That was the name of the book I used to prepare for our recent church retreat. It wasn’t the only one I read (besides the Bible), but that one just stuck out thanks to it’s depth and great study questions.
Not many people signed up and there were at least as many children as adults. I’m glad we had decided beforehand that their would be no child care and that our kids would study the life of Jacob with us. That turned out to be a good decision. The kids did great!
The more I study the life of Jacob, the more like the fact that it has great depth to it. It’s the real deal, a life with lot’s of problems, ups and downs. God shows us he had a plan even before Jacob was born, and even though Jacob is a schemer and oftentimes has an “unchristian” approach to life, God blesses him just as planned.
Terry Young, the author summarises it well: “Jacob was overshadowed by his grandfather, Abraham, and eclipsed by his son Joseph. And yet Jacob’s story stretches over half the book of Genesis, enabling us to understand him as a real person. From Jacob’s perspective we can look at the struggle for success, the pressure of work, the stress of the family, risk, and uncertainty. This may seem a far cry from the blessing he was promised, but this book encourages us to follow Jacob through the wreckage of his relationships until he has to stop running. And when he stops running, he starts to find time for worship.
Would to God we’d also learn that lesson early on in life!