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BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 5: Genesis 29:31-35

Summary of Genesis 29:31-35:

God gave Leah children because she was unloved. Rachel was barren. Reuben was named because Leah was miserable, his name meaning “he has seen my misery.” Simeon was named cause she was unloved, his name meaning “one who hears.” Levi means “attached.” Judah was named for “praise” of the Lord.

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 5: Genesis 29:31-35

14) Jacob to love her.

15) God shows us all kindness in difficult times. God shows kindness by continuing to be present, to guide, to lead, to be merciful, to forgive, and to give us hope through his son, Jesus.

16) She grows in her faith like we all do and realizes God is there for here when Jacob, her husband, is not emotionally.

17) God is faithful.

Conclusions BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 5: Genesis 29:31-35

I continue to be baffled as to why Jacob still sleeps with Leah besides the physical/procreation side. He knows Rachel is hurt by this, so why do it? Another sin since sex is meant as bonding as well as procreation. Sadly, sex is physical for all too many men today.

BSF notes takes the position that Jacob is fulfilling his duty by giving Leah an opportunity to bear children for status purposes. I can see this for maybe one or two kids, but to continue to have sex with her for all those years and watch his supposed beloved, Rachel, suffer heartache with each successive birth is nothing but selfishness in my eyes.

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 5: Genesis 29:31-35

Here we see Leah forced into a marriage with a man who will never love her, and she suffers because of it, hated by her sister, Rachel, yet she can’t change it. It’s not like she could leave or get a divorce. God loves her as he blesses her with children, so important in those times.

Isaiah 54:5 “For the Maker is your husband — the Lord Almighty is his name…”

Reuben is the first born son of Jacob, yet he would not inherit the promise.

We see Leah’s hope shift to God instead of Jacob, which she would never have.

Note the priests (the tribe of Levi) and the royal line (the tribe of Judah) comes from Leah, as well as the Messiah (from Judah). Leah was blessed for her circumstances and for her faith, indeed.

jacob is tricked to take leah as his wife www.atozmomm.com genesis 29

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 4: Genesis 29:21-30

Summary of Genesis 29:21-30:

Jacob asks for Rachel’s hand once his 7 years is up. Laban throws a feast, but when evening came he substitued Leah for Rachel. He gave Leah a servant named Zilpah. When morning came, Jacob realized he had been tricked. When he confronts Laban, Laban says the custom is to take the older daughter first. Jacob agrees to keep Leah as his wife, but he then marries Rachel in exchange for 7 more years of labor. Rachel’s servant is Bilhah.

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 4: Genesis 29:21-30

9) Laban may have been worried no one would marry Leah is she was uncomely. He also knew he could get free labor from Jacob basically for another 7 years. When he confronts Laban, Laban says the custom is to take the older daughter first.

10) Leah is now married to someone who does not love her. Rachel is favored. Rachel has to share her husband. No one trusts Laban.

11) Jacob deceived Esau out of the blessing, and he pretends to be Esau to receive Isaac’s blessing. Galatians says that Jacob sowed a sinful nature and reaped destruction because of it.

12) Just because you are forgiven does not mean you can change what happened. You cannot undo anything in this world. Actions reap other actions. You are responsible for your choices.

13) Unsure. It’s hard to see this from my eyes.

Conclusions BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 4: Genesis 29:21-30

I’m wondering how this went down and how both women felt about this. Leah was forced to marry someone who did not want her. Rachel was forced to allow her sister to take her place that night. I’m wondering too how Jacob did not notice this before he slept with her. Assuming there was no light, and no one said anything or Jacob would have recognized her voice. Still, the logistics of this deceit baffle me. You would think someone would know here.

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End Notes BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 4: Genesis 29:21-30

Leah would have been veiled until they were alone together and with no artificial light….still….

Neither girl had a say in this deceit. It was all Laban. Leah may have been happy, sad, angry. We just don’t know.

The morning must have been a shock. Everyone was angry probably — all because of original sin — Jacob’s.

Many Bible scholars believe that Laban’s excuse was made up and was no custom or law at that time.

Polygamy was a sin of ignorance in Abraham’s day. The example was Adam and Eve, but there was no law against more than one wife. Here Jacob is forced to have 2 wives in order to save Leah from a life of solitude, but it is still a sin.

Jacob most definitely reaped what he had sown, and while Jacob was the younger chosen by God to receive the blessing, he married the older instead.

God disciplined Jacob by allowing this to happen as a consequence of his previous sins. Still, Laban is guilty of sin as well. He used his own daughters for free labor and to ensure Leah was married.

The second 7 years was probably a lot tougher than the first. This was definitely a harder pill to swallow, especially considering Jacob’s age.

Laban gets what he wants initially, but, like always, he’ll get his later. God gives people what they want even when they use sin as a means, but they still have consequences.

In this time, Leah was not defiled and could not be married to another. Jacob was obligated to keep her. That being said, I don’t see how he was obligated to sleep with her and have children with her, especially if he didn’t love her EXCEPT for God’s mandate to be fruitful and multiply. Still, I don’t see how he continued doing this.

Having multiple wives was not uncommon in this culture at that time.

jacob meets rachel in paddan aram www.atozmomm.com genesis 29

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 2: Genesis 29:1-14

Summary of Genesis 29:1-14:

Jacob arrives at Paddan Aram, the land fo the eastern peoples. He saw a well where flocks of sheep were gathered. All the shephards would roll the stone away when it was time to water the sheep and then replace it. Rachel, who was a shepherdess, came to the well to water her flocks. Jacob moved the store for her so her flocks could drink. He told Rachel as he wept for joy that he was a relative of her father and a son of Rebekah. She ran to tell Laban, her father. Laban rushed out to meet Jacob, embracing him and kissing him.

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 2: Genesis 29:1-14

3) Jacob stopped by a well that was to water sheep, not people, like Abraham’s servant stopped by. Rebekah did water the servant’s camels for him as Rachel watered (with Jacob’s help) her father’s sheep. Abraham’s servant prayed at the well for God’s sign. Jacob moved the stone to help Rachel. Laban hurried out to meet Abraham’s servant as he did Jacob as well and welcomed him.

4) Providence is “the protective care of God or of nature as a spiritual power, or timely preparation for future eventualities.” Divine providence is God’s intervention in the universe, God’s guidance or God’s care of the world and all that is in it.” God is orchestrating the meeting of Jacob and Rachel. Jacob stops at a shepherd’s well, and Rachel is a shepheress. She comes to water her flocks when Jacob is there. He helps her, and he finds the family of his mother as he was seeking.

5) He has led me to a new home. Hoping for new opportunities this year with my writing. God has provided all I need faithfully in these tough times.

Conclusions BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 2: Genesis 29:1-14

Granted the world population in ancient times is a fraction of what it is today, but it still amazes me how easily people find each other in the Bible without cell phones, roads, or any sort of technology. God most definitely guides, that’s for sure.

map of jacob fleeing to haran www.atozmomm.com genesis 28End Notes BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 2: Genesis 29:1-14

Providence brought Jacob to the exact place he needed to be. In an age before navigation, this was, indeed, a miracle. Covering the well helped to preserve water from evaporation in this desert region. It may have been to prevent theft of water since water was so precious. Laban probably suspected that Jacob had a lot of money since he knew his father was wealthy, which explains his eagerness to meet Jacob.

BSF Study Questions Genesis Lesson 19, Day 5: Genesis 25:1-18

Summary of passage:  Abraham took another wife named Keturah and had more kids. He left everything he owned to Isaac but gave gifts to his other sons and sent them away to the land of the east.  Abraham lived 175 years and was buried with Sarah in the cave he bought from the Hittites.  God blessed Isaac who settled near Beer Lahai Roi.

Ishmael had 12 sons who became 12 tribal rulers.  He lived to be 137 years old.  His descendants settled near Egypt from Havilah to Shur as you go towards Asshur.  They lived in hostility towards their brothers.

Questions:

12a)  Isaac got everything.  Ishmael got gifts before he died.

b)  Isaac:  Map of Beer Lahai Roi:  http://bibleatlas.org/full/beer-lahai-roi.htm

The sons of Ishmael all settled in Arabia as did most of the sons of Keturah.

13a)  Personal Question.  My answer:  Provided my husband with a job opportunity.  He’s given me a band to play in to keep my mind busy.  We are lacking for nothing for we have savings.  I keep getting the message that I need to write so I keep at it.

b)  Personal Question.  My answer:  Husband.  Kids.  Dog.

Conclusions:  I spent a little bit of time trying to find where the descendants settled but everywhere I looked it was all speculation as to the exact location so in the end I just linked to where Isaac settled since we’re going to be seeing a lot of him coming up and left the rest to Arabia.

I think every day is special as a gift from God and everything He provides is special.  So food, clothing, shelter, and another day to live and breathe are special gifts from God.

Does Beer Lahai Roi sound familiar?  It should.  It’s the place where Hagar encountered God in the form of “the angel of the Lord” as she was fleeing from Sarai and Abram in Genesis 16:14.  The name means “well of the Living One who sees me.”  Interesting that Isaac now ends up there.

Fun Fact:  Abraham is mentioned 70 times in the New Testament.  Only Moses is mentioned more.

BSF Study Questions Genesis Lesson 19, Day 4: Genesis 24:29-67

Summary of passage:  Rebekah ran home and told all what had transpired.  Laban, Rebekah’s brother, ran out to the servant to bring him to their house.  So the servant, his men, and his camels were brought to Rebekah’s house and provided for.  The servant told them his story, how he came there seeking a wife for Abraham’s son, and how Rebekah had been the girl to answer his prayer to God.

Laban and Bethuel agreed that this was God’s will so they let Rebekah go.  The servant showered them with precious and costly gifts for the dowry.  The next morning Laban and Bethuel tried to delay the trip but they left immediately on Rebekah’s acquiescence.  The family blessed Rebekah and sent her on the long journey to Canaan.

Isaac whom we can assume had been praying for a wife as well greets the return party, hears the tale of the servant, and marries Rebekah.

Questions:

9a)  Deuteronomy says to not intermarry with unbelievers for they will turn you away from God to other gods and the Lord’s anger will burn against you and destroy you.  Paul says in Corinthians not to be yoked to unbelievers for they have nothing in common. Paul here was probably talking about the false teachers.  This verse has been extrapolated to the marriage realm but note Paul does not say marriage nor is he speaking about marriage prior to or after this passage.  See my post HERE with regards to this same question.

b)  Verse 50 when Laban and Bethuel acknowledge the servant as from the Lord and give him Rebekah “as the Lord has directed” in verse 51.

10a)  He faithfully told the story to Rebekah’s family about how Rebekah had passed God’s test.  When the family agreed to give Rebekah to him, the servant “bowed down to the ground before the Lord” (verse 52).  He says that “the Lord has granted success to my journey” in verse 56.  Everywhere you turn in this passage, the servant acknowledges God and gives Him all the credit.

b)  Isaiah 48:11 is God talking and He says (if you read verse 10 as well) that He tests us for His own glory.  Not sure how that speaks about attitudes of the people unless you assume the people God directs understand this.

1 Corinthians tells us God chooses the lowly ones so that they have nothing to boast about except for Him.  We should boast in Him.  Give Him the glory.  So we should humble ourselves and when we achieve it is because of God alone.  He chose us.

11a)  He gave Rebekah a gold nose ring, two gold bracelets, gold and silver jewelry, and articles of clothing.  He gave costly gifts to her brother and mother.

b)  Rebekah hears the story of how she was chosen from the servant (verses 34-49) and God is everywhere in the story.  Laban and Bethuel agree “this is from the Lord” (verse 50) and willingly give her to the servant.  The servant gave a huge dowry (verse 53), which gave credibility to the servant’s story.  He came prepared to bring home God’s chosen wife for Isaac.  The servant was eager to leave (verse 56)–to fulfill God’s purpose.

c)  A father desires a bride for his son.  Abraham for Isaac.  God for us.  A son was dead and then raised from the dead.  Isaac and Jesus.  The bride is chosen for marriage before they knew it (Ephesians 1:3-4).  Rebekah and us.  The bride is divinely chosen, called, and then lavished with gifts. (Revelation 19:7-8)  Rebekah and us.  She is entrusted to the care of the servant before she meets her bridegroom.  Rebekah and us.

Conclusions:  The best part of this story is the heart of the servant.  I would wager he was probably treated well by Abraham but servants in ancient times had extremely rough lives and had no social status nor class.  They were nothing in the eyes of many.  So the willingness of this servant to serve his master is a great picture of how we are to serve the Lord.  Everything is credited to God.  The servant is merely the instrument in God’s work.

This is how we should approach life.  God uses us to accomplish His purposes but so often our pride negates this or gets in the way.

Love the parallel to Jesus’s life in the questions.  He served his Father for us.  Incredible to ponder how we were chosen, brought, and loved by Jesus to God like Rebekah to Isaac.  Great stuff!

I’m not sure why we have the question 9a.  It does pertain to this lesson but I can’t say which way BSF is leaning.  If you read my post HERE, you will see a huge debate we had on my blog.  The only thing I wanted to add was the reference to Deuteronomy we had to look up.  This reference to me is null and void today since it is under the Old Covenant that Jesus shattered with his death.  So in terms of marriage today, I believe this doesn’t apply.  Marriage to Rebekah, yes.  Today.  no.

I’m saying this question is only in reference to Rebekah and it is here in order for us to understand the lengths Abraham took to find Isaac a wife and why (because God outlawed it).  Any extrapolation to today’s time should be done with caution.

Interesting reads I found:  Simple read of the church as the Bride of Christ:

http://www.gotquestions.org/bride-of-Christ.html

Great commentary on all of Chapter 24:  http://bible.org/seriespage/how-find-godly-wife-genesis-241-67