There are many interesting snippets within this potted family history of Isaac and Ishmael. Isaac and Rebekah have to wait for 20 years before she conceives. The problems and the joys of life are exposed to us within this family for our spiritual growth and for our own wrestlings in life.
* Great God in Heaven, please teach us a little more of who You are today.
“Isaac loved Esau because he ate of his game, but Rebekah loved Jacob.”
We can see human failing writ large here. Both Isaac and Rebekah made their lives harder by picking favourites amongst their children. A recipe for turmoil in and of itself.
Favouritism is something that is baked into the world around us, even as the world trumpets its inclusivity.
But it can be within us to, God’s people operating in this world.
Our church can show favourites. Our studies of God’s word together can prioritise favourites. The various ways of serving at church can do the same.
And we as individuals can be, just like Isaac and Rebekah, guilty of showing favouritism that leads to comparison that leads to bitterness and envy and all manner of evil.
Our God though is of different stuff.
Years down the track from this reading God will bring His word written to Israel on the mountain after rescuing them out of Egypt.
In Deuteronomy (ch 10) we read these words from God,
“For the LORD your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great, the mighty, and the awesome God, who is not partial and takes no bribe.”
We cannot buy our way into God’s good graces, we cannot smooth over our sin, we cannot bribe or squeeze or strong-arm or argue God around.
But we can fall at the feet of our Saviour and beseech His mercy.
Because while God shows no partiality He also shows much mercy.
He sent Himself as a sacrifice for us! Because God’s justice must be met, He does not show favourites amongst humanity, met for our sin.
And so Jesus came and took that punishment on Himself. So that we could be free.
Hallelujah, what a Saviour we have, what a God!
* Dear God,
Your word to us is a light to our feet and a lamb for our way.
Please teach us today that we might step in Your light.