Best of Daily Reflections: Multiple Deceptions

Daily Reflection / Produced by The High Calling
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Jacob replied, "It's Esau, your firstborn son. I've done as you told me. Here is the wild game. Now sit up and eat it so you can give me your blessing."

Genesis 27:19

What a painful story! We cringe when reading of the multiple deceptions within the family of Isaac and Rebekah. First, Rebekah plotted to trick her own husband to the detriment of one of her sons, Esau, and to the benefit of her favorite son, Jacob. He became a coconspirator with his mother against his father and brother. Then Jacob lied repeatedly to his father, taking advantage of Isaac's poor vision in old age. Jacob even claimed that God had helped him (v. 20). When he kissed his father, whose sense of smell picked up Esau's clothing that Jacob was wearing in order to fool Isaac, finally the old man gave Jacob the blessing which he had intended to give to Esau.

It comes as no surprise that, as a result of being deceived by his brother, Esau hated Jacob and planned to kill him. We can only wonder what happened between Isaac and Rebekah from that time onward. Though Jacob received the blessing he had sought, it came at a painfully high cost. The family of Isaac and Rebekah was even further shattered by Rebekah's and Jacob's conniving.

Though the situations are different, things like this continue to happen in families today. In my pastoral experience, most families have secrets, sometimes devastating ones, that contribute to personal and relational brokenness. But God can mend that which, from a human point of view, is damaged beyond repair.

QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION: Have you ever been involved in some sort of deception in your family? Were you the victim? The perpetrator? Both? How might God want to bring healing to your family?

PRAYER: Dear Lord, I must confess that, for meany reasons, I want to avoid this chapter in Genesis. The multiple deceptions in the family of Isaac and Rebekah are almost too painful to read. It's as if I'm watching a train wreck in slow motion.

Yet this story makes me uncomfortable, not only because I feel empathy for the people involved, but also because it forces me to look at my own family and my own behavior more honestly. These are things I'd rather avoid. But the straightforwardness of your Word won't allow me to deny or pretend.

Bring healing to families, dear Lord, including my own. Help me to be an agent of truthfulness, wholeness, and forgiveness in my family. Let your Spirit reign among us and in each heart. Amen.