Bible Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Genesis 29

Introduction

1Jacob comes to the well of Haran.
9He becomes acquainted with Rachel.
13Laban entertains him.
18Jacob covenants for Rachel.
23He is deceived by Laban with Leah.
28He marries also Rachel, and serves for her seven years more.
32Leah bears Reuben;
33Simeon;
34Levi;
35and Judah.

Verse 1

Then Jacob went on his journey, and came into the land of the people of the east.
Jacob
Psalms 119:32,60; Ecclesiastes 9:7
went on his journey
Heb. lifted up his feet. came.
22:20-23; 24:10; 25:20; 28:5-7; Numbers 23:7; Judges 6:3,33; 7:12; 8:10; 1 Kings 4:30; Hosea 12:12
people
Heb. children. east. The district of Mesopotamia, and the whole country beyond the Euphrates, are called Kedem, or the East, in the Sacred Writings.
Reciprocal: Genesis 28:2 - Padanaram;  Genesis 46:8 - the names;  Job 1:3 - of the east;  Ezekiel 25:4 - of the east

Verse 2

And he looked, and behold a well in the field, and, lo, there were three flocks of sheep lying by it; for out of that well they watered the flocks: and a great stone was upon the well's mouth.
a well
24:11,13; Exodus 2:15,16; John 4:6,14
there
Psalms 23:2; Song of Solomon 1:6,7; Isaiah 49:10; Revelation 7:17
a great stone
In Arabia, and other places in the East, they cover up their wells of water, lest the sand, which is put in motion by the winds, should fill and quite stop them up. So great was their care not to leave the well open any length of time, that they waited till the flocks were all gathered together before they began to draw water; and when they had finished, the well was immediately closed again.

Verse 3

And thither were all the flocks gathered: and they rolled the stone from the well's mouth, and watered the sheep, and put the stone again upon the well's mouth in his place.
the flocks
Instead of haadarim, "the flocks," the Samaritan reads haroin, "the shepherds," as does also the Arabic in Walton's Polyglott. This verse describes what was usually done by some mutual compact among the shepherds, and shows the purpose for which the flocks lay by the well; for the stone was not removed till all the flocks had been collected. Scott.
Reciprocal: Genesis 29:8 - until

Verse 4

And Jacob said unto them, My brethren, whence be ye? And they said, Of Haran are we.
Of Haran
11:31; 24:10; 27:43; 28:10; Acts 7:2,4
Charran
Reciprocal: Genesis 11:26 - Abram;  2 Kings 19:12 - Haran;  Isaiah 37:12 - Haran

Verse 5

And he said unto them, Know ye Laban the son of Nahor? And they said, We know him.
son of
24:24,29; 31:53
Reciprocal: Genesis 11:26 - Abram;  Genesis 11:31 - Haran;  Genesis 24:10 - city

Verse 6

And he said unto them, Is he well? And they said, He is well: and, behold, Rachel his daughter cometh with the sheep.
Is he well? Heb
there peace to him?
37:14; 43:27; Exodus 18:7; 1 Samuel 17:22; 25:5; 2 Samuel 20:9
Reciprocal: Genesis 29:17 - Rachel;  Exodus 2:16 - they came;  2 Samuel 11:7 - how Joab did;  2 Kings 4:26 - Is it well with thee

Verse 7

And he said, Lo, it is yet high day, neither is it time that the cattle should be gathered together: water ye the sheep, and go and feed them.
Lo
Galatians 6:9,10; Ephesians 5:16
it is yet high day
Heb. yet the day is great.

Verse 8

And they said, We cannot, until all the flocks be gathered together, and till they roll the stone from the well's mouth; then we water the sheep.
until
3; 34:14; 43:32
roll
Mark 16:3; Luke 24:2
Reciprocal: Genesis 21:25 - reproved

Verse 9

And while he yet spake with them, Rachel came with her father's sheep: for she kept them.
Rachel
24:15; Exodus 2:15,16,21; Song of Solomon 1:7,8
for she kept them
In those primitive times, a pastoral life was not only considered useful but honourable: nor was it beneath the dignity of the daughters of the most opulent chiefs to carry water from the well, or tend the sheep. Jacob, Moses, and David were shepherds.
Reciprocal: Genesis 24:13 - daughters;  Proverbs 31:13 - worketh

Verse 10

And it came to pass, when Jacob saw Rachel the daughter of Laban his mother's brother, and the sheep of Laban his mother's brother, that Jacob went near, and rolled the stone from the well's mouth, and watered the flock of Laban his mother's brother.
rolled
Exodus 2:17
Reciprocal: Genesis 24:13 - daughters;  Exodus 2:19 - and also;  Proverbs 31:13 - worketh

Verse 11

And Jacob kissed Rachel, and lifted up his voice, and wept.
kissed
13; 27:26; 33:4; 43:30; 45:2,14,15; Exodus 4:27; 18:7; Romans 16:16
and wept
33:4; 43:30; 45:2,14,15
Reciprocal: Genesis 21:16 - lift;  Ruth 1:9 - she kissed;  1 Samuel 20:41 - and they kissed;  Song of Solomon 1:2 - him;  Luke 7:45 - gavest

Verse 12

And Jacob told Rachel that he was her father's brother, and that he was Rebekah's son: and she ran and told her father.
brother
13:8; 14:14-16
and she
24:28
Reciprocal: Genesis 29:14 - art my

Verse 13

And it came to pass, when Laban heard the tidings of Jacob his sister's son, that he ran to meet him, and embraced him, and kissed him, and brought him to his house. And he told Laban all these things.
tidings
Heb. hearing. he ran.
24:29
kissed
45:15; Exodus 4:27; 18:7; 2 Samuel 19:39; Luke 7:45; Acts 20:37; Romans 16:16
all these
Colossians 4:5
Reciprocal: Genesis 29:11 - kissed;  Genesis 31:28 - kiss;  Exodus 2:20 - call him;  1 Samuel 20:41 - and they kissed

Verse 14

And Laban said to him, Surely thou art my bone and my flesh. And he abode with him the space of a month.
art my
12,15; 2:23; 13:8; Judges 9:2; 2 Samuel 5:1; 19:12,13; Micah 7:5; Ephesians 5:30
the space of a month
Heb. a month of days.
Reciprocal: Genesis 37:27 - he is our;  Genesis 41:1 - two full years;  1 Chronicles 11:1 - Behold;  Romans 9:3 - my kinsmen;  1 Timothy 6:10 - and pierced

Verse 15

And Laban said unto Jacob, Because thou art my brother, shouldest thou therefore serve me for nought? tell me, what shall thy wages be?
tell me
30:28; 31:7
Reciprocal: Genesis 29:14 - art my;  Genesis 31:15 - sold us;  Judges 9:3 - our brother

Verse 16

And Laban had two daughters: the name of the elder was Leah, and the name of the younger was Rachel.
was Leah
17,25-32; 30:19; 31:4; 33:2; 35:23; 46:15; 49:31; Ruth 4:11

Verse 17

Leah was tender eyed; but Rachel was beautiful and well favoured.
Rachel
6-12,18; 30:1,2,22; 35:19,20,24; 46:19-22; 48:7; 1 Samuel 10:2; Jeremiah 31:15; Matthew 2:18
beautiful
12:11; 24:16; 39:6; Proverbs 31:30
Reciprocal: Genesis 29:16 - was Leah

Verse 18

And Jacob loved Rachel; and said, I will serve thee seven years for Rachel thy younger daughter.
loved
20,30
I will serve
In ancient times, it was a custom among many nations to give dowries for their wives; but Jacob, being poor, offered for Rachel seven year's service.
31:41; 34:12; Exodus 22:16,17; 2 Samuel 3:14; Hosea 3:2; 12:12
Reciprocal: Genesis 29:17 - Rachel;  Genesis 29:21 - my days;  Genesis 44:27 - GeneralGenesis 46:19 - Rachel;  Deuteronomy 21:11 - desire;  Deuteronomy 21:15 - two wives;  Ruth 4:10 - have I:1 Samuel 18:20 - loved David;  1 Samuel 18:25 - dowry;  2 Samuel 13:1 - loved her

Verse 19

And Laban said, It is better that I give her to thee, than that I should give her to another man: abide with me.
Psalms 12:2; Isaiah 6:5,11
Reciprocal: Genesis 30:26 - my wives;  Genesis 30:28 - GeneralRuth 4:10 - have I;  Jeremiah 29:6 - take wives

Verse 20

And Jacob served seven years for Rachel; and they seemed unto him but a few days, for the love he had to her.
A. M. 2251. B.C. 1753. served
30:26; Hosea 12:12
for the love
24:67; Song of Solomon 8:6,7; 1 Corinthians 13:7; 2 Corinthians 5:14; Ephesians 5:2
Reciprocal: Genesis 29:18 - loved;  Genesis 29:21 - my days;  Genesis 29:27 - we will;  Genesis 29:30 - he loved;  Genesis 34:19 - because;  Deuteronomy 21:15 - two wives;  Judges 16:15 - when thine;  1 Samuel 18:20 - loved David;  2 Samuel 13:1 - loved her;  Proverbs 18:22 - findeth a wife;  Song of Solomon 5:2 - my head;  1 Thessalonians 1:3 - and labour

Verse 21

And Jacob said unto Laban, Give me my wife, for my days are fulfilled, that I may go in unto her.
Give me
Matthew 1:18
my days
18,20; 31:41
go in
4:1; 38:16; Judges 15:1
Reciprocal: Genesis 32:22 - his two wives;  Deuteronomy 22:13 - GeneralDeuteronomy 22:24 - he hath humbled;  Judges 14:8 - to take her;  Proverbs 18:22 - findeth a wife

Verse 22

And Laban gathered together all the men of the place, and made a feast.
and made
Judges 14:10-18; Ruth 4:10-13; Matthew 22:2-10; 25:1-10; John 2:1-10; Revelation 19:9
Reciprocal: Genesis 21:8 - feast;  Genesis 29:28 - fulfilled her week;  Esther 2:18 - made a great;  Mark 2:19 - Can

Verse 23

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.
brought her
24:65; 38:14,15; Micah 7:5
Reciprocal: Genesis 27:19 - I am;  Deuteronomy 22:13 - General1 Samuel 1:2 - two

Verse 24

And Laban gave unto his daughter Leah Zilpah his maid for an handmaid.
Zilpah
16:1; 24:59; 30:9-12; 46:18
Reciprocal: Genesis 29:29 - Bilhah;  Genesis 31:14 - yet any

Verse 25

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?
in the morning
1 Corinthians 3:13
wherefore
27:35,36; Judges 1:7; Proverbs 11:31; Matthew 7:2,12; John 21:17; Revelation 3:19
Reciprocal: Genesis 29:16 - was Leah;  Joshua 9:22 - Wherefore

Verse 26

And Laban said, It must not be so done in our country, to give the younger before the firstborn.
country
Heb. place.
Reciprocal: Genesis 48:18 - for this;  1 Timothy 6:10 - and pierced

Verse 27

Fulfil her week, and we will give thee this also for the service which thou shalt serve with me yet seven other years.
week
2:2,3; 8:10-12; Leviticus 18:18; Judges 14:10,12; Malachi 2:15; 1 Timothy 6:10
we will
Reciprocal: Genesis 7:4 - For;  Genesis 31:15 - sold us;  Ruth 4:10 - have I

Verse 28

And Jacob did so, and fulfilled her week: and he gave him Rachel his daughter to wife also.
fulfilled her week
The public marriage feast made on this occasion, seems to have formed the regular method of recognising the marriage, and lasted seven days: it would therefore have been improper to have broken off the solemnities to which all the men of the place had been invited (ver. 22) and probably Laban wished to keep the fraud from the public eye. It is perfectly plain that Jacob did not serve seven years more before he got Rachel to wife.
Reciprocal: Genesis 7:4 - For;  Genesis 44:27 - GeneralLeviticus 18:18 - wife;  Judges 14:12 - the seven;  Proverbs 18:22 - findeth a wife

Verse 29

And Laban gave to Rachel his daughter Bilhah his handmaid to be her maid.
Bilhah
24; 30:3-8; 35:22,25; 37:2
Reciprocal: Genesis 31:14 - yet any;  Genesis 46:25 - Bilhah

Verse 30

And he went in also unto Rachel, and he loved also Rachel more than Leah, and served with him yet seven other years.
he loved
20,31; 44:20,27; Deuteronomy 21:15; Matthew 6:24; 10:37; Luke 14:26; John 12:25
served
18; 30:25,26; 31:15,41; 1 Samuel 18:17-27; Hosea 12:12
Reciprocal: Genesis 33:2 - Rachel;  1 Samuel 1:5 - he loved;  Malachi 1:3 - hated

Verse 31

And when the LORD saw that Leah was hated, he opened her womb: but Rachel was barren.
saw
Exodus 3:7
was hated
30; 27:41; Deuteronomy 21:15; Malachi 1:3; Matthew 6:24; 10:37; Luke 14:26; John 12:25
he opened
16:1; 20:18; 21:1,2; 25:21; 30:1,2,22; Judges 13:2,3; 1 Samuel 1:5,20,27; 1 Samuel 2:21; Psalms 127:3; Luke 1:7
Reciprocal: Genesis 11:30 - barren;  Genesis 20:17 - GeneralGenesis 30:23 - GeneralGenesis 35:22 - Now the sons;  Exodus 1:1 - GeneralDeuteronomy 22:13 - GeneralRuth 4:13 - the Lord;  Job 3:10 - it shut not;  Acts 7:8 - and Jacob;  Romans 9:13 - hated;  1 Timothy 6:10 - and pierced

Verse 32

And Leah conceived, and bare a son, and she called his name Reuben: for she said, Surely the LORD hath looked upon my affliction; now therefore my husband will love me.
A. M. 2252. B.C. 1752. his name
35:22; 37:21,22,29; 42:22,27; 46:8,9; 49:3,4; 1 Chronicles 5:1
Reuben
that is, See a son. looked.
Exodus 3:7; 4:31; Deuteronomy 26:7; 1 Samuel 1:11,20; 2 Samuel 16:12; Psalms 25:18; 106:44; Luke 1:25
Reciprocal: Genesis 3:20 - Adam;  Genesis 16:11 - shalt;  Genesis 30:6 - God;  Genesis 31:42 - hath seen;  Genesis 35:23 - GeneralGenesis 41:52 - called he;  Genesis 42:13 - Thy servants;  Genesis 46:15 - Leah;  Numbers 1:5 - Elizur;  Numbers 1:20 - GeneralNumbers 26:5 - the eldest;  Numbers 32:1 - the children;  Deuteronomy 27:13 - Reuben;  Deuteronomy 33:9 - I have not;  Ruth 4:11 - Rachel;  1 Chronicles 2:1 - Reuben;  1 Chronicles 5:18 - Reuben;  Isaiah 7:14 - shall call;  Ezekiel 48:6 - Reuben;  Matthew 1:2 - Jacob begat

Verse 33

And she conceived again, and bare a son; and said, Because the LORD hath heard that I was hated, he hath therefore given me this son also: and she called his name Simeon.
A. M. 2253. B.C. 1751. Because
30:6,8,18,20
called
34:25,30; 35:23; 42:24; 49:5,6
Simeon
that is, Hearing.
Reciprocal: Genesis 16:11 - hath;  Genesis 46:10 - Simeon;  Numbers 1:22 - GeneralNumbers 12:2 - And the;  Deuteronomy 21:15 - two wives;  Deuteronomy 27:12 - Simeon;  Judges 1:3 - Simeon;  2 Samuel 16:12 - the Lord;  Ezekiel 48:24 - Simeon;  Romans 9:13 - hated

Verse 34

And she conceived again, and bare a son; and said, Now this time will my husband be joined unto me, because I have born him three sons: therefore was his name called Levi.
A. M. 2254. B.C. 1750. was
34:25; 35:23; 46:11; 49:5-7; Exodus 2:1; 32:26-29; Deuteronomy 33:8-10
Levi
that is, joined.
Numbers 18:2-4
Reciprocal: Genesis 30:20 - now will;  1 Chronicles 6:38 - Levi;  1 Chronicles 6:47 - Levi;  Revelation 7:7 - Levi

Verse 35

And she conceived again, and bare a son: and she said, Now will I praise the LORD: therefore she called his name Judah; and left bearing.
A. M. 2255. B.C. 1749. called
35:26; 38:1-30; 43:8,9; 44:18-34; 46:12; 49:8-12; Deuteronomy 33:7; 1 Chronicles 5:2; Matthew 1:2
Judah
that is, Praise. left bearing. Heb. stood from bearing.
49:8; That is, for a time; she: Reciprocal: Genesis 30:9 - left;  Numbers 1:26 - GeneralRuth 4:14 - Blessed;  Ezekiel 48:7 - Judah;  Hosea 12:12 - Jacob;  Luke 3:33 - of Juda

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Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Genesis 29". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/tsk/genesis-29.html.