Genesis 27:36 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 27:36, NIV: "Esau said, 'Isn't he rightly named Jacob? This is the second time he has taken advantage of me: He took my birthright, and now he's taken my blessing!' Then he asked, 'Haven't you reserved any blessing for me?'"

Genesis 27:36, ESV: "Esau said, “Is he not rightly named Jacob? For he has cheated me these two times. He took away my birthright, and behold, now he has taken away my blessing.” Then he said, “Have you not reserved a blessing for me?”"

Genesis 27:36, KJV: "And he said, Is not he rightly named Jacob? for he hath supplanted me these two times: he took away my birthright; and, behold, now he hath taken away my blessing. And he said, Hast thou not reserved a blessing for me?"

Genesis 27:36, NASB: "Then Esau said, 'Is he not rightly named Jacob, for he has betrayed me these two times? He took away my birthright, and behold, now he has taken away my blessing.' And he said, 'Have you not reserved a blessing for me?'"

Genesis 27:36, NLT: "Esau exclaimed, 'No wonder his name is Jacob, for now he has cheated me twice. First he took my rights as the firstborn, and now he has stolen my blessing. Oh, haven't you saved even one blessing for me?'"

Genesis 27:36, CSB: "So he said, "Isn't he rightly named Jacob? For he has cheated me twice now. He took my birthright, and look, now he has taken my blessing." Then he asked, "Haven't you saved a blessing for me?""

What does Genesis 27:36 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Though Bible scholars are not clear about the definition from the language itself, the name "Jacob"—Ya'aqob in Hebrew—implies a "heel grabber," or "usurper," or "one who cheats." This was a name given to Jacob as a result of his unusual birth: holding the heel of his older brother (Genesis 25:25–26) after a contentious pregnancy (Genesis 25:22). Esau, in his bitter disappointment about losing the blessing, describes his brother's name as appropriate to his actions. Jacob—"the one who cheats"—really is a liar and a cheat!

As evidence, Esau points back to the moment when Jacob purchased Esau's birthright for a bowl of stew (Genesis 25:29–34). While it's true that Jacob took advantage of Esau's foolish disregard for his birthright, it seems as stretch to say that Jacob cheated Esau in that instance. He was manipulative, but Esau knew exactly what was happening. In stealing the blessing, however, there's no doubt Jacob used lies to take what Isaac did not intend to give to him.

What's the difference between a birthright and a blessing? The birthright belonged, by default, to the oldest son. He would inherit a double portion of the family estate. Esau had sold this right to Jacob. The blessing, on the other hand, apparently could be given to any of the children as the father saw fit. In Isaac's case, he had clearly planned to give the greater blessing to Esau, including future rule over his brother.

The giving of that blessing was seen as so tangible that even though it was received as part of a deception, the giving of the blessing remained intact. In Isaac's eyes, the transaction was completed. It was, however, not unusual for a father to give some kind of a blessing to any or all of his children. Esau now asks Isaac if there is not blessing "left over" that he can confer to Esau.