“Now Rebekah was listening when Isaac spoke to Esau his son” (Genesis 27:5).

Eavesdropping is secretly listening to private conversations of others without their consent. The term comes from the depiction of a person who stands so close to your house (just under the eaves) that they can overhear what is said inside.

Techniques for snooping on others have become more sophisticated with advancing technology. Eavesdroppers can wiretap telephone lines, intercept e-mail, or use computer software to electronically gather private conversations. Miniature “bugs” have been invented that can be put inside of a pen or stuck in a hidden place in your home or office. These tiny transmitters pick up and send your conversations to a nearby listening post.

While Isaac had weak eyes, Rebekah had excellent hearing. When Isaac explained his plan to bless Esau, Rebekah eavesdropped on their conversation. She knew her husband’s idea was against God’s will, so she felt impelled to give the Lord some help. Rather than letting God work things out, she took matters into her own hands and thwarted her husband’s plans.

Sometimes we are tempted to do wrong in order to set something right. We rationalize that some situations require us to use unethical means to justify the end result. Jacob was blessed by his father, but when Esau discovered he had been tricked he was so bent on revenge that Jacob had to run for his life. As a result, Rebekah never saw her favourite son again.

One of the consequences of sin is self-deception. What is wrong seems right. Self-justifying thoughts confuse our thinking, and we believe we are doing right while actually breaking God’s law. It’s a serious problem. Jesus predicted, “Yes, the time is coming that whoever kills you will think that he offers God service” (John 16:2). That’s why it is best to keep our ears tuned to heaven.

Dear Father in heaven, may my ears listen to only what You want me to hear today.

For Further Study: Genesis 27:5–29, 41–45; Psalm 143:8


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