A Daily Genesis

Genesis 29:31-35

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[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†. [/COLOR]Gen 29:31 . .The Lord saw that Leah was unloved and he opened her womb; but Rachel was barren.[/B]

God didn't make Rachel barren. She was already that way. And Leah was too. In fact, every one of the matriarchs were barren women. It must have been in their genes. But The Lord elected to repair Leah and leave Rachel out of whack for a while longer.

I really don't think what The Lord did was punishment against Jacob and Rachel. I think it was a countermeasure to force Jacob to pay a little more attention to Leah. It's very important for spouses to bond. Allowing Jacob to focus too much of his attention on Rachel would soon make Leah the odd man out; and a very lonely woman.

But why would God do that-- take an interest in Leah's problems? Because, as Hagar discovered, Abraham's god is a sensitive god who sees people (Gen 16:13-14). And it seems very obvious to me that He was sympathetic to Leah's circumstances.

And that tells me something. It's true that Leah was in on the scheme to trick Jacob. But God didn't get upset with her for that. In fact, it looks to me like He was actually very pleased that she married Jacob. After all, it was through Leah that the man predicted in Dan 7:13-14 would come, not Rachel. I believe that is very significant.

I would even go so far as to say that Leah was the one God Himself would have picked for Jacob if he had only sought a wife in the very same manner that Abraham had sought one for Isaac. But no. Jacob took matters into his own hands, came to Haran in person, and fell in love with the wrong girl. Well; he ended up marrying Leah anyway in spite of his feelings for Rachel; just like his dad ended up blessing Jacob in spite of his feelings for Esau.

Most guys have visions of the girl they would like to marry. She's young, gorgeous, shapely, and compliant. But the reality is: most will never find a girl like that. So they settle for what they can get and become resigned to missing out on life. Big mistake. Leah was no less a woman just because she wasn't Miss Haran circa 1770 bc. And when the chips are down in life, your very best friend had better be your wife. Beauty means nothing when a man is out of work, or coming down with cancer. That's when guys need a faithful friend, not a love pet.

Unbeknownst to Jacob, he was destined to father the twelve tribes of Israel. Up to now, It had been one patriarch fathering just one descendant. But that all changed with Jacob. The nation of Israel quite literally started with him.

(chuckle) That guy lived solo for better than eighty years of his life and then all of a sudden, WHAM, in just one week's time, four women moved in with him. Then, in just seven years time, he had a posse of juveniles running around the house. Awww-Haw-Haw-Haw-Hawww :-)

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†. [/COLOR]Gen 29:32 . . Leah conceived and bore a son, and named him Reuben; for she declared: The Lord has seen my affliction. Now my husband will love me.[/B]

Reuben's name is from [I]Re'uwben[/I] (reh-oo-bane') which means: See; a son!

Children do have a way of bonding a (normal) man to their mother. It doesn't always work, but often does.

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 29:33 . . She conceived again and bore a son, and declared; This is because The Lord heard that I was unloved and has given me this one also. So she named him Simeon.[/B]

Simeon's name is [I]Shim'own[/I] (shim-one') which means: hearing. Leah was obviously a woman of prayer and had no reservations about sharing her personal problems with the god of her choice.

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†. [/COLOR]Gen 29:34 . . Again she conceived and bore a son and declared; This time my husband will become attached to me, for I have borne him three sons. Therefore he was named Levi.[/B]

Levi's name is [I]Leviy[/I] (lay-vee') which means: attached; viz: bonded.

Jacob was indeed a family man now. In spite of his romantic passions for Rachel, he would never again feel the same way about Leah. She could never be just another woman in the house now that she was the mother of his children. Jacob couldn't help but feel bonded to her. God's idea worked. You say: how do I know it worked? Because the next boy was named in gratitude to God for saving the marriage.

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 29:35 . . She conceived again and bore a son, and declared; This time I will praise The Lord. Therefore she named him Judah. Then she stopped bearing.[/B]

Well done! And Judah was a real honor too. His became the tribe of Israel's kings; and from them descended David, and Christ.

The Hebrew word for "Judah" is [I] Yehuwdah[/I] (yeh-hoo-daw') from whence the word [I]Yehuwdiy[/I] (yeh-hoo-dee') is derived; which means a Jehudite i.e. Judaite; viz: a Jew.

The scheme God implemented to bond Jacob to Leah would probably not work with men like Esau. Not all guys are cut out to be family men. But Jacob was definitely cut out for it because he was a man who liked being home at night (Gen 25:27).

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