Margin Notes: Things I scribbled in the white places.


“Once when Jacob was cooking stew, Esau came in from the field, and he was exhausted.” (Genesis 25:29, ESV) / Temptation always argues that the immediate “pinch” must be met, even at the expense of the long term consequences; even at the cost of eternity.

” So Isaac settled in Gerar. When the men of the place asked him about his wife, he said, “She is my sister,” for he feared to say, “My wife,” thinking, “lest the men of the place should kill me because of Rebekah,” because she was attractive in appearance.” (Genesis 26:6-7, ESV) / Like father, like son: Our children often pick up our thought patterns and responses to things. May they learn from us how we trust Christ!

” When Isaac was old and his eyes were dim so that he could not see, he called Esau his older son and said to him, “My son”; and he answered, “Here I am.” He said, “Behold, I am old; I do not know the day of my death. Now then, take your weapons, your quiver and your bow, and go out to the field and hunt game for me, and prepare for me delicious food, such as I love, and bring it to me so that I may eat, that my soul may bless you before I die.” Now Rebekah was listening when Isaac spoke to his son Esau. So when Esau went to the field to hunt for game and bring it, Rebekah said to her son Jacob, “I heard your father speak to your brother Esau, ‘Bring me game and prepare for me delicious food, that I may eat it and bless you before the Lord before I die.’ Now therefore, my son, obey my voice as I command you. Go to the flock and bring me two good young goats, so that I may prepare from them delicious food for your father, such as he loves. And you shall bring it to your father to eat, so that he may bless you before he dies.”” (Genesis 27:1-10, ESV) / Isaac knew full well the words spoken to Rebekah, but wanted to put Esau in his rightful place anyway. He was sinning against the revealed will of God. But Rebekah had little faith that the Lord would see to it His will was done in the face of Isaac’s sin. So she sinned. No one else’s sin every justifies ours. To respond sinfully to sin – is still entirely wrong.

“So he went in to his father and said, “My father.” And he said, “Here I am. Who are you, my son?” Jacob said to his father, “I am Esau your firstborn. I have done as you told me; now sit up and eat of my game, that your soul may bless me.”” (Genesis 27:18-19, ESV) / What an interesting parallel to Christ’s appearance in the likeness of sinful flesh – but not deceive – rather at the Father’s behest. And not to gain for Himself, but for us. He wore our robes, with the smell of this fallen world – and took our sin upon Himself, that we might live. Out instinct is to take upon ourselves what belongs to others in order to win blessings for ourselves.

“Then God remembered Rachel, and God listened to her and opened her womb.” (Genesis 30:22, ESV) / Would to God we would learn to wait His time, rather than grumble, fuss, fret and scheme.

“When the man saw that he did not prevail against Jacob, he touched his hip socket, and Jacob’s hip was put out of joint as he wrestled with him.” (Genesis 32:25, ESV) / We cannot encounter the true God, and still walk the same. We will be ruined for the World’s pace, and brought to His.

“And Hamor the father of Shechem went out to Jacob to speak with him. The sons of Jacob had come in from the field as soon as they heard of it, and the men were indignant and very angry, because he had done an outrageous thing in Israel by lying with Jacob’s daughter, for such a thing must not be done.” (Genesis 34:6-7, ESV) / To Hamor, there was but one solution – let Dinah and his son marry, and open the door for marriage across the board between them. To Jacob’s sons, there was but one solution – Their sister must be avenged.

No one talked with Dinah. Jacob proposed no third alternative. Jacob’s sons refused to see the genuineness of Shechem’s affections for the girl and his willingness to do right by them. Heat and not light prevailed. In the absence of a 3rd alternative, disaster strikes. When two sides will not consider any compromise, we can have nothing but disaster. Certainly some things cannot be set aside. But certainly, some things can.

“The sons of Jacob answered Shechem and his father Hamor deceitfully, because he had defiled their sister Dinah.” (Genesis 34:13, ESV) / Sin against one, is never an excuse for sin against another. We so often justify our sins against others by virtue of their’s against us. This is not God’s way. Here is their missed opportunity. Now they could have said:

a. Let us tell you why Shechem’s actions are so wrong. b. Let us tell you about our God. c. Let us tell you why marriage under the present circumstances is not desirable. d. Come to know our God.

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