Then they moved on from Bethel. While they were still some distance from Ephrath, Rachel began to give birth and had great difficulty. And as she was having great difficulty in childbirth, the midwife said to her, “Don’t despair, for you have another son.” As she breathed her last—for she was dying—she named her son Ben-Oni.
But his father named him Benjamin.
We go back a long time ago earlier to a birth that has sadness about it, because it meant the death of the mother, Rachel, when her little boy Benjamin was born. Our passage today also shares about the death of Isaac, Rachel’s father-in-law.
Then in chapter 36 we pick up the story of what happened to Esau after he lost that special blessing to Jacob. There are only a few of his descendants mentioned; the really interesting stories are those from the children of Jacob who become the Twelve Tribes of Israel.
Much more than a descendant of these ancestors, we are children of God being adopted into God’s family by what Jesus did for us. When you live aware of this fact, think of the impact that you are going to have on your own children!
Here is a sample of a seven-syllable breath-prayer
from today’s reading:
Benjamin while soul departs 35:18
For more information about this creative way to pray,
see Bible Breaths.
Saturdays are dedicated to the Sabbath Torah portions
read in synagogues throughout the world.
This plan follows those traditions that take a third of the portion
over a three year cycle, this year, the second part.
For more about the Torah portions and thoughtful commentaries, visit
The Jewish Theological Seminary.
These Firestarters are from a new edition of The Bible Through the Seasons being developed for families with children. For the Firestarters in the original edition, I recommend the ebook. You will have the entire program of well over a thousand Firestarters with you on your phone or tablet. More information…