S (Scripture): Genesis 27:5 Rebekah was listening when Isaac spoke to his son Esau. When Esau went out to the field to hunt game to bring back, 6 Rebekah said to her son Jacob, “I just heard your father saying to your brother Esau, 7 ‘Bring me some game and make me some delicious food so I can eat, and I will bless you in the Lord’s presence before I die.’ 8 Now, my son, listen to me, to what I’m telling you to do. 9 Go to the flock and get me two healthy young goats so I can prepare them as the delicious food your father loves. 10 You can bring it to your father, he will eat, and then he will bless you before he dies.”
O (Observation): Rebekah and Jacob (mother and son) conspire to steal Esau’s blessing as first-born son. (Yes, Jacob and Esau are twins, but Esau was born first. And in Hebrew tradition, first-born gets a double-portion of the inheritance.)
How conniving and under-handed is this! Rebekah leads this endeavor, and Jacob is not only complicit, he outright lies to his own father. And he succeeds in receiving Isaac’s blessing of Esau’s inheritance.
And over time, God is referred to as the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (and not Esau). How bizarre! Such a terrible act…and somehow, Isaac’s descendants are still blessed and numerous and destined to still have descendants who will honor God…one of whom will eventually bring salvation to all: Jesus!
Later on in Genesis, we will see a reckoning between Jacob and Esau…but the origins of this story are quite challenging.
(But we also cannot forget the Lord’s word to Rebekah when she was pregnant. God said to her in Gen 25:23 –
“Two nations are in your womb;
two different peoples will emerge from your body.
One people will be stronger than the other;
the older will serve the younger.”
Is this God fulfilling God’s prophetic word? Did God simply foresee this action by Rebekah and Jacob? Did this impact Rebekah’s decision to choose Jacob?)
A (Application): What can this mean? Should we go around bringing about thievery and deceit? I should think NOT!
Instead, I am led to think this: even through our deceit and misdeeds…God can still work through our crap and redeem God’s promises.
We make monumental mistakes at times, but God somehow finds a way to work within our systems and makes a way forward.
Where have you seen God working out a plan through your own faults and misdeeds?
Every day, as a husband and parent, I see my own mistakes and wonder how God will work through me and my family, even though I find ways to mess things up? And the church I serve…how does God cover my faults or the faults of our leadership (for none of us is perfect)?
Perhaps being the Church means we are redeemed and covered through God’s forgiveness. Yes. I believe this is the only way I can contribute to God’s work in this world – as a forgiven sinner, redeemed by God’s grace.
P (Prayer): Lord, our misdeeds do not define us. Being your daughters and sons define us. Peace.