Sunday, March 8, 2009


3. Jacob and His Twelve Sons (Genesis 27 to 36)

We consider the life of Jacob under four points:

(1) Flight to Haron

Compelled to flee from the wrath of Esau, from whom he had by trickery taken the patriarchal blessing, Jacob went to his mother’s kinspeople in Padan-aram. Here he served Laban fourteen years in order to secure as his wives Laban’s daughters, Leah and Rachel. Continuing six years longer, he increased exceedingly and had much wealth.

(2) Return to Canaan

Because of differences with his father-in-law, Jacob was constrained to flee from Haran with his wives and his possessions. Overtaken by Laban, reconciliation was effected and Jacob made his way back to Sheechem, where Abraham had first built his altar in the Land of Promise. To Jacob were born twelve sons, who became the heads of the Twelve Tribes of Israel.

(3) Lost Rachel and Joseph

After the return to Canaan a shadow fell over the patriarch’s home in the death of his beloved wife, Rachel. While his heart was yet tender with this bereavement, Joseph, his favorite son, was taken from him through the treachery of his sons and sold into Egypt.

(4) Last days in Egypt

Driven by famine and invited by Joseph, Jacob went down into Egypt with his household. Here, under the care and protection of Joseph, the patriarch spent the last seventeen years of his life.

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