Wednesday 2 December, 2015

Genesis 30:37-43

37 Jacob took freshly cut branches from poplar, almond and plane trees. He made white stripes on the branches by peeling off their bark. 38 Then he placed the peeled branches in all the stone tubs where the animals drank water. He placed them there so they would be right in front of the flocks when they came to drink. The flocks were ready to mate when they came to drink. 39 So they mated in front of the branches. And the flocks gave birth to striped, speckled or spotted little ones. 40 Jacob put the little ones of the flock to one side by themselves. But he made the older ones face the striped and dark-colored animals that belonged to Laban. In that way, he made separate flocks for himself. He didn’t put them with Laban’s animals. 41 Every time the stronger females were ready to mate, Jacob would place the branches in the stone tubs. He would place them in front of the animals so they would mate near the branches. 42 But if the animals were weak, he wouldn’t place the branches there. So the weak animals went to Laban. And the strong ones went to Jacob. 43 That’s how Jacob became very rich. He became the owner of large flocks. He also had many male and female servants. And he had many camels and donkeys.

So, my observations from this passage are that Jacob used certain sticks that somehow influenced the colour of the goats conceived in order to have more speckled and less pure white goats, because he got to keep the coloured and the white belonged to Laban. This would be his wages for serving Laban. Even though Laban removed all the coloured goats, in v43 it says “In this way Jacob grew exceedingly prosperous”. There are stranger stories in the Bible.

To me, this only makes sense because God had earlier promised to bless Jacob, and God kept his promise and later Jacob acknowledges that it was God who increased his flock and made him rich (Gen 31v9).

Reflecting on this, when God makes a promise, He keeps it. Even if the HOW makes no sense, God will keep His promises. Even if other people try to stop God from keeping His promise, it doesn’t matter, because God keeps His promises.

Father, thank you for always keeping your promises to me. And even when I see opposition or if I don’t understand how you will keep your promises, help me to keep trusting you, and believing your Word and your promises to me. And I pray that when the promise comes true, that I, like Jacob, would remember that it was you who kept your word to me and not me who made it happen.

Written by Andrew Martin

2 replies
  1. Andrew Wilson says:

    Andrew M
    I love the honesty of your reflection. This almost does not make sense, but it does make sense because God made an earlier promise to Jacob, and despite all that other stuff we face, despite all the “what, how, that does not make sense” … God keeps his promises.
    I like it.
    I like God.
    Rgds Andrew W

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