He lodged there that night, and took from that which he had with him, a present for Esau, his brother: two hundred female goats and twenty male goats, two hundred ewes and twenty rams, thirty milk camels and their colts, forty cows, ten bulls, twenty female donkeys and ten foals. He delivered them into the hands of his servants, every herd by itself, and said to his servants, “Pass over before me, and put a space between herd and herd.” He commanded the foremost, saying, “When Esau, my brother, meets you, and asks you, saying, ‘Whose are you? Where are you going? Whose are these before you?’ Then you shall say, ‘They are your servant, Jacob’s. It is a present sent to my lord, Esau. Behold, he also is behind us.’” He commanded also the second, and the third, and all that followed the herds, saying, “This is how you shall speak to Esau, when you find him. You shall say, ‘Not only that, but behold, your servant, Jacob, is behind us.’” For, he said, “I will appease him with the present that goes before me, and afterward I will see his face. Perhaps he will accept me.”
So the present passed over before him, and he himself lodged that night in the camp.
We see here that Jacob was a fairly wealthy man. He was able to put together a pretty large present. Jacob was still not very confident in the promise of God. Even though God had said that he would be blessed, Jacob was still afraid of his brother. A guilty conscience harms our relationships with people and with God.
This passage indirectly shows us something about money. In our day of paper dollars, it’s becoming more clear how valuable real property is. You can’t eat paper. Real property is where earthly value really is as we see in the lives of these Old Testament believers. This world is dying, though. As Christians, we work for things that will never get lost or lose value. We will be paid for those things in heaven. We are God’s children and really, we own everything through our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. We can trust that He will give us what we need here on earth too.