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Genesis: Checkmate

Updated: Jan 17

via TJC


And in the morning, behold, it was Leah! And Jacob said to Laban, “What is this you have done to me? Did I not serve with you for Rachel? Why then have you deceived me?” - Genesis 29:25


Recently I’ve taken a great interest in getting better at chess. The game of war on 64 squares is intense—full of strategy and precision, and the game creates situations that are absolutely brutal as both players strive to checkmate the enemy king. Often when I play I get frustrated when my opponent does something unexpected, forcing me to do something I really don’t want to do. The ability to keep my head together in such a situation is absolutely crucial to pressing toward victory, even when I’m at a disadvantage.

As I read through Genesis I noticed a similar situation in the life of Jacob, who is the father of the nation of Israel. Jacob falls in love with Rachel and asks her father, Laban, for her hand in marriage. Laban strikes a bargain that after seven years of labor Jacob could marry his daughter. Jacob works diligently for seven years, and then is surprised on the wedding day to find that he had been tricked! Laban had dressed Rachel’s older sister, Leah, up as a bride and bound her to Jacob in the marriage ceremony before Jacob realized that the switch-er-roo had taken place.

Checkmate.

Or was it?

Jacob could have given up then and settled for what he was given, but Jacob was not one to be pinned without getting what he wanted. Jacob strikes a second bargain with Laban, after having been brutally tricked, to work for ANOTHER SEVEN YEARS in exchange for marrying Rachel. What an incredible move to fight for love and victory! In the end, he perseveres and is rewarded with his rightful bride.



Daily Battle Order:

Read the full story of Jacob, Laban, Leah, and Rachel in Genesis 29:1-30. Think about your responses to setbacks or tactical errors in your life. When you get outmaneuvered do you sulk and pout? Or do you accept the disadvantage and press on for victory? As a warrior for Christ you should move through life with the confidence that, no matter the setback, victory is already yours if you run your race with endurance.



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