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Jacob Heads Home First Meets Esau

Jacob went on his way from the interaction with Laban, the dinner, and the covenant. As he goes, he ran into the angels of GOD; they met them. He probably thought they were regular men until they left. We entertain angel unaware sometimes.

Genesis 32:1-21 KJV

[1] And Jacob went on his way, and the angels of God met him. [2] And when Jacob saw them, he said, This is God’s host: and he called the name of that place Mahanaim. [3] And Jacob sent messengers before him to Esau his brother unto the land of Seir, the country of Edom.

[4] And he commanded them, saying, Thus shall ye speak unto my lord Esau; Thy servant Jacob saith thus, I have sojourned with Laban, and stayed there until now: [5] And I have oxen, and asses, flocks, and menservants, and womenservants: and I have sent to tell my lord, that I may find grace in thy sight.

[6] And the messengers returned to Jacob, saying, We came to thy brother Esau, and also he cometh to meet thee, and four hundred men with him. [7] Then Jacob was greatly afraid and distressed: and he divided the people that was with him, and the flocks, and herds, and the camels, into two bands;

I am not worthy of the least of all the mercies and truth…

[8] And said, If Esau come to the one company, and smite it, then the other company which is left shall escape. [9] And Jacob said, O God of my father Abraham, and God of my father Isaac, the Lord which saidst unto me, Return unto thy country, and to thy kindred, and I will deal well with thee:

[10] I am not worthy of the least of all the mercies, and of all the truth, which thou hast shewed unto thy servant; for with my staff I passed over this Jordan; and now I am become two bands. [11] Deliver me, I pray thee, from the hand of my brother, from the hand of Esau: for I fear him, lest he will come and smite me, and the mother with the children.

[12] And thou saidst, I will surely do thee good, and make thy seed as the sand of the sea, which cannot be numbered for multitude. [13] Also he lodged there that same night; and took of that which came to his hand a present for Esau his brother;

Esau Meets Jacob

[14] Two hundred she goats, and twenty he goats, two hundred ewes, and twenty rams, [15] Thirty milch camels with their colts, forty kine, and ten bulls, twenty she asses, and ten foals. [16] Moreover, he delivered them into the hand of his servants, every drove by themselves; and said unto his servants, Pass over before me, and put a space betwixt drove and drove.

[17] And he commanded the foremost, saying, When Esau my brother meeteth thee, and asketh thee, saying, Whose art thou? and whither goest thou? and whose are these before thee? [18] Then thou shalt say, They be thy servant Jacob’s; it is a present sent unto my lord Esau: and, behold, also he is behind us.

[19] And so commanded he the second, and the third, and all that followed the droves, saying, On this manner shall ye speak unto Esau, when ye find him. [20] And say ye moreover, Behold, thy servant Jacob is behind us. For he said, I will appease him with the present that goeth before me, and afterward I will see his face; peradventure he will accept of me. [21] So went the present over before him: and himself lodged that night in the company.

Brief Comments

The angels of GOD met Jacob and he realized this was GOD’s host; so he gave the place a name, Mahanaim. Mahanaim means two camps; it is actually the same word or wording used in Songs of Solomon 6:13.

Two companies of armies; the LORD has two companies of armies (the resurrected and changed saints, and the innumerable angels). After this meeting, Jacob sent messengers ahead to pre-meet with Esau and his company.

Esau was not living at home anymore but in the land of Seir, which was now called the country of Edom. Remember, these are twin brothers, Esau and Jacob. They are the same age; how does one have two wives, two concubines, and eleven children, and another has the country of Edom?

Esau Married into the Family of Seir

Esau married himself in a league with the children of Seir. This may also be why Edom has a matriarchal lineage; one’s mother or grandmother determines their nationality. He married into the family of Seir and established a nation; this is how Edom had dukes and officials long before Jacob was even a nation.

Nevertheless, Jacob told his servants how to address Esau so he and his company would find grace with Esau. when the messengers returned, they reported that Esau is coming to meet him with four hundred men (intimidation).

Jacob was greatly afraid and stressed, so he began to divide his family into groups so they could escape if they had to. Leah and Rachel’s husband then went into prayer; he prayed for deliverance from Esau.

Giving Gifts

He decided to give Esau gifts; hundreds of goats, ewes, and rams. Dozens of camels, colts, bulls, and foals among other things. Jacob commanded his family and servants what to say to Esau and his people.

This had to be a very nervous time for Jacob knowing what transpired the last time he saw his brother, Esau. Jacob’s servants went over and did as he commanded, but Jacob stayed back that night by himself.

More 5 Minute Studies

From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. The disciples asked, “Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?” And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation. These are the words which thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel.

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