And he discerned him not, because his hands were hairy, as his brother Esau's hands: so he blessed him.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
The plan is successful. Jacob now, without further objection, obeys his mother. She clothes him in Esau's raiment, and puts the skins of the kids on his hands and his neck. The camel-goat affords a hair which bears a great resemblance to that of natural growth, and is used as a substitute for it. Now begins the strange interview between the father and the son. "Who art thou, my son?" The voice of Jacob was somewhat constrained. He goes, however, deliberately through the process of deceiving his father. "Arise, now, sit and eat." Isaac was reclining on his couch, in the feebleness of advancing years. Sitting was the posture convenient for eating. "The Lord thy God prospered me." This is the bold reply to Isaac's expression of surprise at the haste with which the dainty fare had been prepared. The bewildered father now puts Jacob to a severer test. He feels him, but discerns him not. The ear notes a difference, but the hand feels the hairy skin resembling Esau's; the eyes give no testimony. After this the result is summarily stated in a single sentence, though the particulars are yet to be given. "Art thou my very son Esau?" A lurking doubt puts the definite question, and receives a decisive answer. Isaac then calls for the repast and partakes.He discerned him not, because all his senses were not only dulled with age and infirmity, but also held by Divine Providence, as theirs, Luke 24:16, for the bringing about his own purpose; so that it is no wonder he was so grossly deceived in the whole business.
because his hands were hairy as his brother Esau's hands; which could not in a short time become so naturally; it was more reasonable to think that Esau's voice should be altered and become like Jacob's, than that Jacob's hands should become like Esau's:
so he blessed him; or intended and determined within himself to bless him, for the blessing was not given till afterwards; unless this is to be understood of a common blessing, congratulating him on the quick dispatch he made, and the great success he met with; and after this gave him the patriarchal blessing, which as yet he had not, being not thoroughly satisfied of him, as appears by what follows.And he discerned him not, because his hands were hairy, as his brother Esau's hands: so he blessed him.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)23. blessed] Anticipating Genesis 27:26-29.
(Note: We must not think of our European goats, whose skins would be quite unsuitable for any such deception. "It is the camel-goat of the East, whose black, silk-like hair was used even by the Romans as a substitute for human hair. Martial xii. 46." - Tuch on v. 16.)
and sent him with the savoury dish to his father.
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