By Benjamin Jackson,2014-06-12 01:00
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    Chapter 6;The Birth of a Nation

     ------Isaac, Jacob, and Their Children

    Isaac’s wife Rebekah gives birth to two sons-- Esau and Jacob .One day, Esau comes home famished and agrees to give Jacob his inheritance rights in exchange for a bowl of soup. When Isaac becomes old and blind, Rebekah helps Jacob steal Esau’s

    blessing from Isaac to displease Esau. Therefore, Jacob flees to the house of his uncle Laban in fear of Esau. Then he agrees to work for his uncle in exchange for the marriage with Laban’s daughter, Rachel. Laban deceives Jacob into marrying Leah,

    Rachel’s elder sister, before marrying Rachel. The two wives give birth to eleven sons and a daughter for him. After twenty years, Jacob heeds God’s urging and leaves to return to Canaan. Jacob continues on and, nearing home, fears an encounter with Esau. Jacob prepares gifts to appease his brother and, dividing his family and belongings into two camps, spends the night alone on the river Jabbok. Jacob meets God, who, disguised as a man, physically wrestles with Jacob until dawn. Jacob demands a blessing from his opponent, and the man blesses Jacob by renaming him “Israel,” meaning, “he struggles with God. The next morning, Jacob meets Esau, who welcomes his brother with open arms. Eventually, Jacob and Esau embraced each other as brothers.

    Jacob’s sons grow jealous of their youngest brother, Joseph, who is Jacob’s most favorite son. One day, the eleven elder brothers sell Joseph as slavery to Potiphar, who favors the boy greatly until, one day, a slander from his flirtatious

    wife ,Potiphar throws Joseph into prison. Years pass until the Pharaoh of Egypt,

    bothered by two troublesome dreams, hears of Joseph and his abilities as an interpreter of dreams. Summonsed, Joseph warns Pharaoh that a great famine will strike Egypt after seven years. Impressed, Pharaoh elects Joseph to be his highest official. Famine eventually plagues the land and, learning of the Egyptian supply of grain, Joseph’s brothers go to Egypt to purchase food. The eleven men present

    themselves to Joseph, who recognizes them immediately and reveals his identity. Joseph persuades his brothers to return to Egypt with Jacob, who, overjoyed, moves to Egypt with his family.

    As Jacob approaches death, he blessed his sons and his grandsons and instructed his family to return one day to the land God has promised to give to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

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