There were two nations in her womb. According to prophecy, and a little trickery by Jacob and Rebekah, Isaac blessed Jacob and made him lord over Esau. This angered Esau greatly and he vowed to murder his brother Jacob.
~Continuing the History of Israel Narrative Series~
So Jacob’s mother had to get rid of Jacob before Esau carried out his murderous plans. The parents of Jacob sent him back to Mesopotamia to search for a wife. The idea and the plan for Abraham’s seed were never to marry the women of Canaan.
That was the guise Jacob’s parents used to get Jacob to leave without suspicion from Esau.
As Jacob went back to Mesopotamia to seek a wife, but really to stay away from a very angry Esau, he ran into a beautiful young maid named Rachel. The beautiful Rachel was given to him but he also had to take her older sister Leah (who apparently was not so or as beautiful).
It was a family or cultural tradition, the younger sister could not get married before an older sister. This is difficult to carry out if the younger sister is better looking and physically more attractive than the older.
At any rate, Jacob ended up with both of the sister’s handmaid’s. This was because of Rachel’s conflict of not being able to conceive children at the time. Because she was barren, she convinced Jacob to marry her handmaid in order to have children; Leah ended doing the same.
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