Daily Archives: January 15, 2018

Daily Bible Study

The latter part of Genesis 29 and the first half of chapter 30 give us the reason God intended one woman for one man. In these chapters we see a jealous competition between Jacob’s two wives and as a result, their two maids as well. What a mess! As we read on in chapter 30 we see another weakness of man, covetousness! Laban wasn’t willing to let go of Jacob because he was prospering with his assistance. The positive side of this coin though is the faithfulness and diligence of Jacob. He had been diligent in his work. When we get to the New Testament this is a command given to the church (Colossians 3:23 And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men;) This however allowed for Jacob to start prospering himself as it gave him opportunity to set his terms. Again, proper perspective allows for a good attitude. Prosper he did! While the Scripture records some plan of putting Poplar rods in front of the cattle when they drank, I think the real blessing came directly from God.
Genesis 31:11 and 12 also bears that out. The angel indicates to Jacob that the breeding that has prospered Jacob was because he had “seen all that Laban” had done unto him. No doubt Jacob understood that as well. No telling how much blessing we have experienced that we thought was because of our own prowess is actually a direct blessing from God. We owe Him more praise than we even realize!!

Finally the day came when God told Jacob it was time to go. Keep in mind that Jacob has now been with Laban over 30 years and probably closer to 40 or more. There is two factors that I can think of that made Jacob leave without announcing his departure. 1. It’s a pretty safe bet that Laban would try to talk him out of it again and he didn’t want to have to deal with that. 2. Laban’s sons were already displeased with Jacob, this might put them over the edge to do something unreasonable. He has no problem convincing his family it was time to go, so they pack up and steal away into the wilderness. Several days later (three to be exact) it becomes apparent to Laban that Jacob had left with all of his prosperity. Laban gathers his boys and angrily rides after them. Rachel almost messed everything up by stealing her father’s idols. Perhaps she thought they were pretty, who knows, but it was the wrong thing to do and it almost cost her, her life and a miserable trip for the family (to say the least). Once again we see, as we will time after time, mankind’s nature manifest. Romans 7:18 says, “…in my flesh dwelleth no good thing!” There is just no good in us. The only hope we have and the only value we will ever have comes to us by the grace of God. We however must be recipients of that grace. 1 Corinthians 15:10 says, “But by the grace of God I am what I am: and His grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain…”

It took him 7 days but Laban finally caught up to Jacob. I’m sure that the longer he had to ride the angrier he got. However, God spoke to Laban in the night on his journey and warned him not to speak “either good or bad” (Gen. 31:24) to Jacob. The faithfulness of our God is impeccable! The promise He made to Jacob at Bethel was as rock solid as the God who made it! When God promises something in His Word, it’s as safe as the gold in Fort Knox (assuming there is gold in Fort Knox). While there was nothing he could do I like the way Laban expresses his anger when he finally comes face to face with Jacob, ” It is in the power of my hand to do you hurt: but the God of your father spake unto meyesternight, saying, Take thou heed that thou speak not to Jacob either good or bad.” (Gen. 31:29) At that point Laban launches a search for his idols with Jacob’s permission. Rachel devises a cunning plan to hide the idols and gets away with it. Rachel will pay for her sin later, in God’s time and in God’s way. But for now God is protecting Jacob. At this point Jacob unloads on Laban. Laban handles it well and asks for a treaty of peace between them which Jacob grants. This is where the famous “MIZPAH” takes place. It’s an agreement to ask God to watch over three relationship despite the separation of miles. There are bracelets and necklaces and other jewelry and things made from this Mizpah prayer, “The Lᴏʀᴅ watch between me and thee, when we are absent one from another. “. (Genesis 31:49} They set up a pillar of stones monument as a witness of their agreement and parted friends.

The Bible says “A SOFT answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.” (Proverbs 15:1) Make it your policy to answer those who would stir you up in this way. God bless, have a great day.

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