Genesis 27:18 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 27:18, NIV: "He went to his father and said, 'My father.' 'Yes, my son,' he answered. 'Who is it?'"

Genesis 27:18, ESV: "So he went in to his father and said, “My father.” And he said, “Here I am. Who are you, my son?”"

Genesis 27:18, KJV: "And he came unto his father, and said, My father: and he said, Here am I; who art thou, my son?"

Genesis 27:18, NASB: "Then he came to his father and said, 'My father.' And he said, 'Here I am. Who are you, my son?'"

Genesis 27:18, NLT: "So Jacob took the food to his father. 'My father?' he said. 'Yes, my son,' Isaac answered. 'Who are you--Esau or Jacob?'"

Genesis 27:18, CSB: "When he came to his father, he said, "My father." And he answered, "Here I am. Who are you, my son?""

What does Genesis 27:18 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

If we didn't know how high the stakes are for Jacob, Esau, and the future of Israel, this scene would feel like something out of a fictional comedy. Rachel and Jacob are attempting to con Isaac into giving "the blessing" to Jacob instead of Esau (Genesis 27:5–10). To pull it off, they need old, blind Isaac to believe that he's talking to Esau and not Jacob (Genesis 27:1–6). In order to make this happen, Jacob is dressed in Esau's clothes, to mimic his scent (Genesis 27:15). He's wearing goat skins on his arms and neck so that he'll feel rough and hairy, like his brother (Genesis 27:16). He's bringing the food his father specifically asked for (Genesis 27:9).

And yet, right from the start, it looks like the whole scheme is going to fall apart. Isaac may be old and blind, but he's not deaf. Jacob comes before his father carrying the delicious meal, supposedly meat freshly killed and prepared by Jacob's hairy, outdoorsman of a brother, Esau. Jacob begins, perhaps too timidly, by saying, "My father." Isaac immediately asks who is speaking. He is expecting Esau, but he hears something not right in the voice, and it's too soon for Esau to have returned. Now Jacob will need to lie outright or abandon the plan…so he lies.

This moment inspires two future incidents in Jacob's life. Through God's intervention, Jacob will suffer under a bait-and-switch scam (Genesis 29). And, he will be forced to identify himself, honestly, before being blessed in a later event (Genesis 32:26–28).