Sunday, June 5, 2016

Leah - The Loneliest Heroine

“Leah – The Loneliest Heroine”

“From Ulster Plantation to the Carolina’s with the Gospel!” *

Russell H. McCullough / Archdale church of Christ, 2525 Archdale Drive, Charlotte, NC 28210 / - Date:  5 June 2016

Text: Genesis 29 - 49
Thesis: The Love of God conquerors all things including treachery, loathing and unrequited love!

1           Introduction

A.   The Four Tops – “Just Ask the Lonely”
When you feel that need
To make it all alone,
Remember no one is thinking of,
Going alone
Just ask the lonely
They know the hurt and pain,
Of losing a love, you can never regain

B.   Jacob betrayed Esau at Beersheba
1.      Located 75 miles SW of Jerusalem
2.     Founded when Abraham and Abimelech made a covenant regarding the well Abraham had dug in Genesis 21.
3.    The name means “The Well of the Oath” or “Seven Wells.”
4.    Isaac built an altar of sacrifice there (Genesis 26)
5.    Near here Jacob had his vision of the Stairway to Heaven (Genesis 28)
C.    Rebecca told Jacob to flee to Paddan-aram
1.      599 miles from Beersheba
2.     Name means “Field of Aram”
3.    Actually an area in which is located Haran
4.    Laban was Rebecca’s brother and Jacobs uncle
5.    Rachael and Leah were his cousins
D.   Jacob comes under the tent of his uncle Laban
1.      Begins as an extended visit
2.     Employment offered by Laban to Jacob because of kinship
3.    The wages – 7 years of labor in return for Rachael

2          The Treachery of a Father – Genesis 29.15 - 24

A. (We see how Jacob inherited his devious ways!)
B. Laban breaks his covenant with Jacob
C. Laban uses Leah as a bargaining chip to double his money
             1. He saw his daughter as not being valuable because of
                 Poor eyesight.
2. By his snookering (THE FREE DICTIONARY - To lead (another)    into a situation in which all possible choices are undesirable; trap.) he got 7 extra years of free labor by Using his daughter as a pawn in a business deal.
D. Leah’s father’s treachery must have left her very alone and very   afraid of her future. 
1. Once bartered away, women were under 100% control of their husbands, the father was no longer any factor whatsoever.  Leah had no legal rights at all whatsoever.
E. We can hear the sobs and see the tears as her father “high fives” over his business deal.

3          The Loathing of a Husband – Genesis 29.25 - 30

A. Leah is a trick to Jacob not a lover though she is his wife
B. Jacob sees Leah as making him a victim
C. Jacob sees Leah as an instrument of deception
D. Jacob is told the “fine print” of the covenant and realizes he’s been “snookered.”  GOTCHA!
E. Jacob spends a week with Leah, not out of love for her but for the love of her sister!
1. “I’m going through the motions so I can marry your sister that, UNLIKE YOU, I love!”
F. Leah’s husbands open and notorious loathing of her must have left her in absolute terror, loneliness and self-hatred.
G. We can hear the sobs and see the tears while Jacob sulks in the corner over having been out maneuvered by his uncle as he yearns for Leah’s sister.

4         Unrequited Love – Genesis 29.31 – 34; 30.8

A. Reuben is born – “Now my husband will love me.”
B. Levi is born – “Now this time my husband will be attached to me because I have born him 3 sons.”
C. Intense competition erupts with her sister who claims victory over her
D. We can hear the sobs and see the tears as time after time with each new son the love and affection of Jacob elude her.
5.   Love Conquerors All! – Genesis 29.35ff
      A.  A progression of faith in God – HER TRUE FRIEND AND HELPER
1) 29.31 – The Lord came to her rescue when HE saw she was hated.
2) 29.32 – “Because the Lord has looked upon my affliction…”
3) 29.33 – “Because the Lord has heard that I am hated…”
                   b) This is the turning point in Leah’s life when
                   she ceases crying and begins rejoicing!
5) 30.11 – “Good fortune has come!”
6) 30.13 – “Happy am I!  For women have called me happy.”
7) 30.18 – “God has given me my wages because I gave my servant to my husband.”
8) 30.20 – “God has endowed me with good endowment…”

6         The Legacy of Leah’s Life

A.   With God’s loving help:
1)     Leah, like Churchill said, “Never, never, never give up!”
2)    Leah did not allow loneliness to defeat her
3)   Leah did not allow treachery to destroy her
4)   Leah never rebelled against her father
5)   Leah never rebelled against her husband
6)   Leah did not allow her loathing husband to cease striving for his love and affection
7)   Leah did not allow jealousy of her sister embitter her
8)   Leah waited on the Lord to hear her case
9)   Leah always sought what was best for her husband
10)                       Leah accepted her circumstances
11)            Leah gave thanks to God for the success of      others
12)                        Leah always gave God the glory
13)                        Leah was given two great gifts that continue to bless us today!
a)   It was her son, Judah, that became the savior of the family and the familial progenitor of the Lord Jesus Christ!
b)   She received the highest commendation of those who lived centuries later:
1.      “Then all the people who were at the gate and the elders said; “We are witnesses.  May the LORD make the woman, who is coming into your house, like Rachael and LEAH, who TOGETHER built up the house of Israel…” – Ruth 4.11a

7          Leah Challenges Us This Morning:

A. To know that when God is for us, no one can be against us
B. To realize that surrender to our circumstances is not an option
C. To understand that suffering is not failure
D. To know that treachery is never final
E. To realize that every person has at least one other person in life who loathes them
F. To understand that getting “snookered” is not a reflection on me
G. To give God Thanks for every circumstance
H. To give God all the praise and glory for all achievements
I. To understand that a small faith can grow great
J. To grasp the fact that family is greater than all possessions
k. To willingly rejoice with the success of our adversaries
l. To realize that rebellion against God, parents or spouses is never an option
m. To come to grasp with the fact that true happiness is found ONLY in God and nowhere else!
             1. “I have come to give you life and life more abundantly!”
n. To “Never, never, never give up!”

8         “The Gospel Call”

·         My fifth great uncle was Hugh Gaston who was rector at the Ballywillan Presbyterian Church (pictured above left) in County Antrim, Ulster Plantation (Northern Ireland) and wrote the most dangerous book of his time; Gaston’s Collections.  It allowed “the ploughman to know more Bible than his clergyman.”  Hugh fled to South Carolina where he died prematurely of the measles.  He is buried just one hour south of Charlotte in Chester County, S.C. in “Burnt Meeting House Cemetery.”   Uncle Hugh continues to inspire my ministry to this very day.  You can read more about Uncle Hugh here:
Ruins photo courtesy of:
·         On Friday night, August 5, 2016 Russ will dramatically portray the life and times of his 5th Great grandfather, John “Justice” Gaston entitled; “A Patriot of the Revolution.” A portion of the event will cover also the life and times of his brother, Hugh Gaston.  The event will take place at the Archdale church of Christ, 2525 Archdale Drive, Charlotte, NC 28210 at 7 p.m.   The public is invited to this free presentation.

Thy Kingdom Come - The Truth About the Rapture - The Introduction

Thy Kingdom Come The Truth About the Rapture Based Upon the Study Guide of the Same Title by: David R Pharr Lesson #1 – I...