And Leah conceived again, and bore Jacob the sixth son.
EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
30:14-24 The desire, good in itself, but often too great and irregular, of being the mother of the promised Seed, with the honour of having many children, and the reproach of being barren, were causes of this unbecoming contest between the sisters. The truth appears to be, that they were influenced by the promises of God to Abraham; whose posterity were promised the richest blessings, and from whom the Messiah was to descend.
"Reuben" was at this time four or five years of age, as it is probable that Leah began to bear again before Zilpah had her second son. "Mandrakes" - the fruit of the "mandragora vernaIis," which is to this day supposed to promote fruitfulness of the womb. Rachel therefore desires to partake of them, and obtains them by a compact with Leah. Leah betakes herself to prayer, and bears a fifth son. She calls him "Issakar," with a double allusion. She had hired her husband with the mandrakes, and had received this son as her hire for giving her maid to her husband; which she regards as an act of generosity or self-denial. "Zebulun." Here Leah confesses, "God hath endowed me with a good dowry." She speaks now like Rachel of the God of nature. The cherished thought that her husband will dwell with her who is the mother of six sons takes form in the name. "Dinah" is the only daughter of Jacob mentioned Genesis 46:7
, and that on account of her subsequent connection with the history of Jacob Genesis 34
. Issakar appears to have been born in the sixth year after Jacob's marriage, Zebulun in the seventh, and Dinah in the eighth.
3-9. Bilhah … Zilpah—Following the example of Sarah with regard to Hagar, an example which is not seldom imitated still, she adopted the children of her maid. Leah took the same course. A bitter and intense rivalry existed between them, all the more from their close relationship as sisters; and although they occupied separate apartments, with their families, as is the uniform custom where a plurality of wives obtains, and the husband and father spends a day with each in regular succession, that did not allay their mutual jealousies. The evil lies in the system, which being a violation of God's original ordinance, cannot yield happiness.
No text from Poole on this verse.
And Leah conceived again,.... For bearing children Jacob took more to her, and more frequently attended her apartment and bed:
and bare Jacob a sixth son; the sixth by her, but the tenth by her and his two maids. And Leah conceived again, and bare Jacob the sixth son.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)Verses 19, 20.
- And Leah conceived again, and bare Jacob the sixth son. And Leah said, God
(Elohim; vide supra
) hath endued me with a good dowry. Δεδώρηται μοι δῶρον καλον
(LXX.), dotavit me dote
bona (Vulgate), hath presented me with a goodly present. The word זָבַד
is a ἄπαξ λεγόμενον
. Now will my husband dwell with me. זָבַל
, also a ἅπαξ λεγ
., signifies to be or make round (Gesenius), to limit round or encompass (Furst); hence, according to both, to cohabit or dwell together as husband and wife. The LXX. render αἱρετιεῖ
, the meaning being that Leah's six sons would, in her judgment, be an inducement sufficiently powerful to cause Jacob to select her society instead of that of her barren sister. And she called his name Zebulan
. Dwelling; from zabal
, to dwell with, with a play upon the word זָבַל
, to hire, which, commencing with the same letter, was regarded as similar in sound to זָבַד
, the ד
and the ל
being sometimes interchangeable (Keil, Kalisch).
Zilpah's Sons. - But Leah also was not content with the divine blessing bestowed upon her by Jehovah. The means employed by Rachel to retain the favour of her husband made her jealous; and jealousy drove her to the employment of the same means. Jacob begat two sons by Zilpah her maid. The one Leah named Gad, i.e., "good fortune," saying, בּגד, "with good fortune," according to the Chethib, for which the Masoretic reading is גּד בּא, "good fortune has come," - not, however, from any ancient tradition, for the Sept. reads ἐν τύχῃ, but simply from a subjective and really unnecessary conjecture, since בּגד equals "to my good fortune," sc., a son is born, gives a very suitable meaning. The second she named Asher, i.e., the happy one, or bringer of happiness; for she said, בּאשׁרי, "to my happiness, for daughters call me happy," i.e., as a mother with children. The perfect אשּׁרני relates to "what she had now certainly reached" (Del.). Leah did not think of God in connection with these two births. They were nothing more than the successful and welcome result of the means she had employed.
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