“A Bride Worth Waiting For”
LESSON 5 — January 3, 2016
TIME: 1921 B.C.
BIBLE BASIS: Genesis 29:15–30KJV (Read Genesis 28:1–30:43)
BIBLE TRUTH: Jacob’s love for Rachel was so great, that the additional seven years of labor was not a burden for him.
MEMORY VERSE: “And he went in also unto Rachel, and he loved also Rachel more than Leah, and served with him yet seven other years” (Genesis 29:30).
LESSON AIM: By the end of he lesson, we will: RECALL the story of Jacob’s love for and commitment to marry Rachel; REFLECT on marital relationships and the ways unforeseen circumstances affect those relationships; and COMMIT to finding faith-based resolution to difficulties before abandoning relationships.
Now and again we may read of a young couple who loved each other but when in different directions, only to find each other later in life and marry. When neither one finds a life mate until they find each other again, it always makes for a heartwarming story. It did not take a lifetime for Jacob to find and marry Rachel, but it did take time, forgiveness, and endurance. This familiar story is the text for the week. May it yield its lesson of love and patience.
1. Love at first sight: Genesis 29:15–20
Some will identify with Jacob right away in that they too experienced love at first sight and eventually married that particular person. Jacob saw the two daughters of the man for whom he worked and asked for one of them to be his bride. That was Rachel, the younger of the two. He was so smitten with her looks and personality that he was willing to work seven years for the privilege of marrying her.
Think of the wide chasm between what Jacob did and what many do today when it comes to love and marriage. Many today live together without commitment of marriage. Few grooms-to-be ask the bride’s father for permission to marry his daughter. Time, morals, and mores change, but there is something quite romantic and appealing about Jacob’s desire and willingness to wait for the one he loved.
2. A great disappointment: Genesis 29:21–27
Jacob was where he was because he had fled his home as a result of his part in a scheme to get the birthright from his brother, Esau. Now we him reaping what he sowed in that he was tricked into marrying the older sister of Rachel. This is a perfect example of a law of God that a harvest follows sowing and that what one sows one will reap.
3. True love endures: Genesis 29:28–30
The disappointment Jacob had was ameliorated by the promise that another seven years of labor would be the price for Rachel. It may not have been the best of bargains, but because of his strong love for rachel, he was willing to accept the terms. What did paul say about love? Charity [love] suffereth long, and is kind” 1 Corinthians 13:4. What does the Bible say about God’s love for sinners? The testimony of Scripture is that God loved the world so much that He gave His Son (John 3:36) to redeem sinners. John the Baptist pointed out Jesus as the “bridegroom” (John 3:29). The church, according to the Apostle Paul, is the bride of Christ (2 Corinthians 11:2). John, the beloved disciple who wrote the book of Revelation, wrote of the “marriage of the Lamb” (19:7, cf. vs. 9). Consider the patience of Christ in waiting for His bride, the church. The church is composed of repentant sinners and all who will be saved. So our Lord waits patiently!
How many times has a person bought something on impulse? The item had a special appeal; a charge card was as close as the pocket; why wait? How many times have those who bought on impulse regretted the day they did so? Sometimes they are still making payments long after the item has worn out or broken. Looking back, patience should have been exercised, time and thought should have gone into the decision, and a cooler head should have prevailed. It was one of life’s learning moments. Not every impulsive decision is a bad one, thought. Sometimes our first thought is the correct one. but how often is that the case? Some marriages, for example, have been long and successful after a very brief courting period, while some delayed marriages do not last. It is still best to be patient and avoid snap judgments. We must give the Lord time to impress upon our hearts the best way forward, whether in matters of marriage or money.
Dr. Danette M. Vercher, Ph.D., Sr. Pastor