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27 One day, in Isaac’s old age when he was almost blind, he called for Esau his oldest son.

Isaac: “My son?”

Esau: “Yes, Father?”

2-4 Isaac: “I am an old man now, and expect every day to be my last. Take your bow and arrows out into the fields and get me some venison, and prepare it just the way I like it—savory and good—and bring it here for me to eat, and I will give you the blessings that belong to you, my firstborn son,[a] before I die.”

But Rebekah overheard the conversation. So when Esau left for the field to hunt for the venison, 6-7 she called her son Jacob and told him what his father had said to his brother.

8-10 Rebekah: “Now do exactly as I tell you. Go out to the flocks and bring me two young goats, and I’ll prepare your father’s favorite dish from them. Then take it to your father, and after he has enjoyed it he will bless you before his death, instead of Esau!”[b]

11-12 Jacob: “But Mother! He won’t be fooled that easily.[c] Think how hairy Esau is, and how smooth my skin is! What if my father feels me? He’ll think I’m making a fool of him and curse me instead of blessing me!”

13 Rebekah: “Let his curses be on me, dear son. Just do what I tell you. Go out and get the goats.”

14 So Jacob followed his mother’s instructions, bringing the dressed kids, which she prepared in his father’s favorite way. 15 Then she took Esau’s best clothes—they were there in the house—and instructed Jacob to put them on. 16 And she made him a pair of gloves from the hairy skin of the young goats, and fastened a strip of the hide around his neck; 17 then she gave him the meat, with its rich aroma, and some fresh-baked bread.

18 Jacob carried the platter of food into the room where his father was lying.

Jacob: “Father?”

Isaac: “Yes? Who is it, my son—Esau or Jacob?”

19 Jacob: “It’s Esau, your oldest son. I’ve done as you told me to. Here is the delicious venison you wanted. Sit up and eat it, so that you will bless me with all your heart!”

20 Isaac: “How were you able to find it so quickly, my son?”

Jacob: “Because Jehovah your God put it in my path!”

21 Isaac: “Come over here. I want to feel you and be sure it really is Esau!”

22 (Jacob goes over to his father. He feels him!)

Isaac: (to himself) “The voice is Jacob’s, but the hands are Esau’s!”

23 (The ruse convinces Isaac and he gives Jacob his blessings):

24 Isaac: “Are you really Esau?”

Jacob: “Yes, of course.”

25 Isaac: “Then bring me the venison, and I will eat it and bless you with all my heart.”

(Jacob takes it over to him and Isaac eats; he also drinks the wine Jacob brings him.)

26 Isaac: “Come here and kiss me, my son!”

(Jacob goes over and kisses him on the cheek. Isaac sniffs his clothes, and finally seems convinced.)

27-29 Isaac: “The smell of my son is the good smell of the earth and fields that Jehovah has blessed. May God always give you plenty of rain for your crops, and good harvests and grapes. May many nations be your slaves. Be the master of your brothers. May all your relatives bow low before you. Cursed are all who curse you, and blessed are all who bless you.”

30 (As soon as Isaac has blessed Jacob, and almost before Jacob leaves the room, Esau arrives, coming in from his hunting. 31 He also has prepared his father’s favorite dish and brings it to him.)

Esau: “Here I am, Father, with the venison. Sit up and eat it so that you can give me your finest blessings!”

32 Isaac: “Who is it?”

Esau: “Why, it’s me, of course! Esau, your oldest son!”

33 (Isaac begins to tremble noticeably.)

Isaac: “Then who is it who was just here with venison, and I have already eaten it and blessed him with irrevocable blessing?”

34 (Esau begins to sob with deep and bitter sobs.)

Esau: “O my Father, bless me, bless me too!”

35 Isaac: “Your brother was here and tricked me and has carried away your blessing.”

36 Esau: (bitterly) “No wonder they call him ‘The Cheater.’[d] For he took my birthright, and now he has stolen my blessing. Oh, haven’t you saved even one blessing for me?”

37 Isaac: “I have made him your master, and have given him yourself and all of his relatives as his servants. I have guaranteed him abundance of grain and wine—what is there left to give?”

38 Esau: “Not one blessing left for me? O my Father, bless me too.”

(Isaac says nothing[e] as Esau weeps.)

39-40 Isaac: “Yours will be no life of ease and luxury, but you shall hew your way with your sword. For a time you will serve your brother, but you will finally shake loose from him and be free.”

41 So Esau hated Jacob because of what he had done to him. He said to himself, “My father will soon be gone, and then I will kill Jacob.” 42 But someone got wind of what he was planning and reported it to Rebekah. She sent for Jacob and told him that his life was being threatened by Esau.

43 “This is what to do,” she said. “Flee to your Uncle Laban in Haran. 44 Stay there with him awhile until your brother’s fury is spent, 45 and he forgets what you have done. Then I will send for you. For why should I be bereaved of both of you in one day?”

46 Then Rebekah said to Isaac, “I’m sick and tired of these local girls. I’d rather die than see Jacob marry one of them.”


  1. Genesis 27:2 that belong to you, my firstborn son, implied.
  2. Genesis 27:8 instead of Esau, implied.
  3. Genesis 27:11 He won’t be fooled that easily, implied.
  4. Genesis 27:36 The Cheater. Jacob means “Cheater.”
  5. Genesis 27:38 Isaac says nothing. This appears in some versions, not in others.
Living Bible (TLB)

The Living Bible copyright © 1971 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

27 When Isaac was old and his eyes were so weak that he could no longer see,(A) he called for Esau his older son(B) and said to him, “My son.”

“Here I am,” he answered.

Isaac said, “I am now an old man and don’t know the day of my death.(C) Now then, get your equipment—your quiver and bow—and go out to the open country(D) to hunt some wild game for me. Prepare me the kind of tasty food I like(E) and bring it to me to eat, so that I may give you my blessing(F) before I die.”(G)

Now Rebekah was listening as Isaac spoke to his son Esau. When Esau left for the open country(H) to hunt game and bring it back, Rebekah said to her son Jacob,(I) “Look, I overheard your father say to your brother Esau, ‘Bring me some game and prepare me some tasty food to eat, so that I may give you my blessing in the presence of the Lord before I die.’(J) Now, my son, listen carefully and do what I tell you:(K) Go out to the flock and bring me two choice young goats,(L) so I can prepare some tasty food for your father, just the way he likes it.(M) 10 Then take it to your father to eat, so that he may give you his blessing(N) before he dies.”

11 Jacob said to Rebekah his mother, “But my brother Esau is a hairy man(O) while I have smooth skin. 12 What if my father touches me?(P) I would appear to be tricking him and would bring down a curse(Q) on myself rather than a blessing.”

13 His mother said to him, “My son, let the curse fall on me.(R) Just do what I say;(S) go and get them for me.”

14 So he went and got them and brought them to his mother, and she prepared some tasty food, just the way his father liked it.(T) 15 Then Rebekah took the best clothes(U) of Esau her older son,(V) which she had in the house, and put them on her younger son Jacob. 16 She also covered his hands and the smooth part of his neck with the goatskins.(W) 17 Then she handed to her son Jacob the tasty food and the bread she had made.

18 He went to his father and said, “My father.”

“Yes, my son,” he answered. “Who is it?”(X)

19 Jacob said to his father, “I am Esau your firstborn.(Y) I have done as you told me. Please sit up and eat some of my game,(Z) so that you may give me your blessing.”(AA)

20 Isaac asked his son, “How did you find it so quickly, my son?”

“The Lord your God gave me success,(AB)” he replied.

21 Then Isaac said to Jacob, “Come near so I can touch you,(AC) my son, to know whether you really are my son Esau or not.”

22 Jacob went close to his father Isaac,(AD) who touched(AE) him and said, “The voice is the voice of Jacob, but the hands are the hands of Esau.” 23 He did not recognize him, for his hands were hairy like those of his brother Esau;(AF) so he proceeded to bless him. 24 “Are you really my son Esau?” he asked.

“I am,” he replied.

25 Then he said, “My son, bring me some of your game to eat, so that I may give you my blessing.”(AG)

Jacob brought it to him and he ate; and he brought some wine and he drank. 26 Then his father Isaac said to him, “Come here, my son, and kiss me.”

27 So he went to him and kissed(AH) him(AI). When Isaac caught the smell of his clothes,(AJ) he blessed him and said,

“Ah, the smell of my son
    is like the smell of a field
    that the Lord has blessed.(AK)
28 May God give you heaven’s dew(AL)
    and earth’s richness(AM)
    an abundance of grain(AN) and new wine.(AO)
29 May nations serve you
    and peoples bow down to you.(AP)
Be lord over your brothers,
    and may the sons of your mother bow down to you.(AQ)
May those who curse you be cursed
    and those who bless you be blessed.(AR)

30 After Isaac finished blessing him, and Jacob had scarcely left his father’s presence, his brother Esau came in from hunting. 31 He too prepared some tasty food and brought it to his father. Then he said to him, “My father, please sit up and eat some of my game, so that you may give me your blessing.”(AS)

32 His father Isaac asked him, “Who are you?”(AT)

“I am your son,” he answered, “your firstborn, Esau.(AU)

33 Isaac trembled violently and said, “Who was it, then, that hunted game and brought it to me?(AV) I ate it just before you came and I blessed him—and indeed he will be blessed!(AW)

34 When Esau heard his father’s words, he burst out with a loud and bitter cry(AX) and said to his father, “Bless(AY) me—me too, my father!”

35 But he said, “Your brother came deceitfully(AZ) and took your blessing.”(BA)

36 Esau said, “Isn’t he rightly named Jacob[a]?(BB) This is the second time he has taken advantage of(BC) me: He took my birthright,(BD) and now he’s taken my blessing!”(BE) Then he asked, “Haven’t you reserved any blessing for me?”

37 Isaac answered Esau, “I have made him lord over you and have made all his relatives his servants, and I have sustained him with grain and new wine.(BF) So what can I possibly do for you, my son?”

38 Esau said to his father, “Do you have only one blessing, my father? Bless me too, my father!” Then Esau wept aloud.(BG)

39 His father Isaac answered him,(BH)

“Your dwelling will be
    away from the earth’s richness,
    away from the dew(BI) of heaven above.(BJ)
40 You will live by the sword
    and you will serve(BK) your brother.(BL)
But when you grow restless,
    you will throw his yoke
    from off your neck.(BM)

41 Esau held a grudge(BN) against Jacob(BO) because of the blessing his father had given him. He said to himself, “The days of mourning(BP) for my father are near; then I will kill(BQ) my brother Jacob.”(BR)

42 When Rebekah was told what her older son Esau(BS) had said, she sent for her younger son Jacob and said to him, “Your brother Esau is planning to avenge himself by killing you.(BT) 43 Now then, my son, do what I say:(BU) Flee at once to my brother Laban(BV) in Harran.(BW) 44 Stay with him for a while(BX) until your brother’s fury subsides. 45 When your brother is no longer angry with you and forgets what you did to him,(BY) I’ll send word for you to come back from there.(BZ) Why should I lose both of you in one day?”

46 Then Rebekah said to Isaac, “I’m disgusted with living because of these Hittite(CA) women. If Jacob takes a wife from among the women of this land,(CB) from Hittite women like these, my life will not be worth living.”(CC)


  1. Genesis 27:36 Jacob means he grasps the heel, a Hebrew idiom for he takes advantage of or he deceives.
New International Version (NIV)

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