The story of Jacob and his daughter Dinah is a fascinating and exciting story. Full of stupidity of a young naive girl, the raging lust of a young man, the loyalty of family and the viciousness of war. The story can be found in Gen 34-35.

Dinah foolishly went out in a new town her family was traveling through, alone. The leader of the towns son took her and raped her. He kept her and did not allow her to return to her father. His father came and talked to Dinah’s father, Jacob, to make a deal. When Dinah’s brothers found out, young passion took over older wisdom!

A clever battle and rescue plan was put into place, apparently behind their father’s back. The lies they told the young  abductor’s father, that if all the men in the town would agree to be circumcised, then they would agree to settle there, and allow their daughters to marry these foreign men. The men of the town agreed and were all circumcised. On the second day after circumcision, Dinah’s brothers charged into town, killing the young man and his father and all the men, because they couldn’t fight, due to be so sore and they rescued their sister Dinah!

Sounds like a good plan perhaps but Jacob is incensed, for he understands their youth and passion, but also knows they are vastly outnumbered in this land of Canaan!  Jacob wrings his hands and rebukes his sons saying, “You have ruined me, making me infamous and embroiling me with the inhabitants of the land of the Canaanites and the Perizzites!  And we are few in number, and they will gather together against me and attack me; and I shall be destroyed, I and my household.” 34:30

I just love the next part! This is a BAD situation. To say they were outnumbered was a joke and the land was infiltrated with hybrid giants as well! The situation was actually hopeless. Have you faced a hopeless situation? Let’s read on and see what Jacob did, as he and his family are about to meet God!

“And God said to Jacob, Arise, go up to Bethel and dwell there. And make there an altar to God Who appeared to you (in a distinct manifestation) when you fled from the presence of Esau your brother.”

That was another hopeless situation he was in, but that time he brought it upon himself.

Jacob told his family what they were going to do and in repentance, he had his household surrender to him ALL their idols, their ear-rings that they believed protected them from evil spirits, and they purified themselves according to the Law.

When this was done Jacob said, “Then let us arise and go up to Bethel, and I will make there an altar to God WHO ANSWERED ME IN THE DAY OF MY DISTRESS and WAS WITH ME WHEREVER I WENT.” 35:3

The end of the story is that God supernaturally protected them as stated in vs 5. “And they journeyed and a terror from God fell on the towns round about them, and they did not pursue the sons of Jacob.”

If you’re faced with a hopeless situation, go to God in Jesus and do what He says! Repent and don’t try to make the Word fit your circumstances, but rather take your circumstances to the Word! Had Jacob not repented, had he not put away the false gods, had he not high-tailed it to Bethel, had he not sought Gods help, had he not worshipped God, We would know nothing about Jacob and his 12 sons that made up the 12 tribes of Israel because there wouldn’t have been an Israel!

To obey is better than sacrifice!
1 Sam 15:22


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