Today we see a second example of great possessions causing family separation; first Abraham and Lot; now Jacob and Esau. Esau married a Canaanite woman “and went to a country away from the presence of his brother Jacob. For their possessions were too great for them to dwell together, and the land where they were strangers could not support them because of their livestock. So Esau dwelt in Mount Seir. Esau is Edom.”
Remember the origin of the Canaanites? Ham’s cursed son Canaan. The Lord will warn the children of Israel not to intermarry with the Canaanites because it will lead them away from the Lord and into idolatry. We saw this in the beginning of the story when Seth’s descendants began to intermarry with Cain’s descendants who were not walking with the Lord. Over time the hearts and minds of everyone became so wicked that God destroyed the earth by flood. God’s instructions for His people are always for their good!
From the genealogy list, we discover that Edom (Esau’s descendants) has kings before the Israelites (Jacob’s descendants). God’s desire since the garden has always been for his people to trust Him and walk by faith. However, later in the story, the Israelites will make a decision based on sight and not faith. Instead of trusting the Lord, they ask for a king to rule over them like the nations around them.
We also learned today that King Amalek is a descendant of Esau. The Amalekites become notorious for attacking the people of Israel. As a result, God will tell the Israelites to wipe the Amalekites off the face of the earth; but will the Israelites obey? We will find out down the road. Keep reading because tomorrow we get a peek into the lives of two of Jacob’s sons, Joseph and Judah. (Genesis 36:1-19, 1 Chronicles 1:35-37, Genesis 36:20-30, 1 Chronicles 1:38-42, Genesis 36:31-43, 1 Chronicles 1:43-2:2)