18 Now Jacob loved Rachel; so he said, “I will serve you seven years for Rachel your younger daughter.”
This is one of those examples of love in the bible that is really a beautiful picture of sacrificial love. Jacob loves Rachel so much, that he is willing to work for seven years just to have her hand in marriage. We have a pretty warped understanding of love these days, influenced by an emotionally hormone driven society that defines it as ‘falling in and out of love’ with no lifetime commitment. love must go much deeper than that if it is going be a lasting love.
20 So Jacob served seven years for Rachel, and they seemed only a few days to him because of the love he had for her.
Now this is what I call love!
31 When the Lord saw that Leah was unloved, He opened her womb; but Rachel was barren.
Make no mistake about it, the Lord has a very tender heart for the outcast and hurting. I love that about Him and want to have the same heart towards others who are rejected by society for any number of reasons. All we have to do is open our eyes. Such people are all around us.
2 And Jacob’s anger was aroused against Rachel, and he said, “ Am I in the place of God, who has withheld from you the fruit of the womb?”
It breaks my heart when I see couples who want children so very badly and yet for whatever reason, they are unable. Oh how we need to pray that God will give these couples strength. God is the one who determines all things. Even though it is hard, we must always trust Him. We must pray for them, He knows their pain and sorrow.
22 Then God remembered Rachel, and God listened to her and opened her womb. 23 And she conceived and bore a son, and said, “God has taken away my reproach.” 24 So she called his name Joseph, and said, “The Lord shall add to me another son.”
We must guard ourselves from getting impatient with God. When God works, look out! It is always an amazing thing to behold. We are going to see some amazing things in the life of Rachel’s son Joseph. He is one of my favorite people in the bible.
2 Then behold, they brought to Him a paralytic lying on a bed. When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, “ Son, be of good cheer; your sins are forgiven you.”
Everyone knew that only God could forgive sins. The moment that Jesus forgave this man’s sin, He was claiming to be God.
14 Then the disciples of John came to Him, saying, “Why do we and the Pharisees fast often, but Your disciples do not fast?”
I love how God designed the old and the new testaments to flow together. The Old Testament speaks of the law, and the New Testament speaks of Jesus, the fulfillment of the law. He was the ‘new covenant’. As we continue to read through Matthew, we will see this tension growing between the religious, representing the Old Testament law, and Jesus the sinless representative of the New Testament covenant. I love watching this tension build knowing that I stand on the same side as Jesus. This fulfillment of the law, was established by God long before Jesus was born. It is amazing!
36 But when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were weary and scattered, like sheep having no shepherd.
Jesus’s heart breaks when he sees people wandering about without a shepherd. His heart breaks because He wants to be their Shepherd. I want my heart to break like his breaks. When that happens, I know that I will be more determined to be used to see others come to faith in Jesus as their Lord. Lord Jesus, help me to have such a broken heart!