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Bible Commentaries
Genesis 29

Expositor's Dictionary of TextsExpositor's Dictionary

Verses 1-35

Rachel the Placid

Genesis 29:0

You will meet her type continually in the modern world. Do you not know women who seem to go through life easily?

I. When Rachel is keeping her father's sheep at the Well of Haran she sees advancing a young man. It is her cousin Jacob. He has come as a fugitive, flying from his brother's vengeance. Jacob breaks into the red heat of love. He is dazzled by Rachel's beauty. He makes an offer to Laban for the hand of his younger daughter. He promises to serve him for seven years, and the offer is accepted. The seven years are past, and the happy day is coming. But there are two dissentients to the general joy. The one is Laban, the other is Leah. She has cherished for Jacob a secret and passionate love. The solemn act is completed. What is that face which emerges from the veil. It is not Rachel; it is Leah.

II. We can in a measure explain Jacob's acquiescence. But Rachel it is her placidness that surprises us. Why does she not protest? Her placidness was appropriate, for two reasons.

( a ) The artist is describing a race and time wherein everything that happens is received as an act of Divine will.

( b ) There was something about this young woman's religion which would make her not wholly averse to polygamy. She was not altogether emancipated from the belief that in addition to the Almighty God of heaven there were certain subordinate deities allowed to carry out His will on earth. Specially in the regions of the home she sought a sphere for these. So Rachel accepted her ill fortune with a good grace almost with graciousness.

G. Matheson, Representative Women of the Bible, p. 105.

References. XXIX. F. W. Robertson, Notes on Genesis, p. 110. XXX. 1; 48-50. F. W. Robertson, Notes on Genesis, p. 113. XXX. 27. H. J. Wilmot-Buxton, Common Life Religion, p. 223. XXXI. 3-5. Spurgeon, Sermons, vol. xxvii. No. 1630. XXXI. 13. Spurgeon, Sermons, vol. xxi. No. 1267. XXX. 48-50. F. W. Robertson, Notes on Genesis, p. 113.

Bibliographical Information
Nicoll, William Robertson, M.A., L.L.D. "Commentary on Genesis 29". Expositor's Dictionary of Text. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/edt/genesis-29.html. 1910.
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