What does Genesis 25:23 mean?Rebekah, overwhelmed by the difficulty of her pregnancy, decides to approach the Lord to find out what is going on. The children inside of her are "struggling" so much that she's become concerned (Genesis 25:22). Modern readers should remember that Isaac and Rebekah didn't have the same kind of medical tools available to us today; more than likely, she has no idea that there are actually two children in her womb. All she knows is that the turbulence she feels is not right; this is not a normal part of pregnancy.
In seeking God's answer, Rebekah may have consulted a prophet of some sort. We don't know. She does, however, receive a very specific prophesy given in the form of a poem.
The prophecy may have seemed vague and unhelpful at this specific point in Rebekah's life, but it describes what is to come very clearly. Rebekah's two sons, Jacob and Esau, would indeed become two peoples or nations. Their relationship would be marked from the beginning by conflict and division. One would be stronger, but the older one would become a slave or servant to the younger one.
The Lord's answer to Rebekah's prayer began to be fulfilled very soon, as the following verses reveal.