Explore the Bible
December 16 2018
Genesis 29:16-30 (HCSB)
There are many examples in the Bible of imperfect individuals whom God used in extraordinary ways. Scripture does not attempt to hide these individuals’ imperfections and failures. God often uses imperfect people with imperfect lives to advance His plans. One of these individuals was Jacob. He had an awesome experience at Bethel. Yet we see in this lesson Jacob would reap what he had sown.
Jacob arrived just outside of Haran in a field where there was a well. Shepherds were watering their sheep. The shepherds knew Jacob’s uncle Laban. Laban’s daughter Rachel brought the flock to the water and Jacob helped her get them to water. Keep in mind that Jacob was supposed to be looking for a wife from within his own family.
After Jacob had worked for Laban for a month Laban wanted to pay him. Since Jacob was in love with Rachel Jacob agreed to work seven years for Rachel (Gen. 29:18). Jacob worked hard for seven years. When it came time for Jacob and his bride to be alone Laban had substituted Leah for Rachel. Imagine Jacob’s surprise when he looked upon Leah the next morning. Jacob’s question to Laban must have pricked him with conviction “Why have you deceived me” (Gen. 29:25)? Maybe at that moment Jacob could understand emotionally how Esau must have felt when Jacob deceived his father and stole Esau’s birthright.
Jacob agreed to work another seven years for Rachel. It came to be but it was a terrible marital beginning for both Leah and Rachel. Jacob “loved Rachel more than Leah” (Gen. 29:30). The tragic event would set the stage for problems that would fester and continue for years.
As believers we can be thankful for God’s faithfulness to His promises even when we do the opposite of what He has called us to do. When we violate the will of God in our lives we always experience the natural consequences of our sins. We need to remember that God’s grace overcomes the greatest of sins.