“By your sword you shall live, and you shall serve your brother; and it shall come to pass, when you become restless, that you shall break his yoke from your neck.”
Though Esau would not receive the physical blessings passed down from Abraham, Isaac did give him a smaller blessing. He would receive limited agricultural blessings (verse 39)—but not to the extent Jacob’s descendants would receive them.
Isaac also prophesied that Esau’s descendants (later called “Edom”) would:
- Have a tendency toward violence.
- Would be perpetually less powerful than Jacob’s descendants.
- Would occasionally achieve limited victories over Jacob’s descendants (verse 40).
Esau’s descendants would later intermarry with the offspring of Ishmael (Genesis 28:9). The descendants of these two men who lost the blessings to Isaac and Jacob would form the core of the Arab peoples who would dominate the lands surrounding Israel. Throughout biblical history, we read of tension between Israel and Edom (1 Kings 11:14-25; 2 Kings 8:20-22).
Bible prophecy reveals that the descendants of Esau will exist in the end time. They will likely be a part of an Arab confederation known as “the king of the South” (Daniel 11:40-41; Psalm 83:4-5).
To learn more about the Arab nations in Bible prophecy, read our article “The King of the South.”
Tomorrow on the Daily Bible Verse Blog: “Waiting on God.”