Week 4: Day 4
Genesis 27-28; 35
“‘May he give the blessing of Abraham to you and to your offspring with you, that you may take possession of the land of your sojournings that God gave to Abraham.’” Genesis 28:4
Promise Continues: God’s Covenant Established with Jacob
Isaac was now about a hundred and thirty-seven years of age, and “his eyes were dim, so that he could not see.” He therefore called Esau his eldest son, and said, “Behold now, I am old, I know not the day of my death—take I pray thee thy weapons—and go out to the field, and take me some venison; and make me savory meat, such as I love, and bring it to me that I may eat, that my soul may bless thee before I die.” Isaac lived forty-three years after this; but as it was unknown to him, he did very properly in settling his affairs. The day of our death is concealed from us for the very purpose that we may be always ready; and when life is upon the wane, especially, it becomes us to do what we do quickly. The above account, however, does not appear greatly to his honor. His partiality towards Esau would seem to imply a disregard to what had been revealed to Rebecca; and his fondness for the venison has the appearance of weakness.
But, passing this, there are two questions which require an answer—Wherein consisted the blessing which was now about to be bestowed? and why was savory meat required, in order to the bestowment of it?… There was, no doubt, a common blessing to be expected from such a father as Isaac on all his children, and a special one on his first-born; but in his family there was a blessing superior to both. It included all those great things contained in the covenant with Abraham, by which his posterity were to be distinguished as God’s peculiar people. Hence that which Isaac did is said to have been done in faith, and was prophetic of “things to come” (Heb. 11:20). The faith of this good man was however, at first, much interrupted by natural attachment. Desirous of conferring the blessing on Esau, he gives him directions as to the manner of receiving it. And here occurs the second question, Why was savory meat required in order to the bestowment of the blessing? The design of it seems to have been, not merely to strengthen animal nature, but to enkindle affection. Isaac is said to have loved Esau on account of his venison, (chap. xxv. 23); this therefore would tend, as he supposed, to revive that affection, and so enable him to bless him with all his heart. It seems, however, to have been but a carnal kind of introduction to so Divine an act; partaking more of the flesh than of the Spirit, and savoring rather of that natural affection, under the influence of which he at present acted, than of the faith of a son of Abraham.
Andrew Fuller, “Jacob’s Obtaining the Blessing,” in The Complete Works of the Rev. Andrew Fuller, vol. 3 (Harrisonburg, VA: Sprinkle Publications, 1988), 109-110.
Connection with Newer Testament
For the Kids
Have your children select a colored crayon or marker for you to use. Begin drawing a picture of your family on a piece of paper. Every 30 seconds, pause and have them select a new color. When you finish, show how you were able to complete the drawing in spite of their color choices. In the same way, our sin grieves God, but it does not surprise him. In his sovereign power and wisdom, God uses it to complete his plans in spite of our choices.
1. Praise God that his providence extends over our sinful activity. Though the sin of favoritism, lying, and deceit are not pleasing to the Lord, it does not stop God from accomplishing his purposes of redemption. Through Jacob, Jesus was born.
2. All people, even those who are children of Abraham by faith, are prone to sin. Confess your sins and ask the Lord for forgiveness. Ask the Lord to increase your faith so that you might be an obedient child of faith in all aspects of your life.