Saturday, January 14, 2012

On Faith -- That Rebekah...

I want to discuss Rebekah today. She's bothering me.

The section is Genesis 25:12 to 28:5. OK, to sum up. Rebekah is pregnant to twins and there seems to be a lot of commotion in the womb. 

She asks God, "What the heck is going on in there?"

God says, "Two nations are in there. One will be stronger than the other. The older will serve the younger."

Then they are born. Esau is born first and should get the inheritance/blessing. Esau grows to be a manly hunter and he is liked best by dad (Isaac). Jacob, born younger, likes to stay home cooking and he is liked best by Rebekah.

Now Esau is not too smart. He thinks with his stomach. One day he is hungry and trades his inheritance to Jacob for a bowl of his homemade soup.

Later, Rebekah hears that Isaac is going to bless Esau, so she quick has Jacob cook up a fine meal and then dresses Jacob like Esau (hairy gloves and Esau's stinky hunting gear). Then she sends Jacob into Isaac to pretend to be Esau. It works and Jacob steals Esau's blessing.

Esau is upset and angry. He's going to kill Jacob. Rebekah see this and again steps in and asks Isaac to send Jacob away to get a wife. Isaac does so, and thus blesses Jacob a second time. Off goes Jacob and he marries Leah and Rachel and becomes rich (with sheep and servants, etc).

Rebekah did everything she could to further Jacob over Esau.

I'm not liking Rebekah.

1. She plays favorites with her children.
2. She conniving and encourages her son to lie and steal.

But, God told her up front that Jacob would be stronger and would rule over Esau. That's my dilemma. If God told her that, does that make her behavior OK?

I don't think so.

I think God would have found a different way for Jacob to lead without Rebekah's assistance.

What do you think?


  1. Yeah. I have to agree with you on that one.

  2. That is tough. When God tells you how things are going to work out, I suppose you would automatically work towards what He wants..?

  3. Shelly, Thanks for commenting.

    Patti, I know. That's why this one is so tough for me. I just can't believe that God would want us to be deceitful and conniving, even for his ends.

  4. I agree with you. She showed a lack of faith when she made those decisions.

  5. I have to agree, that does sound wrong for a mother to pick one of her children over the other. I'm not really sure what God was trying to tell us through Rebekah. Very tough question!

  6. Rebekah is a Bible Blogger that I look forward to writing! I've done a lot of thinking about her story -before your thought provoking post as I contemplated writing her blog and today during my run.

    It's easy to see why Jacob needed so much convincing from God that God is ultimately in control considering his example in faith - his mother. If I put myself in her shoes, I'd say Rebekah heard God's word and decided it was her duty to see it through. Perhaps she felt God called her to make sure Jacob got his father's inheritance. I know how it feels to want something so bad I'd do anything to make it happen, although, I'm not sure what God's will for me is. I sometimes feel that I should take action. Where do you draw the line between pursuing your goals and giving up control to God? When do you know it's time to let God take the wheel? For me, it's an issue I struggle with and perhaps so did Rebekah. Her life up until she schemed for Jacob was one of faith and trust in God so I don't want to judge her too harshly.

    However, she obviously favored one son over the other and as a mother I can't relate to her on this one. I only have one child, but I know I'd love another one just as much.

    Her punishment was severe. She never saw her favored son again. As a mother, I can imagine that was an overwhelming loss for Rebekah and perhaps she learned that God's plans don't need our interference despite how much we may think otherwise.

  7. This is a really good thoughtful post Dawn.


I appreciate your comments! I try to respond to each one.