Genesis 2:7, 1:26-27

Genesis 21-28          Isaac and Rebekah's Life: Learning to Trust and Yield        – The Bible Teaching Commentary

Isaac and Rebekah's Life:

Learning to Trust and Yield (Genesis 21-28)

Isaac and Rebekah's Life:
Learning to Trust and Yield
Genesis 21-28

• Isaac's formative years
• Abraham's Faith Tested (22)
• The sins of the father (26)
• Isaac & Rebekah's marriage (24)
• Yielding to others (26)
• The Bedside Scene (27)
Spiritual Decline Chart


The account of Isaac and Rebekah gives us a glimpse of the lives of a God-fearing couple. Genesis chapters 21 to 28 shows in minute detail the thoughts, actions, successes and failures of the patriarch and his family.


Recognize the importance of submission to God rather than fleshly desires in all areas of life.
Examine the qualities of a Godly woman.
Demonstrate God faithfulness and blessing in spite of our weaknesses and failures.

• Abraham's later years – Isaac's formative years

Isaac was born to Abraham when he was 100 (21:5) and observed his dad's relationship with God and others for the next 75 years (25:7).
  • Problems of polygamy
  • Hagar and Ishmael had to be sent away to avoid strife in the family (21).
  • Lack of faith and yielding to sinful desires.
  • Serial polygamy of today causes family problems just like it did 4000 years ago.

• Abraham's Faith Tested (22)

  • In his obedience to God, he is willing to sacrifice
  • his son
  • his only son
  • the son whom he love
  • Burnt offering as a demonstration of his obedience and worship of God.
  • Abraham demonstrated that following God means taking risks: Trusting God to work out His promise of giving him many descendents, even if Isaac died.

• The sins of the father passed on - Isaac's lack of faith (26)

  • Lying about Rebekah to the King of the Philistines in fear of his own life.
  • Notice the seriousness of this offense in Abimelech's response.

• Isaac and Rebekah's marriage (24)

  • Trusting God to provide a spouse.
  • Why was it so important for Abraham to get Isaac a wife from the Mesopotamia?

  • Why did Abraham send the servant and not Isaac himself to find the bride?

  • What qualities of a wife was Abraham's servant looking for?

  • Other qualities of a God's women
    • Purity in remaining a virgin.
    • Obedient to authority in following her father and brothers decision to marry Isaac.
    • Inner and outer beauty.
  • Demonstration of Abraham's faith in providing the right wife for Isaac.
  • Demonstration of Isaac's faith in accepting what the Lord had prepared. Instead of actively seeking a wife, he was waited on God until he was 40 years old. (24:63).
  • Demonstration of Rebekah's faith in leaving her family and go to a far off land with a man of God
    • “I will go” (24:58)
    • Laban and Bethuel answered, "This is from the LORD; we can say nothing to you one way or the other. (24:50)

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• Yielding to others - Isaac desire to live at peace (26)

Live at peace with the herdsmen at Gerar.

Isaac was non-confrontational and moved away from conflict at Gerar.

Isaac dealt shrewdly in the many ways:

      Wisely re-digging his father's wells

      Respectfully giving the wells the same names Abraham gave them

      Graciously and peacefully giving up wells that causes contention and dispute and moving on

      Gratefully giving thanks to God for the well of ample room.

Trust God to work out every situation.

Make every effort to live in peace with all men and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord. (Hebrews 12:14)

• The Bedside Scene (27)

Isaac's mistake: Even though God clearly specified that the older is to serve the younger (25:23), he wanted to secretly bless Esau instead of Jacob.

    Isaac intended to defy God's clear command.

    After realizing that he had blessed Jacob, Isaac trembled violently knowing that his scheme had failed.

Rebekah's mistakes

    Planned to deceive Isaac. This is a demonstration of the lack of submission to her husband.

    Rebekah modeled deception for Jacob (27:6-17).

    Did Rebekah act out of faith or out of deception? Was she right in claiming Jacob's blessing for him by deception?

    God demands our obedience to His methods and timing to accomplish His work.

    God ordains the means as well the end. We don't have to give God a hand when things seem to go wrong. Obedience to God in the process of accomplishing a goal is as important as goal itself.

Favoritism breaks down a family

    Isaac favored Esau because of his taste for game (25:28) – This trait was passed down to Esau who sold his birthright for food (25:33).

    Rebekah favored Isaac.

Price to pay for disobeying God

    Jacob paid the price of the deception by being in exile for 20+ years.

    Rebekah's nightmare “Why should I lose both of you in one day?” (27:45) came true: Shortly thereafter, Isaac sent Jacob to Laban in Padan Aram to find a wife and to escape Esau's wrath. Esau soon left his father's household (32:3). Many years passed before the two brothers were at peace with each other. They were finally united in paying last respects to their father after his death.

Deception is passed down:

    Isaac did not trust Jacob, who claimed to be Esau. Isaac had to touch him (27:21)

    Jacob and Esau did not trust each other (25:32-33)

    Rebekah gets her information by eavesdropping on others' conversation (27:5 and 27:42)

    Deception passed on to Isaac's descendants.

End result: Lack of trust and division in the family. Character flaws passed down.

Lesson: God's ultimate goal is still achieved regardless of our defiance and disobedience. But we can avoid the negative consequences if we follow God's methods and timing.

A Godly family is established by following the commands given in Ephesians 5:22-6:4.




Spiritual Decline in the Patriarchal Age

First Generation

Second Generation

Third Generation

Fourth Generation


Ishmael and Isaac

Esau and Jacob

Joseph and his eleven brothers


not son of

little faith

man of God
showed faith

man of faith
believed God

called on God
believed God

at first
compromised, later turned to the Lord

treachery, immorality, lack of separation from Canaanites

built altars to God (Gen. 12:7, 8; 13:4, 18, 22:9)

built an altar to God (Gen. 26:25)

built altars to God (Gen. 33:20; 35:1, 3, 7)

No altars were built to God in the fourth generation

The Genesis Index

Genesis Introduction:  Introduction to Genesis |  Outline and Genealogies  |  Genesis' Chronologies (5 & 11) |   Unified Themes of Genesis
Genesis 1-2:3:   The Worship of the Creator |  The Meaning of Creation  |  Creation Lessons on God.  |  God and the World's Religions
Genesis 2:4-17:    Preparation for Man (Genesis 2:4-6) |  Creation of Man (Gen. 2:7, 1:26-27) |  Purpose for Man (Genesis 2:8-17)
Genesis 2:18-25: The Foundations of Marriage
Genesis 3:1-13: The Fall of Man | Temptation (Genesis 3:1-6) | The Fall (Genesis 3:7-13) | Questions 3:1-6 | Questions 3:7-13
Genesis 5-9: Genesis Flood | Genesis 05 Genealogical Chart
Genesis 10-11: Noah's Sons| Questions | History Genesis 10:6-11 | Tower of Babel Genesis 11:1-9 | Questions | Culture Genesis 11
Genesis 12-22:   The Call: Genesis 12.1The Promises: Genesis 12.2-3  |  The Means: Genesis 15The Testing: Genesis 22
Genesis 12-16: Introduction |   Place Detour: Genesis 12:10-20; 20 |  Person Detour: Genesis 12:13-14Procedure Detour: Genesis 16-17
Genesis 14:1-24: Three Steps to Spiritual Growth | #1 Observe | #2 Utlilitize | #3 Secure
Genesis 18-19: Cultural Woes of Sodom | Appearing to Abraham | Visit to Sodom | Debate of Homosexuality and Sodom
Genesis 21-26: Isaac's Model for Godly Marriages
Genesis 27-36: Genesis 27-36 Jacob's Life of Faith
Genesis 25-37: Influence of Sin | God and Man's Sin | Understanding Man's Sin Nature | Understanding Jacob's Sins
Genesis 37-50: Joseph’s Dillusonment | Genesis 42-47:12: The Big Picture | Conclusion | The Reason

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