“Listening to God” Bible Reading & Devotion: May 12, 2022 – Genesis 034

Read chapter in full: biblegateway.com/passage/?version=ESV&search=Genesis+034

 

Genesis 34 (ESV)

The Defiling of Dinah

Now Dinah the daughter of Leah, whom she had borne to Jacob, went out to see the women of the land. And when Shechem the son of Hamor the Hivite, the prince of the land, saw her, he seized her and lay with her and humiliated her. And his soul was drawn to Dinah the daughter of Jacob. He loved the young woman and spoke tenderly to her. So Shechem spoke to his father Hamor, saying, “Get me this girl for my wife.”

Now Jacob heard that he had defiled his daughter Dinah. But his sons were with his livestock in the field, so Jacob held his peace until they came. And Hamor the father of Shechem went out to Jacob to speak with him. The sons of Jacob had come in from the field as soon as they heard of it, and the men were indignant and very angry, because he had done an outrageous thing in Israel by lying with Jacob’s daughter, for such a thing must not be done.

But Hamor spoke with them, saying, “The soul of my son Shechem longs for your daughter. Please give her to him to be his wife. Make marriages with us. Give your daughters to us, and take our daughters for yourselves. 10 You shall dwell with us, and the land shall be open to you. Dwell and trade in it, and get property in it.” 11 Shechem also said to her father and to her brothers, “Let me find favor in your eyes, and whatever you say to me I will give. 12 Ask me for as great a bride price and gift as you will, and I will give whatever you say to me. Only give me the young woman to be my wife.”

13 The sons of Jacob answered Shechem and his father Hamor deceitfully, because he had defiled their sister Dinah.14 They said to them, “We cannot do this thing, to give our sister to one who is uncircumcised, for that would be a disgrace to us. 15 Only on this condition will we agree with you—that you will become as we are by every male among you being circumcised. 16 Then we will give our daughters to you, and we will take your daughters to ourselves, and we will dwell with you and become one people. 17 But if you will not listen to us and be circumcised, then we will take our daughter, and we will be gone.” (vv18-24 skipped)

25 On the third day, when they were sore, two of the sons of Jacob, Simeon and Levi, Dinah’s brothers, took their swords and came against the city while it felt secure and killed all the males. 26 They killed Hamor and his son Shechem with the sword and took Dinah out of Shechem’s house and went away. 27 The sons of Jacob came upon the slain and plundered the city, because they had defiled their sister. 28 They took their flocks and their herds, their donkeys, and whatever was in the city and in the field. 29 All their wealth, all their little ones and their wives, all that was in the houses, they captured and plundered.

30 Then Jacob said to Simeon and Levi, “You have brought trouble on me by making me stink to the inhabitants of the land, the Canaanites and the Perizzites. My numbers are few, and if they gather themselves against me and attack me, I shall be destroyed, both I and my household.” 31 But they said, “Should he treat our sister like a prostitute?”

 

REFLECTION

  • No sooner had Jacob and his family entered the land entered than the security of Jacob’s family was threatened by the violent rape of Dinah, Jacob’s daughter. Shechem offers to marry Dinah, which is his right according to custom. Certainly, the brothers of Dinah were wrong to take revenge on an entire city for the act of one of its citizens. Jacob, whose fears had been relieved by reconciliation with Esau, now had a new worry. Would the other Canaanites attack his family because his sons had taken such bloody revenge?
  • Like Jacob’s, our life is never completely free of stress. One anxiety is relieved only to be replaced by a new one. Jesus said, “In this world you will have trouble” (John 16:33). We need a peace that has a source beyond this world.
  • Personalize the verse of John 14:27. Read the verse slowly: “Peace God leaves with (fill in your name); God’s peace God gives (fill in your name). God does not give to (fill in your name) as the world gives. Do not let (fill in your name) hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”
  • Thank the Lord for the peace He’s given you. Ask that God help you to experience His peace.

 

PRAYER

My loving and almighty Father, how great and how many are our sufferings in this world? When we are still immersed in self-righteous comfort, suffering often comes without warning! Some of these sufferings are caused by others or circumstances, but many are caused by our own greed and evil deeds! Our lives are full of troubles, and often the old worries have not yet been lifted, the greater new sorrows will come. We are so vulnerable and often filled with fear in the face of unpredictable life storms. However, because of You, with Your grace and love, I will be strong and courageous in this world full of suffering and sin, and have the courage to face all difficulties. Whom have I in heaven but You? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides You. Let the peace from the Lord Jesus live in my heart forever, because the suffering in the world is great and deep, but our Lord Jesus Christ has overcome this world. Amen!

 

HYMN

Living Waters – youtu.be/LA9UfBEHciY

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