Genesis 24-27 – “The Covenant Is Renewed”

God’s covenant with Abraham was continued in the family of Isaac and Rebekah. Through their experiences, we learn that being part of the covenant is to have patience and trust in God’s promised blessings. And we can see the story of Rebekah and Jacob’s deception in Genesis 27 as a ritual performance in order to secure a sacred blessing.  

 

“Eternal Marriage and Family in the Old Testament,” Michael A. Goodman, The Gospel of Jesus Christ in the Old Testament

Although the Old Testament may fail to teach marriage in the covenant didactically, the message is illustrated powerfully throughout the narrative. The examples of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob further reinforce the importance of marriage in the covenant. To understand the sacred literature of the Jews, it is essential to understand that Israel’s relationship to their God is seen as a marital relationship.

“From the Hand of Jacob: A Ritual Analysis of Genesis 27,” David E. Bokovoy, Studies in the Bible and Antiquity

“Genesis 27 is a story that depicts a series of ancient ritual performances. The narrative recounts the time when Jacob, the son of Isaac, received his father’s blessing by means of an act of deception. As an account that contains explicit examples of performances designed to set the activities apart from other less sacred occurrences, the blessing story in Genesis 27 contains features of what scholars refer to as ‘ritualization’ in narrative. Ritualization can be defined as actions designed to distinguish and privilege what is being done in comparison to other, usually more commonplace, activities. Ritualization can assist those of a lesser status in accomplishing their objectives that stand in opposition to the desires of the powerful. When read as ritualization in narrative, Genesis 27 can be interpreted as an account that portrays the use of ancient temple and sacrificial imagery in order to secure a sacred blessing.”

“Genesis 24-36: The Covenant Line Continues with Isaac and Jacob,” Old Testament Student Manual, Church Educational System

Isaac and Jacob were foreordained to their responsibilities. Through their personal worthiness, however, they justified their callings in the covenant line.