Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Genesis 28: Jacob Overinterprets a Dream

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Jacob Sent to Laban (v. 1-5)

Isaac calls in Jacob and blesses him and tells him he needs to go to Paddan-aram and marry his cousin.

Last time Isaac was pissed at Jacob for stealing his brother's blessing because he apparently had very few blessings available to give out. Now He gives Jacob another one. And of course, it is hilarious that he doesn't want his son to marry a Canaanite woman, but is perfectly happy to have him marry a blood relative.

Guzik says that Isaac is finally accepting that it is God's will that Jacob will be the one to get the birthright, and that is why he blesses him now. Guzik also says something which I find fascinating
Jacob is by no means worthy of this blessing. Each of the four parties in this whole birthright mess were in the flesh somewhere along the line. The amazing thing is that God could bring any good out of all this, and this is an example of a triumph of God’s sovereignty.
This seems like an incredibly strange take on this to me, I suppose it comes out of necessity of finding a good angle on this story. I suppose God's sovereignty says that he can do whatever he wants, but why should we call it good that God rewards people who are terrible throughout the whole story?

Esau Marries an Ishmaelite (v. 6-9)

Esau overheard this conversation and realized his father didn't like his wives because they are Canaanites, so he took another wife, the daughter of Ismael. So it was the daughter of his father's half-brother. So what is that, half-cousin?

I just feel sorry for Esau here. He clearly just wants his father's approval. Granted, he sucks at this, but it seems like he is just not treated very well by his parents.

Jacob's Dream (v. 10-22)

When it got dark Jacob stopped to sleep and he had a dream. He saw a ladder to heaven and angels going up and down it. He also saw God, who promised him the land as he had promised his father and grandfather. When he awoke he said that the lord must be in this place even though he didn't know it.

What does he mean when he says he didn't know the lord was in this place? Surely with his father and grandfather constantly assured by God that their descendants would get the land, he must have heard that over and over his whole life.

Guzik suggests that Jacob didn't realize God was in this particular place, perhaps thinking God was only in the place where he grew up.

He then took the stone he had been using as a pillow and set it up as a pillar and poured oil over it. He then says that if God can provide him with food and clothing "so that I come again to my father's house in peace" then he will follow the lord. The stone will be God's house.

I thought you weren't supposed to test God. I guess that is New Testament stuff.

Guzik points out that it won't be quite that easy for Jacob, referencing stuff that is coming. That should be interesting.

Also, what is the whole deal with him asking for food and clothing so he can come in peace. It reads to me like he is saying if God doesn't provide him with those things he will have no choice but to get them through violence. Is there another interpretation here?

For the verses of note post:


Genesis 28:2,9 Jacob and Esau marry cousins

"take as your wife from there one of the daughters of Laban your mother's brother...Esau went to Ishmael and took as his wife, besides the wives he had, Mahalath the daughter of Ishmael, Abraham's son, the sister of Nebaioth."

1 comment:

  1. The entire world, including The Jews and particularly the Cainite-Judeo-Christian Religion, is bamboozled into feeling that Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, later to be named by The Lord, Israel, were Jews when they were never any such thing. On the off chance that you discover this too difficult to trust then a read of this, as the first of my most recent arrangement of articles, is an absolute necessity. Wife of Jacob


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