Absolute Absolution

“His mother said to him, ‘My son, let the curse fall on me. Just do what I say; go and get them for me.’”—Genesis 27:13 (NIV)

What a story! Today we’re covering Genesis 26:34–27:13. To summarize, Isaac is on the brink of death, and he knows it. So, he calls Esau, his eldest son, in order to begin the process of bestowing his final blessings over him.

Here, Isaac was ready to give Esau the blessing of the firstborn, which he actually sold to Jacob for some stew in the previous chapter. But that wasn’t going to stop Esau from receiving it. And from what we’re told, Esau could have overcome the sale of his birthright because Isaac was still prepared to give him the blessing due the firstborn.

But Rebekah, who loved and favored Jacob above Esau, wasn’t having it. So, she devised a “harebrained” scheme to ensure Jacob would receive the blessing he had slithered his way into even going as far as to say, “Let the curse fall on me.” Does this absolve Jacob of his wrongdoing? Of his trickery? No. Rebekah is responsible for her sin and Jacob is responsible for his. Each acted in opposition to the nature and ways of God. No amount of “Oh, my pookie bear, my little angel . . . don’t worry. I’ll take the fall. I’ll accept the responsibility. You’ll be safe.” Sorry, Rebekah, it doesn’t work that way!

I want you to understand that no one, except for JESUS, can absolve you of your sinfulness by claiming responsibility for it! Isn’t it amazing that even in a seemingly unrelated passage, a passage riddled with our heroes of faith falling into sin and doing the wrong thing, that the gospel is not only present, it’s also front and center? It’s woven into the fabric of every story; it’s foreshadowed and alluded to in every account.

Isaiah 53:4–5 (NIV) tells us, “Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering . . . He was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.” Galatians 3:13 (NIV) declares, “Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us.” And 2 Corinthians 5:21 (NIV) states, “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”

Friends, apart from Jesus there is no absolution, restitution, atonement, or forgiveness for transgressions and sinfulness. Apart from Jesus, no one can save you or shoulder the responsibility for your imperfections, mistakes, failures, and flaws. But thanks be to God who has “rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins” (Colossians 1:13–14 NIV).

DIG: What does this story teach you about sin? What does it teach you about Jesus?

DISCOVER: Why couldn’t Rebekah’s actions absolve Jacob before God?

DO: If you’re saved, thank the Lord for the forgiveness of sins; for the redemption and justification we have in Him. Thank Him for absolving us, making us innocent and pure through His sacrifice. If you’ve never made the decision, but you want to be forgiven of your sins, set free from death, and made new and made right with God, you can find that by putting your faith in Jesus. If you have questions or are ready to receive Him, e-mail me at DanielS@CalvaryFTL.org and I’d love to walk you through it!