“After Jacob came from Paddan Aram, he arrived safely at the city of Shechem in Canaan and camped within sight of the city.”-Genesis 33:18
So once again history repeats itself.
We are told that Jacob transports himself and all his camp to an area called Shechem.
Let’s take a look back to Genesis 12:6.
“Abram traveled through the land as far as the site of the great tree of Moreh at Shechem. At that time the Canaanites were in the land.”
So Jacob had moved into the same place his grandfather had come to when he first entered Canaan.
However, understand that it was NOT called Shechem when Abraham was there.
Again, here we encounter a redaction.
Since the Torah that we read and study today was written in Moses’ time and Shechem was a well-established city in Moses’ day, Moses was simply using the city name known to his contemporaries to describe an area that undoubtedly went by a different name 500-600 years ago.
Furthermore, during Abraham’s time, Shechem was not even a city, more like a flat spread of ground.
However, in Jacob’s time, it was now a walled city.
We are told that Jacob bought this plot of land from the sons of Shechem’s king, King Hamor.
King Hamor was a Hivite which was one of the many tribes in Canaan at the time.
Note that the exact amount (100 pieces of silver) he paid for this plot of land was recorded.
Reminiscent of Abraham’s purchase of the Cave of Machpelah, the amount paid is important because it establishes that a fair transaction took place.
Now let’s fast forward in time to this exact same spot where we encounter Yeshua conversing with a Samaritan woman.
“Now Yeshua had to go through Samaria. So he came to a town in Samaria called Sychar, near the plot of ground Jacob had given to his son Joseph. Jacob’s well was there, and Yeshua, tired as he was from the journey, sat down by the well. It was about noon. When a Samaritan woman came to draw water, Yeshua said to her, ‘Will you give me a drink?'”-John 4:4-7
Note that during Yeshua’s time, Shechem went by the name Sychar.
Note also that the first Gentile to be offered a drink of living water from Yeshua was a woman and a despised Samaritan and that this life-changing invitation occurred at the very spot where Jacob/Israel settled upon his return to the promised land.
Finally, here’s an interesting trivia question.
What name does Shechem go by today?
Answer: It goes by the Arab name of Nablus.
Now get this.
The Palestinians claim that they ALWAYS held ownership of this land.
They claim to own the very plot of land whose purchase we just read about and where Jacob/Israel erected an altar called El-Elohe-Israel.
This means El, the God of Israel.
Oh Yeshua, return quickly please!
NEXT TIME WE BEGIN GENESIS CHAPTER 34