Sharon Wilharm Bible Storyteller

Rachel and the Idols

In the process of fleeing from Laban, Rachel stole his household idols. When Laban returned home and realized Jacob had left with his daughters, grandchildren, and idols, he pursued after them.

Laban confronted Jacob, claiming to be upset that he wasn’t able to give them a proper sendoff. He understood why Jacob would want to return to his father’s house but was confused why Jacob would steal his idols.

Jacob had no idea what he was talking about. He told Laban to feel free to search everyone, going so far as to say, “Anyone with whom you find your gods shall not live.” (Genesis 31:32 ESV) What a rash statement to make, but it didn’t occur to him that anyone in his party might take idols, especially his beloved Rachel.

Laban went through all the tents, going to Rachel’s last, but when he entered Rachel’s tent, he found her sitting. She was actually sitting on the idols. She apologized for not getting up, but said it was that time of the month. He searched throughout the tent but didn’t find anything.

Why did Rachel steal the idols? Was it an impulse move or a deliberate attempt to hold on to idol worship? Why would she hold on to useless objects after seeing the hand of Jacob’s true God. What happened to those stolen idols?

How easily Rachel deceived her father, stealing from him, hiding from him, and lying to him. Though she wasn’t caught, Jacob’s foreshadow of death would soon come true.

Are you holding on to the world’s strongholds rather than trusting in God’s provision and protection? Are you deceiving those around you, pretending to be something you’re not? Though you may get away with it for a time, truth always comes out. We cannot hide our evil deeds forever.  

Read the story: Genesis 31:19-35

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Rachel steals idols

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