(3) Most expositors believe this text reflects an example of a typological prophecy (i.e., a picture prophecy, as distinct from a word prophecy). So the shepherds who gathered there waited until there was a group to move it. On this particular afternoon, a young traveller called Jacob was there too. When the seven years were over Jacob demanded his bride, and Laban prepared a wedding feast – though the Hebrew words suggest it was more of a drinking banquet. John William Waterhouse, The Household Gods. The bride was dressed in the finest clothes, including a rich head-dress and veil that covered her face. The voice is that of a woman who is weeping bitterly. Rachel may have been the more loved of the two women, but she was not the most fertile. "Rachel's Tears." No matter how she prayed to God, no matter how much she was loved by Jacob, Rachel did not conceive. and now he was fooled when Leah pretended to be her sister Rachel. She might become the mother of the future tribal leader. She conceived and bore a son and said, ‘God has taken away my reproach’; and she named him Joseph, saying ‘May the Lord add to me another son!’. Jacob won the battle of wills because he was quick-witted and skilled in animal husbandry. He did not. They pointed towards a woman in the distance, saying she was the daughter of his mother’s brother. Neither of the young lovers had understood the implications of this statement. But Jacob had come empty-handed, and could not produce the normal bride-price for Rachel. Rachel was cheated by her father. Why then have you deceived me?’. Leah means ‘cow’ Our latest podcast episode features popular TED speaker Mara Mintzer. The Bible does not say when Rachel was born, nor how old she was when she married Jacob, nor how long she lived. It indicts the apostle Matthew as an unscrupulous manipulator of the Old Testament. This was not a random act of malice, for years ago on what should have been her wedding night, Laban had stolen Rachel’s happiness. The paragraphs (ASV) may be cataloged as follows (for a fuller discussion, see Jackson 1979, 79-87): In this study, we are focusing on verse fifteen. During the night he had taken Leah’s virginity, and in tribal society this meant she was his wife, like it or not. A thousand or so years after her death, Rachel is symbolically portrayed by the prophet Jeremiah: “Thus says Jehovah: A voice is heard in Ramah, lamentation, and bitter weeping. Naturally, Laban and his sons resented Jacob’s success. Laban means ‘white’; it was often linked with leprosy In response, Rachel ran to her father’s house and told him about the young man. A prospective bridegroom was expected to give financial compensation to the family of the bride, to make up for the loss of their daughter. But there was not much that could be done. The expression “latter days” is employed by the prophets for the Christian age (cf. Rachel had an older sister Leah, not so beautiful (see her story at Leah, mother of many sons) and Laban had quietly pointed out that the older sister in a family was usually married before her younger sister. One day, Leah’s son Reuben found some mandrake roots in the fields. He knew about cross-breeding techniques for his flocks and was able to develop a particular type of animal that Laban had previously agreed Jacob might keep. In giving birth to Benjamin she died, and was buried near Bethlehem (Genesis 35:19). ©2020. This practice was common in the ancient world; the woman became a concubine instead of a servant, and it was a step up the social ladder for her. The whole family group assembled, ready to return to the land of Jacob’s father, Isaac. (You can read more about this at Money and Marriage.). It is a signal to the reader that Jacob had already developed the work ethic. Jacob stayed with Rachel’s family for a month, and during this time he fell deeply in love with Rachel. This article was most recently revised and updated by, https://www.britannica.com/biography/Rachel-biblical-figure. Before they set out, she took the small figurines that represented the spirits of ancestors and the protective deities of her father’s family (the teraphim), telling no-one at all what she was doing. Earlier in the story, Rachel said she would die if she had no sons (Genesis 30:1). When Laban was gone Rachel’s family moved on, and on the way to Ephrath she went into labor. So after the ceremonial week of the wedding to Leah was over, Rachel married Jacob, becoming his second but most-loved wife. Typically, William Barclay wrote: “Very certainly the verse in Jeremiah has no connection with Herod’s slaughter of the children. . (2) Others maintain there is a relationship between the two texts, but it is not a case of genuine prophecy. He was then allowed to marry Rachel as well, in return for seven more years of labour. Most ancient tribes had customs that allowed menstruating women to withdraw from physical contact with the tribe while they had their periods, and women welcomed this time of rest from their usual tasks. Rachel and Leah were also dissatisfied by the way things were panning out financially, and felt they are not getting what they were entitled to as Laban’s daughters. Almost immediately after marrying Jacob and despite the fact she was ‘unloved’, she became pregnant and gave birth to a series of male babies. Rachel, in Genesis, the first book of the Hebrew Bible, one of the two wives of the partriarch Jacob. The furious Jacob confronted Laban. The rear part of the tent was private. A bitter rivalry grew up between the two women. Did I not serve with you for Rachel? When Jacob saw Rachel at close quarters, he was smitten. Daily Life – Prayer – Paintings – Books of the Bible – Bible Paintings, see her story at Leah, mother of many sons. He chatted with the shepherds, telling them that his family had originally come from this area. The restrictions on her date of birth are: 1. This was news to Jacob. Money was involved in a marriage. The birth of Rachel’s son Joseph seemed to jolt her family into action. Because of the mutual suspicion between the two men and double-dealing on both sides, there could be no amicable resolution of the matter. It was, but Rachel would not live to see him grow. This view cannot be endorsed by anyone who respects the doctrine of Bible inspiration. She had used the laws of ritual cleanliness to her own advantage. All rights reserved. Moreover, he had been fooled with the same trick: Who says the Bible has no sense of humour? But it was not going to be as easy as that. Each time she had another son she prayed that Jacob would finally love her. Chapter 31 can be arranged into ten thematic segments: Section 1 begins with a chronological notation, “at that time,” which is the equivalent of “the latter days” in the previous verse (30:24b).