Genesis 31:14
And Rachel and Leah replied, "Do we have any portion or inheritance left in our father's house?
A Worldly-Spirited ReplyA. Fuller.Genesis 31:14
Inheritance for UsW. M. Statham, M. A.Genesis 31:14
LessonsG. Hughes, B. D.Genesis 31:14

And the man increased exceedingly, &c.

I. The PROMISE TO GUIDE, protect, and bless fulfilled in connection with the employment of ordinary faculties and instrumentalities. Jacob's craft partly natural, but in this instance specially assisted that he might be helped in an emergency. The "supplanter" in this case represented the better cause.

II. HUMAN DEVICES only apparently, and not really, thwart the purposes of God. Jacob represents the people of God. The victory is appointed them. Their interests must be served by the kingdoms of this world, though for a season the advantage appears on the side of the mere calculating, selfish policy. The true wisdom is that which cometh from above.

III. INCREASE in the best sense is God's promise. It will be sent as he wills and when he wills, but will be found the true answer to prayer and the true manifestation of love. On all that belongs to us the blessing rests. Spiritual prosperity carries with it all other. Though the individual may be called to suffer for the sake of the community, the promise to the Church must be fulfilled. "It is our Father's good pleasure to give us the kingdom." "The meek shall inherit the earth." - R.

Is there yet any portion or inheritance for us in our father's house.
So asked Rachel and Leah of Jacob. And we see how suggestive these historical touches in Old Testament story are, when vitalized by the spirit of the gospel. We think at once of the Saviour, who is the open door to the great Father's house. There are multitudes who have lost their portions, and some are very sad and weary. Prodigal meets prodigal, and recounts the story of the painful way. Ruins always touch us with sadness; and "human hearts get ruinous in so much less time than stone walls do!"

I. THE CRY IS PERSONAL. Men do not ask, "Is there hope for the lost — the profligate, the vile?" but, "Is there hope for me?" The soldier lying wounded in the battle-field thinks of the home harvest-fields far away, and the soul amid its wounds and woes whispers, "I will arise and go to my Father. There is a home-returning way for me!"

II. THE CRY IS ANXIOUS. "Is there yet?" Once the soul was ready to surmise there might be! But is there now? when sin has consolidated into habit, when the door has been shut so often in the marred face of the Man of Sorrows! "My sin is ever before me," is the great cry of conscience. We sympathize with human anxiety. We watch with moistened eyes the widow who asks, "Is there yet a table in the wilderness for me and my little ones?" In reply to the "yet," let us answer, "Though thy sins be as scarlet, He shall make them white as wool"; "He shall blot out thy transgressions as a cloud, and thine iniquities as a thick cloud"; "He is able to save to the uttermost all that come unto God by Him."

III. THE CRY IS CHILDLIKE. "My Father's house!" For we are, in one sense, all of us God's offspring. True, we have lost likeness to Him and peace with Him; and only by faith can we become the spiritual sons of God. But there is memory of the lost estate in every heart. Man was made for God, and He is the only home of the soul. God gave us our earthly homes and relationships, to be parables of that great central truth. No word thrills us like "home"; no picture on Academy walls touches us like Provis's interiors. And this is natural. For let home be dark or deserted, let the dove of peace leave that, let those sweet sanctities be desecrated, and no outside joys, no travels, no pursuits can make compensation! And to know the value of a home, you must lose one.

IV. THE CRY IS ANSWERED. Yes! in many parables, in many promises, in deeds of love and sacrifice. Faith leads all along the way, from justification to glory. But it were wrong to conceive of the inheritance as all future. Heaven does begin on earth, because the heavenly principles, purposes, and pleasures may be ours now. CONCLUSION. We close with the remembrance that there is welcome for us, room for us, reward for us. Have you ever stood outside a flower-show in the summer-time, and seen carriage after carriage drive up, with rustling silks and dazzling liveries and crested panels, pride and pomp entering in; and then caught the wistful face of a poor child at the gate, with another child in her arms, shut out from seeing God's beautiful flowers? The poor, the blind, the maim, the halt, the prodigals of every type are welcome. What, does He want me? does He wait for me? has He asked for me?

(W. M. Statham, M. A.)

We have seen some things in the history of these women which have induced us to hope well of them, notwithstanding their many failings; but though in this case it was their duty to comply with the desire of their husband, and to own the hand of God in what had taken place between their father and him; yet there is something in their manner of expressing themselves that looks more like the spirit of the world, than the spirit which is of God. A right spirit would have taught them to remember that Laban, whatever was his conduct, was still their father. They might have felt it impossible to vindicate him; but they should not have expatiated on his faults in such a manner as to take pleasure in exposing them. Such conduct was but too much like that of Ham towards his father. And as to their acknowledging the hand of God in giving their father's riches to their husband, this is no more than is often seen in the most selfish characters, who can easily admire the Divine providence when it goes in their favour. The ease, however, with which all men can discern what is just and equitable towards themselves, renders the love of ourselves a proper standard for the love of others, and will sooner or later stop the mouth of every sinner. Even those who have no written revelation have this Divine law engraven on their consciences: they can judge with the nicest accuracy what is justice to them, and therefore cannot plead ignorance of what is justice from them to others.

(A. Fuller.)

1. It becometh wives, especially in good families, to listen unto advice of husbands from God.

2. God can make them that disagree in a family sweetly to concur to do His work.

3. It is unnatural for children to find no portions in their father's house, when they abound.

4. Such brands of cruelty are left upon unnatural fathers by the Spirit (ver. 14).

5. It is cruel for fathers to use their children as slaves and make merchandize of them.

6. It is savage for parents to consume the substance of children for whom they should provide.

7. Such unnatural dealings, in God's justice, alienate hearts of children from parents (ver. 15).

8. It is fit to consider how God recompenseth cruelties of unnatural parents in depriving them of their children.

9. What God giveth to parents and children may be justly owned by them.

10. Good women will be free and helpful to their husbands to go and do whatever is the will of God unto them (ver. 16).

(G. Hughes, B. D.)

Aram, Isaac, Jacob, Laban, Leah, Nahor, Rachel
Canaan, Euphrates River, Galeed, Gilead, Jegar-sahadutha, Mizpah, Paddan-aram
Answereth, Estate, Father's, Heritage, Inheritance, Leah, Portion, Rachel, Replied, Share, Yet
1. Jacob, displeased with the envy of Laban and his sons, departs secretly.
19. Rachel steals her father's household gods.
22. Laban pursues after him, and complains of the wrong.
34. Rachel's plan to hide the images.
36. Jacob's complaint of Laban.
43. The covenant of Laban and Jacob at Galeed.

Dictionary of Bible Themes
Genesis 31:1-24

     5095   Jacob, life

Gen. xxxi. 11
Of no less importance and significance is the passage Gen. xxxi. 11 seq. According to ver. 11, the Angel of God, [Hebrew: mlaK halhiM] appears toJacob in a dream. In ver. 13, the same person calls himself the God of Bethel, with reference to the event recorded in chap. xxviii. 11-22. It cannot be supposed that in chap xxviii. the mediation of a common angel took place, who, however, had not been expressly mentioned; for Jehovah is there contrasted with the angels. In ver. 12, we read: "And behold
Ernst Wilhelm Hengstenberg—Christology of the Old Testament

Appendix xvi. On the Jewish views About Demons' and the Demonised,' Together with Some Notes on the Intercourse Between Jews and Jewish Christians in the First Centuries.
IT is not, of course, our purpose here to attempt an exhaustive account of the Jewish views on demons' and the demonised.' A few preliminary strictures were, however, necessary on a work upon which writers on this subject have too implictly relied. I refer to Gfrörer's Jahrhundert des Heils (especially vol. i. pp. 378-424). Gfrörer sets out by quoting a passage in the Book of Enoch on which he lays great stress, but which critical inquiries of Dillmann and other scholars have shown to be
Alfred Edersheim—The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah

How the Rude in Sacred Learning, and those who are Learned but not Humble, are to be Admonished.
(Admonition 25.) Differently to be admonished are those who do not understand aright the words of the sacred Law, and those who understand them indeed aright, but speak them not humbly. For those who understand not aright the words of sacred Law are to be admonished to consider that they turn for themselves a most wholesome drought of wine into a cup of poison, and with a medicinal knife inflict on themselves a mortal wound, when they destroy in themselves what was sound by that whereby they ought,
Leo the Great—Writings of Leo the Great

Epistle Xlix. To Anastasius, Bishop of Antioch .
To Anastasius, Bishop of Antioch [35] . Gregory to Anastasius, &c. I received the letters of thy Fraternity, rightly holding fast the profession of the faith; and I returned great thanks to Almighty God, who, when the shepherds of His flock are changed, still, even after such change, guards the faith which He once delivered to the holy Fathers. Now the excellent preacher says, Other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Christ Jesus (1 Cor. iii. 2). Whosoever, then, with love of
Saint Gregory the Great—the Epistles of Saint Gregory the Great

The Great Shepherd
He shall feed his flock like a shepherd; He shall gather the lambs with His arm, and carry them in His bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young. I t is not easy for those, whose habits of life are insensibly formed by the customs of modern times, to conceive any adequate idea of the pastoral life, as obtained in the eastern countries, before that simplicity of manners, which characterized the early ages, was corrupted, by the artificial and false refinements of luxury. Wealth, in those
John Newton—Messiah Vol. 1

And He had Also this Favour Granted Him. ...
66. And he had also this favour granted him. For as he was sitting alone on the mountain, if ever he was in perplexity in his meditations, this was revealed to him by Providence in prayer. And the happy man, as it is written, was taught of God [1112] . After this, when he once had a discussion with certain men who had come to him concerning the state of the soul and of what nature its place will be after this life, the following night one from above called him, saying, Antony, rise, go out and look.'
Athanasius—Select Works and Letters or Athanasius

A Treatise of the Fear of God;
SHOWING WHAT IT IS, AND HOW DISTINGUISHED FROM THAT WHICH IS NOT SO. ALSO, WHENCE IT COMES; WHO HAS IT; WHAT ARE THE EFFECTS; AND WHAT THE PRIVILEGES OF THOSE THAT HAVE IT IN THEIR HEARTS. London: Printed for N. Ponder, at the Peacock in the Poultry, over against the Stocks market: 1679. ADVERTISEMENT BY THE EDITOR. "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom," and "a fountain of life"--the foundation on which all wisdom rests, as well as the source from whence it emanates. Upon a principle
John Bunyan—The Works of John Bunyan Volumes 1-3

Meditations for the Morning.
1. Almighty God can, in the resurrection, as easily raise up thy body out of the grave, from the sleep of death, as he hath this morning wakened thee in thy bed, out of the sleep of nature. At the dawning of which resurrection day, Christ shall come to be glorified in his saints; and every one of the bodies of the thousands of his saints, being fashioned like unto his glorious body, shall shine as bright as the sun (2 Thess. i. 10; Jude, ver. 14; Phil. iii. 21; Luke ix. 31;) all the angels shining
Lewis Bayly—The Practice of Piety

The Old Testament opens very impressively. In measured and dignified language it introduces the story of Israel's origin and settlement upon the land of Canaan (Gen.--Josh.) by the story of creation, i.-ii. 4a, and thus suggests, at the very beginning, the far-reaching purpose and the world-wide significance of the people and religion of Israel. The narrative has not travelled far till it becomes apparent that its dominant interests are to be religious and moral; for, after a pictorial sketch of
John Edgar McFadyen—Introduction to the Old Testament

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