The Bible Slam: Genesis Chapter 28

Here we begin the tales of kissing cousins, and a little bit more polygamy, to boot.   After Rebekah told Isaac in the previous chapter that she didn't care for the local gals, Isaac blesses Jacob and tells him to find a wife in Padanaram.   This wife was to be a cousin (Jacob's mother's brother's family).   After he does that, Esau goes to his dad's side of the famly (Ishmael, the older brother) and takes a wife, adding to the two he already had (see Genesis 26).

Along the way to Padanaram, Jacob camps out and awakes to proclaim, "How dreadful this place!" after he has a dream in which he sees God.   God gives him the same promise of lands and progeny that he had previously given Abraham.   He builds an alter and names this spot "Bethel" (see talking points below).

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Talking Points.

As pointed out in the Skeptic's Annotated version of the King James Bible, Bethel is repeatedly named in this book.

Jacob names Bethel for the first time, before meeting Rachel. Later in 35:15, just before Rachel dies, he names Bethel again. (And it was called Bethel long before it was named Bethel in 12:8 and 13:3.)

In Genesis 12, Abraham (then called Abram) also built an alter there.

Polygamy is totally endorsed in the Bible, as we have seen so far.   Not only do these men who God approves of take additional wives, but they also have concubines.   Here's a deeper look at polygamy in the Bible, from a current affairs point of view.

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