God’s story is anything but boring. Our study through Genesis has been full of twists and turns, faith, deceit, love, rejection, pain, sorrow, miracles and rejoicing. We sometimes find ourselves identifying with one or more characters in the story. This week’s story includes quite the cast. For the last few weeks, we have been following Jacob. So far, he has been anything but impressive (in terms of faith). He has deceived his brother and father; he escapes to his uncle’s house to avoid getting killed. This week, we pick up with his arrival in his homeland. Little does Jacob know that God is about to turn the table. The trickster is about to be tricked.
Jacob falls in love with a beautiful girl named Rachel. Her father promised her hand in marriage in exchange for seven years of work. The story is one of patience, endurance and love. We read,
(Genesis 29:20 NIV) So Jacob served seven years to get Rachel, but they seemed like only a few days to him because of his love for her.
Maybe life was going to be OK for Jacob. Sure, he lied to his father and brother, but who’s perfect, right? Yet God has not forgotten his scheme.
A wedding night is a highly anticipated event. You can imagine how intense the excitement must have been for Jacob; he had been engaged seven years. Most engagements in our culture range from six months to 3 years. Finally, the big day arrives. Rachel’s father (Laban) throws a party; everyone celebrates. But at some point, Laban substitutes his eldest daughter. We aren’t exactly sure when Jacob figures it out. The text simply tells us,
(Genesis 29:25 NIV) When morning came, there was Leah!
As we explore this story in detail on Sunday, we discover the tables turned. Jacob, the deceiver, is deceived. There are many facets to this story, a modern-day soap opera would have to compete for such drama. But in the end, God is doing his work. He is forming a people from this twisted bunch. He is forming his man Jacob into the person He has called him to be.
If you have a few minutes, listen to Rich Mullins’ take on this story and please join us on Sunday as we engage Scripture together.