Genesis Lesson 22 Day 3

Genesis Lesson 22 Day 2,Genesis Lesson 22 Day 3, Genesis Lesson 22 Day 4,Genesis Lesson 22 Day 5

Genesis Lesson 22 Day 3

Genesis 34:13-31

Jacob’s sons avenge the defilement of Dinah.

6a) Simeon and Levi devised a scheme and presented a counter offer.

If you circumcise every man in the city of Schechem, we will accept your proposal. If not, we will take Dinah and go.

Hamor and Shechem agreed to such an extreme demand because circumcision was not only practiced among the Israelites, but some other ancient peoples also circumcised their males. Shechem and Hamor knew of the practice from the rituals of other nations.1

Simeon and Levi used spiritual words to present their

What’s in it for the rest of the men?

I’m amazed Hamor and Schechem convinced all the men of the city to go along with the plan. Perhaps Shechem’s passion for Dinah stirred up their lust, believing the daughters from her family were especially desirable.

Hamor and Schechem also appealed to their greed with the question, “Will not their livestock, their property and all their beasts be ours?” (Genesis 34:23)

. . . and every male was circumcised. And on the third day when the men were in pain—

Crudely performed, circumcision could be quite incapacitating, particularly after two or three days (Kidner).*

“On the third day”—Several times in the Bible when we read those words, it’s followed by a significant event—

  • The Lord came down on Mt. Sinai. (Exodus 19:15-20)
  • Jonah survived the fish-tomb. (Jonah 1:7; 2:10)
  • Mary and Joseph found young Jesus in the temple among the teachers, listening and asking questions. (Luke 2:46)
  • Jesus worked his first public miracle at a wedding. (John 2:1-10)
  • Jesus walked out of his own tomb. (Luke 18:33)

This draconian massacre and plunder of Shechem was NOT that type of event and far exceeded the crime against Dinah.

Jacob seems only concerned about his family’s reputation among the other Canaanites and Perizzites for fear of retribution. Simeon and Levi respond with a weak excuse, “Should he treat our sister like a prostitute?” Because of a despicable crime committed by one man, they decimated a whole city.

Jacob! You brought that trouble on yourself. You passed your own deceitful nature into your boys. You set them a constant example of guile. They heard you lie to Esau at Peniel and start northwest after he went southeast. They saw your interest in the fat pastures when you pitched your tent in Shechem. You said nothing when Dinah was violated… Talk to God about your own sin before talking to these boys about theirs.” (Barnhouse)1

b) Consequences (See Genesis 49:5-7)

Jacob “blesses” his sons.

Simeon and Levi are brothers;
weapons of violence are their swords.
Let my soul come into their council;
O my glory, be not joined to their company.
For in their anger they killed men,
and in their willfulness they hamstrung oxen.
Cursed be their anger, for it is fierce,
and their wrath, for it is cruel.!
I will divide them in Jacob
and scatter them in Israel. (Genesis 49:5-7)

This prophetic word of God spoken through Jacob came to pass.

God did in fact both divide the tribes of Simeon and Levi, and scatter them among Israel.

The tribe of Simeon was effectively dissolved as a tribe, because of their lack of faithfulness, and absorbed into the tribal area of Judah.

Levi’s tribe was also scattered, but because of their faithfulness . . . during the rebellion of the golden calf (Exodus 32:26-28), the tribe was scattered as a blessing throughout the whole nation of Israel.1

7a) Various responses

Negative

Jacob and his sons provide a case study of the two negative extremes. One does nothing, then allows immature, unwise men to scheme, and then acted in a fit of fierce, cruel, out-of-control rage.

Other possible responses include revenge on a smaller, select scale, verbal confrontation, or slander.

Positive

With the story of Dinah so fresh in my mind, I’m having a hard time thinking of positive responses that don’t sound trite.

b) Rule out the wild and illegal options that come to mind.

Ask the Spirit of Council and Might and Spirit of Wisdom and Revelation for help.

Seek help, guidance, and support from wise believers, if possible.

Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceable with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” To the contrary, “if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. (Romans 12:17-21)

c) Another tough question

Seek the Lord for wisdom. Go to the Bible for answers.

I’m still thinking about what if this happened to one of my granddaughters. How would I plan a  rescue? Sometimes intervention is necessary.

for by wise guidance you can wage your war, and in abundance of counselors there is victory (Proverbs 24:6).

Where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors there is safety (Proverbs 11:4).

8) Lessons learned

Jacob’s decision to camp near Schechem reminds me of Lot’s choices.

Do not delay in following the Lord’s instructions to the letter. Disobedience can reap huge consequences on those you love.

Don’t shirk my duty in a crisis situation. Assuming others will “handle it” correctly, is often unwise. At the very least, be involved.

Don’t allow fear, insecurities, or sinful patterns from the past to cloud my judgment and dictate my response.

I’m naturally passive and have failed to properly confront situations when I should have. I can relate to how Jacob got himself into this situation.


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1 EnduringWord.com used by written permission.
2 AWM Living Commentary used by written permission.
3 Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations from *The ESV Bible® (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®) copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
4 Strong’s Concordance, public domain.

5 *Spirit Filled Life Bible®copyright © 1991 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. (The Holy Bible, New King James Bible) copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.

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