If Jacob was the ultimate trickster, he certainly met his match in Uncle Laban. Jacob swapped the younger for the older. And Laban did just the opposite.
The day arrived that Jacob had waited and worked for: Rachel’s hand in marriage! It had been seven long years, and he was eager to get on with married life. A feast was planned and the celebration lasted into the evening. The sky grew dark, and crafty Laban brought his daughter, no doubt veiled, to Jacob. Jacob consummated the marriage that night in his tent. But what a surprise the morning brought! “It came to pass in the morning, that behold, it was Leah” (Gen 29:25). Earlier, the sisters were described as follows: “Leah’s eyes were delicate, but Rachel was beautiful of form and appearance” (v 17). The conjunction “but” in the middle suggests a contrast. Some have translated the Hebrew word rak, not as delicate, but as weak or faint. Perhaps. Or it may simply mean that Leah’s only redeeming feature was her eyes, while her younger sister was beautiful overall. Whatever the case, Jacob was unhappy, to say the least! “What is this you have done to me? Was it not for Rachel that I served you? Why then have you deceived me?” (v 25). Jacob is getting some of his own medicine, isn’t he! What goes around comes around. Especially when you hear Uncle Laban’s ironic excuse: “And Laban said, ‘It must not be done so in our country, to give the younger before the firstborn’” (v 26). Ah, yes, Jacob, we have rules around here about the younger not stepping in before the firstborn. What a zinger! Now here we are almost 4000 years beyond these times. But there is a principle throughout Scripture that was true then and is true now. It comes in various forms: What you sow, you reap. As you judge, you will be judged. Or how about this, in Proverbs 26:27, “Whoever digs a pit will fall into it, and he who rolls a stone will have it roll back on him.”