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20 By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau concerning things to come.


The next three men illustrate those who die well, by faith (Isaac, Jacob, Joseph). None of them saw the Abrahamic Covenant fulfilled to its completion.

Abraham’s patriarchal line continued by Isaac’s blessing of Jacob and Esau.

20 By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau

Jacob and Esau were twins. Just before their birth, the Lord told Rebekah, their mother, that the elder would serve the younger (Ge 27:26–29). Esau was born first. Jacob, however, received the blessing of being the firstborn son, although he was not the firstborn son (Ge 27:27–29). His older brother, Esau, as the firstborn forfeited this special blessing for selfish reasons (Ge 27:39–40). We can see Isaac’s faith in his words to Esau (Ge 27:39–40). He gave his special blessing to Jacob (Ge 27:28–29).  Blessing is always related to promise in the book of Hebrews.

Isaac was partial to Esau because of his hunting prowess. He determined to pass his singular blessing to Esau, but he did not understand God’s plan for Jacob. Esau also sold his birthright and forfeited its rights.

Isaac blessed Jacob with an irrevocable blessing. This was the covenantal blessing of the Abrahamic Covenant. Esau merely received a general blessing but not the specific blessing of Jacob. Esau had previously rejected his birthright as the older son.

Before these two boys were born, God announced to their mother Rebekah that they would become the heads of two nations and that the elder (Esau) would serve the younger (Jacob). Normally the elder son would receive the primary blessing of the inheritance, but God overruled and gave the blessing to Jacob.

concerning things to come.

Isaac trusted that God would fulfill His promise to Abraham through him and his sons. God clearly spelled out His promise to Isaac in Genesis 26:3–4. God passed Abraham’s promises to Isaac. Although Isaac failed the Lord many times, he never lost trust in God. His faith extended to the future.


God works on our faith even if we exercise it reluctantly.


Isaac believed that God would be true to His promises even though he personally did not see them come true. It was not until after the passing of blessing to Jacob that Isaac saw the plan of God. In the final analysis, Isaac accepted the fact that God’s will for the blessing would come through Jacob, then he finally blessed him.

In all this, God overruled Rebekah’s chicanery.

Christians can reject their inheritance rights through not believing God’s promises.