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Monday, January 8 2018

The Birth Of Israel: On The Run From Esau and Laban

"Thy name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel: for as a prince hast thou power with God and with men, and hast prevailed"

Jacob and his fraternal-twin brother Esau were fierce competitors right from the womb (see The Marriage of Isaac and Rebekah and The Birth of Jacob and Esau). The great trouble between them happened as a result of Jacob's lifelong habit of coming from behind and besting his brother Esau by any means.

Jacob and Esau

"25:21 And Isaac intreated the LORD for his wife, because she was barren: and the LORD was intreated of him, and Rebekah his wife conceived. 25:22 And the children struggled together within her; and she said, If it be so, why am I thus? And she went to enquire of the LORD.

25:23 And the LORD said unto her, Two nations are in thy womb, and two manner of people shall be separated from thy bowels; and the one people shall be stronger than the other people; and the elder shall serve the younger.

25:24 And when her days to be delivered were fulfilled, behold, there were twins in her womb. 25:25 And the first came out red, all over like an hairy garment; and they called his name Esau. 25:26 And after that came his brother out, and his hand took hold on Esau's heel; and his name was called Jacob: and Isaac was threescore years old when she bare them." (Genesis 25:21-26 KJV)

After having taken advantage of starving Esau (Esau was the family hunter and provider, while Jacob liked to stay at home in the tent with his Mama i.e. "Jacob was a plain man, dwelling in tents. And Isaac loved Esau, because he did eat of his venison: but Rebekah loved Jacob") for the birthright, the final straw came when Jacob, with Rebekah's help, deceitfully obtained the blessing (see Esau's Blessing Taken By Jacob).

"25:27 And the boys grew: and Esau was a cunning hunter, a man of the field; and Jacob was a plain man, dwelling in tents.

25:28 And Isaac loved Esau, because he did eat of his venison: but Rebekah loved Jacob.

25:29 And Jacob sod pottage: and Esau came from the field, and he was faint: 25:30 And Esau said to Jacob, Feed me, I pray thee, with that same red pottage; for I am faint: therefore was his name called Edom.

25:31 And Jacob said, Sell me this day thy birthright.

25:32 And Esau said, Behold, I am at the point to die: and what profit shall this birthright do to me?

25:33 And Jacob said, Swear to me this day; and he sware unto him: and he sold his birthright unto Jacob.

25:34 Then Jacob gave Esau bread and pottage of lentiles; and he did eat and drink, and rose up, and went his way: thus Esau despised his birthright." (Genesis 25:27-34 KJV)

When the plot was discovered, both Isaac and Esau were enraged. Elderly and blind Isaac was left with little to do about it.

Isaac and Esau

"27:30 And it came to pass, as soon as Isaac had made an end of blessing Jacob, and Jacob was yet scarce gone out from the presence of Isaac his father, that Esau his brother came in from his hunting. 27:31 And he also had made savoury meat, and brought it unto his father, and said unto his father, Let my father arise, and eat of his son's venison, that thy soul may bless me.

27:32 And Isaac his father said unto him, Who art thou?

And he said, I am thy son, thy firstborn Esau.

27:33 And Isaac trembled very exceedingly, and said, Who? where is he that hath taken venison, and brought it me, and I have eaten of all before thou camest, and have blessed him? yea, and he shall be blessed.

27:34 And when Esau heard the words of his father, he cried with a great and exceeding bitter cry, and said unto his father, Bless me, even me also, O my father.

27:35 And he said, Thy brother came with subtilty, and hath taken away thy blessing.

27:36 And he said, Is not he rightly named Jacob? for he hath supplanted me these two times: he took away my birthright; and, behold, now he hath taken away my blessing. And he said, Hast thou not reserved a blessing for me?

27:37 And Isaac answered and said unto Esau, Behold, I have made him thy lord, and all his brethren have I given to him for servants; and with corn and wine have I sustained him: and what shall I do now unto thee, my son?

27:38 And Esau said unto his father, Hast thou but one blessing, my father? bless me, even me also, O my father. And Esau lifted up his voice, and wept.

27:39 And Isaac his father answered and said unto him, Behold, thy dwelling shall be the fatness of the earth, and of the dew of heaven from above; 27:40 And by thy sword shalt thou live, and shalt serve thy brother; and it shall come to pass when thou shalt have the dominion, that thou shalt break his yoke from off thy neck." (Genesis 27:30-40 KJV)

Unlike his invalid father, the rage of young Esau the hunter was a lethal situation. In an attempt to save her favorite son's life, she had Jacob flee to her brother Laban in Syria.

"27:41 And Esau hated Jacob because of the blessing wherewith his father blessed him: and Esau said in his heart, The days of mourning for my father are at hand; then will I slay my brother Jacob.

27:42 And these words of Esau her elder son were told to Rebekah: and she sent and called Jacob her younger son, and said unto him, Behold, thy brother Esau, as touching thee, doth comfort himself, purposing to kill thee. 27:43 Now therefore, my son, obey my voice; and arise, flee thou to Laban my brother to Haran; 27:44 And tarry with him a few days, until thy brother's fury turn away; 27:45 Until thy brother's anger turn away from thee, and he forget that which thou hast done to him: then I will send, and fetch thee from thence: why should I be deprived also of you both in one day?" (Genesis 27:41-45 KJV)

Jacob remained with his uncle Laban in Syria for over 20 years - during which he greatly prospered in family and fortune. He arrived alone, but acquired four wives and many children there - who would become the Israelite tribal patriarchs, including Judah (see The Mothers Of The Patriarchs: Leah and The Mothers Of The Patriarchs: Rachel and The Mothers Of The Patriarchs: Bilhah and The Mothers Of The Patriarchs: Zilpah; also The Mothers Of The Patriarchs: Asenath).

Jacob also prospered financially - so much so that he went from a poor employee of Laban to owning almost everything that Laban had possessed (see also Speckled and Spotted - How Did He Do It?). Once again, Jacob's success came at the devastating expense of a close family member.

Camels

"31:14 And Rachel and Leah answered and said unto him, Is there yet any portion or inheritance for us in our father's house? 31:15 Are we not counted of him strangers? for he hath sold us, and hath quite devoured also our money. 31:16 For all the riches which God hath taken from our father, that is ours, and our children's: now then, whatsoever God hath said unto thee, do.

31:17 Then Jacob rose up, and set his sons and his wives upon camels; 31:18 And he carried away all his cattle, and all his goods which he had gotten, the cattle of his getting, which he had gotten in Padanaram, for to go to Isaac his father in the land of Canaan.

31:19 And Laban went to shear his sheep: and Rachel had stolen the images that were her father's. 31:20 And Jacob stole away unawares to Laban the Syrian, in that he told him not that he fled. 31:21 So he fled with all that he had; and he rose up, and passed over the river, and set his face toward the mount Gilead." (Genesis 31:14-21 KJV)

Laban pursued Jacob and caught up with him. The LORD however warned Laban not to harm Jacob (the LORD had not yet renamed Jacob as "Israel" - but the LORD was about to do so, with Jacob's conflicts with Esau and Laban among the glaring reasons that earned Jacob his new name) and so their parting was a "good riddance" rather than a slaughter.

"31:22 And it was told Laban on the third day that Jacob was fled. 31:23 And he took his brethren with him, and pursued after him seven days' journey; and they overtook him in the mount Gilead. 31:24 And God came to Laban the Syrian in a dream by night, and said unto him, Take heed that thou speak not to Jacob either good or bad.

31:25 Then Laban overtook Jacob. Now Jacob had pitched his tent in the mount: and Laban with his brethren pitched in the mount of Gilead." (Genesis 31:22-25 KJV)

31:51 And Laban said to Jacob, Behold this heap, and behold this pillar, which I have cast betwixt me and thee; 31:52 This heap be witness, and this pillar be witness, that I will not pass over this heap to thee, and that thou shalt not pass over this heap and this pillar unto me, for harm. 31:53 The God of Abraham, and the God of Nahor, the God of their father, judge betwixt us.

And Jacob sware by the fear of his father Isaac.

31:54 Then Jacob offered sacrifice upon the mount, and called his brethren to eat bread: and they did eat bread, and tarried all night in the mount.

31:55 And early in the morning Laban rose up, and kissed his sons and his daughters, and blessed them: and Laban departed, and returned unto his place." (Genesis 31:51-55 KJV)

With Laban's wrath appeased, Jacob then continue onward, home to the land of Canaan (there was no "land of Israel" yet - there had even been an "Israel" for less than a day). Jacob / Israel then discovered that Esau, the reason that Jacob had fled to Syria over twenty years before, was coming straight at him with a force of four hundred men. It was during that frantic night, while awaiting the dawn meeting with Esau, that the LORD renamed Jacob as "Israel."

"32:22 And he rose up that night, and took his two wives, and his two womenservants, and his eleven sons, and passed over the ford Jabbok.

32:23 And he took them, and sent them over the brook, and sent over that he had.

32:24 And Jacob was left alone; and there wrestled a man with him until the breaking of the day.

32:25 And when he saw that he prevailed not against him, he touched the hollow of his thigh; and the hollow of Jacob's thigh was out of joint, as he wrestled with him.

32:26 And he said, Let me go, for the day breaketh.

And he said, I will not let thee go, except thou bless me.

32:27 And he said unto him, What is thy name?

And he said, Jacob.

32:28 And he said, Thy name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel: for as a prince hast thou power with God and with men, and hast prevailed." (Genesis 32:22-28 KJV)

Fact Finder: What happened the next day when "Israel" met Esau?
See Jacob's Peace With Esau


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This Day In History, January 8

307: Jin Huidi, Emperor of China's Jin Dynasty, was assassinated by poisoning. He was succeeded by his son Jin Huaidi (see also The Origin Of Gog And Magog and End-Time Gog And Magog; also The First Chinese American War).

Ancient China

871: Alfred the Great led a West Saxon army against an invasion of Danelaw Vikings.

Ancient Britain

1297: In Monaco, Franceschino Grimaldi, disguised as a monk, sneaked into the Genoese-controlled fortress, let in his own soldiers, and established the Grimaldi dynasty.

1499: Louis XII of France, after a papal divorce, married Anne, Duchess of Brittany, to keep the duchy for the crown.

1598: Jews were expelled from Genoa, Italy (see also Jews - Three Tribes and Three Meanings).

1642: Galileo Galilei, Italian mathematician, astronomer, physicist and developer of the astronomical telescope, died at age 78 (see also No 'Flat Earth' In The Bible and Parabolic Prophecies).

Galileo Galilei

1656: The oldest surviving commercial newspaper began, in Haarlem, Netherlands.

1681: The treaty of Radzin ended 5 years of war between the Turks (i.e. the Ottoman Empire; listen to our Sermon The Ottoman Empire) against Russia and Poland.

1745: England, Austria, Saxony and the Netherlands formed an alliance against Russia.

1746: During the Second Jacobite Rising, Charles Edward Stuart (known as "Bonnie Prince Charlie" or "The Young Pretender") occupied Stirling.

1780: A magnitude 7.7 earthquake killed 80,000 people and caused major damage to the city of Tabriz, Iran.

1806: Cape Colony, South Africa became a British colony.

1815: The battle of New Orleans between U.S. and British forces. It was the last battle of the War of 1812 (1812-1814), although the war was officially over when the battle was fought - a peace treaty had actually been signed in Europe 2 weeks earlier, but the news had not reached the armies of either side until up to a month later in some more remote areas.

1877: Crazy Horse led Sioux warriors in their last battle against the U.S. Cavalry, at Wolf Mountain, Montana Territory. Although Sitting Bull is popularly regarded as the native leader at "Custer's Last Stand," Sitting Bull was not present at the battle, which was led by Crazy Horse who proved himself a superior battle commander than the flamboyant George Custer (see The First Chinese American War).

Sioux

1926: Abdul Aziz ibn Saud became the King of the Hejaz, which he announced would from then on be called Saudi Arabia (see Paul's Geography Lesson).

1941: Robert Baden-Powell died at age 84. The British army officer, hero of the South African (Boer) War of 1899-1902, was founder of the "Boy Scouts" - a movement that spread from its origin in Britain to countries all around the world.

Robert Baden-Powell

1959: Charles de Gaulle became the first president of France's Fifth Republic. He took office for a second term on this day in 1966.

1964: President Lyndon Johnson declared a "War on Poverty" in the U.S. (see also Guns Versus Butter).

Urban Decay

From a speech by U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower on April 16, 1953

Eisenhower

"Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children.

The cost of one modern heavy bomber is this: a modern brick school in more than 30 cities. It is two electric power plants, each serving a town of 60,000 population. It is two fine, fully equipped hospitals. It is some 50 miles of concrete highway.

We pay for a single fighter plane with a half million bushels of wheat.

We pay for a single destroyer with new homes that could have housed more than 8,000 people.

This, I repeat, is the best way of life to be found on the road the world has been taking. This is not a way of life at all, in any true sense. Under the cloud of threatening war, it is humanity hanging from a cross of iron."

1973: The Soviet Luna 21 was launched. The spacecraft landed on the Moon where it deployed the second Soviet lunar rover.

1973: The trial of seven men accused of illegal entry into Democratic Party headquarters at Watergate began. The Watergate burglary eventually caused the resignation of Richard Nixon (see also The Impeachment Of The President).

1998: A quote from a pro-cloning scientist: "You can't stop science. God made man in His own image. God intended for man to become one with God. ... Cloning and the reprogramming of DNA is the first serious step in becoming one with God."

2004: The RMS Queen Mary 2, the largest passenger ship ever built, was christened by her namesake's granddaughter, Queen Elizabeth II.





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