Leah was married to a man who didn’t love her, who even felt he had been defrauded and manipulated into marrying her. No matter how many babies Leah had, she continued to live in the enveloping shadow of the woman her husband did love, and favored. Her situation left her despondent.
As Leah stood at the edge of the precipice, powerless, bereft, broken, and alone, with despair yawning below, she was presented with an inner choice. Would she allow despair’s gravity to pull her in, or would she look up to find God at work even in this dark and awful place?
Jacob had arrived, unexpectedly and unannounced, a young, handsome, and penniless stranger—well actually, he knew he was family, but no one else did, at first.
Probably remembering the way his mother Rebekah had been discovered by his grandfather’s trusted servant, sensing he was near the family’s homestead, and certainly thirsty and hungry after his long journey, Jacob headed for the local well.
After talking with some local shepherds, Jacob knew his uncle Laban’s home was nearby . . . and then he saw Rachel. Love at first sight! He wept, he kissed her, and so our story begins.
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Biblical exegesis from an equalitarian point of view
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