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People: Leah

Leah

Laban's oldest daughter and Jacob's first wife.

Background

Jacob loved Leah's younger sister, Rachel, and wanted her for his wife. Her father, Laban, promised Rachel's hand if Jacob would work for him for seven years. When the seven year contract was complete Laban slipped Leah into Jacob's tent in place of Rachel. When Jacob awoke and found himself married to Leah instead of Rachel he had to work another seven years for Rachel. Leah always had to struggle for Jacob's attention, but she bore more of Jacob's children than Rachel or his concubines. In her competition with Rachel for Jacob's favor she gave her handmaiden, Zilpah, to him for a concubine. Leah's children were Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, Zebulun, and Dinah.

AUTHOR: Robert Brusic, Seminary Pastor Emeritus