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Genesis 27

27
Jacob’s Deception.#The chapter, a literary masterpiece, is the third and climactic wresting away of the blessing of Esau. Rebekah manages the entire affair, using perhaps her privileged information about Jacob’s status (25:23); Jacob’s only qualm is that if his father discovers the ruse, he will receive a curse instead of a blessing (vv. 11–12). Isaac is passive as he was in chaps. 22 and 24. The deception is effected through clothing (Jacob wears Esau’s clothing), which points ahead to a similar deception of a patriarch by means of clothing in the Joseph story (37:21–33). Such recurrent acts and scenes let the reader know a divine purpose is moving the story forward even though the human characters are unaware of it. 1When Isaac was so old that his eyesight had failed him, he called his older son Esau and said to him, “My son!” “Here I am!” he replied. 2Isaac then said, “Now I have grown old. I do not know when I might die. 3So now take your hunting gear—your quiver and bow—and go out into the open country to hunt some game for me. 4Then prepare for me a dish in the way I like, and bring it to me to eat, so that I may bless you#I may bless you: Isaac’s blessing confers fertility (vv. 27–28) and dominion (v. 29). The “dew of heaven” is rain that produces grain and wine, two of the principal foodstuffs of the ancient Near East. The “fertility of the earth” may allude to oil, the third basic foodstuff. The full agricultural year may be implied here: the fall rains are followed by the grain harvests of the spring and the grape harvest of late summer, and then the olive harvest of the fall (cf. Dt 11:14; Ps 104:13–15). before I die.”
5Rebekah had been listening while Isaac was speaking to his son Esau. So when Esau went out into the open country to hunt some game for his father,#Gn 25:28. 6Rebekah said to her son Jacob, “Listen! I heard your father tell your brother Esau, 7‘Bring me some game and prepare a dish for me to eat, that I may bless you with the Lord’s approval before I die.’ 8Now, my son, obey me in what I am about to order you. 9Go to the flock and get me two choice young goats so that with these I might prepare a dish for your father in the way he likes. 10Then bring it to your father to eat, that he may bless you before he dies.” 11But Jacob said to his mother Rebekah, “But my brother Esau is a hairy man and I am smooth-skinned!#Gn 25:25. 12Suppose my father feels me? He will think I am making fun of him, and I will bring on myself a curse instead of a blessing.” 13His mother, however, replied: “Let any curse against you, my son, fall on me! Just obey me. Go and get me the young goats.”
14So Jacob went and got them and brought them to his mother, and she prepared a dish in the way his father liked. 15Rebekah then took the best clothes of her older son Esau that she had in the house, and gave them to her younger son Jacob to wear; 16and with the goatskins she covered up his hands and the hairless part of his neck. 17Then she gave her son Jacob the dish and the bread she had prepared.
18Going to his father, Jacob said, “Father!” “Yes?” replied Isaac. “Which of my sons are you?” 19Jacob answered his father: “I am Esau, your firstborn. I did as you told me. Please sit up and eat some of my game, so that you may bless me.” 20But Isaac said to his son, “How did you get it so quickly, my son?” He answered, “The Lord, your God, directed me.” 21Isaac then said to Jacob, “Come closer, my son, that I may feel you, to learn whether you really are my son Esau or not.” 22So Jacob moved up closer to his father. When Isaac felt him, he said, “Although the voice is Jacob’s, the hands are Esau’s.” 23(He failed to identify him because his hands were hairy, like those of his brother Esau; so he blessed him.) 24Again Isaac said, “Are you really my son Esau?” And Jacob said, “I am.” 25Then Isaac said, “Serve me, my son, and let me eat of the game so that I may bless you.” Jacob served it to him, and Isaac ate; he brought him wine, and he drank. 26Finally his father Isaac said to him, “Come closer, my son, and kiss me.” 27As Jacob went up to kiss him, Isaac smelled the fragrance of his clothes. With that, he blessed him, saying,
“Ah, the fragrance of my son
is like the fragrance of a field
that the Lord has blessed!#Gn 22:17–18; Heb 11:20.
28May God give to you
of the dew of the heavens
And of the fertility of the earth
abundance of grain and wine.
29#Gn 25:23; 49:8; Nm 24:9. May peoples serve you,
and nations bow down to you;
Be master of your brothers,
and may your mother’s sons bow down to you.
Cursed be those who curse you,
and blessed be those who bless you.”
30Jacob had scarcely left his father after Isaac had finished blessing him, when his brother Esau came back from his hunt. 31Then he too prepared a dish, and bringing it to his father, he said, “Let my father sit up and eat some of his son’s game, that you may then give me your blessing.” 32His father Isaac asked him, “Who are you?” He said, “I am your son, your firstborn son, Esau.” 33Isaac trembled greatly. “Who was it, then,” he asked, “that hunted game and brought it to me? I ate it all just before you came, and I blessed him. Now he is blessed!” 34As he heard his father’s words, Esau burst into loud, bitter sobbing and said, “Father, bless me too!” 35When Isaac said, “Your brother came here by a ruse and carried off your blessing,” 36Esau exclaimed, “He is well named Jacob, is he not! He has supplanted me#He has supplanted me: in Hebrew, wayyaqebeni, a wordplay on the name Jacob, ya‘aqob; see Jer 9:3 and Gn 25:26. There is also a play between the Hebrew words bekorah (“right of the firstborn”) and berakah (“blessing”). twice! First he took away my right as firstborn, and now he has taken away my blessing.” Then he said, “Have you not saved a blessing for me?”#Gn 25:26, 29–34; Hos 12:4. 37Isaac replied to Esau: “I have already appointed him your master, and I have assigned to him all his kindred as his servants; besides, I have sustained him with grain and wine. What then can I do for you, my son?” 38But Esau said to his father, “Have you only one blessing, father? Bless me too, father!” and Esau wept aloud.#Heb 12:17. 39His father Isaac said in response:
“See, far from the fertile earth
will be your dwelling;
far from the dew of the heavens above!#Heb 11:20.
40By your sword you will live,
and your brother you will serve;
But when you become restless,
you will throw off his yoke from your neck.”#2 Kgs 8:20, 22; 2 Chr 21:8.
41Esau bore a grudge against Jacob because of the blessing his father had given him. Esau said to himself, “Let the time of mourning for my father come, so that I may kill my brother Jacob.”#Wis 10:10; Ob 10. 42When Rebekah got news of what her older son Esau had in mind, she summoned her younger son Jacob and said to him: “Listen! Your brother Esau intends to get his revenge by killing you. 43So now, my son, obey me: flee at once to my brother Laban in Haran, 44and stay with him a while until your brother’s fury subsides— 45until your brother’s anger against you subsides and he forgets what you did to him. Then I will send for you and bring you back. Why should I lose both of you in a single day?”
Jacob Sent to Laban. 46Rebekah said to Isaac: “I am disgusted with life because of the Hittite women. If Jacob also should marry a Hittite woman, a native of the land, like these women, why should I live?”#Gn 26:34–35.

Genesis 27

27
1Isaac had become old. His eyes were so weak he couldn’t see anymore. One day he called for his older son Esau. He said to him, “My son.”
“Here I am,” he answered.
2Isaac said, “I’m an old man now. And I don’t know when I’ll die. 3Now then, get your weapons. Get your bow and arrows. Go out to the open country. Hunt some wild animals for me. 4Prepare for me the kind of tasty food I like. Bring it to me to eat. Then I’ll give you my blessing before I die.”
5Rebekah was listening when Isaac spoke to his son Esau. Esau left for the open country. He went to hunt for a wild animal and bring it back. 6Then Rebekah said to her son Jacob, “Look, I heard your father speaking to your brother Esau. 7He said, ‘Bring me a wild animal. Prepare some tasty food for me to eat. Then I’ll give you my blessing before I die. The Lord will be my witness.’ ” 8Rebekah continued, “My son, listen carefully. Do what I tell you. 9Go out to the flock. Bring me two of the finest young goats. I will prepare tasty food for your father. I’ll make it just the way he likes it. 10I want you to take it to your father to eat. Then he’ll give you his blessing before he dies.”
11Jacob said to his mother Rebekah, “My brother Esau’s body is covered with hair. But my skin is smooth. 12What if my father touches me? He would know I was trying to trick him. He would curse me instead of giving me a blessing.”
13His mother said to him, “My son, let the curse be on me. Just do what I say. Go and get the goats for me.”
14So he went and got the goats. He brought them to his mother. And she prepared some tasty food. She made it just the way his father liked it. 15The clothes of her older son Esau were in her house. She took Esau’s best clothes and put them on her younger son Jacob. 16She covered his hands with the skins of the goats. She also covered the smooth part of his neck with them. 17Then she handed to her son Jacob the tasty food and the bread she had made.
18He went to his father and said, “My father.”
“Yes, my son,” Isaac answered. “Who is it?”
19Jacob said to his father, “I’m your oldest son Esau. I’ve done as you told me. Please sit up. Eat some of my wild meat. Then give me your blessing.”
20Isaac asked his son, “How did you find it so quickly, my son?”
“The Lord your God gave me success,” he replied.
21Then Isaac said to Jacob, “Come near so I can touch you, my son. I want to know whether you really are my son Esau.”
22Jacob went close to his father. Isaac touched him and said, “The voice is the voice of Jacob. But the hands are the hands of Esau.” 23Isaac didn’t recognize Jacob. Jacob’s hands were covered with hair like those of his brother Esau. So Isaac blessed him. 24“Are you really my son Esau?” he asked.
“I am,” Jacob replied.
25Isaac said, “My son, bring me some of your wild meat to eat. Then I’ll give you my blessing.”
Jacob brought it to him. So Isaac ate. Jacob also brought some wine. And Isaac drank. 26Then Jacob’s father Isaac said to him, “Come here, my son. Kiss me.”
27So Jacob went to him and kissed him. When Isaac smelled the clothes, he gave Jacob his blessing. He said,
“It really is the smell of my son.
It’s like the smell of a field
that the Lord has blessed.
28May God give you dew from heaven.
May he give you the richness of the earth.
May he give you plenty of grain and fresh wine.
29May nations serve you.
May they bow down to you.
Rule over your brothers.
May the sons of your mother bow down to you.
May those who curse you be cursed.
And may those who bless you be blessed.”
30When Isaac finished blessing him, Jacob left his father. Just then his brother Esau came in from hunting. 31He too prepared some tasty food. He brought it to his father. Then Esau said to him, “My father, please sit up. Eat some of my wild meat. Then give me your blessing.”
32His father Isaac asked him, “Who are you?”
“I’m your son,” he answered. “I’m Esau, your oldest son.”
33Isaac began to shake all over. He said, “Then who hunted a wild animal and brought it to me? I ate it just before you came. I gave him my blessing. And he will certainly be blessed!”
34Esau heard his father’s words. Then he yelled loudly and bitterly. He said to his father, “Bless me! Bless me too, my father!”
35But Isaac said, “Your brother came and tricked me. He took your blessing.”
36Esau said, “Isn’t Jacob just the right name for him? This is the second time he has taken advantage of me. First, he took my rights as the oldest son. And now he’s taken my blessing!” Then Esau asked, “Haven’t you saved any blessing for me?”
37Isaac answered Esau, “I’ve made him ruler over you. I’ve made all his relatives serve him. And I’ve provided him with grain and fresh wine. So what can I possibly do for you, my son?”
38Esau said to his father, “Do you have only one blessing, my father? Bless me too, my father!” Then Esau wept loudly.
39His father Isaac answered him,
“You will live far away from the fruit of the earth.
You will live far away from the dew of heaven above.
40You will live by using the sword.
And you will serve your brother.
But you will grow restless.
Then you will throw off the heavy load
he has caused you to carry.”
41Esau was angry with Jacob. He was angry because of the blessing his father had given to Jacob. He said to himself, “The days of sorrow over my father’s death are near. Then I’ll kill my brother Jacob.”
42Rebekah was told what her older son Esau had said. So she sent for her younger son Jacob. She said to him, “Your brother Esau is planning to get back at you by killing you. 43Now then, my son, do what I say. Run away at once to my brother Laban in Harran. 44Stay with him until your brother’s anger calms down. 45When he forgets what you did to him, I’ll let you know. Then you can come back from there. Why should I lose both of you in one day?”
46Then Rebekah spoke to Isaac. She said, “I’m sick of living because of Esau’s Hittite wives. Suppose Jacob also marries a Hittite woman. If he does, my life won’t be worth living.”