Genesis 30:22
And God remembered Rachel, and God listened to her, and opened her womb.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(22-24) God remembered Rachel.—Rachel’s long barrenness had probably humbled and disciplined her; and, cured of her former petulance, she trusts no longer to “love-apples,” but looks to God for the great blessing of children. He hearkens to her prayer, and remembers her. (Comp. 1Samuel 1:19.) In calling his name Joseph, there is again a play upon two words, for it may be formed from the verb used in Genesis 30:23, and would then mean he takes away; or it may signify he adds, which is the meaning made prominent by Rachel. And God did add to her another son, but the boon cost her her life. As Joseph was born six or seven years before Jacob left Padan-aram, Rachel had been barren for twenty-six years. We must add that in her joy at Joseph’s birth there is no trace of the ungenerous triumph over Leah so marked in her rejoicing at the birth of the sons of Bilhah; and in her trust that “Jehovah would add to her another son,” she evidently had in mind the covenant promises, which a son of her own womb might now inherit. As a matter of fact, the long struggle for supremacy lay between the houses of Joseph and Judah; and Judah finally prevailed.

Genesis 30:22. God remembered Rachel — Whom he seemed to have forgotten, and hearkened to her, whose prayers had been long denied, and then she bare a son. Rachel called her son Joseph, which, in Hebrew, is akin to two words of a contrary signification: Asaph, abstulit, he has taken away my reproach; as if the greatest mercy she had in this son were, that she had saved her credit: and Joseph, addidit; the Lord shall add to me another son: which may be looked upon as the language of her faith: she takes this mercy as an earnest of further mercy: hath God given me this grace? I may call it Joseph, and say, he shall add more grace.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."God remembered Rachel," in the best time for her, after he had taught her the lessons of dependence and patience. "Joseph." There is a remote allusion to her gratitude for the reproach of barrenness taken away. But there is also hope in the name. The selfish feeling also has died away, and the thankful Rachel rises from Elohim, the invisible Eternal, to Yahweh, the manifest Self-existent. The birth of Joseph was after the fourteen years of service were completed. He and Dinah appear to have been born in the same year.21. afterwards, she bare a daughter—The inferior value set on a daughter is displayed in the bare announcement of the birth. No text from Poole on this verse. And God remembered Rachel,.... In a way of mercy and kindness, whom he seemed to have forgotten, by not giving her children:

and God hearkened to her; to her prayer, which had been made time after time, that she might have children; but hitherto God had delayed to answer, but now gives one:

and opened her womb; gave her conception, and made her fruitful, and she became the mother of a child she so much desired.

And God remembered Rachel, and God hearkened to her, and opened her womb.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
Verses 22-24. - And God remembered Rachel (cf. Genesis 8:1; 1 Samuel 1:19), and God hearkened to her, - as to Leah (ver. 17) - and opened her womb - as he had previously done to Leah (Genesis 29:31). Rachel's barrenness had not continued so long as either Sarah's or Rebekah's. And she conceived, and bare a son; and said, God hath taken away my reproach - i.e. of sterility. The mandrakes of Leah having proved inefficacious, Rachel at length realizes that children are God s gift, and this thought sufficiently explains the use of the term Elohim. And she called his name Joseph; - יוסֵפ, either, "he takes away," with allusion to the removal of her reproach, or, "he shall add," with reference to her hope of another son. Perhaps the first thought is not obscurely hinted at, though the second appears' from the ensuing clause to have occupied the greater prominence in Rachel's mind - and said, The Lord - Jehovah; a trace of the Jehovistic pen (Tuch, Bleek, et alii); rather an outcome of the higher spiritual life of Rachel, who had now got emancipated from all such merely human devices as resorting to mandrakes, and was able to recognize her complete dependence for offspring on the sovereign grace of the covenant God of Abraham and Isaac and Jacob (Hengstenberg, Keil) - shall add to me another son.

CHAPTER 30:25-43 The Other Children of Leah. - How thoroughly henceforth the two wives were carried away by constant jealousy of the love and attachment of their husband, is evident from the affair of the love-apples, which Leah's son Reuben, who was then four years old, found in the field and brought to his mother. דּוּדאים, μῆλα μανδραγορῶν (lxx), the yellow apples of the alraun (Mandragora vernalis), a mandrake very common in Palestine. They are about the size of a nutmeg, with a strong and agreeable odour, and were used by the ancients, as they still are by the Arabs, as a means of promoting child-bearing. To Rachel's request that she would give her some, Leah replied (Genesis 30:15): "Is it too little, that thou hast taken (drawn away from me) my husband, to take also" (לקחת infin.), i.e., that thou wouldst also take, "my son's mandrakes?" At length she parted with them, on condition that Rachel would let Jacob sleep with her the next night. After relating how Leah conceived again, and Rachel continued barren in spite of the mandrakes, the writer justly observes (Genesis 30:17), "Elohim hearkened unto Leah," to show that it was not from such natural means as love-apples, but from God the author of life, that she had received such fruitfulness. Leah saw in the birth of her fifth son a divine reward for having given her maid to her husband - a recompense, that is, for her self-denial; and she named him on that account Issaschar, ישּׂשׂכר, a strange form, to be understood either according to the Chethib שׂכר ישׁ "there is reward," or according to the Keri שׁכר ישּׂא "he bears (brings) reward." At length she bore her sixth son, and named him Zebulun, i.e., "dwelling;" for she hoped that now, after God had endowed her with a good portion, her husband, to whom she had born six sons, would dwell with her, i.e., become more warmly attached to her. The name is from זבל to dwell, with acc. constr. "to inhabit," formed with a play upon the alliteration in the word זבד to present - two ἅπαξ λεγόμενα. In connection with these two births, Leah mentions Elohim alone, the supernatural giver, and not Jehovah, the covenant God, whose grace had been forced out of her heart by jealousy. She afterwards bore a daughter, Dinah, who is mentioned simply because of the account in Genesis 34; for, according to Genesis 37:35 and Genesis 46:7, Jacob had several daughters, though they were nowhere mentioned by name.
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