“And Jacob kissed Rachel, and lifted up his voice, and wept.”
I’d like to share with us a little thing about Jacob. In Genesis 29 we read about how he went in search of a wife. When he saw Rachel he kissed her and wept. Now it is strange to see an elderly person weeping and that which must move him to cry must be a great thing. It was not just a sob but the Bible says he lifted up his voice and wept. It was a loud cry. What could have moved him to cry this way not caring his age, or the people standing by? Was it her beauty that was so refined that he cried? I don’t think that beauty moves people to tears not to mention crying loudly before all. What could that be exactly that made him cry?
When Abraham got a wife for Isaac his servant did not cry when he saw beautiful Rebekah. When Isaac saw her, he too did not cry. We didn’t read of anyone crying when they saw the woman they were going to marry or wished to marry. However one thing we notice between Isaac and his son Jacob was that when the servant of Abraham saw Rebekah he first gave her a gift and brought so much wealth for her family. Such a man ought not to cry when he sees the girl his master would marry. When Isaac saw Rebekah he too needed not to cry. But Jacob seeing a lady he wished to marry cried with a loud voice because he was broke and impoverished. For this reason the only way he could show his love was to quickly start watering his uncle’s sheep (Genesis 29:10). When the servant of Abraham went to get a wife for Isaac he immediately told them his mission and the next day he was on his way back home. This was not so with Jacob. He stayed with his uncle speechless for a full month serving for free as if he came all the way to meet them for nothing but to work for free. It was not until Laban asked him, “Because thou art my brother, shouldest thou therefore serve me for nought? tell me, what shall thy wages be?” (Genesis 29:15). It was at this point he was able to say he wanted to marry Rachel. He had no money so he offered to serve for seven whole years. If he had money he wouldn’t have made such an offer.
But why was Jacob this way? Abraham was super rich and was considered a mighty prince though he had no link to a throne (Genesis 23:6). This was because God blessed him greatly and he had abundance of wealth. Isaac also was wealthy and prosperous (Genesis 26:12). But what happened to Jacob? Did Isaac leave him no wealth? Did he not give him gifts to go with when he sought a wife? Was he himself not a keeper of sheep while with his father? Why then was he so impoverished that he had nothing at all with him when he went to his uncle’s house? To have little is quite bad, but to have nothing is quite unimaginable. He himself said concerning his state when he went to Laban, “with my staff I passed over this Jordan; and now I am become two bands.” (Genesis 32:10). He had only his staff at hand when he went seeking for wife. The Bible did not tell us why, but the Book of Jasher gave us a detail explanation of what happened to him. He had been prepared to go with a lot of gifts but while he was on the way he was robbed by the sons of his brother, Esau, and they took all that he had. It is was in the distress of his heart that he vowed saying, “If God will be with me, and will keep me in this way that I go, and will give me bread to eat, and raiment to put on, So that I come again to my father’s house in peace; then shall the LORD be my God: And this stone, which I have set for a pillar, shall be God’s house: and of all that thou shalt give me I will surely give the tenth unto thee.” (Genesis 28:20 – 22). This was the true foundation and basis of Levitical tithing unlike what many preachers teach today that it is in Abraham’s gift to Melchizedek that tithe is gotten. The Levitical tithing is the fulfilment of Jacob’s vow to God and it applies to him and his children alone.
Before I go on, I would like to warn you that I refer to the book of Jasher only because the Bible itself refers to it in two portions, that is in Joshua 10:13 and 2 Samuel 1:18. I do not wish that other books of creation or historical books of that kind should be read. Many of them are false and demonic. Please avoid them. I however encourage Christians to read the book of Jasher. You’d find it very useful. It is from it I present the things written above.
Seeing the plight of Jacob, we could understand better the pain that made him, though a full grown man, to lift up his voice and weep. To have seen the lady he wished to marry and yet lack the finances to marry her is a very painful thing indeed. More painful it is knowing that he only came to this impoverished state because he was robbed. All the embarrassment he went through was because of this lack. There are many embarrassment that lack of money can cause today when it comes to the issue of marriage. It may not come in exactly the same way as Jacob experienced it, but they do come in diverse ways whether one deserved to be poor or not. I’ve seen a man who wedded and on the thanksgiving day he was not allowed to speak because he had no money and the lady’s parents who were very wealthy paid for all that pertained to the wedding. Both parents of the lady spoke, the lady spoke, but the man was not allowed to speak. He just stood there like a humble servant.
Let the issue of finance not seem like a light matter. I do not wish to scare people about marriage, neither do I wish to encourage people to be very demanding regarding money, or to make the possession of a man a criteria for parents before giving their daughter out in marriage. A man that is rich today can be poor tomorrow and a man that is poor today can be rich tomorrow. Money, as important as it is, does not in itself make a good or happy home. However, let young men not have lackadaisical attitude towards their finances. They should be hard working, diligent, and wise in spending. They should not throw away their money on frivolities, buying expensive phones, fine clothes, fine shoes, only to end up poor.
“For wisdom is a defence, and money is a defence: but the excellency of knowledge is, that wisdom giveth life to them that have it.”
The things the Bible teaches about finances and things related to it are as follows:
- Save for the rainy day (Proverbs 6:6-8)
- Be thrift and invest (Proverbs 21:20)
- Do your business and be industrious at it (1 Thessalonians 4:11, Romans 12:11)
- Acquire skills that shall make you profitable (Titus 3:14)
- Don’t be lazy, rather be hard working and diligent (Proverbs 10:4)
- Study (1 Thessalonians 4:11, 1 Timothy 2:15)
- Give your life a right order (Proverbs 24:27)
- Don’t waste your time (Ecclesiastes 4:5)
- Lay up wealth for children (2 Corinthians 12:14)
- Most importantly, be rich towards God (and I don’t mean to commercial preachers) (Luke 12:16-21)
In summary, we are not to serve money and allow it take the place of God. But we are to make money and make good and wise use of it. As a matter of fact our jobs or businesses by which we make money is a part of our Christian calling. It is a holy service to God to earn our living while we serve him. To act against any of the things the Bible teaches about finances is a refusal to be a good Christian. May God give us a perfect understanding concerning family finances in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Prayer: Dear Father, teach us to be wise about money. Help us never to trust in money but to put our money in trust. In all that we do, help us to be abundantly rich towards you. Do this for us dear Father. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.