Gilbert House Fellowship #267: Genesis 33-35

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JACOB WAS not exactly an ideal father.

His reaction to the rape of his daughter Dinah by the prince of the city of Shechem is puzzling. Genesis chapter 34 shows that he didn’t say anything when learning of Dinah’s humiliation, or while his sons Simeon and Levi, two of Dinah’s six brothers by their mother Leah, plotted revenge against the city of Shechem, slaughtering the men after deceiving them into being circumcised. 

Jacob’s concern was not for Dinah or the murdered men, but for himself: “You have brought trouble on me by making me stink to the inhabitants of the land, the Canaanites and the Perizzites. My numbers are few, and if they gather themselves against me and attack me, I shall be destroyed, both I and my household.” (Genesis 34:30, ESV)

The Wormwood Oak at Beit El, Israel (our photo)

We also discuss Jacob’s reunion with his brother Esau, the spiritual significance of the city of Shechem (and its patron god, Resheph), and the deaths of Rebekah’s nurse, Deborah, Jacob’s wife, Rachel, and his father, Isaac.

Click here for the complete archive of our New Testament Bible studies to date, and click here for the Old Testament studies to date. Or go to for all of the audio.


  1. When Esau wept on Jacob’s neck, in the Hebrew scrolls there are 5 little bite marks above one of the words. I don’t have my old Tanach by me but they’re in there. The teachers used to say that Esau was really jealous/envious of Jacob and still angry.

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