If you've been reading through Genesis with the 5 day Bible Reading Plan then you'll have heard about a pretty dysfunctional family! The Jesus Story book Bible rightly tells us that the Bible isn't mainly a book of heroes - in fact as we look at each of them we see almost all of them have some pretty big flaws and Jacob is no exception! The miracle of the Bible is how God can use such messed up people to bring about His purposes.
Jacob had been promised so much by God, and yet he wasn't content to trust God he felt the need to take matters into his own hands, and the result was a tragic fall out with his brother and uncle (Genesis 27-31). Despite all of this God continued to work his purposes out, and humbled Jacob until he cried out to Him for help (Genesis 32). Jacob's twelve sons experience similar rivalry, but as we'll see God still works his purposes out so that at the end of it all Joseph can say the incredible words in Genesis 50:20.
The disciples in the reading from Mark 14 don't seem much better - they all abandon Jesus, and the only one who didn't think about his own interests but the interests of others was put to death. But thank God that he was, otherwise there would have been no hope for any of us. The Jesus Storybook Bible is right - the Bible is not a book of heroes, but is about one hero "who comes from a far country to win back his lost treasure. It's a love story about a brave prince who leaves his palace, his throne - everything - to rescue the one he loves" - but we're just getting started. The good news for us is that not even messed up families and people like Jacob's can mess up God's plans, and no one is too far gone to be rescued.