By Janth English
Read Together: Isaac and Rebekah lived many years before they had children, but God finally blessed them with twin sons, Jacob and Esau. They were twins, but never were two people more different. Esau was hairy, but Jacob had smooth skin. Esau was a skillful hunter, but Jacob was a mild-mannered shepherd. One day Jacob was cooking lentil stew when Esau came from the fields. He had been hunting and was very hungry. Jacob offered his brother some stew in return for his “birthright blessing”. Esau agreed. Jacob seems quite devious, talking his brother out of his birthright. Remember this, however; Esau cared more about his hunger than his birthright. Many years later, an elderly Isaac decided it was time to bestow a final blessing upon each of his sons. His plan was to give the greater blessing to Esau and a lesser blessing on Jacob, because Esau was his favorite son. Since Rebekah’s favorite son was Jacob, she hatched a plot that would have the greater blessing go to him! This lesson’s reading reveals what happened when their plan unfolded. Though the Bible reveals how weak and deceitful people can be, God’s purpose to establish a nation is still revealed. We’ll learn more about that later.
Read Together: Genesis 25:19-34; 27:1-41
- Discuss with your child the ethics of this situation. Since God had chosen Jacob to inherit the promises He made to Abraham and Isaac, was it wrong for Jacob and his mother to use trickery in getting them?
- Discuss with your child the fact that Isaac intended to give the blessings to Esau. Think of a few ways that God could have prevented Isaac from giving the blessings to Esau. Can any human cause God’s plans to fail (Isaiah 46:9-10)?
- Jacob was his mother’s favorite son and Esau his father’s. Ask your child what happens in a family when individual members are shown favoritism.
- Help your child understand that God chooses individuals for His purpose at His time. Explain that God did not choose Jacob because he was somehow “better” than Esau. This principle applies to those who are called now as well.
Review Memorization Genesis 27:29 “Let peoples serve you, and nations bow down to you. Be master over your brethren and let your mother’s sons bow down to you. Cursed be everyone who curses you, and blessed be those who bless you.”