« AnteriorContinuar »
Esau marries two Hittite women, GENESIS. which are a grief to his parents. A. M. cir. 2200. Hittite, and Bashemath the daugh- 35 Which a
were grief of A. M. cir. 2200. B. C. cir. 1804.
B. C. cir. 1804. ter of Elon the Hittite :
mind unto Isaac and to Rebekab.
a Chap. xxvii. 46; xxviii. 1, 8.
• Heb. bitterness of spirit.
is very likely that the wives taken by Esau were daugh- tice or providence of God requires. There are, howters of chiefs among the Hittites, and by this union he ever, many who owe their poverty 10 their want of sought to increase and strengthen his secular power diligence and economy ; they sink down into indolence, and influence.
and forget that word, Whatsoever thy hand findeth to Verse 35. Which were a grief of mind) Not the do, do it with thy might; nor do they consider that marriage, though that was improper, but the persons ; by, idleness a man is clothed with rags. Be diligent they, by their perverse and evil ways, brought bitter- in business and fervent in spirit, and God will withhold ness into the hearts of Isaac and Rebekah. The Tar- from thee no manner of thing that is good. gum of Jonathan ben Uzziel, and that of Jerusalem, 2. From many examples we find that the wealth of say they were addicted to idol worship, and rebelled the primitive inhabitants of the world did not consist against and would not bearken to the instructions in gold, silver, or precious stones, but principally, in either of Isaac or Rebekah. From Canaanites a dif- flocks of useful cattle, and the produce of the field. ferent conduct could not be reasonably expected. Esau With precious metals and precious stones they were was far from being spiritual, and his wives were wholly not unacquainted, and the former were sometimes used carnal.
'in purchases, as we have already seen in the case of
Abraham buying a field from the children of Heth. Tue same reflections which were suggested by But the blessings which God promises are such as Abraham's conduct in denying his wife. in Egypt and spring from the soil. Isaac- sowed in the land, and had Gerar, will apply to that of Isaac; but the case of possessions of flocks and herds, and great store of ser, Isaac was much less excusable than that of Abraham. vants, ver. 12-14. Commerce, by which nations and The latter told no falsity; he only through feat sup- individuals so suddenly rise and as suddenly fall, had pressed a part of the truth.
not been then invented; every man was obliged to ac1. A good man has a right to.expect God's blessing quire property by honest and persevering labour, or be on his honest industry. Isaac sowed; and received a destitute. Lucky hits, fortunate speculations, and adhundred-fold, and he had possession of flocks, &c., for venturous risks, could then have no place; the field the Lord blessed him. Worldly men, if they :pray at must be tilled, the herds watched and fed, and the all, ask for temporal things : “What 'shall we eat? proper seasons for ploughing, sowing, reaping, and laywhat shall we drink? and wherewithal shall we be ing up, be carefully regarded and improved. - No man, clothed ?" Most of the truly religious people go into therefore, could grow rich by accident. Isaac wared another extreme ; they forget the body, and ask only great, and went forward, and grew until he became for the soul ? and yet there are " things requisite and very great, ver. 13. Speculation was of no use, for necessary as well for the body as the soul," and things it could have no object, and consequently many inwhich are only at God's disposal. The body lives for citements to knavery and to idleness, that bane of the the squl's sake ; its life and comfort are in many re- physical and moral health of the body and soul of mám, spects essentially requisite to the salvation of the soul; could not show themselves. Happy times! when every and therefore the things necessary for its support should man wrought with his hands, and God particularly be earnestly asked from the God of all grace, the Fa- blessed his honest industry. As he had no luxuries, ther of bounty and providence. Ye have not because he had no unnatural and factilious wants, few diseases, ye ask not, may be said to many poor, afficted religious and a long life. people ; and they are afraid to ask lest it should ap
O fortunatos nimium, sua si bona norint, pear mercenary, or that they sought their portion in this life. They should be better taught. Surely to o thrice happy husbandmen! did they but know their
Agricolas ! none of these will God give a stone if they ask bread : he who is so liberal of his heavenly blessings will not
own mercies. withhold earthly ones, which are of infinitely less con- "But has not what is termed commerce produced the sequence. Reader, expect God's blessing on thy honest reverse of all this? A few are speculators, and the industry ; pray for it, and believe that God does not many are comparatively slaves; and slaves, not to love thee less, who hast taken refuge in the same hope, enrich themselves, (this is impossible,) but to enrich than he loved Isaac. Plead not only his promises, but the speculators and adventurers by whom they are plead on the precedents he has set before thee: “ Lord, employed. Even the farmers become, at least parthou didst so and so to Abraham, to Isaac, to Jacob, tially, commercial men; and the soil, the fruitful parent and to others who trusted in thee; bless:my field, bless of natural wealth, is comparatively disregarded : the my flocks, prosper my labour, that I may be able to consequence, is, that the misery of the many, and the provide things honest in the sight of all men, and have luxury of the few, increase; and from both these something to dispense to those who are in want.” And spring, on the one hand, pride, insolence, contempt of will not God hear such prayers ?. Yea, and answer the poor, contempt of God's holy word and commandthem too, for he does not willingly afflict the children ments, with 'the long catalogue of crimes which proof men. And we may rest assured that there is more. ceed from pampered appetites and unsubdued pasaffliction and poverty in the world than either the jus- sions : and on the other, murmuring, repining, disconIsaac desires his son Esau
to prepare him savoury meat.
tent, and often insubordination and revolt, the most of providing for the support of life. When shall fell and most destructive of all the evils that can de- men learn that even this is but a subordinate pursuit; grade and curse civil society. Hence wars, fightings, and that the cultivation of the soul in the knowand revolutions of states, and public calamities of all ledge, love, and' obedience of God, is essentially kiods. Bad as the world and the times are, men have necessary, not only to future glory, but to present Bade them much worse by their unnatural methods happiness ?
Isaac, grown old and feeble, and apprehending the approach of death, desires his son Esau to provide some
savoury meal for him, that having eaten of it he might convey to him the blessing connected with the right of primogeniture, 1-4. Rebekah hearing of it, relates the matter to Jacob, and directs him how to personate his brother, and by deceiving his father, obtain the blessing, 5–10. Jacob hesitates, 11, 12; but being counselled and encouraged by his mother, he at last consents to use the means she prescribes, 13, 14. Rebekah disguises Jacob, and sends him to personate his brother, 15–17. Jacob comes to his father, and professes himself to be Esau, 18, 19. Isaac doubts, questions, and examines him closely, but does not discover the deception, 20–24. He eats of the savoury meat, and confers the blessing upon Jacob, 25–27. In what the blessing consisted, 28, 29. Esau arrives from the field with the meat he had gone to provide, and presents himself before his father, 30, 31. Isaac discovers the fraud of Jacob, and is much affected, 32, 33. Esau is greatly distressed on hearing that the blessing had been received by another, 34. Isaac accuses Jacob of deceit, 35. Esau erpostulates, and prays for a blessing, 36. . " Isaac describes the blessing which he has already conveyed, 37. Esqu weeps, and earnestly implores a blessing, 38. nounces a blessing on Esau, and prophecies ihat his posterity should, in process of time, cease to be tributary to the posterity of Jacob, 39, 40. Esau purposes to kill his brother, 41." Rebekah hears of.it; and counsels Jacob to lake refuge with her brother Laban in Padan-aram, 42–45. She professes to be greatly
alarmed, lest Jacob should take any of the Canaanites to wife, 46. AX. cir. 9925. AND it came to pass, that know not the day
of A M. cir. 2225,
my B. C. cir. 1779.
B. C. cir. 1779. Kanicatt.
when Isaac, was old, and death:
- his eyes were dim, so that he 3. Now therefore take, I pray thee, thy could not see, he called Esau his eldest son, weapons, thy quiver and thy bow, and go out and said unto him, My son: and he said unto to the field, and take me some' venison; him, Behold, here am I.
4 And make me savoury meat, such as I 2 And he said, Behold now, I am old, I love, and bring it to me, that I may eat; that
Chap. xlviii. 10; 1 Sam. iii. 2.- Prov. xxvii. 1 ; James iv. 14.- Chap. xxv, 27, 28.__ Heb, hunt.
NOTES ON CHAP. XXVII.
pend. Had not the Septuagint translated the word ..Verse 1. Isaac was old] It is conjectured, on good paperpav, and the Vulgate pharetram, a quiver, I should grounds, that Isaac was now about one hundred and rather have supposed some kind of shield was meant; seventeen years of age, and Jacob about fifty-seven; but either can be suspended on the arm or from the though the commonly received opinion makes Isaac one shoulder. Some think a sword is meant; and because hundred and thirty-seven, and Jacob seventy-seven;
the original signifies to hang or suspend, hence they but see the notes on chap. xxxi. 38, &c.
think is derived our word hanger, so called because it And his eyes were dim] - This was probably the is generally worn in a pendent posture ; but the word effect of that affliction, of what kind we know not, hanger did not exist in our language, previously to the under which Isaac now laboured ; and from which, as Crusades, and we have evidently derived it from the well as from the affliction, he probably recovered, as Persian siis khanjar, a poniard or dagger, the it is certain he lived forty if not forty-three years after use of which, not only in battles, but in private assasthis time, for he lived till the return of Jacob from sinations, was well known. Padan-aram ; chap. xxxv. 27–29.
Verse 4. Savoury meat) - D'nyos matammim, from Verse 2. I know not the day of my death] From nyo toam, to taste or relish; how dressed we know his present weakness he had reason to suppose that not, but its name de clares its nature. his death could not be at any great distance, and there- That I may eat] The blessing which Isaac was to fore would leave no act undone which he believed it confer on his son was a species of Divine right, and his daty to perform. He who lives not in reference must be communicated with appropriate ceremonies. to eternity, lives not at all.
As eating and drinking were used among the Asiatics Verse 3. Thy weapons] The original word •57 keley on almost all religious occasions, and especially in signifies vessels and instruments of any kind ; and is pro- making and confirming covenants, it is reasonable to bably used here for a hunting spear, javelin, sword, Sc. suppose that something of this kind was essentially Quiver] teli, from ihn ralak, to hang or sus- | necessary on this occasion, and that Isaae could not
B. C. cir. 1779.
B. C. cir. 1779.
Jacob counselled by Rebekah
to supplant his brother, A. M. cir. 2225. my soul e may bless thee before 12. My father peradventure will A. M. cír. 2225. I die.
k feel me, and I shall seem to 5 And Rebekah heard when Isaac spake to him as a deceiver; and I shall bring 'a curse Esau his son.
And Esau went to the upon me, and not a blessing. to hunt for venison, and to bring it. :
13. And his mother said unto him, Upon 6 And Rebekah spake unto Jacob her son, me be thy curse, my son: only obey my saying, Behold, I heard thy father speak. unto voice, and go-fetch me them. Esau thy brother, saying,
14 And he went, and fetched, and brought 7 Bring me venison, and make me savoury them to his mother: and his mother made meat, that I may eat, and bless thee before the savoury meat, such as his father loved. Lord, before my death.
15 And Rebekah took goodly raiment of 8 Now therefore, my son, obey my voice her eldest son Esau,P which were with her in according to that which I command thee. the house, and put them upon Jacob her
9 Go now to the flock, and fetch me from younger son:
of his neck :
of her son Jacob. 11 And Jacob sàid to Rebekah his mother, '18 And he came unto his father, and id, Behold, · Esau my brother is a hairy man, and My father and he said, Here am I; who art 1 am a smooth man.
thou, my son ?
• Ver. 27; chapter xlviii. 9, 15 ; xlix. 28; Deut.. xxxiii. 1. Ver. 13.- Verse 4.- h Verse 4. Chapter xxv. 25. * Ver. 22,
1 Chap. ix. 25; Deut. xxvii. 18.- m Chap. xliii. 9; I Sam. xxv. 24 ; 2 Sam. xiv. 9; Matt. xxvi. 25.-- Verse 4, 9. o Heb. desirable.- _p Ver. 27.
convey the right till he had eaten of the meat pro- of the kind to plead, and therefore had recourse to the
Verse 13. Upor me be thy curse, my son) Onkelos This seems to be the sole reason why savoury meat gives this a curious-turn : It has been revealed to me is so particularly mentioned in the text. When we by prophecy that the curses will not come upon thee, my consider, 1. That no covenant was deemed binding son. What a dreadful responsibility did this woman unless the parties had eaten together; 2. That to con- take upon her at this time! : The-sacred writer states vey this blessing some rite of this kind was necessary; the facts as they were, and we may depend on the and, 3. That Isaac's strength was now greatly ex- truth of the statement; but he nowhere says that God hausted, insomuch that he supposed himself to be would have any man to copy this conduct. He often dying ; we shall at once see why meat was required relates facts and sayings which he never recommends.. on this occasion, and why that meat was to be pre- Verse 15. Goodly raiment] Mr. Ainsworth has a pared so as to deserve the epithet of savoury. As I sensible note on this place. “ The priest in the law believe this to be the true sense of the place, I do not had holy garments to minister in, Exod. xxviii. 2-4, trouble my readers with interpretations which I sup- which the Septuagint there and in this place term tru pose to be either exceptionable or false.
otoanv, THE robe, and otom kylav, the holy-robe. Verse 5. And Rebekah heard] And was deter- Whether the first-born, before, the law, had such to mined, if possible, to frustrate the design of Isaac, and minister in is not certain, but it is probable by this exprocure, the blessing for her favourite son, Some ample ; for had they been common garments, why did pretend that she received a. Divine inspiration to the not Esau himself, or his wives, keep them? But being, purpose ; but if she had she needed not to have re- in all likelihood, holy robes, received from their ancescourse to deceit, to help forward the accomplishment. tors, the mother of the family kept them in sweet Isaac, on being informed, would have had too much chests from moths and the like, whereupon it is said, piety not to prefer the will of his Maker to his own ver. 27, Isaac smelled the smell of his garments." pastiality for his eldest son; but Rebekah had nothing The opinion of Ainsworth is followed by many critics,
B. C. cir. 1779.
B. C. cir. 1779.
Jacob provides savoury meat,
and imposes on his father. 4. M. cir. 2225. 19 And Jacob said unto his hands were hairy, as his brother A. M. cir. 2225
father, I am Esau thy first-born; Esau's hands : so he blessed him. I have done according as thou badest me: 24 And he said, Art thou my very son Esau? arise, I pray thee, sit and eat of my venison, And he said, I am. e that thy soul may bless me..
25 And he said, Bring it near to me, and I 20 And Isaac said unto his son, How is it will eat of my son's venison, w that my soul that thou hast found it so quickly, my son ? may bless thee. And he brought it near to And he said, Because the LORD thy God him, and he did eat : and he brought him brought it 'to me.
wine, and he drank. 21 And Isaac said unto Jacob, Come near, 26 And his father Isaac said unto 'him, I pray thee, that I may feel thee, my son, Come near now, and kiss me, my son. whether thou be my very son Esau or not. : 27 And he came near, and kissed him: and
22 And Jacob went near. unto Isaac his he smelled the smell of his raiment, and blessfather; and he feli him, and said, The voice ed him, and said, See, "the smell of my son is Jacob's voice, but the hands are the hands is as the smell of a field which the LORD hath of Esau.
blessed: 23 And he discerned him not, because this 28 Therefore w God give thee of the dew
9 Verse 4.
Heb. before me. Verse 12.-Verse 16. Hosea xiv. 6.
u Verse 4.
Verse 19. I am Esau thy first-born] Here are naturally suppose were laid up with the clothes; a cusmany palpable falsehoods, and such as should neither tont which prevails in many countries to the present be imitated nor excused.." Jacob," says Calmet, “im- day. Thyme, lavender, &c.; are often deposited in
poses on his father in three different ways. . 1. By his wardrobes, to communicate an 'agreeable scent, and '- xords: I am thy first-born Esau. 2. By his actions ; under the supposition that the moths are thereby pre
he gives him kids' “flesh for venison, and says he had vented from fretting the garments. I have often seen
appropriate, as to leave no wish for any thing farther
on the subject.. The cause of God and truth is under no obligation to “ It is here foretold, and in ver. 39, of these two such defenders; their hands are more unhallowed than brethren, that as to situation, and other temporal adthose of Uzzah ; and however the bearers may stum- vantages, they should be much alike. It was said to ble, the ark of God requires not their support. It was Jacob : God give thee of the dew of heaven, and the the design of God that the elder, should - serve the fatness of the earth, and plenty of corn and wine ; younger, and he would have brought it about in the and much the same is said to Esau, ver. 39: Behold; way of his own wise and just providence ; but means thy dwelling shall be the fainess of the earth, and of sueh as here used he could neither sanction nor recom- the dew of heaven from above. The spiritual blessing, mend.
or the promise of the blessed seed, could be given only Verse 23. And he discerned him not, because his to ONE ;- but temporal good things might be imparted hands were hairy) From this circumstance we may to both. - Mount Seir, and the adjacent country, was learn that Isaac's sense of feeling was much impaired at first in the possession of the Edomites ; they after-, by his present malady. When he could not discerowards extended themselves farther into Arabia, and - the skin of a kid from the flesh of his son, we see that into the southern parts of Judea. But wherever they
he was, through his infirmity, in a fit state to be im- were situated, we find in fact that the Edomites, in posed on by the deceit of his wife, and the cunning temporal advantages, were little inferior to the Israel, of his younger son..
ites. Esau had cattle and beasts and substance in Verse 27. The smell of my son is as the smell of abundance, and he went to dwell in Seir of his own a field] The smell of these garments, the goodly rai- accord; but he would hardly have removed thither ment which had been laid up in the house, was proba- with so many cattle, had it been such a barren and de, bly occasioned by some aromatic herbs, which we may Isolate country as some would represent it. The Edom,
A. M. cir. 2225. of heaven, and y the fatness of Isaac his father, tnat Esau his A. M. cir. 2225. B. C. cir. 1779.
B. C. eu. 1779. the earth, and ? plenty of corn brother came in from his hunting. and wine :
31 And he also had made savoury meat, and 29 - Let people serve thee, and nations bow brought it unto his father, and said unto his down to thee; be lord over thy brethren, and father, Let my father arise, and deat of his Þ let thy mother's sons bow down to thee : son's venison, that thy soul may bless me. e cursed be every one that curseth thee, and 32 And Isaac his father said unto him, Who blessed be he that blesseth thee.
art thou ? And he said, I am thy son, thy 30 And it came to pass as soon as Isaac had first-born, Esau. made an end of blessing Jacob, and Jacob 33 And Isaac e trembled very exceedingly, was yet scarce gone out from the presence of and said, Who? where is he that hath f taken y Chap. xlv. 18. -z Deut. xxxi. 28. Chap. ix. 25; xxv. – Chap. xi. 3– Ver. 4.- Le Heb. trembled with a great 23. Chap. xlix. 8.
ites had dukes and kings reigning over them, while their temporal advantages were to each other,” says the Israelites were slaves in Egypt. When the Israel. Bp. Newton, “in all spiritual gifts and graces the. ites, on their return, desired leave to pass through the younger brother was to have the superiority, was to be territories of Edom, it appears that the country abound the happy instrument of conveying the blessing to all ed with FRUITFUL Fields and vineyards : Let us pass, nations : In thee and in thy seed shall all the families I pray thee, through thy country; we will not pass of the earth be blessed ; and to this are to be referred, through the fields, or through the vineyards, neither in their full force, those expressions : Let people serve will we drink of the water of the wells ; Num. xx. 17. thee, and nations bow down to thee. Cursed be every And the prophecy of Malachi, which is generally, al- one that curseth thee, and blessed be he that blesseth leged as a proof of the barrenness of the country, is thee. The same promise was made to Abraham in rather a proof of the contrary : I hated Esau, and the name of God: I will bless them that bless thee, laid his mountains and his heritage waste for the dra- and curse him that curseth thee, chap. xij. 3; and it. gons of the wilderness, Mal. i. 3 ; for this implies that is here repeated to Jacob, and thus paraphrased in the the country was fruitful before, and that its present un- Jerusalem Targum : He who curseth thee shall be fruitfulness was rather an effect of war, than any natu- cursed as Balaam the son of Beor; and he who blessral defect in the soil. If the country is unfruitful now, eth thee shall be blessed as Moses the prophet, the neither is Judea what it was formerly.” As there was lawgiver of Israel.' It appears that Jacob was, o but little rain in Judea, except what was termed the the whole, a man of more religion, and believed the early rain, which fell about the beginning of 'spring, Divine promises more, than Esau. The posterity of and the latter rain, which fell about September, the Jacob likewise preserved the true religion, and the worlack of this was supplied by the copious dews which ship of one God, while the Edomites were sunk in fell both morning and evening, or rather through the idolatry; and of the seed of Jacob was born at last whole of the night. And we may judge, says Calmet, the Saviour of the world. This was the peculiar privi. of the abundance of these dews by what fell on Gideon's lege and advantage of Jacob, to be the happy instru
fleece, Judges vi. 38, which being wrung filled a bowl. ment of conveying these blessings to all nations. This' And Hushai compares an army ready to fall upon its was his greatest superiority over Esau ; and in this “enemies to a dew falling on the ground, 2 Sam. xvii. sense St. Paul understood and applied the prophecy : 12, which gives us the idea that this fluid fell in great The elder shall serve the younger, Rorn. ix. 12. The profusion, so as to saturate every thing. Travellers Christ, the Saviour of the world, was to be born of in these countries assure as, that the dews fall there in some one family ; and Jacob's was preferred to Esau's, an extraordinary abundance.
out of the good pleasure of Almighty God, who is cer. · The fatness of the earth] What Homer calls ovbap tainly the best judge of fitness and expedience, and apovpns, Ilias ix., 141, and Virgil uber glebæ, Æneis has undoubted right to dispense his favours as he shall i., 531, both signifying a soil naturally fertile. Under see proper; for he says to Moses, as the apostle prothis, therefore, and the former expressions, Isaac wishes ceeds to argue, ver. 15 : 'I will have mercy on whom his son all the blessings which a plentiful country can I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on - produce ; for, as Le Clerc rightly observes, if the dews whom I will have compassion. And when the Genand seasonable rains of heaven fall upon a fruitful soil, tiles were converted to Christianity, the prophecy was nothing but human industry is wanting to the plentiful fulfilled literally: Let people serve thee, and let nations enjoyment of all temporal good things. Hence they bow down to thee; and will be more amply fulfilled are represented in the Scripture as emblems of pros- when the fulness of the Gentiles shall come in, and perity, of plenty, and of the blessing of God, Deut, all Israel shall be saved.” xxxiii. 13, 28; Micah v. 7; Zech. viii. 12 ; and, on Verse 33. And Isaac trembled] The marginal readthe other hand, the withhelding of these denotes bar- ing is very literal and proper, And Isaac trembled with renness, distress, and the curse of God; 2 Sam. j. 21. a great trembling greatly. And this shows the deep Soe Dodd.
concern he felt for his own deception, and the iniquity Verse 29. Let people serve thee) "" However alike of the means by which it had been brought about.