After a fancy dinner, Beth and her family came out of the restaurant and walked up to the valet to get their car back. Although Beth's father had his valet parking receipt in his pocket, he told the valet that the ticket was lost and said that he had been driving a red Corvette. Actually, Beth and her family had a beat-up old Volkswagen.
While they were driving home in the sporty new car, Beth asked her mother if it was all right to have taken a different car home. "Won't the car's owner be upset?" she asked.
"We're the owners of this car now, Dear One," her mother said. "Let me explain." And as they raced down the freeway at eighty miles an hour, this is the story she told:
One day, when Isaac was old and having trouble seeing, he called his eldest son Esau and said, "My son, look how old I am. I don't know when I am going to die, so please, take your bow and arrow, go out in the fields, and kill a deer. Then bring it back and cook it the way I like it and bring it to me to eat. Then I will bless you before I die.
Rebekah heard what Isaac said to Esau, and when Esau had gone out hunting, Rebekah said to her son Jacob, "Look, I heard your father tell Esau to bring him dinner. He also said that after dinner he would give Esau a blessing. So here's what I want you to do: go and get me two of our goats and I will make deer meat for your father the way he likes it. Then you can bring it to him and he'll give his blessing to you instead of to your brother Esau."
Jacob said, "Wait a minute, I don't look at all like Esau, he's all hairy. Dad will know the difference the minute he touches me and know that I'm trying to trick him. Then he'll curse me and I'll never get a blessing of my own."
"Just do what I say," said Rebekah. So Jacob did as he was told.
When the goats had been cooked the way that Isaac liked them, Rebekah took some of Esau's clothes and put them on Jacob. Then she put the goat's skins on his hands and neck so that he would seem to be all hairy. Then she gave Jacob the meat and bread that she had made to bring to Isaac.
Jacob brought these things to his father and said, "Father."
"I'm here," Isaac said. "Who are you, my son?"
"I am Esau, your firstborn," lied Jacob. "I did what you said to do so please, eat your dinner and bless me."
And Isaac said, "How did you find a deer so quickly?"
"God told me where the deer were," answered Jacob.
"Come here a minute," said Isaac, "so that I can feel you and make sure that you are Esau." So Jacob went up to his father.
After Isaac had felt Jacob he said, "Well, your voice is Jacob's voice, but your hands are like Esau's hands. So tell me, are you my son Esau?"
"I am," Jacob lied again.
"Then give me my deer meat," said Isaac, and Jacob did as he was told. He brought his father some wine, too.
"Wouldn't Isaac be able to tell the difference between goat and deer meet if deer meet was his favorite thing?" Beth asked.
"No," answered her mother. "Goat and deer both taste the same. In fact, they both taste like chicken."
After he was done eating, Isaac said, "Come here and kiss me, son." And when Jacob kissed Isaac, Isaac smelled Jacob's clothes and said, "You even smell like Esau. So I hope that you will be blessed with plenty. People will serve you and nations will honor you. Be in charge of your brothers, and I hope that God curses everyone that curses you, and blesses everyone who blesses you."
As soon as Isaac had given Jacob his blessing, Jacob got scared and ran away so that his brother wouldn't find him there.
Then Esau came in and offered his father deer meat. "Here's your dinner. Eat it and bless me," said Esau
"Who are you?" asked Isaac, confused.
"I'm your son, Esau," said Esau truthfully.
Then Isaac became very agitated. "Oops," he said, "I think that I have blessed the wrong person."
Then it was Esau's turn to be upset. "Can't you bless me, too?"
Isaac shook his head. "Your brother tricked me out of your blessing and he has taken away your birthright and your blessing, too."
"Now do you understand?" her mother asked. "God lets us keep anything that we can get using our wits."
Beth thought about this for a moment. Then she smiled toward her mother in the front seat. The story had answered all her questions, and the new car was very nice, indeed.
Be sure to visit The Bible Annotated for more Biblical wisdom!