Why Should We Marry And Sleep with Only One Person? (Genesis 29-30)

Why Should We Marry And Sleep with Only One Person? (Genesis 29-30)

– Alrighty, what book of the Bible are we in? – Genesis.

– Genesis, both of you said, with no enthusiasm, great. We’re off to a great start. All right, so here’s the question. We’re gonna be in Genesis, Chapter 29 and 30. Here’s the question: Why should we not sleep with or marry more than one person? Okay, so most of you should just open your Bible to Genesis 29, 30. If you’re a single guy dating multiple girls, here’s your homework assignment. Right now, text, apologize to the women, send a link to this sermon, and then post a one star review. But otherwise we’re gonna be in Genesis 29 and 30. And let me just catch you up to speed. We’re going through the book of Genesis in the course of about a year. So when we open the book of Genesis, it says that God made us blank and blank, male and female, binary gender categories. Very judge-y, very controversial, okay? How do I know which one I am? Check for an Adam’s apple. It’s a clue, okay? So, God made us male and female. God said it wasn’t good to be alone. If you’ve ever met a single guy, you know why. And so God brought them together to be married. So here’s what marriage is according to the word of God. And it’s always the Word versus the world. There’s always this collision between the Word and the world, and the question is: Should the Word tell the world what to do, or should the world edit what the Word says? So God tells us we’re made male and female. He brought us together, man and woman, to be married. One man, one woman, and marriage is a covenant that’s consummated. So you get married and then you go on your honeymoon, and you make it official. So that’s what God establishes as marriage. Now, the world has completely abandoned this. And so what the world has done, first and foremost, do we still in the world believe in male and female? No, we don’t. And if you don’t believe me, just go onto a college campus and look around, okay. So what happens is we’ve obliterated male and female. Do we still believe as a culture that marriage is for one man and one woman? No, so there’s four big ideas. We’ve already eliminated two of those in our culture, and so let me tell you the two that are still going to be eliminated in our lifetime or there’ll at least be strong efforts to eliminate. Number one, marriage between one man and one woman. I’m telling you what’s coming is polygamy. I’m just telling you that. Because if we don’t have men and women, and marriage isn’t for one man and one woman, then it seems very discriminatory and binary to say that marriage is just between two people. Why not 3, 4, 27, an entire zip code? Who am I to judge? And then the fourth thing that you will see in our lifetime… Let me say this. If you’re offended, it’s gonna get worse. Okay, so the fourth thing that we’re gonna see in our lifetime is an attempt to eradicate the age of consent. So we’ve gotten rid of male and female. We’ve gotten rid of marriage for a man and a woman. And so the push will continue, and I should make it the push to the left. So the push to the left will continue to eradicate marriage between two people and also age of consent. And so this leads us to the subject that we’ll be investigating today, of polygamy. And there are two forms of polygamy. You’re like, “Pastor Mark, please explain this.” I will, thank you for asking. The first is polygyny, which is one man with multiple women. That’s what you see on naughty shows like “The Bachelor.” And then there’s polyandry, which is one woman with multiple men, like you see on the naughty show “The Bachelorette.” Now, when it comes to polyandry, one

woman with multiple men, it never appears in the Bible, okay. Probably because the men killed each other, okay. That’s probably why. How many of you guys were married? Can you imagine having multiple husbands at your house? Merry Christmas, right? I bought a knife. Okay, so for me. Oh, and for you. So historically, too, there’s no major culture that has ever had women marrying multiple men because those cultures would die. You’re not gonna have population replacement. And so what we see in our day is there’s this great push toward polygamy. And the reasons in our lifetime are gonna be these. If I’m on the gender sexual spectrum, well, today I wanna be with a man, tomorrow I wanna be with a woman. Maybe I need to marry a bunch of people so that as I’m moving on my gender spectrum, my sexual continuum, then I can keep all my options open. You’ll also hear that it’ll lower divorce rate. Rather than getting divorced, let’s just add some more people to the marriage and to the family. The argument will be made as well, well, there’s higher income. Like if there’s seven people all working, that’s gonna be greater household income. And now with inflation, maybe we can get gas, okay? In addition, the argument will be made, multiple parents are better. ‘Cause if you’ve tried to raise kids, you realize it’s difficult. So they would say it takes a village to raise a child, so why don’t the whole village get married? The other will be religious freedom. We’ll get into that. And then also there’s 150,000 people that are practicing polygamy illegally in the United States today. They don’t have legal protections and rights, so this will be a justice issue. And justice is a word that we’ve weaponized to do injustice. So we’ll use it to push toward polygamy. And how many of you have seen or heard of this? Ultimately, how many of you seen those crazy TV shows where there’s a polygamous family? These are ways of trying to erode the conscience about marriage. So there’s shows like “Sister Wives,” one guy, four wives, 18 kids. Just visit there emotionally for a minute. How about this one? There’s another show called “My Five Wives,” one guy, four women, 25 children. In addition “Seeking Sister Wife.” This television show follows three polygamous couples, and it’s always the husband and the wife, and then they are seeking to find more sister wives. Now I don’t, I’ll just spoil alert. I don’t, like, watch these shows, okay, ’cause there’s not enough hand sanitizer and I throw up in my mouth. But I was clicking through the channels the other day and I saw this and I was like, well for research purposes. So I clicked and I, you know, for Bible teaching. So I clicked on it and it was horrifying ’cause there’s this guy with his wife and they keep trying to find other wives to join the family, and his teenage kids are part of the show. Do you think they’re excited, proud to be on the show, glad? No, these kids look like the zombie apocalypse. They’re like, “Dad, don’t go, Dad, don’t do this.” The daughter is completely broken, devastated, and the parents just keep saying, “She has a bad attitude.” No, she has discernment. Okay, that’s why she’s frustrated. And what’s going to happen in our day, we use words like thruples, open marriage, swingers. We have serial divorce, which is, “I’m older and I meet somebody younger so I get rid of my wife to pick up the next girl.” In addition, we’ve got things like cohabitation without marriage. You’re just moving from one relationship to another, and serial dating, just gonna live and sleep with lots of people, no intention of being committed to them. We have all of these different ways of practicing this plurality and polygamy. And of course pornography obliterates all categories. So the more you watch, the less you see the will of God. So there’ll be two primary arguments or places that arguments for polygamy come from. There will be the secular and there will be the religious. For those who are secular, as I said, they’re going to be arguing from sociology or gender spectrum or gender identity. The

religious folks are gonna argue in a different way. So for example, we’ll get into Mormonism in a minute, ’cause we’re in Arizona. We got nothing else to do. But first let me just tell you about the founder of Islam. His name is Muhammad. He’s called a prophet. He’s actually a false prophet. He had 11 wives. The youngest was six and he was 50. And the defenders of Muhammad and Islam would say, “Well, yeah, but he didn’t consummate until she was nine.” He was 53. We follow Jesus, and if he married a six year old girl, I would recommend we not follow Jesus. In addition, when it comes to polygamy, one person married to lots of other people, what’s the first religious group that comes to mind? Mormonism. So we’re in Arizona. Let’s talk about it. And Mormonism is an offshoot of Christianity. It’s a cult. A cult starts kind of as Christian-ish and then denies Christian principles, but still claims to be Christian. And what the Mormons will say is there’s over two dozen believers in the Bible that practice polygamy. We’re gonna look at one today. “Well, since God’s people practiced polygamy, we should practice polygamy.” Let me just say this: Just ’cause it’s in the Bible doesn’t mean you should do it. Like Judas hung himself, and it’s not like, well where do we get the rope? No, it’s a discouragement. There are things in the Bible that end so badly, it’s to warn us not to do the same. Polygamy is one example. So when it comes to polygamy, there’s something called the fundamentalist Mormons, and the fundamentalist Mormons would say, based upon the text we’re gonna look at today, that God’s people often practice polygamy, so we should too. So some of their founders include Brigham Young. He had, guess how many wives? 55. How many of you guys feel like that’s a lot? I can’t imagine how often he heard, “I just don’t feel like we get quality time.” I can hear that. “I don’t feel like I’m a priority.” It’s like the DMV. “Now calling number 51.” I mean it’s crazy. Okay. He had 55 lives, 57 kids, and his youngest wife was 15. He married her when he was 42. And if you’re a single guy, you’re like, what? And if you’re a dad, you’re like, what? You see it differently. In addition, Joseph Smith, he had up to 40 wives. The youngest was 14 when he married her. And so what happened was in Utah, in Utah, Mormon is so the, the number one state in America for percentage of population that is practicing Mormon, number one state is Utah. Number two is Arizona. Why? Well, here’s what happens. When the old, rich men marry all the young women, the young men have no one to marry. Like between these two guys, you got 95 wives. That means there’s 93 young guys going, “It’s musical chairs and I got no chair.” There’s no women left. So what happens in those communities that are polygamous, the rich, old men marry the young women. There’s no wives left for the young men, so what do the young men have to do? Leave? They’re called the lost boys. They get kicked out. So they ended up moving to Arizona, looking for wives. And so entire territories in Arizona were founded as Mormon territories. This would include of course, Joseph City, Maricopa, Snowflake, Winslow, and Sunset. Those were all Mormon settlements. To this day, the Mormon church has outlawed… Or I shouldn’t call it church. Church-ish, fake church. Fake church. That ultimately it has outlawed polygamy, but there are still fundamentalists, Mormon. They’re not fun, little mental, but you know, fundamentalist Mormons that still practice it. And so there are entire cities in Arizona that are polygamous: Centennial Park and Colorado City. It happens a lot up in the mountains. If you go to one of those towns, you’re like, why does everybody got a banjo and a scary look? ‘Cause you’re not supposed to be there. They are closed communities. They are polygamous towns. And so here’s what’s gonna happen in our lifetime. Then we will get into the Bible. What’s gonna happen in our lifetime is, from the religious and the rebellious, from the far

right to the far left. They’re gonna push together for polygamy/ I know a lot of you don’t think this is important, but just lemme tell you this. One day it will be this sermon is prophetic, and when it happens, just play it again. But it’s gonna be really weird ’cause from the mountains of Arizona, you know the guy with his wife and their 17 kids are gonna be like, “Hey, we gotta go to the Capitol and protest.” Right? “Puts your bonnets on, stop churning your butter. Everybody get in the wagon. We gotta go protest.” And they’re gonna show up, and the transgender people are gonna be there, too. And the kids are gonna be like, “Dad, who do we protest with? “You protest with those people.” “Huh, well, who?” “With the guy.” “Huh?” “With the guy in the tutu with the Dora the Explorer backpack. Stand with him.” “Okay, sure.” It’s gonna be a weird coalition that comes together. It’s just gonna be weird. And ultimately they’re gonna be coming to the same conclusion, but they’re gonna be coming for different motivations. Now, wouldn’t it be nice, hypothetically, if somewhere in the Bible there was an in-depth case study on what would happen if generations practice polygamy. Wouldn’t that be helpful? You’re welcome. All right, we’re in Genesis 29. So this is a family story, Abraham and Sarah. She couldn’t have a baby, so she brought in another woman, got pregnant. They practiced polygamy, lots of drama. The Arabs come from that side of the family. The Jews come from her side of the family. Abraham and Sarah, their son Isaac did not practice polygamy. His wife was barren for 20 years. This is what we’ve studied in Genesis. So they waited. God provided two sons, Jacob and Esau. Jacob and Esau are fighting the whole time. They’re born, Esau is born first. He’s the stronger and older. Jacob is the younger and the weaker. Esau is daddy’s boy, Jacob is mama’s boy. He tricks his brother out of his birthright and his blessing. So mama, who’s high control, overbearing, domineering over parenting says, “Run for your life. Go to my brother’s house, who’s your uncle.” He shows up there and he meets the girl of his dreams. It’s Rachel. And so he works for seven years for his crazy, crooked uncle Laban to pay the bride price. On the wedding day, he says, “I do” to Rachel. He wakes up in the morning from the honeymoon, and there is Leah, ruh roh, they swapped out the bride! How many of you, you’re like, “If I woke up married to my wife’s sister, that would be bad.” Amen, brother, Amen. So here now he works another seven years to marry Rachel. Now he’s got two wives, and in this section in, about seven years, they’re gonna have 11 kids with four women. You ready? I don’t care, Genesis 29. Okay, here we go. Here’s the big idea. Your fantasy is your misery. So many of us have a fantasy, and for many men, I know not you guys, ’cause you’re here filled with the Holy Spirit under good teaching and obedient and all that, but for other men, like for those guys on the internet right now. So some men have a fantasy of… Lemme just, lemme say this. Don’t raise your hands, especially if you’re here with your wife, ’cause you’re gonna get stabbed in the liver while you sleep tonight, so just keep this between us. But how many of you, your fantasy would be, “If I could get four women to spend their whole life competing over me, performing for me, doing whatever I want, that would be amazing.” Oh, it would be, but not in the way you’re thinking. All right, Genesis 29. “When the Lord saw that Leah was hated…” This is what happens when you have multiple people that you’re in a romantic relationship with. You love one, you hate one. “He opened her womb, but Rachel was barren.” So the hated wife can have kids. The loved wife can’t. “And Leah conceived and bore a son,” called him Reuben. “For she said…” This is a tragic, haunting verse. “‘Because the Lord has looked upon my…'” What? Her marriage is an affliction. Every day is painful. “‘For now my husband will…'” Surely if I sleep with

him, and surely if I give him a baby, he’ll like me. “She conceived again and bore a son, and said, ‘Because the Lord has heard that I am hated…'” When you use words like hated and afflicted, that’s brutal. “‘He has given me this son also.’ She called his name Simeon. Again she conceived and bore a son, and said, ‘Now this time my husband will be attached to me because I have borne him three sons.’ Therefore his name was called Levi. And she conceived again and bore her son and said, ‘This time, I will praise the Lord.'” She’s like, I’m not even gonna think about my husband. “Therefore she called his name Judah. Then she ceased bearing.” Now she may have ceased bearing ’cause he stopped sleeping with her. So let me look at this. Each woman has something that the other wants. Rachel is loved by her husband, but she can’t have kids. Leah is hated by her husband, but she can have kids. The point is this in: In life, there’s always something that’s broken and painful. They’ve each got one thing that the other wishes they could have. So let’s look at each of these. Rachel’s had a rough seven years. Her and her sister, with their crazy, demonic dad, they manipulated Jacob into marrying the wrong gal by switching out the bride on the honeymoon night. But that means for an additional seven years, Jacob worked for seven years to marry Leah, and then he had to work in another seven to marry Rachel for seven years. What do you think it was like for Rachel? Now she agreed to this setup, but now her husband is married to her sister. For seven years, her husband goes home to be with her sister and she goes home with her dad. And for seven years, her sister is sleeping with her husband and she’s sleeping alone. Let me say that sometimes when you get what you want, it’s exactly what you don’t need. In addition here, Leah, she… So I’m gonna say something controversial now. I mean I haven’t yet, so it’s time, you know. It’s time. So Leah wrongly thinks that men think like women. This, let me, we’re thousands of years removed. This still continues. Now Leah’s not wrong, but what she thinks is love, sex, children, those are unified issues. If I sleep with him and have a baby with him, surely he’ll love me. Okay, let me say this. Men don’t think like women, and I’m not saying that men are right. I’m saying they’re different. Is he sleeping with her? Oh yeah. Does he love her? No. Does he have kids with her? Yeah. Does he love her? No. No matter how much she sleeps with him or how many kids she gives him, does he love her? No. ‘Cause men who are unwell can sleep with women they don’t love, and men who are unwell can have children with a woman that they don’t love and don’t have an interest in. So she’s thinking, well, if we’re sleeping together and living together and making babies together, surely we’ll be together. And he’s like, “No, that’s it. I like what I get from you. I don’t like you. I’m happy to be intimate, but I don’t want those responsibilities that come with fatherhood.” In addition here, she may be showing more faith than Rachel and Jacob, ’cause the names that she gives for her kids are actually names in reference to God. So nobody in this story is godly. But the one who probably is demonstrating at least a little bit of faith is Leah. Not Rachel, not Jacob. And here we have Jacob, and he is bitter against Leah, because why? She tricked him. She tricked him. So their whole relationship is built on a lie, deception, manipulation, and control. And let me say this. The New Testament says that women need love. Men need respect. Did Jacob get respect from Leah? No. Does he give love to Leah? No. They’ve got a crisis. He’s bitter. Now, what he should do, he should forgive her. Now, that doesn’t mean that he should trust her. Forgiveness is free, trust is earned. Forgiveness has more to do with you and God, and trust has more to do with you and them. He should forgive her and see if she doesn’t change. Apologize, repent. If things can’t get a little better, because

he’s really bitter. Let me say this. Any marriage that has bitterness cannot be healthy, holy, or happy. It just can’t. It just can’t. He’s bitter. He’s so bitter. He doesn’t love her. He doesn’t care about her. He doesn’t invest in her, but he’ll sleep with her. And she keeps thinking, if I just keep being his present, comforter, and physical pleasure, his heart will change. No, it’s encased in bitterness. He’s in a bad place. He’s in a bitter place, and it’s gonna infect and it’s gonna affect, rather, his whole family. Story continues. How many of you, don’t raise your hand, but how many of you come from really messed up, jacked up, broken, complicated families? Here’s the next idea. We work from love, not for love. Let me just explain this before we jump into the text. This is the difference between what the Bible teaches and what every other religion teaches. Every religion except for Christianity teaches that we work for love. So you start your life and love is at the finish line. And this is called works. If you work hard, if you do well, if you achieve, if you perform, if you’re obedient, if you’re compliant, at the very end, God will love you. For Christianity, love is at the starting line, not the finish line. We don’t work for love. We work from love. I’ve got five kids. I love ’em with all my heart. I never held one of my kids and said, “You know, at the end of my life, if you do everything I say, then I will love you.” What I say is, “I love you right now.” And you’re gonna work from that, not for that. The problem in this marriage, it’s a works, not a grace-based marriage. Leah keeps working for his love. The key to a marriage is not to work for love, but to work from love. That’s how God has a relationship with us. He puts grace in love at the beginning of the relationship. We work from that. Here’s the story. “When Rachel saw that she bore Jacob no children…” She can’t have babies, she what? Envied, she’s jealous. “Her sister. She said to Jacob, ‘Give me children or I shall die.'” She gets very emotional, very dramatic. Jacob gets angry. Let me say this to you. Jacob should be angry with himself, right? “Jacob’s anger was kindled against Rachel, and he said, ‘Am I in the place of God, who has withheld you the fruit of the womb?'” But he’s like, this is between you and God. So he’s blaming it on God. “Then she said, ‘Here is my servant.'” Ugh. So here’s where they’re at. He has two wives. It’s not going well, so let’s add a third wife. I mean, let me say this. If you don’t deal with your problems, just adding more people only adds more problems. “‘Go in to her.'” That is what you think it is. “‘So that she may give birth on my behalf.'” So she’s gonna be a surrogate. “‘That even I may have children through her.'” Let me say this. This is exactly what Jacob’s grandmother Sarah said and did. They had a son. Sarah didn’t get to be the mother. It ended up in total disaster. It didn’t work, and now they’re doing it again. Sometimes we repeat the sins of prior generations. “So she gave him her servant Bilhah as a wife.” Now we’re up to three wives. “And Jacob went in to her. An Bilhah conceived and bore Jacob a son. Then Rachel said, ‘God has judged me, and has also heard my voice and given me a son.'” She’s like, praise the Lord, He answered my prayers. I mean, let me just ask you this. Do you think that God was so excited about this, or maybe when a guy sleeps with a girl, a baby shows up, that’s kind of just what happens some of the time, but this is what happens. Sometimes we have a really dumb idea and it works, and we’re like, “See, God blessed it!” And God’s like, “What are you talking about?” “Therefore she called his name Dan. Rachel’s servant Bilhah conceived again.” See that Jacob’s very busy. “And bore Jacob a second son. Then Rachel said, ‘With mighty wrestlings I have wrestled with my sister and have prevailed.'” You see the competition. Jacob’s whole problem with his brother Esau, they were fighting from the womb, wrestling and combating and competing throughout their whole life, and now the same thing is happening with

Rachel and her sister. “So she called his name Naphtali. When Leah saw that she had ceasing bearing a child…” Either ’cause her womb closed or Jacob stopped being intimate with her. “She took her servant Zilpah…” Now we’re up to, how many of you are keeping score? Where are we at now? Four women. This is a weird looking wedding cake, you know? I mean, the top has got four brides. “And gave her to Jacob as a wife. Then Leah’s servant Zilpah bore Jacob a son, and Leah said, ‘Good fortune has come to me! So she calls his name Gad” Which means lucky. “Leah’s servant Zilpah bore Jacob a second son. Leah said, ‘Happy am I, for women have called me happy.'” So she named his name Asher, which means happy. And this is just weird.

“In the days of wheat harvest…” We all know when that is. No we don’t. “Reuben went and found mandrakes…” How many of you like mandrakes? Not as many as these people. “In the field and brought them to his mother Leah. And then Rachel said to Leah, ‘Please give me some of your son’s mandrakes.'” She really wants the mandrakes. “But she said to her, ‘Is it a small matter you’ve taken away my husband?” Now you’re gonna take away my mandrakes. This is what we call in the Hebrew, baby mama drama. That’s what it is right there. You wanna take my mandrakes? You took my man! You can’t have my mandrake! When you got a broken marriage, everything’s a fight, all the way down to the mandrakes. The married people said nothing. That’s hilarious. Okay. “Rachel said, ‘Then he may lie with you tonight in exchange for your son’s mandrakes.'” I’ll trade you the mandrakes for a night with the husband. Is this weird? Apparently Rachel oversees the bedtime routine of Jacob. On the fridge, there’s two charts. One’s a chore chart for the kids. The other’s the bedtime routine for the husband and the wives. Apparently Rachel runs the chart. This is all very weird. “When Jacob came from the field in the evening, Leah went out to meet with him and said, ‘You must come in to me, for I have hired you with my son’s mandrakes.'” Oh, of course. I’m just gonna throw it out there. It kinda looks like Jacob might have lost leadership. Okay, it just kinda looks that way. “Oh, well you paid for me. Well, okay dokey.” “So he lay with her that night.” He’s like, okay. I mean, who wants to waste good mandrakes? “And God listened to Leah, and she conceived and bore Jacob a fifth son. Leah said, ‘God has given me my wages because I gave my servant to my husband.'” She’s like praise the Lord, God bless the fourth wife. Here’s what happens. When we’re in a bad place, we can justify anything and even think that God’s okay with it. If you’re a single guy, this is where you say like, “We’re married in our heart.” No, you’re not. Your heart is deceitful and wicked. “We’re married in God’s eyes.” No, you’re not. I’ve looked at ’em, they’re flaming red. He’s not even blinking. “So she called his name Issachar. And Leah conceived again and bore Jacob a sixth son.” Last slide. “Then Leah said, ‘God has endowed me with a good endowment. Now my husband will honor me.'” She’s dropped her expectations. She’s dropped her expectations. “‘Because I have borne him six sons.’ So she called his name Zebulun. Afterward she bore a daughter and called her name Dinah.” That becomes a very significant moment in history where Dinah gets introduced, not to be a spoiler alert, in one of the most tragic, horrific, traumatic chapters of the Bible coming up. Something horrible happens to this daughter, and Dad does nothing because he hates the wife. And so he doesn’t care about the kids that she has. “Then God remembered Rachel, and God listened to her and opened her womb. She conceived and bore a son and said, ‘God has taken away my reproach.'” Isn’t that interesting? In our day, the worst thing is to have a baby. In that day, the worst thing is not to have a baby. “And she called his name Joseph.” He’s gonna be a major figure at the end of Genesis. “‘May the Lord add to

me another son!'” So let me deal with everybody in succession. Let me say this. Genesis isn’t about just what happened, but about what always happens. Crazy family dynamics. And these are believers, okay? That’s what’s scary. Somebody will be like, “When do they get saved?” They are! You can be saved and stupid. Amen. How many are like, “I think I understand that, but I’m not sure.” Exactly. So you can be saved and stupid. You can know God and not know what to do with your life, okay. And that’s what’s happening. All of us, if we go back far enough in our family history, there’s some craziness, right? Like just go home and call your grandma and be like, “Do we have any mandrakes in our family history?” She’ll be like, “Don’t ask.” We’ve all got some stuff in our family that you’re just like, what? That was crazy. Every family has sin, struggle, and strife. It has pain, problems, and perils. It has drama and difficulty and division. That’s this family. Well, Rachel, her problem is she can’t have a baby, and she wants a baby with all of her heart. Now some of you women can identify with her, either because of infertility with you or your husband or both. You’re like, we really want to have kids, but we can’t have kids. Okay. That was the story of Abraham and Sarah, the grandparents, and now it’s the story of Jacob and Rachel. And the moral of the story is, It’s better to not have children than have them in a way that is against the will of God. I mean, now these kids are a blessing, but do you think the family that they’re born into feels like a blessing? This is a mess. Okay. And so what she does, she does what grandma did, not what Jacob’s mother did. She brings in another woman into the relationship, and she has this myth that if this woman gives birth to a child, then she can raise the child and it’ll be their child. Well, here’s what I know about women. And everything I know, by the way, fits on a three by five card and doesn’t fill it up. That’s what I know about women. But here’s what I know. When a woman births a child, good luck taking it from her. Amen. Like this is my baby. She’s thinking, well, you know, these women are both thinking, some other woman will have a baby and then I’ll get to be the mother. That’s not the way this works. And she prophesies her own death. She says, “Give me a child or I’ll die.” If you read ahead to Genesis 35:16 through 19, she dies in childbirth. She’s got a problem here. She resolves it with a sin. She’s got a prophecy here. She ultimately is foreshadowing how she will die. Now for Leah, she is unloved and she is unhealthy. She’s unloved and she’s unhealthy. The tragedy of her being so unloved, she said early on, “If I sleep with my husband and give him a baby, he will love me.” She sleeps with him, gives him some babies. And then she says, “If I sleep with my husband and give him some babies, he’ll be attached to me. “I mean, he won’t love me, but at least he’ll care about me.” And then here she says, “If I sleep with my husband and give him some babies, at least he’ll honor me.” Do you see the years go by, the expectations go down? the years go by the expectations go down. “He’ll love me.” “At least he’ll appreciate me.” “Maybe he’ll say thank you.” She’s unloved. But the truth is, as a result, she is very unhealthy. How many of you look at Leah and say, this is not healthy behavior. This is where a woman gets in a relationship with a guy who doesn’t love her, and she does everything in her power to get his heart to change. But ultimately his heart is under his jurisdiction, and his heart is hard toward the Lord and the woman. And then she gets competitive with other women. This still happens in our day, particularly in unhealthy, unholy, unhappy, serial dating and cohabitating relationships. The woman can feel like, well, he doesn’t really love me, but he will. He will. I’m gonna blow his mind. They’re like, well, okay. He doesn’t love me, but maybe, maybe he’ll like me. No, maybe he just won’t leave me. She’s in that performance treadmill of a really

brutal relationship, and she’s in this position because her conniving, controlling, demonic dad, he contrived this entire scheme where he would swap out the brides on the wedding night, on the honeymoon night. And I said this before, but let me say this again. It is better for a woman to be unmarried than married and unloved. I’m a dad, I got two daughters. One’s married, one’s single, she’s 18. And so I would rather my daughters be unmarried than what? Married and unloved. There’s this haunting little line comes to mind in Proverbs, says, well, there’s a list of things that the world can’t bear the weight of and will crumble under, and one is a married woman who’s unloved. The whole world just breaks, you know? I mean, I love my wife. My son is married, he loves his wife. My daughter is married, her husband loves her. I couldn’t imagine being a dad who pushed his daughter into marriage, a marriage in which she would be unloved. Her dad set her up and what’s interesting, the girls are fighting and conflicting and sibling drama and rivalry. They never called Dad in like, “Dad, what the heck are you doing?” And oftentimes what happens is our parents will make a series of bad decisions. They will over parent and control. They will set up a broken family system that is wrongly architected. The kids have pain and conflict and the kids keep fighting with each other and they never look at the parents and ask, “Why did you set this up?” That’s the case. It’s amazing to me that the two daughters are fighting with each other instead of agreeing that they need to go deal with their crazy dad, ’cause he’s the one who set this all up. So that’s Rachel, that’s Leah. So here’s Jacob. Let me ask the men: What is Jacob doing? He is silent. Is he silent? He don’t do much talking. He’s like Adam in Genesis 3. He’s like, you know what? There’s a lot of, I’ll just sit back and see how this plays out. He’s silent, and he’s a sire, not a father. He’s a sire, not a father. He’s a guy who’s just like, well I’ll just let the women run the house. As long as they sleep with me, I’ll just, you know, try to go to the man cave and watch ESPN and listen to eighties metal and drink Pabst Blue Ribbon and post on the internet all the reasons I hate my life while I’m listening to country music, and you know, as long as they sleep with me, I’m just gonna avoid them. That’s what he does. He’s the passive, silent sire. He just lets it all go, and he doesn’t say or do anything. What’s interesting, too… This sets up the rest of Genesis. So you got four women having kids. It’s gonna be 12 sons and a daughter ultimately. And there’s one wife with her maid servant, and then the other wife with her maid servant. Do you see any potential division or conflict with the children? Do you see the hypothetical possibility of playing favorites? Now lemme say this. Blended families can be beautiful families, but not if they’re all living together under the same roof. No, don’t raise your hand, but how many of you are like, I was married, we had a complicated situation, we got divorced, now I’m remarried. How many of you are glad you’re not living with the first wife and the kids? Okay, you should see your faces. Okay, you all agree with me? That’s what’s happening here. And so the problem in this family system ultimately becomes that as the husband, does he have a favorite wife? Oh yeah. So is he gonna have favorite kids? Oh yeah. Joseph is borne of Rachel. He becomes the favorite. The rest of Genesis, the other kids, many whom are borne through Leah and her maidservant, hate this division. “Dad loved your mom, not our mom.” “Dad loved their kids, not our kids.” This sets up all of the favoritism, the drama, and the conflict at the whole conclusion of the book of Genesis, with the story of Joseph. The point is this. Sometimes the pain in our life was caused generations prior by family architecting, poor leadership, and weak men. Just throwing it out there. So let met do this. And by the way, it seems like you don’t like this sermon. You’re welcome. Okay, so let me say this.

Polygamy, this is my summary. My summary is that polygamy is a misery. Is it working? No. And here’s what we’re doing in our culture. Like, “Let’s try it!” Let’s not. You know, let’s not. Let’s say that every time it was tried, it failed. The most well-known polygamist in the Bible… How many of you know who that is? Solomon. He had a thousand wives. Can you even imagine that? Next time you go to an apartment complex that has a thousand apartments, imagine that’s your family, and in every room there’s a woman who hates you with your children. So Solomon marries a thousand women, and then he picks up concubines. He wakes up and he’s like,

“Need more women!” So he picks up a thousand concubines, or he has a thousand wives plus his concubines. He has a ton of kids. You know what they grow up and do? Abduct one another, rape one another, and murder one another fighting for the inheritance. It never ends well. So what happens when there is polygamy? And again, it comes in various forms: adultery,
swinging, open marriage, friends with benefits, serial dating, open cohabitation. You’re gonna have a favorite. This is gonna cause divisions in factions. If a whole culture went polygamous, it would eventually be a genetic disaster. Like if you got a town and one guy’s older and richer and he’s got a whole bunch of young wives, eventually everybody in the town is interrelated. In addition, what happens is the older wives get displaced by the younger wives. Here’s a gal, she’s like I gave you kids, gave you my life. I’ve been here for 30, 40 years, put up with you. Then one day you bring home a bunch of gals that are same age as our daughter. That’s what happens. In addition, another downside that causes polygamy to be misery. It ruins young men. And let me just ask you this. Does it set up an abusive family system? Yeah. So lemme say this. Jacob does not like this situation. Neither do the women, neither do the children. It doesn’t work for anyone. And it’s abusive, particularly for women and children, particularly for women and children. A lot of guys are like, “Oh, I’d love to have multiple women.” That’s abusive toward women and children. That’s abusive toward women and children. That’s what this is. Leah is in an abusive relationship. She already says, I’m despised and I’m hated and my life is a painful misery. So let me do this. Let me give some lessons for everybody, for everyone. Just hear me in this. What you want ain’t what you need, okay? So in this, Laban wanted Jacob to be married to both of his daughters. How’s that going? Terrible and really, really bad for his daughters. Really bad for his grandkids. Leah and Rachel, they wanted to manipulate Jacob and force him into a double marriage. Did they get what they wanted? Are they happy? No. Jacob apparently, ’cause he never is like, “No.” He never says no. Apparently having four women compete for him is what he wanted. Does he like it? No. See you and I, as we read the story, we gotta put ourselves in it, and we gotta ask, well, what are my desires? What are my fantasies? What are my longings? What are my ambitions? What are my control issues? What are my hopes, dreams, and fears? We just think, “If I could just get what I want.” So far in the story, everybody gets what they want, and everybody’s miserable. And it started with Jacob’s mom. She controlled him for 20 years. And she got what she wanted: an obedient, compliant, adult son. He has to leave home. She never sees him again for more than 20 years. The point is this, what we want is usually not what we need. And some of you right now, you hear this. You’re like, no, no, no, God, if you just give me what I want, I know what I need. And God’s like what you want and what you need, those are two different things, I promise you. So let’s talk to the men. Men, siring is easy. Fathering is difficult. We have a culture filled with sires, not with fathers. True? Majority of children, at some point in their life, grow up without their father. For the first time in the

nation’s history, the majority of children born to women 30 and older are born out of wedlock, no father. There’s guys just like Jacob everywhere. They’re like, “I’ll sleep with all those women, and if they get pregnant, whatever, but I don’t intend to be a father. I just want to be a sire.” Now God didn’t make us to sire children, but to father them. It’s really easy to sire children. It’s very difficult to father them. And we’re gonna deal with this at Real Men, starting after Labor Day, we kick off. We’ve got a nine-part lecture. The working title is “Act Like a Man.” I tell you the nine reasons God made men and what the nine aspects of manhood are, ’cause nobody knows. And I’d love to see you guys there, and if you got a few knuckleheads, bring ’em. Tell ’em you’re taking ’em out for chicken wings at the bar and then shock ’em and pull up at the church. All right. Okay, now I need to speak to the women, ’cause we believe in equality, so we offend everyone, ’cause that’s how we practice diversity. That’s how we practice diversity. So okay, so let’s talk about the women. So I need to be careful with this. So I’m gonna ask it as a question, and then you women are gonna answer it, and this will not be my information. This is me serving the women by sharing their answer to my question about women, okay? Are we clear on this? Okay, because I know it’s an open carry state, and I gotta be careful, okay. Okay, now I know not, you ladies are just like Jesus’s mom, right? Like just virgins who worship. So look at the story, Leah and Rachel. Let’s ask a few questions. Does it seem like they manipulate the man through sex and drama? I’m not making eye contact. I’m just asking a question. So come down. So ladies, answer yes or no.

– [Females In Audience] Yes.

– Oh, that was two or three witnesses. We’ve met the biblical criteria for truth, okay. So okay, now we’re gonna, okay. Let me me think about how I’m gonna say this. I probably should have run this by Grace before I do this. But so ladies, so these women control a man, manipulate him through sex and drama, sensuality and emotion. But ladies, I’m research. Thank you for helping. Do some women still use these tactics on men?

– [Female Audience Member] Yes.

– Oh, that was quick, and a lot of men were looking at their girl like, yeah. It was funny. A lot of women were like, yeah. Lot of men were like, huh? So that’s where we are. So what Jacob gives up is leadership and godliness and leading his… Is he praying with his family? Are they going to church? Are they worshiping God? Are they building an altar? No, because what he’s saying is, “I’ll give up godliness for sex, and I’ll put up with drama for sex.” The sex, sometimes it’s sensuality, it’s flirtation. You’re cute, you know, you’re taking care of him, or it’s drama, emotion, passion, explosion, tears. Men don’t know what to do with it. That’s like Kryptonite. If a man sees mascara coming down, he’s like . “Here’s my credit card, I don’t know what to do.” That’s how he responds. We don’t know what to do. All right, we’ll just move forward. So for married couples, here’s the question. Who’s in charge of, who’s leading, who’s the head of this family? It’s a battle. One day, Leah’s in charge. One day, Rachel’s in charge. One day, Laban’s in charge. One days it’s like, who’s got the mandrake? You know, it’s like, “Rock, paper, scissor, mandrake.” You know, it’s crazy. The point is this: If God isn’t the Lord over the marriage, the

marriage will be nothing but a bitter battle over who’s gonna be the Lord. They should have stopped, but Jacob lost his moral authority. Soon as you’re sleeping with four women, you can’t get ’em together and be like, you know, “We really need to do a Bible study and pray about this.” He’s lost his moral authority. In addition, for those who are single… How many of you are single? Okay. Meet in the foyer, okay, after we’re done. There’s numbers under your seat. You’ll find your spouse. We just sorta, we let God choose here. It’s a joke, unless you got a number under your seat, then that was the Lord, okay. So for those who are single, I’ll walk you down the thought process, so that you can vote. The best way to prepare to be married to one person is to just date… Now, the girls said one person. The guy was like, I don’t know, trick question. Thanks, Jacob, for all your insight, all right. So what happens in our culture, we have serial, casual dating, of dating multiple people with no intentions. Well that doesn’t lead to faithful marriage. If you wanna be faithfully married, it starts with intentionally dating. And that is, okay, what is the intention of dating someone? To get married. Some of you are like, “That’s just crazy.” So if you don’t wanna be married to multiple people, don’t, crazy…. Don’t date multiple people. I mean, she thought it was funny. So, you know, and he didn’t, he’s like, “Oh, this is dumb.” He said to his girlfriend, “We gotta go for sure. Yeah, I looked this guy up. We shouldn’t be here in the first place.” Okay, so. So if you wanna be faithfully married, don’t date a whole bunch of people. Intentionally date one person at a time and see if that’s the person that God would have for you to marry. Now, for parents of adult children. How many of you are parents of adult children? Okay, I’m a parent of adult children. So is Grace, my first wife and my only wife, by the way. So if you are an overbearing, controlling, domineering parent, you set your adult child up to have those kinds of relationships for the rest of their life. Growing up, he was over mothered, over parented, controlling, and now he shows up at Laban’s house. Instead of his mom controlling him, who does? His uncle. Then he marries women, and who controls him? The women. At this point, Jacob should be buying a ticket for his life, ’cause he’s an observer. And it started with his mom. His mom’s like, “Just do everything I say. Uh oh, run for your life!” All he knows how to do is what everyone tells him how to do. That’s not a man. That’s a boy who can shave. That’s not a man. That’s a boy who can shave. So let me tell you what the Bible says, Genesis 1 and 2. God made us male and female. Marriage is for one man and one woman in a covenant that is consummated. We looked at it in Genesis 3, the first marriage. As soon as they get married, who shows up on the honeymoon? Satan. After the wedding comes the war. As soon as you get married, in addition to all the gifts, you also get a dragon. That’s what happens. And as a result of sin and the curse entering the world, marriage is difficult. How many of you been married for more than 15 minutes? First 15 minutes, you’re like, “It’s great!” 16th minute, you’re like, “There’s the dragon.” It just, not your spouse. Marriage, because of sin and the curse, it’s really hard. ‘Cause Satan hates love. He hates unity. He hates family. He hates legacy. So he attacks it. Polygamy starts with Lamech. He’s ungodly. It ended with Noah in the days of the flood when everyone died. Apparently I just mentioned Noah… Everyone’s flood alert goes off. “Do we have a boat, Pastor Mark? Do we have a boat?” How many of you are glad you don’t have my job? Well, anything else? I mean, it seems like we’ve covered it all. I have more in my notes. It doesn’t matter. All right, so here’s what we’re gonna do. We’re gonna do the one thing this crazy family never did: Stop and just look up. Okay God, this is not going well. This isn’t working. Okay, God, what do you have to say about this? We’ve opened His

Word and we’ve invited God to speak into it. Okay, God, what do I need to own? What do they need to own? What can we pivot? How can we change? What do we need to do better? What did we get from our parents or grandparents that we love them, we forgive them, but we can’t continue these patterns of behavior? So let me say what’s really crazy. Through these sons, they’re called also… What are these sons called in the Bible? The 12 tribes of Israel. Now they didn’t tell you that when you were in Sunday school as a kid. They just showed you the 12 tribes of Israel on the flannel graph. They didn’t show you the four mothers and the creepy father. They didn’t show you that. These guys become the 12 tribes of Israel. They form the nation of Israel. Through them come the prophets, the priests, and the kings. We heard about Levi. He becomes the father of the priest. We hear about Judah. It says later that Jesus Christ is the lion of the tribe of Judah. Jesus comes and he is a descendant of this dysfunctional family system. He is not just the son of Abraham, Isaac, or Jacob. He’s the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. And He’s the son of God. He lives without any sin. And here’s what happens. He never, he never marries. He lives and dies and rises as a virgin. That must mean that you can live a perfect life and a full life and an incredible life even without being married or having sex or having children, ’cause Jesus did. Jesus died on the cross, in our place, for our sins. ‘Cause what we’re learning is, unless God gets involved, it only gets worse. And then Jesus dies and He rises. He conquers sin and death. He ascends into heaven. That’s where he’s at now. And when we die we go into His kingdom, ’cause he’s our king. And one day He comes back, and just like He rose from the dead, we rise from the dead, and we’re all gonna enter into heaven. And the centerpiece of the new heaven, the new earth, and the new Jerusalem, is a city. So let me share. Here’s what’s gonna happen if you’re a believer in Jesus Christ. This is the book of conclusions. We’ve been in the book of beginnings. Here’s the book of conclusions. Jesus is the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Here’s heaven. Revelation 21:12. “Heaven had a great, high wall with 12 gates, and at the gates 12 angels, and on the names of the gates are the 12 tribes of the sons of Israel.” Here’s what’s gonna happen, friends. You’re gonna die. You’re gonna go into heaven. You’re gonna rise. You’re gonna go into heaven. Jesus is like, “Come home, come home, come home.” You’re like, “Okay, where do I go?” “Just pick a gate.” How many gates are there? There’s 12 gates. You look down. One of these guys’ names is on every one of the 12 gates. Now what’s gonna happen, I’ll give you an assignment. When that day comes, there’s gonna be religious people around you. You’ll be like, oh my gosh, it’s Jacob! Oh my gosh, it’s his sons! Oh my gosh, they’re so godly, oh my gosh! Here’s what I want you to do: laugh. Just be like, “Let me tell you this story.” Their names are there by the grace of God. Not because they got it right, because God made it right. God’s good is bigger than our bad. God’s grace is bigger than our sin. The reason their names are on the gates and we have to pass through, it just reminds us. We all come from a broken, messed up family with a lot of sin and folly. We’ve all got things that we regret, much of it in relation to our gender, our sex, our marriage, our parenting. Many of us have broken family systems and all kinds of chaos, but the grace of God was sufficient for them, and the grace of God is sufficient for us. And I tell you that, ’cause I don’t want you to abuse God’s grace, but here’s what I’m gonna tell you. You need to use God’s grace. Forgive your parents, your grandparents. Forgive your spouse, forgive yourself. Forgive your kids, forgive your grandkids. Okay God, put some grace on this family. Put some grace on this marriage. So what we’re gonna do right now, we’re gonna meet with the

God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. We’re gonna worship him. We’re gonna pray. There’s communion in the back to remember the broken body and shed blood of Jesus. There are prayer teams available in the back to pray for you. And if you wanna pray for or with your family, you’re welcome to. We’re gonna stop right now and do the one thing they never did that would’ve helped. Just stop what you’re doing. Stop what you’re thinking. Stop how you’re behaving. Stop justifying. Stop trying to fix it, and just look up and ask God, okay. What do you say? Give me the grace to live that. Father, thank you, that you are the same yesterday, today, and forever. Thank you that you’re the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Thank you that their family is no better than our family, that their life is no better than our life. And if there’s grace for them, there’s grace for us. If there’s hope for them, there’s hope for us. If there is a future for them, there’s a future for us. If there’s a legacy for them, there’s a legacy for us. And so Jesus, thank you that now we can come to meet with you, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Love you guys. Thanks for letting me teach and have a little fun.

Mark Driscoll
[email protected]

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