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  • Writer's pictureDeborah

Jacob and Rachel

Genesis 30:4 (Rachel gave Bilhah to Jacob)

Genesis 30:22-24 NKJV

Genesis 35:16-21 NKJV

Genesis 35:9-15 NKJV

Genesis 37:3-4 NKJV

Genesis 37:5-9 NKJV

Genesis 37:21-28 (The plot against Joseph)

Genesis 41 (Joseph and the famine in Egypt)

Genesis 41:41 NLT

A Story of Love Series

Jacob Part Two

Jacob loved Rachel best and her sister Leah had been blessed to bear Jacob many sons. Rachel was barren. As a result, Rachel gave her servant Bilhah to Jacob and she bore him two sons, Dan and Naphtali (Genesis 30:4).

Then God remembered Rachel and she had a son. We read in Genesis 30:22-24, “Then God remembered Rachel, and God listened to her and opened her womb. She conceived and bore a son and said, “God has taken away my reproach.” And she called his name Joseph, saying, “May the Lord add to me another son.”

Then some years later before she died in childbirth, we read in Genesis 35:16-21, “Then they journeyed from Bethel. When they were still some distance from Ephrath, Rachel went into labor, and she had hard labor. And when her labor was at its hardest, the midwife said to her, “Do not fear, for you have another son.” And as her soul was departing (for she was dying), she called his name Ben-oni; but his father called him Benjamin. So Rachel died, and she was buried on the way to Ephrath (that is, Bethlehem), and Jacob set up a pillar over her tomb. It is the pillar of Rachel's tomb, which is there to this day. Israel journeyed on and pitched his tent beyond the tower of Eder.”

Do you remember how much Jacob loved his wife, Rachel? Rachel had been barren but when Jacob was older she did conceive and bear a son and they named him Joseph. In Genesis 37:3-4 we read, “Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age. Also he made him a tunic of many colors. But when his brothers saw that their father loved him more than all his brothers, they hated him and could not speak peaceably to him.”

The coat of many colors that resembled his love for Joseph made Jacob’s older sons jealous of Joseph.

In addition to the beautiful coat, in Genesis 37:5-9, “Now Joseph had a dream, and he told it to his brothers; and they hated him even more. He said to them, “Please hear this dream which I have dreamed: There we were, binding sheaves in the field. Then behold, my sheaf arose and also stood upright; and indeed your sheaves stood all around and bowed down to my sheaf.”And his brothers said to him, “Shall you indeed reign over us? Or shall you indeed have dominion over us?” So they hated him even more for his dreams and for his words. Then he dreamed still another dream and told it to his brothers, and said, “Look, I have dreamed another dream. And this time, the sun, the moon, and the eleven stars bowed down to me.”

Joseph’s older brothers were livid and even Jacob questioned him. In Genesis 37:10-11, “His father rebuked him and said to him, “What is this dream that you have dreamed? Shall your mother and I and your brothers indeed come to bow down to the earth before you?” And his brothers envied him, but his father kept the matter in mind.”

Joseph’s brothers then plotted against him. In Genesis 37:19-20 “they said to one another, “Look, this dreamer is coming! Come therefore, let us now kill him and cast him into some pit; and we shall say, ‘Some wild beast has devoured him.’ We shall see what will become of his dreams!”

Now Reuben didn’t like the way this was headed so he convinced them not to kill Joseph but to put him in a pit. Reuben’s plan was to return later to rescue his younger brother Joseph. The other brothers put Joseph in a pit and took his coat of colors so they could show their father he was gone.

Then (without Reuben knowing it) the other brothers spotted a caravan passing by and Judah suggested that they sell Joseph and make some money. They sold their brother to the Ishmaelites for twenty shekels of silver and he was taken to Egypt (Genesis 37:21-28).

Fast forward to the famine. In Egypt Joseph gained a place in Pharaoh’s court because he was led by God to interpret Pharaoh’s dreams concerning the coming famine. Joseph advised there would be seven years of plenty followed by seven years of famine. Under Joseph’s leadership, Egypt used the seven years of plenty to prepare for the seven years of famine.

Joseph’s family was hit hard by the famine and when Jacob heard there was food in Egypt he sent his sons there, but he kept his youngest son Benjamin at home (Genesis 41).

When the sons of Jacob came before the ruler they didn’t know it was their brother, Joseph. In Genesis 41:41 we read, “Pharaoh said to Joseph, “I hereby put you in charge of the entire land of Egypt.”

Joseph was in charge of all of Egypt. As a result, Joseph saved his family from starvation and ruin.

Once again, God took a very bad event and brought good to it. Joseph’s brothers intended bad for Joseph, but God turned it to good. Joseph’s dreams did come true.

His brothers did bow down to him in Egypt. God knew what was coming to Israel and his family, and He prepared them for it.

Jacob’s sons that were born of Rachel were Joseph and Benjamin, and her servant Bilhah bore Jacob Dan and Naphtali. Rachel and Bilhah had four sons of Jacob.

All the sons of Jacob who turned to Egypt were Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah (the line of Mary and Joseph), Issachar, and Zebulun born of Leah. Gad and Asher were born of Zilpah, (servant of Leah). Joseph and Benjamin were born of Rachel. Dan and Naphtali were born to Jacob of Rachel’s servant, Bilhah. Jacob had twelve sons.

They are the twelve tribes of Israel.

God had a plan all along. Through God’s love for His children, He was faithful, helped them even as they struggled to do right, and blessed them in mighty ways.

Today’s Spiritual Practice is: Blessing of God’s Love

Consider how God has unexpectedly blessed you with His love…tell God thank-you!

In God, Deborah with God


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