From Pastor Perry

Genesis 35:16-29

The Deaths of Rachel and Isaac

16 Then they journeyed from Bethel. When they were still some distance from Ephrath, Rachel went into labor, and she had hard labor. 17 And when her labor was at its hardest, the midwife said to her, “Do not fear, for you have another son.” 18 And as her soul was departing (for she was dying), she called his name Ben-oni; but his father called him Benjamin. 19 So Rachel died, and she was buried on the way to Ephrath (that is, Bethlehem), 20 and Jacob set up a pillar over her tomb. It is the pillar of Rachel’s tomb, which is there to this day. 21 Israel journeyed on and pitched his tent beyond the tower of Eder. 

22 While Israel lived in that land, Reuben went and lay with Bilhah his father’s concubine. And Israel heard of it. 

Now the sons of Jacob were twelve. 23 The sons of Leah: Reuben (Jacob’s firstborn), Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, and Zebulun. 24 The sons of Rachel: Joseph and Benjamin. 25 The sons of Bilhah, Rachel’s servant: Dan and Naphtali. 26 The sons of Zilpah, Leah’s servant: Gad and Asher. These were the sons of Jacob who were born to him in Paddan-aram. 

27 And Jacob came to his father Isaac at Mamre, or Kiriath-arba (that is, Hebron), where Abraham and Isaac had sojourned. 28 Now the days of Isaac were 180 years. 29 And Isaac breathed his last, and he died and was gathered to his people, old and full of days. And his sons Esau and Jacob buried him.




Sorrows surround Jacob. He learns of his son’s incest with his concubine and also the death of his wife and of his father. God-fearing people such as Jacob sometimes have children who fall into great sin and shame. And even those who receive God’s promises, such as Rachel and Isaac, are still subject to death. Mourning is a part of life in a sin-broken world. When sorrows surround you, call on the Lord in prayer. Remember and celebrate His promises, which are guaranteed to you in Jesus’ death and resurrection. Because Jesus conquered death and sin, we have comfort in the midst of all troubles. 



I pray:  O Lord, forgive our sins, and bring us to eternal life for Jesus’ sake. Amen.



Engelbrecht, E. A. (2009). The Lutheran Study Bible (p. 71). St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House.

Genesis 35:9–15 (ESV)

God Blesses and Renames Jacob

God appeared to Jacob again, when he came from Paddan-aram, and blessed him. 10 And God said to him, “Your name is Jacob; no longer shall your name be called Jacob, but Israel shall be your name.” So he called his name Israel. 11 And God said to him, “I am God Almighty: be fruitful and multiply. A nation and a company of nations shall come from you, and kings shall come from your own body. 12 The land that I gave to Abraham and Isaac I will give to you, and I will give the land to your offspring after you.” 13 Then God went up from him in the place where he had spoken with him. 14 And Jacob set up a pillar in the place where he had spoken with him, a pillar of stone. He poured out a drink offering on it and poured oil on it. 15 So Jacob called the name of the place where God had spoken with him Bethel.


There was little mention of God in ch 34. Now, He again takes center stage, and Jacob responds. Jacob gets rid of the false gods. He journeys to Bethel, the “house of God.” He again hears God’s promises. He worships. Where God’s people assemble around Word and Sacrament, God Himself is present to forgive those who repent.



I pray:  “My soul, now praise your Maker! Let all within me bless His name Who makes you full partaker of mercies more than you dare claim.” Amen. 



Engelbrecht, E. A. (2009). The Lutheran Study Bible (p. 70). St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House.

Genesis 35:5–8 (ESV)

God Blesses and Renames Jacob

And as they journeyed, a terror from God fell upon the cities that were around them, so that they did not pursue the sons of Jacob. And Jacob came to Luz (that is, Bethel), which is in the land of Canaan, he and all the people who were with him, and there he built an altar and called the place El-bethel, because there God had revealed himself to him when he fled from his brother. And Deborah, Rebekah’s nurse, died, and she was buried under an oak below Bethel. So he called its name Allon-bacuth.


We see the power of God and how He protected Jacob, even though Jacob had not walked in the ways of the Lord.  The people in the cities would have wanted to kill Jacob and his sons, because how they treated Shechem and his clan… they killed them!  Jacob honored God by building an altar.  I do see a comparison between us today and Jacob.  Jacob did evil, yet God forgives and protects.  We sin against the Lord, yet Jesus came and died for us and took away our sins. 


I pray:  O Lord, I repent of my sins and want to do better.  Forgive me, guide me, and protect me.  Amen.

Genesis 35:1–4 (ESV)

God Blesses and Renames Jacob

35 God said to Jacob, “Arise, go up to Bethel and dwell there. Make an altar there to the God who appeared to you when you fled from your brother Esau.” So Jacob said to his household and to all who were with him, “Put away the foreign gods that are among you and purify yourselves and change your garments. Then let us arise and go up to Bethel, so that I may make there an altar to the God who answers me in the day of my distress and has been with me wherever I have gone.” So they gave to Jacob all the foreign gods that they had, and the rings that were in their ears. Jacob hid them under the terebinth tree that was near Shechem.



As much as Jacob has gone against God, we have a loving and merciful God who still speaks to Jacob.  Jacob not only listens to God, but responds to his words.  He goes to Bethel and builds an altar to God.  He also disposes the foreign gods/idols that they have.  We to listen to God and respond to his Word.


I pray: O Lord, help me to listen and to respond to your Word.  Amen.

Genesis 34:30–31 (ESV)

Defiling of Dinah (Final)

30 Then Jacob said to Simeon and Levi, “You have brought trouble on me by making me stink to the inhabitants of the land, the Canaanites and the Perizzites. My numbers are few, and if they gather themselves against me and attack me, I shall be destroyed, both I and my household.” 31 But they said, “Should he treat our sister like a prostitute?”



Jacob is not happy with Simeon and Levi for the mass killing of the circumcised clan of Hamor’s.  Their action has possibly jeopardized their future.  The Lutheran Study Bible states: “One sin leads to another. Shechem rapes Dinah, and Jacob’s sons abuse God’s holy institution of circumcision so they could massacre the men of Shechem. Christians, beware! Those who treat God’s holy things carelessly and who nurture vengeance prepare for themselves lasting misery. Zeal for a right cause is good, but moderation and due process are also required. The same Savior who died for us also died for sinners such as Shechem and Jacob’s sons.


I pray: O Lord Jesus, grant me wisdom and patience. Help me to love others as You have loved me. Amen.



Engelbrecht, E. A. (2009). The Lutheran Study Bible (pp. 69–70). St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House.

Latest comments

27.05 | 16:27

Pastor: on my e mails, a note said that you were trying to contact me. Now,
I am having trouble reaching you. Was it important? In Christ, daisy

10.02 | 08:33

Look at the Words say they "fell away". The had it, but lost it. Just like the Bible says your name can be blotted out of the Book of Life.

10.02 | 08:25

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10.02 | 03:32

I have just begun to start a blog called christTalk as well. Mine is a .com site. I was checking to see if my site was up and this is how i come to find yours.