Jacob’s Prosperity 25 As soon as Rachel had borne Joseph, Jacob said to Laban, “Send me away, that I may go to my own home and country. 26 Give me my wives and my children q for whom I have served you, that I may go, for you know the service that I have given you.” 27 But Laban said to him, “If I have found favor in your sight, I have learned by divination that 1 the Lord has blessed me because of you. 28 r Name your wages, and I will give it.” 29 Jacob said to him, s “You yourself know how I have served you, and how your livestock has fared with me. 30 For you had little before I came, t and it has increased abundantly, and the Lord has blessed you wherever I turned. But now when shall I u provide for my own household also?” 31 He said, “What shall I give you?” Jacob said, “You shall not give me anything. If you will do this for me, I will again pasture your flock and keep it: 32 let me pass through all your flock today, removing from it every speckled and spotted sheep and every black lamb, and the spotted and speckled among the goats, and v they shall be my wages. 33 So my honesty will answer for me later, when you come to look into my wages with you. Every one that is not speckled and spotted among the goats and black among the lambs, if found with me, shall be counted stolen.” 34 Laban said, “Good! Let it be as you have said.” 35 But that day Laban removed the male goats that were striped and spotted, and all the female goats that were speckled and spotted, every one that had white on it, and every lamb that was black, and put them in the charge of his sons. 36 And he set a distance of three days’ journey between himself and Jacob, and Jacob pastured the rest of Laban’s flock. 37 Then w Jacob took fresh sticks of poplar and almond and plane trees, and peeled white streaks in them, exposing the white of the sticks. 38 He set the sticks that he had peeled in front of the flocks in the troughs, that is, the x watering places, where the flocks came to drink. And since they bred when they came to drink, 39 the flocks bred in front of the sticks and so the flocks brought forth striped, speckled, and spotted. 40 And Jacob separated the lambs and set the faces of the flocks toward the striped and all the black in the flock of Laban. He put his own droves apart and did not put them with Laban’s flock. 41 Whenever the stronger of the flock were breeding, Jacob would lay the sticks in the troughs before the eyes of the flock, that they might breed among the sticks, 42 but for the feebler of the flock he would not lay them there. So the feebler would be Laban’s, and the stronger Jacob’s. 43 Thus the man y increased greatly and z had large flocks, female servants and male servants, and camels and donkeys.
25 וַיְהִ֕י כַּאֲשֶׁ֛ר יָלְדָ֥ה רָחֵ֖ל אֶת ־ יוֹסֵ֑ף וַיֹּ֤אמֶר יַעֲקֹב֙ אֶל ־ לָבָ֔ן שַׁלְּחֵ֙נִי֙ וְאֵ֣לְכָ֔ה אֶל ־ מְקוֹמִ֖י וּלְאַרְצִֽי ׃ 26 תְּנָ֞ה אֶת ־ נָשַׁ֣י וְאֶת ־ יְלָדַ֗י אֲשֶׁ֨ר עָבַ֧דְתִּי אֹֽתְךָ֛ בָּהֵ֖ן וְאֵלֵ֑כָה כִּ֚י אַתָּ֣ה יָדַ֔עְתָּ אֶת ־ עֲבֹדָתִ֖י אֲשֶׁ֥ר עֲבַדְתִּֽיךָ ׃ 27 וַיֹּ֤אמֶר אֵלָיו֙ לָבָ֔ן אִם ־ נָ֛א מָצָ֥אתִי חֵ֖ן בְּעֵינֶ֑יךָ נִחַ֕שְׁתִּי וַיְבָרֲכֵ֥נִי יְהוָ֖ה בִּגְלָלֶֽךָ ׃ 28 וַיֹּאמַ֑ר נָקְבָ֧ה שְׂכָרְךָ֛ עָלַ֖י וְאֶתֵּֽנָה ׃ 29 וַיֹּ֣אמֶר אֵלָ֔יו אַתָּ֣ה יָדַ֔עְתָּ אֵ֖ת אֲשֶׁ֣ר עֲבַדְתִּ֑יךָ וְאֵ֛ת אֲשֶׁר ־ הָיָ֥ה מִקְנְךָ֖ אִתִּֽי ׃ 30 כִּ֡י מְעַט֩ אֲשֶׁר ־ הָיָ֨ה לְךָ֤ לְפָנַי֙ וַיִּפְרֹ֣ץ לָרֹ֔ב וַיְבָ֧רֶךְ יְהוָ֛ה אֹתְךָ֖ לְרַגְלִ֑י וְעַתָּ֗ה מָתַ֛י אֶֽעֱשֶׂ֥ה גַם ־ אָנֹכִ֖י לְבֵיתִֽי ׃ 31 וַיֹּ֖אמֶר מָ֣ה אֶתֶּן ־ לָ֑ךְ וַיֹּ֤אמֶר יַעֲקֹב֙ לֹא ־ תִתֶּן ־ לִ֣י 1 מְא֔וּמָה אִם ־ תַּֽעֲשֶׂה ־ לִּי֙ הַדָּבָ֣ר הַזֶּ֔ה אָשׁ֛וּבָה אֶרְעֶ֥ה צֹֽאנְךָ֖ אֶשְׁמֹֽר ׃ 32 אֶֽעֱבֹ֨ר בְּכָל ־ צֹֽאנְךָ֜ הַיּ֗וֹם הָסֵ֨ר מִשָּׁ֜ם כָּל ־ שֶׂ֣ה ׀ נָקֹ֣ד וְטָל֗וּא וְכָל ־ שֶׂה ־ חוּם֙ בַּכְּשָׂבִ֔ים וְטָל֥וּא וְנָקֹ֖ד בָּעִזִּ֑ים וְהָיָ֖ה שְׂכָרִֽי ׃ 33 וְעָֽנְתָה ־ בִּ֤י צִדְקָתִי֙ בְּי֣וֹם מָחָ֔ר כִּֽי ־ תָב֥וֹא עַל ־ שְׂכָרִ֖י לְפָנֶ֑יךָ כֹּ֣ל אֲשֶׁר ־ אֵינֶנּוּ֩ נָקֹ֨ד וְטָל֜וּא בָּֽעִזִּ֗ים וְחוּם֙ בַּכְּשָׂבִ֔ים גָּנ֥וּב ה֖וּא אִתִּֽי ׃ 34 וַיֹּ֥אמֶר לָבָ֖ן הֵ֑ן ל֖וּ יְהִ֥י כִדְבָרֶֽךָ ׃ 35 וַיָּ֣סַר בַּיּוֹם֩ הַה֨וּא אֶת ־ הַתְּיָשִׁ֜ים הָֽעֲקֻדִּ֣ים וְהַטְּלֻאִ֗ים וְאֵ֤ת כָּל ־ הָֽעִזִּים֙ הַנְּקֻדּ֣וֹת וְהַטְּלֻאֹ֔ת כֹּ֤ל 1 אֲשֶׁר ־ לָבָן֙ בּ֔וֹ וְכָל ־ ח֖וּם בַּכְּשָׂבִ֑ים וַיִּתֵּ֖ן בְּיַד ־ בָּנָֽיו ׃ 36 וַיָּ֗שֶׂם דֶּ֚רֶךְ שְׁלֹ֣שֶׁת יָמִ֔ים בֵּינ֖וֹ וּבֵ֣ין יַעֲקֹ֑ב וְיַעֲקֹ֗ב רֹעֶ֛ה אֶת ־ צֹ֥אן לָבָ֖ן הַנּוֹתָרֹֽת ׃ 37 וַיִּֽקַּֽח ־ ל֣וֹ יַעֲקֹ֗ב מַקַּ֥ל לִבְנֶ֛ה לַ֖ח וְל֣וּז וְעֶרְמ֑וֹן 1 וַיְפַצֵּ֤ל בָּהֵן֙ פְּצָל֣וֹת לְבָנ֔וֹת מַחְשֹׂף֙ הַלָּבָ֔ן אֲשֶׁ֖ר עַל ־ הַמַּקְלֽוֹת ׃ 38 וַיַּצֵּ֗ג אֶת ־ הַמַּקְלוֹת֙ אֲשֶׁ֣ר פִּצֵּ֔ל בָּרֳהָטִ֖ים בְּשִֽׁקֲת֣וֹת הַמָּ֑יִם אֲשֶׁר֩ תָּבֹ֨אןָ הַצֹּ֤אן לִשְׁתּוֹת֙ לְנֹ֣כַח הַצֹּ֔אן וַיֵּחַ֖מְנָה בְּבֹאָ֥ן לִשְׁתּֽוֹת ׃ 39 וַיֶּחֱמ֥וּ הַצֹּ֖אן אֶל ־ הַמַּקְל֑וֹת וַתֵּלַ֣דְןָ הַצֹּ֔אן עֲקֻדִּ֥ים נְקֻדִּ֖ים וּטְלֻאִֽים ׃ 40 וְהַכְּשָׂבִים֮ הִפְרִ֣יד יַעֲקֹב֒ וַ֠יִּתֵּן פְּנֵ֨י הַצֹּ֧אן אֶל ־ עָקֹ֛ד וְכָל ־ ח֖וּם בְּצֹ֣אן לָבָ֑ן וַיָּֽשֶׁת ־ ל֤וֹ עֲדָרִים֙ לְבַדּ֔וֹ וְלֹ֥א שָׁתָ֖ם עַל ־ צֹ֥אן לָבָֽן ׃ 41 וְהָיָ֗ה בְּכָל ־ יַחֵם֮ הַצֹּ֣אן הַמְקֻשָּׁרוֹת֒ וְשָׂ֨ם יַעֲקֹ֧ב אֶת ־ הַמַּקְל֛וֹת לְעֵינֵ֥י הַצֹּ֖אן בָּרֳהָטִ֑ים לְיַחְמֵ֖נָּה בַּמַּקְלֽוֹת ׃ 42 וּבְהַעֲטִ֥יף הַצֹּ֖אן לֹ֣א יָשִׂ֑ים וְהָיָ֤ה הָעֲטֻפִים֙ לְלָבָ֔ן וְהַקְּשֻׁרִ֖ים לְיַעֲקֹֽב ׃ 43 וַיִּפְרֹ֥ץ הָאִ֖ישׁ מְאֹ֣ד מְאֹ֑ד וַֽיְהִי ־ לוֹ֙ צֹ֣אן רַבּ֔וֹת וּשְׁפָחוֹת֙ וַעֲבָדִ֔ים וּגְמַלִּ֖ים וַחֲמֹרִֽים ׃
God makes Jacob incredibly wealthy Intro : Last week's passage emphasised God blessing Jacob with a huge family; now it emphasises how he blesses him with incredible wealth. It's the last part of the puzzle for him to plan to return home. 1. Laban tries to trick Jacob again (v25-36) v25 as soon as...; the focus now turns to going home. God has done abundantly more than Jacob hoped for at Bethel. v27 by divination. Either he's lying, and trying to manipulate Jacob. Or he's honest about his own idolatrous dabblings; cf later on his household idol is stolen and he's upset about it. In any case he speaks the truth; 'the LORD has blessed me because of you.' Laban knows the blessing comes from being associated to Jacob. v30 Jacob knows it too; the LORD has blessed you wherever I turned, 'abundantly' v33 Jacob keen not to be a trickster any more, or be seen to be one v35 the trickster again; Laban doesn't want to lose Jacob 2. But God makes Jacob very rich (v37-43) Is v37 superstition? Doesn't seem fit with our knowledge of genetics - unlike the other component of selective breeding. In any case, the point is that God blessed Jacob through, or despite, the means he chose - to a degree to which no one would have expected or predicted (this is clear from subsequent references to Jacob's wealth). God's glory : He blesses abundantly, using means but going way beyond FCF : Trickery again; Laban sees God's blessing as something to capture for himself. Like a genie. Mistrust of God leads to mistreatment of others. Multiple ways in which we think of 'blessing' as something to capture and secure for ourselves, rather than what we simply receive with gratitude. Person of Jesus . Once again, we see true humanity in Jesus. No mixed motives or lurking selfish motives and agendas. Pure, self-giving blessing. From his hand come the blessings. I am the bread of life; spiritual blessings are not less real, they are more real. Eternal rather than temporary, being constantly 'en-fleshed' in different ways. E.g., manna, or the blessings upon Jacob here. This is a particular manifestation of God's limitless treasury in Jesus. Work of Jesus. He is killed by cruel and selfish trickery and deceit. In his death, the blessing of God really is nailed down for us, never to be taken away. Not under our control, but yet entirely for our good. The eternal, invisible, unstoppable love of God made 'visible' within time and space at the cross. Union with Jesus : learn the extraordinary blessings given to me in Jesus by the Father (Ephesians 1). What I can expect from wise living in this age vs the 'age to come'. Repent : of trying to control others from my mistrust of God. Of clutching and grasping, for myself, rather than giving freely. Believe : the cross guarantees the goodness of God toward his people always and forever, in everything. Wrap-up: God has blessed us beyond our wildest dreams in Jesus.