Chick-fil-A Biblical Family of the Day

Chick-fil-A president Dan Cathy: “We support biblical families.”

Today’s Chick-fil-A Biblical Family of the Day: Jacob & Leah & Rachel & Zilpah & Bilhah (Genesis 29:15-30)

Then Laban said to Jacob, ‘Because you are my kinsman, should you therefore serve me for nothing? Tell me, what shall your wages be?’ Now Laban had two daughters; the name of the elder was Leah, and the name of the younger was Rachel. Leah’s eyes were lovely, and Rachel was graceful and beautiful. Jacob loved Rachel; so he said, ‘I will serve you seven years for your younger daughter Rachel.’ Laban said, ‘It is better that I give her to you than that I should give her to any other man; stay with me.’ So Jacob served seven years for Rachel, and they seemed to him but a few days because of the love he had for her.

Then Jacob said to Laban, ‘Give me my wife that I may go in to her, for my time is completed.’ So Laban gathered together all the people of the place, and made a feast. But in the evening he took his daughter Leah and brought her to Jacob; and he went in to her. (Laban gave his maid Zilpah to his daughter Leah to be her maid.) When morning came, 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?’ Laban said, ‘This is not done in our country—giving the younger before the firstborn. Complete the week of this one, and we will give you the other also in return for serving me for another seven years.’ Jacob did so, and completed her week; then Laban gave him his daughter Rachel as a wife. (Laban gave his maid Bilhah to his daughter Rachel to be her maid.) So Jacob went in to Rachel also, and he loved Rachel more than Leah. He served Laban for another seven years.

  • PandaRosa

    And now comes the dawn, the dreams of every Trad Val Fundy Male…

  • vsm

     So which do y’all dislike more, Jacob or Joseph? I think Joseph is probably the worse person, since he uses insider information to hoard food just before a famine and then use his stock to enslave the entire population of Egypt, but Jacob is more punchable from a subjective perspective. He starts his career in douchbaggery by deceiving his father and brother, engages in this bizarre woman-buying business, rapes two slaves and plays blatant favorites with his sons. Bizarrely enough, he seems to consider himself a good person through all this, to the extent that he thinks he of all people has the right to curse his oldest son for dishonoring him (he slept with one of Jacob’s slaves).

  • Samantha C

    This is one that bothered me ever since the day I learned it. I think the version they gave me as a kid didn’t mention the…wedding night. So I was stuck utterly, completely baffled as to how it could possibly be a legal marriage if the groom said I Do to the wrong person. I remember something about there being an extra-thick veil so he couldn’t see her face.

    If they slept together, then at least I understand how it’s not something that can just be undone (the Jewish law I was taught is that the act of having sex is basically an elopement, and you’re automatically married). But raises just more questions. How?

    and re: vsm – I have ALWAYS thought Jacob was  a COLOSSAL ASSHOLE from the Esau story (and it took me a while to realize this was the same Jacob being an asshole to his wives). WHY YES JACOB, you TOTALLY have the right to cheat your brother out of everything because…..um…..because!

    At least Joseph is helping one group of people. At the expense of another, but he can be framed as leading his adopted country. Jacob is just…ugh.

  • Wednesday

    For some context, the “seven years of labor” thing is probably not so much “Laban pimps out his daughters” as “the culture has bride service/bride price” (the opposite of a dowry, basically) — in which case, if Jacob wants to marry at all, he’s going to have to work for or pay the bride’s family.  Marriage has historically been an economic contract, after all.

    So Laban isn’t pimping out (ie, renting) his daughters, he’s selling them, a full-fledged transfer of ownership.

  • EllieMurasaki

    I’d rather have bride price than dowry, personally. Not that either is a good thing (unless we’re working with both bride price and dowry so that both individuals/families pay and the money/property goes to setting up the new household), but it’s the difference between ‘she is valuable to us, you must compensate us for what we lose when she goes to you’ and ‘let us pay you to take her off our hands’.

  • http://vicwelle.wordpress.com victoria

    I would also highly recommend “The Red Tent.”  Making the daughter Dinah the narrator provides a sympathetic yet unvarnished depiction of both Leah and Rachel.  (And yes, Laban is still an asshole).

  • Lori

    another Eagle Scout sent him an Eagle Scout pin.  

    Aww. What a good guy. He’s the kind of person the Boy Scouts say they want to mold (as opposed to what they model). I was already verklempt about how his folks are standing up for him. (So many gay kids still get throw out on the street for coming out to their parents that I always get a little misty when I see folks being all PFLAG for their child.)

  • Lori

     

    I remember something about there being an extra-thick veil so he couldn’t see her face.  

    The only positive I ever found in this story was that it’s the origin of the bedekken, which is the veiling ceremony for a Jewish wedding. It happens before the main ceremony and is attended by just close friends and family. IME it’s a nice custom. For one thing, it eliminates all the flapping about the groom not seeing the bride before the ceremony, which makes picture-taking and transportation much less fraught.

     

      WHY YES JACOB, you TOTALLY have the right to cheat your brother out of everything because…..um…..because!  
     

    But mom told me to do it!

    What a colossal ass.

  • Amaryllis

    it’s the difference between ‘she is valuable to us, you must compensate
    us for what we lose when she goes to you’ and ‘let us pay you to take
    her off our hands’.
    .

    Yes, especially in some modern practices it can give that impression.

    But in some traditional societies, dowry could be a form of protection for the woman, if it was expected to be returned to her or her family if the marriage ended for any reason. The idea was that her husband wouldn’t mistreat her so badly that she left and took her dowry with her. And if he divorced her or he died, she and her children would have some means of support.

    And bride-price could be seen as less a compensation for the woman herself, and more for any children she might have– her clan loses them and his clan gains them.

  • Antigone10

    Why is it always a “bride price” or “a dowry”?  Why is it, no matter who it’s attached to, it’s always the woman that’s to do with money instead of the husband?

  • Guest

    Meir Shalev quotes this poem to ask if every woman is Rachel the girlfriend who drives you wild and then becomes Leah, the one you settle down with, make children, get a mortgage, the one who’s not fun anymore as if that’s her fault, which it isn’t, because you’re in Grown-up Land now.

  • Guest
  • Carstonio
  • http://stealingcommas.blogspot.com/ chris the cynic

    Ah, I’m from Maine, if you were wondering.

  • newenglandsun

    That can’t possibly a Biblical family. They don’t have marriage between one man and one women for life.


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