We expect faith to be accompanied by goodness but in this story it is accompanied by shrewdness and deception that everyone knows will soon be discovered. Yet, Rebekah is commended by her husband for the determined way she values the promises of God above any comforts this life offers. The lesson of the story is we all face a choice to be people who choose reality in God or choose the unrealities we make for ourselves. In either case, God takes us more seriously than we take ourselves for God has chosen to entrust himself to those who trust him.
Genesis 25 & 27 | Hating God’s promises
The loss of the son
A comforting marriage
Barrenness, prayer and prophecy
A testing birth
A despised right
A wrong and stolen blessing
The return of the son
A lesson about God – Romans 9
A lesson about us – Hebrews 12 | James 1
For further thought
Q: Retell the story of Isaac from his birth until 28:9. What do we learn about Isaac’s character from his actions?
Q: What do we learn about Rebekah from her actions?
Q: Why is the birth of twins, one holding the other, a test of faith for Isaac and Rebekah?
Q: What motivates the parents’ love for their children?
Q: Later in life, Isaac is blind – perhaps at more than one level, but his wife sees clearly what matters. Why does Rebekah invent a deception she knows will be found out rather than confront Isaac?
Q: Isaac’s faith (and blessings) become clear as he sends Jacob to find a wife as valuable as his own. Esau is still reactionary (28:6-9). What lessons about God, faith and life are to be learnt in these stories?