Saturday, August 08, 2009

Two Nations

Genesis 25:22-24: But the children struggled together within her; and she said, “If it is so, why then am I this way?” So she went to inquire of the Lord. And the Lord said to her, “Two nations are in your womb; And two peoples shall be separated from your body; And one people shall be stronger than the other; And the older shall serve the younger.” When her days to be delivered were fulfilled, behold, there were twins in her womb.

I do not know exactly why the author of Genesis used the phrase “struggled together within her” to express the physical feelings that Rebekah was having while she carried her twins. The actual Hebrew word is ratsats and it indicates that a sense of crushing was involved. Perhaps the twins were large and Rebekah small, causing her to feel each movement of one of them as ‘crushing’ against the other. In any case, the action and perhaps the pain associated with such movement over the pregnancy were sufficient to cause Rebekah to wonder why she was experiencing this conflict within her body.

Oftentimes things happen to us and we wonder why we are feeling the way we are. Many of us just keep on wondering. Some of us ask our friends while others take the next step and visit doctors and other specialists, but not Rebekah. She knew God had created her and all that was within her. She likely knew the twins were an answer to Isaac’s prayer. With those facts, Rebekah first inquires about her condition “of the Lord”. And God answers her. If we are truly seeking His answers, He does address our concerns.

God tells Rebekah that the two children in her womb represent two nations from which will come two peoples. One of them will be stronger than the other; and the older child and nation stemming from it will serve the younger child and peoples stemming from it. How does a young mother deal with such words from the Lord? Although the Bible does not tell us how Rebekah reacted, we can be sure it was with some anxiety as to what all that would look like in the years ahead. Sometimes we ask God a question and He gives us an answer that we only partly comprehend. The rest requires patience and trust, as well as, the necessary obedience.

Rebekah waited until it was time for her to deliver and sure enough, she gave birth to twins.

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