Search Tools

And Jacob served seven years for Rachel; and they seemed unto him but a few days, for the love he had to her.
And Jacob said unto Laban, Give me my wife, for my days are fulfilled, that I may go in unto her.
And Laban gathered together all the men of the place, and made a feast.
And it came to pass in the evening, that he took Leah his daughter, and brought her to him; and he went in unto her.
And Laban gave unto his daughter Leah Zilpah his maid for an handmaid.
And it came to pass, that in the morning, behold, it was Leah: and he said to Laban, What is this thou hast done unto me? did not I serve with thee for Rachel? wherefore then hast thou beguiled me?
And Laban said, It must not be so done in our country, to give the younger before the firstborn.
Fulfil her week, and we will give thee this also for the service which thou shalt serve with me yet seven other years.
And Jacob did so, and fulfilled her week: and he gave him Rachel his daughter to wife also.
And Laban gave to Rachel his daughter Bilhah his handmaid to be her maid.

New Defender's Study Bible Notes

29:23 brought her to him. This cruel deception on Laban’s part was not God’s retribution for Jacob’s deception of Isaac, as many have suggested. Leah was destined to be the mother of Judah, through whom Christ would come. Leah was less attractive than Rachel and had found no husband as yet, thus inhibiting her younger sister also from marrying (Genesis 29:26), so that both were well past the normal age for marrying (as was Jacob). Laban was afraid no suitable husband would ever be found for Leah, and so used this trick to force Jacob into marrying both. This would, he hoped, tie Jacob (a productive worker with a substantial future inheritance) permanently to Laban and his family. Leah also had come to love Jacob and, although her father’s device must have been difficult and embarrassing for her, as well as for Rachel, she went along with the plan in obedience to her father.

29:27 her week. Crafty Laban elicited fourteen years of free and fruitful labor from Jacob because of Jacob’s unselfish love for Rachel. After Jacob had served seven years and then was forced to marry Leah first, Laban finally gave Rachel to Jacob also, for another seven years of service. However, he had only to wait seven days (Leah’s festive week, in accord with custom) before receiving Rachel too. Note, incidentally, that time was being measured in weeks (even in Syria) almost 500 years before the giving of the Sabbath commandment on Mount Sinai. This is incidental testimony that the nations of the world had been (perhaps inadvertently) commemorating the literal creation week ever since the beginning.

About the New Defender's Study Bible