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Genesis 33

Brothers Reconcile
1When Jacob # 33:1 Jacob’s name had been changed, but like us, he was slow to realize his new identity. It was not until Rachel died that Israel journeyed onward (see Gen. 35:19–21). Jacob entered his promised inheritance with a limp. When he walked toward Esau and bowed down, he was limping. Esau did not see a whole Jacob; he saw a crippled Jacob. looked up, he saw Esau approaching with four hundred men. # 33:1 Esau came with four hundred men; Jacob came with four women and his children. Jacob divided his children by their mothers and sent them to Esau one group at a time. The most loved of all to Jacob were Rachel and Joseph, so he reserved them for last, just in case the anger of Esau broke out against him and his family. Jacob was a clever, thoughtful man, but he was still walking in man’s wisdom. Because he anticipated vengeance from the hand of Esau, he exposed those whom he cared about the least to the first stroke of that vengeance. So he quickly divided the children among Leah, Rachel, and the two maidservants. 2He lined up the maidservants and their children in front, then Leah and her children, then Rachel and Joseph last of all. 3Then Jacob went ahead of them to face Esau. As he approached his brother, he bowed down to the ground seven times # 33:3 It is hard to miss the irony here, for Isaac’s prophecy was that Esau would be ruled by Jacob and bow down to him (see Gen. 27:29), but here we see Jacob bowing down before his estranged brother. before reaching him.
4But Esau ran to Jacob and hugged him! He threw his arms around Jacob’s neck, he kissed him, and they wept in each other’s arms. # 33:4 Imagine the sense of emotional release Jacob (Israel) must have felt as he stood there hugging Esau. Jacob had deceitfully kissed his father, pretending to be Esau (see Gen. 27:26). Now the two brothers shared the kiss of restoration. Their tears released and washed away the emotional pain of their past! Reconciliation between brothers always pleases God (see Ps. 133). Remember that, in a moment, God can turn enemies into friends. Remember that God turned Saul into Paul (see Acts 13:9)! Our hearts must always be postured to reconcile with others who have distanced themselves from us. 5When Esau looked up and saw the women and the children, he said to Jacob, “Who are all these coming behind you?”
Jacob replied, “These are the children, your niece and nephews, whom God has so graciously given # 33:5 This word comes from a Hebrew verb meaning to “be gracious,” “show favor,” or “be kind to.” Indeed, children are a gracious gift from God. See Ps. 127:3. your servant.” 6Then the maidservants came forward with their children and bowed low before Esau. 7Leah likewise came forward with her children and bowed down. Finally, Rachel and Joseph came forward and they bowed down to the ground before Esau.
8Esau asked Jacob, “Why did you send all these animals to me?”
“I was hoping to find favor with you, my lord,” Jacob replied.
9“But my brother,” Esau laughed, “I have plenty. Keep what you have for yourself.”
10Jacob replied, “No, please. If I have found favor in your eyes, please take the gifts. For truly, seeing your face after all these years, it’s like looking upon the face of God! # 33:10 Jacob again saw that same glorious face of God (see Gen. 32:30) through the mending of his relationship with his brother. How sweet is forgiveness, how pleasant to the soul when we are made one again with those we love! It is like gazing on the face of God. We see God most clearly as we touch mercy and forgiveness. Are there some in your life that need to see the face of God in your countenance? Since you have received me so warmly, 11please accept the blessing I have brought to you, for God has poured his grace over me, and I have everything I want!” # 33:11 Jacob was offering to share the blessing he took away from Esau many years earlier. So with these words Jacob urged him, and Esau accepted the gifts.
12Then Esau said, “Let’s start out on our journey, and I’ll walk alongside you.”
13But Jacob replied, “My lord, you can see how tired the children are, and all our flocks and herds are nursing their young. If we drive them too hard for even a day, they will die. 14Please, my lord, go ahead of your servant. Let me move along slowly with my flocks and herds, to give them a chance to graze. I must think of my children, too, so go ahead of me, my lord, until I catch up with you in Seir.”
15Esau said, “Well, at least let me leave you with some of my men.”
“You’re so kind,” Jacob replied, “but there’s no need to do so.”
16So that very day Esau and his men left to return to Seir, 17but Jacob went the opposite direction to Succoth instead, # 33:17 Succoth means “booths,” “shelter,” “huts,” or “stalls.” There is a large tell, or archeological mound, called Deir ’Allah located in the center of the Jordan Valley that is now identified as Succoth. and built himself a house there. He also built shelters for his livestock, and that is why Jacob named the place Succoth.
Jacob Builds an Altar at Shechem
18Jacob’s journey home from Paddan-Aram finally brought him safe and sound to the Canaanite city of Shechem, # 33:18 Shechem lies about forty miles north of Jerusalem and is the site where Abram first built an altar in the promised land (see Gen. 12:7). Joseph was eventually buried on this parcel of land (see Josh. 24:32). In John 4 Jesus encountered a woman of Samaria in the vicinity of Sychar (Shechem). The well was on a piece of land which was bought by Jacob and given to his son Joseph (see John 4:5–8). The well mentioned in John 4 was Jacob’s well. Jesus sat on top of the very place where Jacob dwelt at Shechem. At that time, Jacob had no clue that his seed would indeed sit upon that well someday. There, the long-awaited Messiah patiently won the soul of a sinful woman. The Mighty God of Israel visited Jacob’s well at Shechem! where he camped just outside of the city. 19He purchased the field where he pitched his tent from the clan of Hamor, # 33:19 Hamor means “donkey.” Shechem’s father, for one hundred pieces of silver. # 33:19 Some ancient manuscripts have “one hundred sheep” as the purchase price. 20There he set up an altar # 33:20 Or “a pillar.” and named it To the True God, the God of Israel. # 33:20 Or “El-Elohe-Israel” or “Mighty is the God of Israel.”

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Genesis 33: TPT





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