Esau, maybe I’m just getting old...” I want ya to notice something. He doesn’t go by the WORD he heard, but by how he FEELS! Many times WE need to be careful to go by the WORD of God and NOT the seat of our emotions. Chew on that this week.
Notice vs. 30, no sooner does the blessing go down that Esau now comes in from the field just as Jake is skating away with the blessings...
Vs. 30-35 - “ After Isaac finished blessing him, and Jacob had scarcely left his father’s presence, his brother Esau came in from hunting.
He too prepared some tasty food and brought it to his father. Then he said to him, “My father, please sit up and eat some of my game, so that you may give me your blessing.”
His father Isaac asked him, “Who are you?”
“I am your son,” he answered, “your firstborn, Esau.”
Isaac trembled violently and said, “Who was it, then, that hunted game and brought it to me? I ate it just before you came and I blessed him —and indeed he will be blessed!”
When Esau heard his father’s words, he burst out with a loud and bitter cry and said to his father, “Bless me—me too, my father!”
But he said, “Your brother came deceitfully and took your blessing.”
Notice we’re told in vs. 33 - “Isaac trembled violently,” no doubt at this point it’s beginning to settle in Isaac’s mind that God’s will went forward and so he acknowledges here - “I have blessed him and indeed he shall be blessed.” I think this was a real wake-up call for Isaac. I think he is being violently shaken out of his own deception and the text seems to indicate that here and will continue to indicate that this is the case. He’s going to come around, he’s going to get on board where the Lord was going the whole time.
Vs. 36-41 - “Esau said, “Isn’t he rightly named Jacob? This is the second time he has taken advantage of me: He took my birthright, and now he’s taken my blessing!” Then he asked, “Haven’t you reserved any blessing for me?”
Isaac answered Esau, “I have made him lord over you and have made all his relatives his servants, and I have sustained him with grain and new wine. So what can I possibly do for you, my son?”
Esau said to his father, “Do you have only one blessing, my father? Bless me too, my father!” Then Esau wept aloud.
His father Isaac answered him,
“Your dwelling will be away from the earth’s richness, away from the dew of heaven above.
You will live by the sword and you will serve your brother. But when you grow restless, you will throw his yoke from off your neck.”
Esau held a grudge against Jacob because of the blessing his father had given him. He said to himself, “The days of mourning for my father are near; then I will kill my brother Jacob.”
Esau’s reaction here so typifies our default nature. Here we are making decisions for ourselves. I decide I’m going to launch out in this direction, and I launch out in that direction and things don’t go well for me, they don’t go as I intended, and rather than saying - “Look, I’m an idiot, I blew this, I was short sighted, I’m a fool...” I begin to point the finger of blame to other people, and I begin to blame others for the grief that I’ve brought about in my own life.
Notice what he says in vs. 36. It’s true he did rip him off of the blessing, but he didn’t rip him off of the birthright, did he? If memory serves me correctly, he gave his birthright away for a bowl of chili.
And that is just our fallen nature. So often people don’t want to look at themselves, they don’t want to own their own responsibility because it's easier to simply blame others and shift our garbage and our responsibility upon others. So this guy is clearly angry here, and he thinks he’s going to find comfort in killing his brother.
But ya know what? Everyone thinks Issac is going to die, but he isn’t going to die for another 43 years, and we will discover, down the road in Gen. 33, decades will pass and these boys are going to cool off and they will literally and figuratively kiss and make up. But for the moment he’s pretty angry. Now here comes mom with yet another contingency plan - Man, she’s got it all figured out.
Vs. 42-46 - “When Rebekah was told what her older son Esau had said, she sent for her younger son Jacob and said to him, “Your brother Esau is planning to avenge himself by killing you.
Now then, my son, do what I say: Flee at once to my brother Laban in Harran. Stay with him for a while until your brother’s fury subsides.
When your brother is no longer angry with you and forgets what you did to him, I’ll send word for you to come back from there. Why should I lose both of you in one day?”
Then Rebekah said to Isaac, “I’m disgusted with living because of these Hittite women. If Jacob takes a wife from among the women of this land, from Hittite women like these, my life will not be worth living.”
Remember Esau had taken some women from within the pagan land and they were a real thorn in the side of Rebekah and Isaac at the end of ch. 26. These 2 daughters-in-law of Esau were driving mom and dad crazy, and so now, here she is, she’s found a way to get Jacob blessed and now she has to figure out a way to not get him killed.
And so she sets this whole deal up by telling Issac - “You know, these 2 daughters-in-law, they’ve been driving us crazy, and, ya know, if my boy Jacob takes up with one of these types, I just can’t go on living, so let’s send him back to the old country to get one of those good girls from back there...”
Of course Isaac falls for it. Just like his dad, he’s one of those great guys that thinks he’s in charge of the home, but nothing could be further from the truth.
Here’s the tragedy. The tragedy is that throughout this whole ordeal they are under the impression that Jacob is going to be gone for a few days. The reality is they will never see Jacob again - ever! This is the tragedy of us trying to manipulate, trying to take control of our own destinies rather than submitting to the will of God and the power of God to work in our life.
Here we are, we’re trying to find happiness. We have a sense of where God might want us to go in life, but WE choose to dictate that I’LL be the one who’s going to make that happen rather than just resting and trusting in God to bring about HIS will.
The tragedy of manipulation, both the manipulation of others, and more importantly, the manipulation of ourselves, is that she wound up losing the very thing she was trying to protect. She’ll never see her beloved son again and all as a result of her manipulation and her focus upon herself and what she wanted.
So Isaac takes Rebeka’s bait, but we will see in ch. 28, he will get on board with God’s program.
This story was real life. Everyone in the story sinned. No one looked good. The Patriarch Isaac fought against God’s Word. The matriarch Rebekah, through her favorite son, attempted to manipulate life so as to ensure that God’s promise would actually happen. She and Jacob thought that God needed help, even if the help was dishonest and self-serving. Esau, the patriarch’s favorite son, disregarded God’s word. Indeed, he despised the promise.
Everyone in the family sought the blessings of God without bending one knee to Him. This little family was full of ambition, jealousy, envy, lying, deceit, coveting, malice, manipulation, stubbornness, and stupidity. And everyone lost. Rebekah was forced to send her pet son to a far away land, away from his father’s house, in a destitute condition.
Jacob was gone for 20 years, and his mother would never see him again. Jacob’s exile was just payment for his deceiving Esau as he experienced the extended miseries of conflict and exploitation at the hands of his Uncle Labon.
Blind old Isaac had tossed a torch into his families’ tents by fighting against God’s word. And Esau, who despised his birthright, lost everything.
But in and above this is something of immense beauty and grandeur - the invincible determination of God to keep His word despite the prevailing unbelief and unfaithfulness of His people. God fulfilled his word despite Isaac’s opposition, despite Rebekah and Jacob’s manipulation, and despite Esau’s indifference. The invincible determination of God will see to it that His people are sanctified.
Amidst our sins and stupidities, the invincible determination of God is set to bring us to completion - even when we resist it!
This truth was given in Paul’s advice to Timothy in 2 Tim. 2:11-13 - “Here is a trustworthy saying:
If we died with him, we will also live with him; if we endure, we will also reign with him.
If we disown him, he will also disown us; if we are faithless, he remains faithful, for he cannot disown himself.”
The first 2 lines give us assurance, then the third line warns that if we deny Him, he will also deny us. So with the 2 lines of assurance and a line of warning, we come to the fourth line: “if we are faithless...” We expect to hear: “He will be unfaithful...”
But instead, we read: “He remains faithful!” God cannot and will not be anything but faithful to His unfaithful children. God will be faithful to His word and to His own - even when they manipulate and fight against His will. And His word will; ALWAYS prevail.
Are we playing games with the word of God? Are we attempting to control its application? Are we engaging in unrighteous means to bring about His righteous end? Are we fighting against His word? If so, we need to stop it! Give it up! Let’s all say with our Savior: “Your will be done.” And yield to His invincible determination to fulfill His word.
Rest in this: “...If we are faithless, He remains faithful - for He cannot deny Himself.”