Genesis 27

Every Shabbat in the synagogue, they read prescribed sections from the Torah (the five Books of Moses), called Parsha. This week it is called Parsha Toledot and it brings us a message similar to what we saw in this past week’s message where Peter was walking on the water. We learnt that when you lose sight of God, things become very messy. Among other passages, synagogue reading will include the full chapter of Genesis 27 where we have another great illustration of what happens when God is not considered but is forgotten.

Genesis 27 must be among the many proofs that the Bible is the inspired Word of God, because no one would invent such an account of the history of his own people. It is such a mess because everyone is doing something wrong. Tempers flare up, there is lying, people making accusations, and character assassination. It is done by individuals of great faith like Isaac, Jacob, and Rebecca.

Isaac is the one who typified so well the Messiah as being willing to be sacrificed on Mount Moriah. Yet I don’t know what happened to him. He is so enamored by his son Esau that he wanted him to have the blessings of the firstborn. Isaac wanted Esau to be the ancestor of the Seed, of the Messiah, yet Rebecca must have told him that God clearly said that it was not for him. It was from Jacob, the younger brother, that the Seed was to come. Rebecca received the prophecy, so perhaps he did not believe her or simply forgot.  Seeing this, Rebecca panics and forgets God as well. She takes it upon herself to accomplish the prophecy, but through deceit, and what bold deceitfulness!

Jacob follows every word and command from his mother, like a submissive son. At no time does he complain about the evil behind the actions, but just does what she says. He is asked to play the bad guy but does such a pitiful job. After all, he was the tam (the blameless, perfect one) as God had described him before.

Then we have Esau. The worst in him comes out when he finds out about the scheme. He is so overwhelmed by a feeling of victimization, that he weeps out of pain and regret, complaining that Jacob stole his birthright. He actually forgot he’d just sold it. Or maybe he just reneged the deal. He feels so betrayed that he decides to kill Jacob, at which point Rebecca panics even more, and sends her son whom she loved so much, away. That’s where the story of Jacob and his 12 sons, the history of Israel, really begins. It is a messy account because God is not there at all.

These stories, like the ones of the 12 disciples, of Moses, and of Elijah, are there to encourage us to always keep sight of and to keep up our relationship with the Lord. It is vital.