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Genesis 31:22-35

Talks for Growing Christians

Laban Pursues Jacob; God Protects Jacob

Genesis 31:22-35

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Lesson Number 71

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. Believers are guaranteed God’s protection when they are doing God’s will.
  2. Believers are not guaranteed smooth sailing when they are doing God’s will.

Practical Application

  1. Be careful about making rash statements.

Questions

  1. When Jacob decided to return home, he didn’t tell Laban that he was going. Why?
  2. What were the idols and why were they so important?
  3. How does God protect those who are doing His will?
  4. Since God had told Jacob to return home, was it an easy trip?
  5. What rash statement did Jacob make?

Answers

  1. Because Jacob was the key to Laban’s prosperity, so Laban wouldn’t like it if Jacob left.
  2. These small, hand-held female doll-like images were thought to bring blessing and fertility. Also, they were used as title deeds to the property.
  3. Part of God’s protective system is the use of guardian angels. Also, circumstances, dreams and common sense are included.
  4. No. Besides the logistics of getting there and the opposition from Laban, there were other challenges common to most journeys.
  5. See Genesis 31:32. He said that with whomever Laban found the idols, that person should be put to death. He was unaware that his wife, Rachel, had stolen the idols.

Discuss/Consider

  1. If we are promised God’s protection when we are doing His will, why do some of His servants suffer accidents, illness, and even martyrdom?
  2. When problems, obstacles and criticism by fellow believers occur in your ministry, does that mean that you are out of God’s will?

Challenge

  1. Have you ever made a rash statement and regretted it? Did you learn a lesson here?

Key Verses

  • “God had come to Laban in a dream by night, and said, ‘Be careful how you speak to Jacob.” Genesis 31:24
  • “Laban said, ‘It is in my power to do you harm, but the God of your father spoke to me.” Genesis 31:29
  • “Why did you steal my gods?’ ‘Because I was afraid.” Genesis 31:30-31
  • “Jacob did not know that Rachel had stolen them.” Genesis 31:32

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