Jacob limped. Moses was “heavy of tongue.” Isaac was blind. But did Isaac also suffer from a mild mental retardation? Did Esau show symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder? Was Joseph “gifted”?
In Esau’s Blessing, Dr. Ora Horn Prouser offers a provocative new reading of the Hebrew Bible that applies a contemporary “special needs” perspective to the ancient texts. The resulting insights into biblical characters makes the Tanakh a source of educational and pedagogic wisdom.
“Who makes [man] dumb or deaf, seeing or blind? Is it not I, the Lord?” says God to Moses (Exodus 4:11). Prouser shows how reading the Bible can, in her words, “help us to imagine our special needs brethren in the embrace of a loving God, and instruct us to respond in a similar compassionate manner.”
This book confirms that the Bible wants people with disabilities to be treated with dignity and respect. It shows that characters with disabilities are among the most heroic personages in Scripture.
For those working in the field of special education, this book provides a framework that anchors their good work firmly in an ancient tradition and calls attention to its holy purpose. For those with loved ones with disabilities, Esau’s Blessing shows how God’s love and covenant extend to everyone.