Rebekah’s Dilemma

So, Rebekah brought forth two nations in God’s timing from which one of them Messiah came, fulfilling God’s promise to Abraham.  The first boy came out red all over like a hairy garment, and they named him Esau [hairy]. Afterward, his brother came forth and his hand grasped Esau’s heel; so, he was named Jacob [supplanter]. When they grew up, Esau was a cunning and skilled hunter, a man of the outdoors; but Jacob was a plain and quiet man, dwelling in tents. Isaac loved Esau, because he ate of Esau’s game; but Rebekah loved Jacob (Gen. 25:25-28). Esau was the progenitor of the Edomites, who continues with the hatred for their brothers, the Jews. A root that sprung forth from their forefather, Esau. As a warrior, Esau lived by the sword and enjoyed the fatness of the earth, according to the words of Isaac in Genesis 27:40. Jacob (supplanter) lived to represent the meaning of his name, which according to the free dictionary, is one who wrongfully or illegally seizes and holds the place of another. That’s the way he dealt with his brother by stealing his birthright. He was the forefather of the nation of Israel fulfilling the words from the Lord to Abraham, In blessing I will bless you and in multiplying, I will multiply your descendants like the stars of the heaven and like the sand on the seashore. And your Seed (YAHSHUA) will possess the gate of His enemies, and in your Seed (YAHSHUA) shall all the nations of the earth be blessed and [by Him] bless themselves, because you have heard and obeyed My voice (Gen. 22:17-18).

Here, we have a tale of two brothers, whose parents favored one of each of them. The older one sold his birthright for a bowl of lentil soup, when the younger brother, in his deceitful way suggested that he sells him his birthright in exchange for a bowl of soup he had prepared. So, it happened when Esau came in from the field, very famished, he asked Jacob to share some of his lentil soup with him. He said to Jacob, I beg of you, let me have some of that red lentil stew to eat, for I am faint and famished; Jacob answered, Then sell me today your birthright. Esau said, See here, I am at the point of death; what good can this birthright do me? Jacob said, Swear to me today; and he swore to Jacob and sold him his birthright (Gen. 25:29-33). Hungry as Esau was, he did not consider the after effect of that decision and succumbed to Jacob’s idea.  Esau lost his right of first born then. And later, with the help of their mother, Jacob completed the deed, under the disguise of being Esau, when Esau was to receive the blessing of a first-born son from his father before he died. This was the crossroads for both of them. Jacob became a fugitive from his brother, who wanted to kill him; he fled to Haran, where his mother’s family lived, upon her request. The root of Esau’s anger grew deeper against his brother for years to come. Today, we still see the results of those years past. History changed its course for the two of them, but God’s plan stayed alive amidst the seemly confusion. God also blessed Esau with a kingdom and many kings reigned in Edom, even before Israel had a king of their own.  Israel was Jacob’s new name God gave him under a new perspective of a future that would fulfill God’s plan for his life, as He promised Abraham his grandfather – And your Seed (YAHSHUA) will possess the gate of His enemies, and in your Seed (YAHSHUA) shall all the nations of the earth be blessed and [by Him] bless themselves, because you have heard and obeyed My voice (Gen. 22:17-18).

History of the past confirms in the present what God spoke to Rebekah, when she was pregnant with her twins. We witness today a continuous family feud between these twins’ descendants. The struggles of these two brothers in their mother’s womb took a physical and powerful direction against each other the moment they were born to this day and will continue to the end. We read in Numbers 20:21 how Edom refused to grant Israel to pass through their land, when Israel was in route to the Promised Land. Animosity was visible between them as the result of the stolen inheritance many years past. From generation to generation, Esau’s hatred grew deeper and deeper for his brother, Jacob. Jacob, a humble and quiet man, a mom’s boy, who liked to stay home, had issues that carried to his descendants for years. While alive, he paid dearly for what he did to his brother. Under Laban, his uncle, where he fled to, he had to work hard for seven years for Rachel the girl of his dream, only to end up with Lea, her sister and having to work for Laban seven more years for Rachel. He lost her at the time of giving birth to her second child, Benjamin. Her first child, Joseph, Jacob’s favorite son was lost, when his brothers sold him to the Ishmaelites who took him to Egypt and sold as a slave. Jacob lived for several years believing the lie that his son Joseph was dead. The last time he had seen him, Joseph was seventeen years old. It happened that his other sons took Joseph’s long garment, and dipped in its blood and sent the garment to their father saying that his son was killed by a wild animal. Jacob tore up his clothes, put on sackcloth, and mourned many days for his son. All his sons and daughters attempted to console him, but he refused to be comforted and said, I will go down to Sheol to my son mourning. And his father wept for him (Gen. 37). This is a sad, sad story. It was not until thirteen years later, when Joseph was thirty years of age, that he saw him again. He suffered much at the news of his son’s death. It seems that Jacob paid enough for his wrong doings; he died without the forgiveness of his brother, Esau. So, his descendants were held guilty all their lives. A heavy burden to carry from his brother. However, on the other hand, Jacob enjoyed God’s forgiveness and prospered to the end of his life, living close to his favorite son Joseph until he died, with God assuring him of His blessings and protection. God’s promise to Abraham was completely fulfilled, when YAHSHUA was born into his descendance.

Every child, a dilemma. The lives of our children constitute worries, decisions and questions needing answers for every mother, for our children’s future depends on our guidance and our prayers. Rebekah did not display a good example of a godly mother for taking sides and for stripping her older son of his first-born blessing. Surely, God didn’t need her help to make his plan happen, and Jacob wouldn’t have had to pay for those mistakes influenced by her. In spite of her actions, God executed His plan on Jacob’s life that shaped the future of the world. We mothers are accountable for what we teach and do not teach our children; vessels in the hand of God, mothers are to help their children achieve God’s purposes for their lives. When we fail to do it, they fail to achieve a future that is perfect in God’s plan; we all suffer the consequences, as a result. Maybe it is not too late for you to think about it. Time and opportunity stand in your favor for now.

Think about it!

Author: Jacinta da Cruz Rodgers

I have been committed to teaching the truth of the Word of God beginning with Trans World Radio on Bonaire, N.A and Swaziland, Africa (1969-1980), then through churches in the United States in both English and Portuguese and then through ministry in Israel (2005-2006). This ministry continues through local Bible studies and outreach to the world via the internet. I have written a book about my life from that of an orphan in Brazil to missionary in 5 countries. You can find out more on the "Book" page of our blog site.

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