Esau and Jacob

Esau and Jacob. we find that 20 years has gone by since their marriage. Like his mother, Sarah, Isaac's wife Rebekah is barren. Isaac plead to God on behalf of Rebekah and God answered his prayers by sending them twins.

20 Isaac was forty years old when he took Rebekah as wife, the daughter of Bethuel the Syrian of Padan Aram, the sister of Laban the Syrian. 21 Now Isaac pleaded with the Lord for his wife, because she was barren; and the Lord granted his plea, and Rebekah his wife conceived. 22 But the children struggled together within her; and she said, “If all is well, why am I like this?” So she went to inquire of the Lord.

23 And the Lord said to her:

“Two nations are in your womb,

Two peoples shall be separated from your body;

One people shall be stronger than the other,

And the older shall serve the younger.”

24 So when her days were fulfilled for her to give birth, indeed there were twins in her womb. 25 And the first came out red. He was like a hairy garment all over; so they called his name Esau. 26 Afterward his brother came out, and his hand took hold of Esau’s heel; so his name was called Jacob. Isaac was sixty years old when she bore them.

27 So the boys grew. And Esau was a skillful hunter, a man of the field; but Jacob was a mild man, dwelling in tents. 28 And Isaac loved Esau because he ate of his game, but Rebekah loved Jacob.

Genesis 25:20-28, NKJV

Esau and Jacob

As we continue with our series of devotions on the Bible Couple, Isaac and Rebekah, we find that 20 years has gone by since their marriage. Like his mother, Sarah, Isaac's wife Rebekah is barren. Isaac plead to God on behalf of Rebekah and God answered his prayers by sending them twins. We are told that the children struggled together within her womb. In her concern, Rebekah went to inquire of the Lord. The Lord responded that two nations were in her womb, and the older would serve the younger. 

Indeed, when the twins were born Esau and Jacob were opposites in their personalities. Esau became a skillful hunter and a man of the field, but Isaac was a mind man, dwelling in tents. We are told that Isaac preferred his son, Esau, but Rebekah's favorite was Jacob.

As often happens in such situations, it is easy, though perhaps not too wise, to develop favorites. Doing so can often lead to contentions between the parents. However, regardless of the plans or feelings of the parents, God has specific plans for the two boys. Providentially, not only would the older, Esau, serve the younger, Jacob, but God would choose Jacob to be the head of a nation later to become known by Jacob's other name: Israel. Esau would become the head of a nation as well, but it was a nation that would serve other gods.

The most important lesson for us to learn from the story of Esau and Jacob is that we cannot supplant the will of God. Even before the Esau and Jacob were born, God had chosen to continue with the line of Jacob in His plan of having a nation which would love and serve Him. Both parents became involved in the struggle between their sons, but God's will was done.

Rebekah's involvement in the struggle between the boys cost her dearly. When Isaac called Esau in to give him his final blessing, Rebekah overheard their conversation. Working with Jacob to deceive Esau and therefore steal his father's blessing, Jacob had to flee for his life. Though he returned years later, it was not until after the death of Rebekah. So, though Jacob and Rebekah succeeded in their plans, they never saw one another again.

What do you think? If God had already determined before the twins were born that He would continue His nation through Jacob, was it really necessary for Rebekah and Jacob to use deceit to accomplish this very thing?

That is a very interesting question? Does God need our deceitfulness to accomplish His holy will? No! God uses men and women to accomplish His holy purposes, but He is not part of their sinful deeds. His will is always accomplished, but He is not responsible for their sin in the process.

In other words, God's holy will was accomplished, but that did not excuse the deceit practiced by Rebekah and Jacob. And, of course, they both paid dearly by their separation that resulted from their actions.

We will be leaving Isaac and Rebekah now and will continue our next devotional with the Bible Couple, Jacob and Rachel--or should I say, Jacob and Leah. HMM, now that is an interesting question is it not?

As we leave Isaac and Rebekah, let us be reminded that, by God's grace, we need to seek to be obedient to His holy will. Let us not be tempted to use our sinful natures as a means of being obedient to God. We serve a wondrous and holy God; by His grace let us find joy and peace in our service to Him.

Bible Couples Devotions

Abraham and Sarah 

One devotional on Abraham and Sarah is just not nearly enough. Even with the six devotionals shown, we hardly seem to scratch the surface as we see how God worked with this extraordinary couple. Though most of us reading these devotionals are not of Jewish descent, we must remember that, as believers, we are part of the spiritual descendants of Abraham, fulfilling God's promise to Abraham that his descendants would number as the sands in the seas or the stars in the skies.

     Barren Woman

     Gods Plan for Me 


     Laughing at God

     Trouble in Paradise 

     Death of Sarah

Adam and Eve

How can Adam and Eve not hold a place dear to our hearts? Through their sin, sin and devastation entered into the human race. However, who of us can criticize, for if it had been us, we would have done the same thing. Praise God that, as His children, we have a Redeemer who became the second Adam, and through whom our guilt has been cast away forever.

Esther and the King

I have actually written an entire series of devotions from the Book of Esther, so I am not going to write an additional devotional here. I would encourage you to look through the Book of Esther devotionals. I really enjoyed writing that series and hope you will take the time to look through them.


Priscilla-Bible. The New Testament gives us some very interesting commentary on the Bible couple, Priscilla and Aquila. Who is this couple and what is their role as a couple in furthering the New Testament church?

Ruth and Boaz

No series of devotionals on Bible Couples would be complete without some devotions on Ruth and Boaz. I have already done a series on the Book of Ruth, so I would encourage you to go there. It was a study I especially enjoyed doing and I hope you will read it and be encouraged as well.

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Esau and Jacob

Response of Isaac

Rebekah and Isaac

Who is Rebekah?

Bible Couples 

Abraham and Sarah

Adam and Eve

Teen Devotions

Devotions for Women

Great Women of the Bible