Jacob Returns Home to Bury His Father

Genesis 35:29 – And Isaac breathed his last, and he died and was gathered to his people, old and full of days. And his sons Esau and Jacob buried him.

As they were heading to Bethlehem, Jacob’s beloved wife Rachel died giving birth to Jacob’s youngest son, Benjamin, who became the last of the 12 sons who would become the 12 tribes of Israel. She died in Ephrath, also called Bethlehem, where Jesus was later born. (Ruth 1:2, 4:11; 1 Sam. 17:12; Matt. 2:18)

Shortly thereafter, Israel’s son Reuben slept with his fathers’ concubine, Bilhah. This great sin against his father cost him his position as the firstborn son (Genesis 49:3-4; 1 Chronicles 5:1). Now the two oldest boys and the third have all lost their place as firstborn through the sin of murder and adultery (see Genesis 49:3-4) leaving Judah or Joseph next in line for the role of senior patriarch, which sets the stage for the rest of Genesis.

Finally, after at least 20 long years away, Jacob returned home to see his father Isaac, the same place where his father Abraham had also been, as he now too had transformed from the young impetuous trickster to a patriarch of faith like his father and grandfather. Jacob’s sons got to meet their grandfather, and then Isaac died at the age of 158 years old. His only two sons Esau and Jacob buried him.

What evidence is there of repentance and faith in Jacob and his family in this account?

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