Rev. Chris Hull, pastor of Zion Lutheran Church in Tomball, Texas, studies Genesis 29:31-30:23 on today’s episode. Rev. Hull talks about prayer, our view of children, envy, and in this meditation a teaching on the blessed exchange.
“In the Beginning was the Truth” is a mini-series on Sharper Iron featuring a step-by-step walk through the book of Genesis, focusing on the truth of Jesus, the story of salvation found throughout the book, and how we view our lives through the lens of God’s promises. Sharper Iron is hosted by Rev. Jonathan Fisk.
31 When the Lord saw that Leah was hated, he opened her womb, but Rachel was barren. 32 And Leah conceived and bore a son, and she called his name Reuben,[a] for she said, “Because the Lord has looked upon my affliction; for now my husband will love me.” 33 She conceived again and bore a son, and said, “Because the Lord has heard that I am hated, he has given me this son also.” And she called his name Simeon.[b] 34 Again she conceived and bore a son, and said, “Now this time my husband will be attached to me, because I have borne him three sons.” Therefore his name was called Levi.[c] 35 And she conceived again and bore a son, and said, “This time I will praise the Lord.” Therefore she called his name Judah.[d] Then she ceased bearing.
30 When Rachel saw that she bore Jacob no children, she envied her sister. She said to Jacob, “Give me children, or I shall die!” 2 Jacob’s anger was kindled against Rachel, and he said, “Am I in the place of God, who has withheld from you the fruit of the womb?” 3 Then she said, “Here is my servant Bilhah; go in to her, so that she may give birth on my behalf,[e] that even I may have children[f] through her.” 4 So she gave him her servant Bilhah as a wife, and Jacob went in to her. 5 And Bilhah conceived and bore Jacob a son. 6 Then Rachel said, “God has judged me, and has also heard my voice and given me a son.” Therefore she called his name Dan.[g] 7 Rachel’s servant Bilhah conceived again and bore Jacob a second son. 8 Then Rachel said, “With mighty wrestlings[h] I have wrestled with my sister and have prevailed.” So she called his name Naphtali.[i]
9 When Leah saw that she had ceased bearing children, she took her servant Zilpah and gave her to Jacob as a wife. 10 Then Leah’s servant Zilpah bore Jacob a son. 11 And Leah said, “Good fortune has come!” so she called his name Gad.[j] 12 Leah’s servant Zilpah bore Jacob a second son. 13 And Leah said, “Happy am I! For women have called me happy.” So she called his name Asher.[k]
14 In the days of wheat harvest Reuben went and found mandrakes in the field and brought them to his mother Leah. Then Rachel said to Leah, “Please give me some of your son’s mandrakes.” 15 But she said to her, “Is it a small matter that you have taken away my husband? Would you take away my son’s mandrakes also?” Rachel said, “Then he may lie with you tonight in exchange for your son’s mandrakes.” 16 When Jacob came from the field in the evening, Leah went out to meet him and said, “You must come in to me, for I have hired you with my son’s mandrakes.” So he lay with her that night. 17 And God listened to Leah, and she conceived and bore Jacob a fifth son. 18 Leah said, “God has given me my wages because I gave my servant to my husband.” So she called his name Issachar.[l]
19 And Leah conceived again, and she bore Jacob a sixth son. 20 Then Leah said, “God has endowed me with a good endowment; now my husband will honor me, because I have borne him six sons.” So she called his name Zebulun.[m] 21 Afterward she bore a daughter and called her name Dinah.
22 Then God remembered Rachel, and God listened to her and opened her womb. 23 She conceived and bore a son and said, “God has taken away my reproach.”
- Genesis 29:32 Reuben means See, a son
- Genesis 29:33 Simeon sounds like the Hebrew for heard
- Genesis 29:34 Levi sounds like the Hebrew for attached
- Genesis 29:35 Judah sounds like the Hebrew for praise
- Genesis 30:3 Hebrew on my knees
- Genesis 30:3 Hebrew be built up, which sounds like the Hebrew for children
- Genesis 30:6 Dan sounds like the Hebrew for judged
- Genesis 30:8 Hebrew With wrestlings of God
- Genesis 30:8 Naphtali sounds like the Hebrew for wrestling
- Genesis 30:11 Gad sounds like the Hebrew for good fortune
- Genesis 30:13 Asher sounds like the Hebrew for happy
- Genesis 30:18 Issachar sounds like the Hebrew for wages, or hire
- Genesis 30:20 Zebulun sounds like the Hebrew for honor
English Standard Version (ESV)
The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Permanent Text Edition® (2016). Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.