Biblical Family Values Parte the Firste: Sibling Rivalry
Abraham’s sister/wife Sarah has died. He’s only in his mid-hundreds, so he gets himself another wife, Keturah, who’s apparently considered a concubine. He certainly treats her like one. He has six more sons with her. Old Abe isn’t one for keeping the sons he sires with mere sex slaves around where they can compete with his darling Isaac, so he gives the boys gifts and tells them to GTFO, just like he did with Ishmael. Like many men who hate paying child support, he apparently doesn’t really consider them his sons (Gen. 25:1-6).
After all that effort making babies he doesn’t even want, Abraham dies at a ripe old age. Ishmael, despite being cut out of Abe’s will, helps his half-brother Isaac bury their Pop, but after all he’s been through, and the loyalty he shows at the end, who do you think God blesses? Isaac. Of course. Asshole (Gen. 25:7-11).
Isaac tries to get busy knocking up his wife Rebekah, but she doesn’t get preggers until he begs God to pretty-please let him sire children, because God likes to make people beg. Isaac apparently kisses God’s arse so well he gets twins. Poor Rebekah has a rough pregnancy, the twins in her womb fighting so bad she wonders why she’s even alive. God tells her she has two whole nations in there, and the younger twin will make his older brother serve him. Thus, we know even before he’s born that Jacob will be a douchebag. He even comes out of the birth canal holding brother Esau by the heel, like he’s trying to drag him back so he can be first (Gen. 25:21-26).
Esau turns out to be an awesome hunter, while Jacob lounges around in tents all the time. For some reason, Rebekah loves the lazy boy best, while Isaac’s fonder of a son who brings him meat meals on the regular (Gen. 25:27-28).
Jacob, being a cunning little rat who has plenty of time to scheme, isn’t at all above cheating his very own brother. One day, he’s cooking a stew when Esau comes in from a long day out in the field. Sweaty, no doubt, and exhausted, and absolutely famished, he asks Jacob for a bowl. Now, you’d think a book full of good family values, stuff you should really base your life around, would show Jacob cheerfully sharing his delicious foodstuffs with his older bro, and pouring him out a tall glass of cold beverage to boot. I mean, that’s what families are supposed to be about, right, helping each other and loving each other, not to mention feeding hungry members? We should share like they teach us in preschool, right? Ha ha ha, silly person, no. This is not how you treat family at all! If you’re being Biblical, you screw your poor brother six ways from Sunday (Gen. 25:29-30).
Jacob, seizing his moment, says, “You want some of this? Sell me your birthright first, bro.” (Gen. 25:31)
That’s right. He makes his older brother trade his entire inheritance for a bowl of lentil stew. I mean, it’s not even a hearty meat stew. What an asshole.
Esau’s so hungry he thinks he’s dying, and of course an inheritance is no use to a dead man, so he agrees. Jacob makes him swear it, and he does. Now, you may think Esau was a dumbass who deserved what he got, but let’s consider the circumstances. I suspect he may have been hypoglycemic. When you’ve been out working your ass off in the burning hot sun all day, and your blood sugar drops like the stock market on Black Monday, and every muscle’s shaking, and your vision’s going out, and you cannot brain because your brain is running on the very last fume, then yeah, you’ll agree to a lot of stupid shit to get some food. Besides, you probably don’t suspect your brother would be such a major asshat that he meant it. But Jacob totally does, and would’ve let his brother starve to death if he’d said, “Fuck you, Jake.” (Gen. 25:32-34)
And that’s totally cool with God, as we’ll soon see.
Those, children, are traditional biblical family values. So don’t feel bad about fucking your family over. Go ahead and cheat ’em out of everything they’ve got and ever will have. God will love you for it.
Copyright © 2015 by Dana Hunter. All rights reserved.
Really Terrible Bible Stories vol. I: Genesis is now available at Amazon! Worldwide, even! To order outside the United States, visit your country’s Amazon website and search for “Really Terrible Bible Stories” by Dana Hunter. Thanks for reading!