B6 Jacob & His Family

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Lesson 1: At Haran

Readings: Genesis 29: 1-30

In these studies we meet a man called Jacob. He is on the run from home. Jacob had deceived his father, Isaac, and cheated his brother, Esau, out of the special blessing that he should have had. Because Esau was threatening to kill Jacob, their mother, Rebekah, sent Jacob away to stay with his uncle, who lived in Haran (sometimes called Padan-Aram) in Mesopotamia. Here he would be safe from Esau, and possibly find someone to be his wife from among his mother’s relatives.

Lesson 2: At Peniel

Readings: Genesis 32: 1-32

Sometimes we face a crisis and we don’t know how to cope with it. That’s how it was with Jacob. He had now left Haran and was making his way back to Canaan. He knew that he would have to meet his brother Esau very soon. He was very concerned and worried about this.

Lesson 3: At Bethel

Readings: Genesis 35: 1-15

Jacob did eventually meet Esau. It was not nearly as bad as he had feared. No doubt, God had been with him and helped him. Jacob had promised Esau that he would return to Canaan and follow on behind him. However, once again Jacob did not keep his word. He bought some land and settled down
and didn’t fulfil his promise to Esau.

Lesson 4: In Canaan

Readings: Genesis 37: 1-36

Jacob already had ten sons and one daughter, when Joseph was born. Joseph was the elder son of Rachel. There was jealousy and other problems within the family. Joseph suffered the grief of his mother’s death at the birth of his brother, Benjamin. All these experiences could have made Joseph bitter, but he had a faith in God to carry him through. We do not know when Joseph began to have faith in God.