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“In exile”

Behold, it was Leah. —Genesis 29:25

Read Genesis 29:12-30

The Lord fulfilled the promise He gave: “and thou shalt spread abroad” (Gen.27:14). Jacob had not only married and received many children, but his material wealth had also increased greatly. Despite these blessings, he experienced difficult times because of his earlier sin, and had to live in exile away from his family. Jacob’s new life had started out so well when Laban took him in and promised him Rachel for seven years of work. But Laban deceived his nephew and gave him Leah in marriage instead.

This trickery must have been a shock for Jacob. But it was also a mirror held up before him, letting him experience what it was to be deceived as he had deceived his father and his brother. Driven by greed, Laban proposed that Jacob work another seven years for Rachel, and despite the inherent sinfulness of the bar-gain, Jacob agreed. By marrying two wives, Jacob brought unrest, jealousy, hatred and envy into his family. And yet, in spite of all this human meddling, the Lord God still fulfilled His counsel and plan of salvation. The Lord had said to Abraham, “In thee shall all the families of the earth be blessed” (Gen.12:3). Out of this sinful generation, the Messiah would one day emerge as the lion of the tribe of Judah. Jacob’s history teaches us that the Lord keeps His promises even when, humanly speaking, there is every reason not to. “My ways are higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts” (Is.55:9).

When can we hope for God’s blessing?


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