JANUARY 11 READINGS…Genesis 30:25-31:55
Today in our readings we have the continuing saga between Jacob and Laban. Over the weekend we saw that Jacob had met his match in his uncle Laban. Laban was a master manipulator…and what we saw Jacob do to his brother before leaving Canaan, now we see Laban doing to him.
Clearly Jacob has had his fill of Laban. He felt he and his family were being turned into mere servants in order to make Laban rich. So now Jacob contrives a scheme to gain his freedom from Laban, and to build wealth for his own family. As you read the story, Jacob was not even handed in his dealings with Laban…and Laban clearly was not fair with Jacob, as he removed the affected sheep and goats after the agreement was made. All of this led to Jacob realizing that he would never be treated fairly by Laban, nor would Laban ever give permission for Jacob to leave with his family. God finally told Jacob to leave.
As Jacob leaves, Laban chases after him, but being warned by God Laban will not do physical harm to Jacob. These two schemers come to the end of their “relationship” in the hills of Gilead. It is there they make a oath with one another. “Mizpah” is an agreement between two scoundrels who could not be trusted…it sounds good and sweet, but it’s anything but. Ironically, many Christian bookstores sell jewelry with the statement of “Mizpah” on them to young couples who are going to spend time away from each other. This consist of a medallion with the phrase, “May the Lord watch between me and thee while we are apart from one another”…usually with hearts on the medallion. Seems few realize the context of this statement out of the Bible…hopefully the intent is different than it was for Jacob and Laban.
Please take time to share your impression from today’s readings. Your input not only blesses me, but it encourages and helps all the others who are reading with us. Have a great day, treat others well…and love one another.
TOMORROW’S READING…Genesis 32:1-35:27