A Devotional Journey
led by Dr. Gene Pearson
Thru the Bible in a Year
The importance of ancestors and descendants
is continuously highlighted in the Old Testament through so many genealogies. Chapter 25 begins with a discussion of Abraham’s posterity through sons other than Isaac, and than describes Abraham's death.
Isaac is not a ‘star’ in the story of salvation, even though he's the direct descendent of Abraham. His brief mentions include parallel incidents to Abraham’s encounters with Abimelech, and an agreement to end all future strife between his family and that king’s.
Jacob becomes a far more important figure in the story of salvation
, fighting his twin brother Esau for a first place in the family, and succeeding in his pursuit of prominence, to a great extent because Esau doesn't take his benefits seriously enough
, and because Isaac’s wife, Rebecca, is willing to deceive her husband on Jacob’s behalf.
Esau loses both his birthright and his blessing to Jacob and can truly understand the meaning of his brother’s name: Jacob means deceiver.
Have you ever traded something valuable for something worthless?
It happens whenever we become impatient with the future and imprudently use resources and opportunities for instant
as opposed to delayed
gratification. It also happens when we set aside our potential as rational-spiritual beings in order to indulge our physical desires. Overeating, certain types of addictive behavior and immoral activity emerge from a decision to focus on how we feel
and what we want right now
, and disregard who we are
and what we were intended to become.
In your family have you ever played favorites?
Do you ever try to deceive other people? Take some time today and think about it. Ask yourself if you're standing up for the right things (or ever standing up at all). Ask yourself if other people would mostly (few human evaluations are ever unanimous!) say you are sincere, above board and reliable.
We may not all share Jacob’s name, but we must all fight the temptation
to make things happen which only God has the right to control.
© A. Eugene Pearson 2011