Posted by: biblestudyseattle | November 1, 2016

Rebekah’s motives

Isaac and Rebekah had twins Jacob and Esau.  The question comes up: since Jacob already bought Esau’s birthright, why did he deceive Isaac to get the blessing?

Now it came about, when Isaac was old and his eyes were too dim to see, that he called his older son Esau and said to him, “My son.” And he said to him, “Here I am.”  Isaac said, “Behold now, I am old and I do not know the day of my death.  Now then, please take your gear, your quiver and your bow, and go out to the field and hunt game for me; and prepare a savory dish for me such as I love, and bring it to me that I may eat, so that my soul may bless you before I die.”

Rebekah was listening while Isaac spoke to his son Esau. So when Esau went to the field to hunt for game to bring home, Rebekah said to her son Jacob, “Behold, I heard your father speak to your brother Esau, saying, ‘Bring me some game and prepare a savory dish for me, that I may eat, and bless you in the presence of the Lord before my death.’  Now therefore, my son, listen to me as I command you.  Go now to the flock and bring me two choice young goats from there, that I may prepare them as a savory dish for your father, such as he loves.  Then you shall bring it to your father, that he may eat, so that he may bless you before his death.”  Jacob answered his mother Rebekah, “Behold, Esau my brother is a hairy man and I am a smooth man.  Perhaps my father will feel me, then I will be as a deceiver in his sight, and I will bring upon myself a curse and not a blessing.”  But his mother said to him, “Your curse be on me, my son; only obey my voice, and go, get them for me.”  So he went and got them, and brought them to his mother; and his mother made savory food such as his father loved.  Then Rebekah took the best garments of Esau her elder son, which were with her in the house, and put them on Jacob her younger son. And she put the skins of the young goats on his hands and on the smooth part of his neck. She also gave the savory food and the bread, which she had made, to her son Jacob.”  Genesis 27:1-17

Then Esau comes in:

Isaac his father said to him, “Who are you?” And he said, “I am your son, your firstborn, Esau.”  Then Isaac trembled violently, and said, “Who was he then that hunted game and brought it to me, so that I ate of all of it before you came, and blessed him? Yes, and he shall be blessed.”  When Esau heard the words of his father, he cried out with an exceedingly great and bitter cry, and said to his father, “Bless me, even me also, O my father!”  And he said, “Your brother came deceitfully and has taken away your blessing.” Then he said, “Is he not rightly named Jacob, for he has supplanted me these two times? He took away my birthright, and behold, now he has taken away my blessing.”  Genesis 27:23-36

The answer about the deception probably comes later:

“Rebekah said to Isaac, “I am tired of living because of the daughters of Heth; if Jacob takes a wife from the daughters of Heth, like these, from the daughters of the land, what good will my life be to me?”  Genesis 27:46

The deception was Rebekah’s idea.  She probably saw it as a way to get rid of Esau’s Canaanite wives.  What a merry band of schemers!

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