It’s pretty neat to see how God reaffirms his covenant with Isaac in the beginning of chapter 26. Abraham has died, so now the covenant has been passed to Isaac, of which God reminds him. God reveals himself to the next generation and passes on the covenant again in chapter 28 with Jacob.
I grew up in a Christian family, so God and church was my life. But really, my faith wasn’t mine; it was the faith of my parents, and I was living it because it was the thing to do, and there were no other real options at that age. But the summer before eight grade, God revealed himself to me in a very real way, and my faith became my own, no longer reliant upon my parents’. I think this is what God is doing here; making himself real to them, telling them that their faith is their own now.
And it’s always helpful to be reminded of our relationship with God.
“She’s my sister!” Ok, I don’t know about you, but I’m rather tired of hearing this.26:6-11 is the third time this has happened: twice with Abraham, and now with Isaac. I would think Abraham would have told his son what happened to him (twice), and hopefully Isaac would have learned something from it. Apparently not. But then again, how many of us make the same mistakes as those who have come before? How many mishaps would we have avoided if we had listened to our parents? I could just see this as a Springer episode… “Man, you said she was your sister!”
Speaking of television, who needs daytime drama when you have the Bible? Deceit and betrayal in a wealthy family? Yup, we’ve certainly got that! It’s hard for me to imagine what would bring a mother to urge one of her children to take what is rightfully her other child’s, but that’s what happens here. Apparently sending a servant on a long journey to procure a wife from among your own people instead of marrying local girl doesn’t mean she’s going to be perfect.
It’s interesting to me how seriously this blessing is taken, and just what it means. There is true power in the blessing, as though Isaac is actually giving his son these things, and once given, the blessing cannot be taken back. It makes me wonder about the impact a father giving a blessing to his son can have. I don’t really see anything like this in our world today, and I wonder what it would be like if we did? Not in the same, one son over the other way, but for a father to pass on something to his sons like this would have great power for shaping that son. (Not to leave the daughters out, I’m sure there is a great deal of crossover, I’m just coming from the perspective of being a son!)
Does anybody else think that Rebekah is manipulating Isaac in 27:46? She knows Jacob needs to get away to be safe from a murderous Esau, so she tells Isaac she doesn’t want Isaac marrying a local girl so he will send Jacob away. Very sneaky maneuvering.
Laban is not very nice to his nephew. First he tricks Jacob into marrying Leah, not the girl he wanted, and then he tries to cheat him out of his wages! Again, who needs t.v. with this kind of drama.
Also of note, Jacob’s wives are bartering for who gets to sleep with him (30:15). Something in that just doesn’t speak of healthy relationships…
30:37-43 – Here’s an interesting one for anyone who wants to take the Bible like a science book; I’m sure there are studies that support that this is how the coloring of a sheep is determined… (Sidebar: while I’m thinking about it, are there any other things where the singular form is the same as the plural? i.e., a sheep; the flock of sheep. Nobody talks about the sheeps.)