5 And Rebekah heard when Isaac spake to Esau his son. And Esau went to the field to hunt for venison, and to bring it. 6 And Rebekah spake unto Jacob her son, saying, Behold, I heard thy father speak unto Esau thy brother, saying, 7 Bring me venison, and make me savoury meat, that I may eat, and bless thee before the Lord before my death. 8 Now therefore, my son, obey my voice according to that which I command thee. 9 Go now to the flock, and fetch me from thence two good kids of the goats; and I will make them savoury meat for thy father, such as he loveth: 10 And thou shalt bring it to thy father, that he may eat, and that he may bless thee before his death.
This is the first we have heard directly from Rebekah since her introduction to Abraham’s servant, and this is a very different side of her from that sweet, industrious girl. In this scene she is planning a deception, one that is elaborate and bold.
Of course, this isn’t the first time that she has played a part in a deception, there was that time Isaac asked her to say that she was his sister, and not his wife, when they traveled in the land of the Philistines. And perhaps, in some way, this trick that is played on Isaac is a karmic retribution for his part in that deceit.
But something that stood out to me as I read these verses was that Moses gave an entire chapter dedicated to this one, small story. Of all the experiences in Esau and Jacob’s childhood, the two that were chosen to define them were the one of Esau selling his birthright and this one, with all other years just skimmed over. I’ve never seen much spiritual significance to this tale, but the realization that it was given in detail, rather than in a single passing verse, has me thinking that I ought to look more closely as I continue. Perhaps there is a lesson I have missed every time before.