Contents Calendar Find Reference
Navigating the Bible
Genesis Chapter 27
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50

Jacob takes the Blessing
27:1 Isaac had grown old and his eyesight was fading. He summoned his elder son Esau.

'My son.'


27:2 'I am old and I have no idea when I will die.
27:3 Now take your equipment, your dangler and bow, and go out in the field to trap me some game.
27:4 Make it into a tasty dish, the way I like it, and bring it to me to eat. My soul will then bless you before I die.'
27:5 Rebecca had been listening while Isaac was speaking to Esau, his son. Esau went out to the field to trap some game and bring it home.
27:6 Rebecca said to her son Jacob, 'I just heard your father speaking to your brother Esau. He said,
27:7 'Bring me some game and prepare it into something tasty. I will eat it and bless you in God's presence before I die.'
27:8 Now, my son, listen to me. Heed my instructions carefully.
27:9 Go to the sheep and take two choice young kids. I will prepare them with a tasty recipe, just the way your father likes them.
27:10 You must then bring it to your father, so that he will eat it and bless you before he dies.'
27:11 'But my brother Esau is hairy,' replied Jacob. 'I am smooth-skinned.
27:12 Suppose my father touches me. He will realize that I am an impostor! I will gain a curse rather than a blessing!'
27:13 'Let any curse be on me, my son,' said the mother.' But listen to me. Go, bring me what I asked.'
27:14 [Jacob] went and fetched what his mother had requested. She took [the kids] and prepared them, using the tasty recipe that [Jacob's] father liked best.
27:15 Rebecca then took her older son Esau's best clothing, which she had in her keeping, and put them on her younger son Jacob.
27:16 She [also] placed the young goats' skins on his arms and on the hairless parts of his neck.
27:17 Rebecca handed to her son Jacob the delicacy, and the bread she had baked.
27:18 He came to his father. 'Father.'

'Yes. Who are you, my son?'

27:19 'It is I, Esau, your first-born,' said Jacob. 'I have done as you asked. Sit up, and eat the game I trapped, so that your soul will bless me.'
27:20 'How did you find it so quickly, my son?' asked Isaac.

'God your Lord was with me.'

27:21 'Come closer to me,' said Isaac to Jacob. 'Let me touch you, my son. Are you really Esau or not?'
27:22 Jacob came closer to his father Isaac, and [Isaac] touched him. He said, 'The voice is Jacob's voice, but the hands are the hands of Esau.'
27:23 He did not realize who it was because there was hair on [Jacob's] arms, just like those of his brother Esau. [Isaac] was about to bless him.
27:24 'But are you really my son Esau?'

'I am.'

27:25 'Then serve me [the food]. I will eat the game that my son trapped, so that my soul may bless you.'

[Jacob] served it, and [Isaac] ate. He then brought [Isaac] some wine, and he drank it.

27:26 His father Isaac said to him, 'Come closer and kiss me, my son.'
27:27 [Jacob] approached and kissed him. [Isaac] smelled the fragrance of his garments, and blessed him.

He said, 'See, my son's fragrance is like the perfume of a field blessed by God.

27:28 'May God grant you the dew of heaven and the fat of the earth, much grain and wine.
27:29 Nations will serve you; governments will bow down to you. You shall be like a lord over your brother; your mother's children will prostrate themselves to you. Those who curse you are cursed, and those who bless you are blessed.'
27:30 Isaac had finished blessing Jacob, and Jacob had just left his father Isaac, when his brother Esau came back from his hunt.
27:31 He had also prepared a delicacy and brought it to his father. 'Let my father get up and eat his son's venison,' he said, 'so that your soul may bless me.'
27:32 'Who are you?' asked his father Isaac.

'I am your first-born, Esau.' he replied.

27:33 Isaac was seized with a violent fit of trembling. ' the one who trapped game and just served it to me? I ate it all before you came and I blessed him. The blessing will remain his'.
27:34 When Esau heard his father's words, he let out a most loud and bitter scream. 'Bless me too, Father,' he pleaded.
27:35 'Your brother came with deceit, and he already took your blessing.'
27:36 'Isn't he truly named Jacob (Ya'akov)! He went behind my back (akav) twice. First he took my birthright, and now he took my blessing!'

[Esau] pleaded, 'Couldn't you have saved me a blessing too?'

27:37 Isaac tried to answer. 'But I made him like a lord over you,' he said. 'I have given him all his brothers as slaves. I have associated him with the grain and the wine. Where....what....can I do for you, my son?'
27:38 Esau said to his father, 'Is there only one blessing you have, my father? Father! Bless me too!' Esau raised his voice and began to weep.
27:39 His father Isaac then replied and said, 'The fat places of the earth can still be your dwelling, and [you can still have] the dew of heaven.
27:40 But you shall live by your sword. You may have to serve your brother, but when your complaints mount up, you will throw his yoke off your neck.'
27:41 Esau was furious at Jacob because of the blessing that his father had given him. He said to himself, 'The days of mourning for my father will be here soon. I will then be able to kill my brother Jacob.'
27:42 Her older son's plans were reported to Rebecca. She sent word and summoned her younger son Jacob. 'Your brother Esau is consoling himself by planning to kill you,' she said.
27:43 'Now, my son, listen to me. Set out and flee to my brother Laban in Charan.
27:44 Remain with him awhile until your brother's anger has subsided.
27:45 When your brother has calmed down from his rage against you, and has forgotten what you have done to him, I will send word and summon you home. But why should I lose you both on the same day?'
27:46 Rebecca said to Isaac, 'I am disgusted with life because of those Hittite women. If Jacob marries such a Hittite girl, from the daughters of this land, why should I go on living?'


  Teli in Hebrew, variously translated as sword (Onkelos; Rashi) or quiver (Targum Yonathan; Rashbam; Radak, Ibn Ezra). The word, however, suggests something hanging, like a bolo or lasso, that would be used to trap game.

the way I like it
  See Genesis 25:28. Isaac wanted Esau to have the merit of parental honor, since this would make him worthy of a spiritual blessing (Sforno). Isaac may have known of Esau's shortcomings, but felt that the blessing would improve him (Radak). Isaac was not aware of the prophecy (Genesis 25:23) or of the fact that the birthright legally belonged to Jacob (Genesis 25:33), and hence the blessing would automatically go to Esau (Ramban).

You must then bring...
  Rebecca was aware that the blessing was rightfully Jacob's (see note on Genesis 27:4). Without this ruse, however, it might have been impossible for Jacob to obtain it.

Those who curse you...
  See Genesis 12:3.

The blessing will remain his
  Literally, 'He will also be blessed.' Isaac realized that since the blessing had been granted with divine inspiration, it was valid, and Jacob was the one chosen by God (Bereshith Rabbah 67; Sforno).

I have associated him
  'I have placed him close' (Radak), or 'I have supported him with' (Targum).

Hittite women
  See Genesis 26:34.

Copyright © 2000 World ORT
Notice: This computer program is protected by copyright law and international treaties. Unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this program, or any portion of it, may result in severe civil and criminal penalties, and will be prosecuted to the maximum extent possible under the law.