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Book of Genesis for Beginners: Chapters 32-37

Updated on March 23, 2018

Jacob Wrestling with the Lord

Jacob wrestling with the Lord
Jacob wrestling with the Lord | Source

Genesis Chapter 32

Jacob wants Peace with Esau

Gen 32:1-21

Jacob sent one of his servants to talk to his brother Esau with the intention to make peace with him. Jacob’s servant came back to Jacob and told him that Esau was coming to meet him along with four hundred of his men. Jacob became afraid and divided his camp into two so at least one camp could escape the attack from Esau. Jacob prayed to God for help in making peace with Esau.

Jacob set forth three droves of his servants in front of him with gifts for Esau in hopes that Esau might be pleased with Jacob. The plan was for Esau to come to the first drove and be offered gifts from Jacob. Once Esau would pass the first drove, he would encounter the second drove with gifts and so forth. Jacob hoped that after the third drove of gifts from Jacob, Esau might forgive Jacob and make peace with him.

Jacob Wrestles with the Lord

Gen 32:22-32

Jacob went out alone and a man wrestled with him. Jacob was winning the fight, so the man touched Jacob’s hip and it became disjointed. The wrestling stopped and the man changed Jacob’s name to Israel. Jacob was now called Israel because he won the fight against God and man.

Esau Embraces Jacob

Esau Embraces Jacob
Esau Embraces Jacob | Source

Genesis Chapter 33

Jacob Meets Esau

Gen 33:1-20

Esau finally came to Jacob with his men. Jacob came up to meet Esau bowing several times as a servant would. Esau went to Jacob and kissed him. Esau asked Jacob what the droves of men and gifts were about. Jacob told him that the gifts were for him. Esau did not accept the gifts at first, but Jacob pushed him into accepting the gifts as a token of peace.

Esau wanted to journey with Jacob. Jacob agreed to the journey, but told Esau to go ahead of him because Jacob’s children and his flock were frail and could only move slowly. Jacob told Esau that he would meet up with him in Seir.

Esau and his men went onward to Seir, but Jacob and his people went to live in Succoth, and built a house and booths for his livestock. Jacob then went to the land of Shechem. Jacob bought a piece of land in Shechem, and lived there.

Genesis Chapter 34

Shechem Defiles Dinah

Gen 34:1-31

Shechem saw how beautiful Jacob’s daughter Dinah was. Shechem took Dinah and defiled her. After Shechem defiled Dinah, he fell in love with her. Shechem asked his father Hamor to talk with Jacob to ask for marriage. Hamor went to Jacob and explained what happened between Shechem and Dinah. Jacob’s sons were present during the conversation and secretly plotted against Shechem and the Hivites.

Shechem made a deal with Jacob that he along with all male Hivites would become circumcised and Jacob would have a free stay in the land of the Hivites in exchange for Dinah’s hand in marriage. Shechem got circumcised and ordered his men to get circumcised too. Jacob’s sons set up camp in the land of the Hivites, and dwelled there for a few days.

When the Hivites were at their most venerable state recovering from the circumcision, Jacob’s sons killed Dinah, Shechem, and the male Hivites for defiling their sister. Jacob heard what happened in the land of the Hivites concerning his sons and was not pleased about what had happened. Jacob told his sons that his people were just a few and would not be able to withstand any retaliation from the Hivites. Jacob’s sons told Jacob that they could not let Shechem go unpunished.


Bethel | Source

Genesis Chapter 35

God Speaks to Jacob

Gen 35:1-15

God told Jacob to go to Bethel and dwell there with his family. Jacob gathered his people and then journeyed to Luz. God came to Jacob again and changed his name to Israel because he was going to be the father of many nations for God. Jacob renamed Luz to Bethel to honor God’s covenant with him.

Rachel and Isaac Die

Gen 35:16-29

Israel and Rachel were on their way to Ephrath (Bethlehem) and Rachel was having a hard pregnancy. Rachel finally gave birth to Israel’s last son, but died doing so. Jacob’s last son was named Benjamin. Isaac died at the age of 180 years and his sons, Jacob and Esau, buried him in Hebron.

Genesis Chapter 36

Esau Stays with Jacob

Gen 36:1-8

Esau encamped with Jacob and stayed with him for a time. Esau married Canaanite wives which started the generations of Edom:

Descendants of Esau (Edom)

Esau & Adah
Esau & Oholibamah
Esau & Basemath
(> = one descendant down the blood line)

Esau Departs from Jacob

Gen 36:9-19

Esau’s family and possessions became too many to coexist with Jacob and his possessions. Esau decided to depart from Jacob and moved to the land of Seir. In the land of Seir, Esau’s family multiplied:

Descendants of Esau (Edom) in Seir

Esau & Adah
Esau & Oholibamah
Esau & Basemath
>> Nahath
(> = one descendant down the blood line)

People of Seir

Gen 36:20-30

The inhabitants of the land of Seir had their own line of descendants:

>>Timna (daughter)
>>Oholibamah (daughter)
(> = one descendant down the blood line)

* The living sons of the founding fathers in the land were called chiefs. The Chiefs of Esau’s people were: Timna, Alvah, Jetheth, Oholibamah, Elah, Pinon, Kenaz, Teman, Mibzar, Magdiel, and Iram.

Kings of Seir

Gen 36:31-43

There was a line of kings in the land of Seir. The line of kings was:

Line of Kings in Seir

(> = one descendant down the blood line)

Joseph: Dreamer/Redeemer #2: Betrayal and Deception

Genesis Chapter 37

Joseph’s Brothers Hate Him

Gen 37:1-11

Joseph was his father’s favorite son. Israel made Joseph a multi-colored robe because he loved Joseph so much. The other sons of Israel became jealous of Joseph and hated him for being their father’s favorite son.

Joseph had a dream and then told his dream to his brothers. Joseph dreamed that he and his brothers were working in the field gathering sheaves of grain. Joseph’s brothers' sheaves were gathered around Joseph’s sheaf, but were bowing down to his sheaf. Joseph’s brothers asked him if they were now supposed to be ruled by him. Joseph’s brothers hated him even more now.

Joseph had another dream and told his father and his brothers the dream. The dream was about the sun, the moon, and eleven stars bowing down to Joseph. Israel and Joseph’s brothers became angry at Joseph for telling them his dream. Israel asked Joseph if he, his mother, and all his brothers were now supposed to bow down to him. Joseph’s brothers hated him even more.

Joseph’s Brothers Sell Joseph

Gen 37:12-36

Israel wanted Joseph to help heard Israel’s flock with Joseph’s brothers. Israel told Joseph to go and find his brothers and ask if it is well with them and the flock to be with them. Joseph went and found his brothers and the flock. As Joseph was coming to his brothers, they were conspiring to kill him. The brothers wanted to kill Joseph and throw him into a pit. The brothers would then tell everyone that Joseph was devoured by a fierce animal. The oldest son, Reuben, told his brothers not kill Joseph, but to throw him in a pit.

Joseph met up with his brothers and they tore off his multi-colored robe. Joseph’s brothers threw Joseph in a pit and then sat down to eat. One of the brothers, Judah, saw an Ishmaelite caravan go by and told his brothers that it would be better to sell Joseph to a caravan than to leave Joseph for dead. The brothers agreed to sell Joseph and sold him to Midianite traders that were passing by. The Midianites took Joseph to Egypt.

Joseph’s brothers tore up his multi-colored robe and covered it with goat’s blood to resemble Joseph’s blood. Joseph’s brothers brought the bloody robe to their father for identification. Israel recognized the robe to be Joseph’s and asked his sons what had happened to Joseph. Israel’s sons said that a fierce animal must have ripped Joseph to threads and devoured him. Israel mourned for his favorite son’s death not knowing that Joseph was being sold by the Midianite traders in Egypt to Pharaoh’s officer, Potiphar.

What do You Think?

Do you think Joseph's brothers should have sold him?

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