Bible study 30 – Genesis 30Posted: November 2, 2016
This chapter reads like a bad harem anime, and is really quite hilarious.
Poor Jacob is constantly pulled between his two beautiful sister-wives, who crave his attention and offspring. Rachel is jealous because she can’t give birth to any children, whereas Leah, who has given Jacob lots of children, is jealous because Rachel is his “main” wife. So how does Rachel solve this problem of no children? By having her husband sleep with her maid, of course! The maid has two children, and Rachel is temporarily satisfied.
But Leah gets jealous at this, especially since she herself has stopped getting children. So she cleverly sends her own maid to Jacob, and makes him sleep with her, too! Two more children are born this way.
The last part of the harem-anime is when one of Leah’s sons find a delicious plant which Rachel wants. Leah won’t give it to her, but Rachel knows how to solve any problem; just have her husband sleep with someone. In this case it is Leah, who gladly sleeps with her husband for one night in exchange for the plant. And more children are born this way. Finally, God notices that Rachel is barren, and makes sure she also conceives, giving birth to Joseph. By the way, all the names of the children born in this chapter and the former are silly word-puns in Hebrew. Joseph, for example, means “He adds”, because Rachel wanted God to “add” her another son. Napthali, son of Rachel’s servant, is similar to the Hebrew word for “wrestle”, because Rachel “wrestled” with and prevailed against Leah for him.
Not only is Jacob a playboy who plays his wives against each other and sleeps with their maids; he also totally deceives his father-in-law who has employed him for fourteen years. When he says he wants to go back to his birthplace, Laban asks him to name his price, and he does; he will go the same day and pick out the goats that are discoloured and therefore worthless. He also makes a big thing about being super honest, and dares Laban to check later that he only took discoloured goats. Then he takes some coloured sticks from a tree and puts them in front of the eyes of goats that are copulating. This, apparently, make their offspring discoloured. Also, they apparently give birth the same day as they copulate, since all of this is supposed to take a single day. Since he only did this to the strong goats, he gets a huge herd of strong lambs out of this.