Sibling Rivalry (Genesis 29:31-30:24) by Ptr Xley Miguel

Eight days from now, the world will celebrate what they call the National Siblings day. It is a man-made holiday. It is not recognised by any government, also by the Bible, but it is a day when people appreciate their siblings. You may probably have seen in the past year, people posting about their siblings, nothing wrong about that. It’s a good thing to appreciate your siblings. So this is something that everyone is doing, mostly seen in social media. Now I wonder what if Leah and Rachel, the two daughters of Laban, would celebrate this? I doubt! Now we will look at the passage that we will read in Genesis chapter 29 verse, ah, to 30, we will see why probably they won’t because of their sibling rivalry.

Turn with me to Genesis chapter 29 verse 31 to chapter 30 verse

24. I’ll be reading from ESV When the Lord saw that Leah was hated, he opened her womb, but Rachel was barren. And Leah conceived and bore a son, and she called his name Reuben, for she said, “Because the Lord has looked upon my affliction; for now my husband will love me.” She conceived again and bore a son, and said, “Because the Lord has heard that I am hated, he has given me this son also.” And 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 a son, and said, “This time I will praise the Lord.” Therefore she called his name Judah. Then she ceased bearing. Chapter 30. When Rachel saw that she bore Jacob no children, she envied her sister. She said to Jacob, “Give me children, or I shall die!” Jacob’s anger was kindled against Rachel, and he said, “Am I in the place of God, who has withheld from you the fruit of the womb?” Then she said, “Here is my servant Bilhah; go in to her, so that she may give birth on my behalf, that even I may have children through her.” So she gave him her servant Bilhah as a wife, and Jacob went in to her. And 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.” Therefore she called his name Dan. Rachel’s servant Bilhah conceived again and bore Jacob a second son. Then Rachel said, “With mighty wrestlings I have wrestled with my sister and have prevailed.” So she called his name Naphtali. When Leah saw that she had ceased bearing children, she took her servant Zilpah and gave her to Jacob as a wife. Then Leah’s servant Zilpah bore Jacob a son. And Leah said, “Good fortune has come!” so she called his name Gad. Leah’s servant Zilpah bore Jacob a second son. And Leah said, “Happy am I! For women have called me happy.” So she called his name Asher. Verse 14. In the days of wheat harvest Reuben went and found mandrakes in the field and brought them to his mother Leah. Then Rachel said to Leah, “Please give me some of your son’s mandrakes.” But she said to her, “Is it a small matter that you have taken away my husband? Would you take away my son’s mandrakes also?” Rachel said, “Then he may lie with you tonight in exchange for your son’s mandrakes.” When Jacob came from the field in the evening, Leah went out to meet him and said, “You must come in to me, for I have hired you with my son’s mandrakes.” So he lay with her that night. 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.” So she called his name Issachar. And Leah conceived again, and she bore Jacob a sixth son. Then Leah said, “God has endowed me with a good endowment; now my husband will honour me, because I have borne him six sons.” So she called his name Zebulun. Afterward she bore a daughter and called her name Dinah. 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.” And she called his name Joseph, saying, “May the Lord add to me another son!” The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our Lord stands forever.

I want to start by saying firstly that polygamy is a sin. It has been since the beginning. We have the models, Adam and Eve, the first man and the first woman and they were married by God.

Secondly, I want to say that we see here in this text Leah and racial’s rivalry. Para silang nag-uunahan. They were on a race to whoever will have more babies. Paramihan. Both of them, even gave their servants to Jacob para lang sila ay dumami ang kanilang anak. And during that time by the way, if nag-cease ang pag-bear ng child ng isang wife, custom nila, but again it doesn’t mean na hindi sinful yung custom na iyon, custom nila na ibigay ang servant doon sa kanilang asawang lalaki at yung anak ng yun ay pag-aari noong mistress, nung wife. Hindi ba’t ganun ang nangyari kay Sarah, right? At kaniyang inimbitahan si Hagar kay Abraham, di ba? Kaso ang nangyari doon ay inangkin pa rin ni Hagar yung kanyang anak, okay. But in their customs, yun ay pag-aari in a sense noong mistress, okay. So again, kita natin, kung titignan natin ang full picture ng Genesis chapter 29, Chapter 30, we can say, again, just like we what we said before in the previous chapters of Genesis, we have here a dysfunctional family, okay. We’re not saying that our families are perfect. That’s just what we are seeing here. And perhaps tayo rin ay mare-relate ang sarili natin dito sa mga pamilyang ito. Their situation was messy you can say. And that’s it’s messy because of sin. Again, there’s polygamy, there’s we see jealousy, envy, there is hatred, there’s unloving. But despite of this all, just as we have seen the dysfunctional family of Abraham. Pwede tayong bumalik kay Abraham and then kay Isaac and then now Jacob, but we can root it back from Adam and Eve. When they were tempted by the serpent, immediately we have a dysfunctional family blaming one another kung sino ang may kasalanan. And we see something here as well, right. Amplified in a sense. But despite of this, despite of the sins that, that causes the dysfunction, the messiness of the family, we see the active hand of God. Malinaw dito ang active hand ng Diyos. We saw that Leah was hated it says here, okay. Unloved in other translations. We see at the end of what we have read, God remembering Rachel and because of that, she conceived. Now we have Joseph. God here providing for both Leah and Rachel despite of the messy situations that they have.

Giving them sons and a daughter, we see God’s hand active in this messy situation. We can say na grabe talaga itong pamilya na ito right. And yet remember this, this chapter shows us, two chapters rather, shows us the origin of the 12 tribes of Israel. Which as you know, God uses to produce the long-awaited Messiah, Son of God, the Savior of men. So see, we see the active hand of God despite of what’s happening in the family of Jacob. God is in the background. He is active, we can see His power, He is giving sons and a daughter to those who are barren, Rachel was barren. He is active, He is powerful. We can see His power in this text, we can see His compassion, His love toward His people, toward Leah who was unloved, to be specific; that’s what we can see here.

Now, again perhaps you are in this kind of family. Perhaps you are like a Jacob, a Rachel or a Leah. Perhaps you are in this kind of situation as well. But fear not. If you’re just gonna look at the overview of these texts, these passages, we can see here is that God is present, God is active in the lives of these sinners despite of the messy situations that they are in. That’s basically my message for this afternoon. God is active, he is present. In His providence, He is not tied up and just waiting for things to happen. He is active. He is providing sons. He is making sure that what He has promised before will be fulfilled. He is active no matter how messy our situations may seem.

Now in why, again, are there situations to be specific, Jacob’s family? Bakit sinasabi nating dysfunctional ito? Of course this is because of sin. Firstly, makikita natin, anong sin ito? mayroong hatred! Sa umpisa pa lang nabasa natin, there is hatred. Someone is being hated here. That is what’s going on. We’ll look at that in our first

point, THE UNLOVED LEAH. And secondly, makikita rin natin, isang sin na evident dito sa text, isang envious na Rachel, THE ENVIOUS RACHEL.

Let us look at the first point, THE UNLOVED LEAH. We can see

here that it says in verse 31 that Leah was hated, but really, you have to go back to the previous verse to recognise yung konteksto ng hatred kay Leah. It is because Jacob Loved someone else more. Jacob loved Rachel more than Leah, okay. She was, Leah was unloved, Leah was unwanted, Leah was undesired. Remember in the previous chapter, in chapter 29, mayroong comparison ni Leah at Rachel. Rachel was the one beautiful, at nabighani talaga si Jacob sa kagandahan ni Rachel. And then when it, when, Leah was being described, she was the one who has weak eyes, right. In other terms, kabaligtaran ng beautiful…ugly. Ganun ang lumalabas sa ating text, okay. So she was hated, she was unloved, unwanted. Of course we can say that the one who hates her, the one who does not love her was Jacob, right. Kasi sabi Jacob love Rachel more. But we can also say that Rachel hated Leah, right. Sino ba yung nasa contest? Sino ba yung nasa competition? Buong chapter, up to chapter 30, sino yung nag-co- compete? Sino yung nag-aaway, Sino yung may rivalry? That was Rachel and Leah. So obviously also Rachel does not want Leah in the picture. Rachel hates Leah, we can say that. Not only that we can also say that Laban too was unloving toward Leah. Oh he knew, he knew that Jacob wanted Rachel, Jacob spent the whole seven years to labor to, for him to get the hand of Rachel in marriage. And yet, nung gabi, ang ginawa nitong tatay, si Laban, ang pinasok niya, naka-veil, papasok doon sa whatever that is, dun sa tent, ay yung kaniyang panganay na si Leah, someone na hindi naman ginusto in the first place. That was an unloving thing to do as a father. But see, despite of the situation, despite of the sins of hatred, of the unloving situation, anong nangyari kung nasaan sila, God was indeed active in their lives, in the life of Leah, ‘no. May hope kaagad na pinakita ang Diyos. Sa unang berso na binasa natin, when the Lord saw, see, when the Lord saw, nakita ng Diyos, alam ng Diyos ang pinagdadaanan ni Leah. Alam Niya na si Leah probably have spent days in prayer to God. He saw that Leah was hated. And what did He do He opened her womb. And we can see how Leah named her children. Nakita natin yung kaniyang journey, yung kaniyang spiritual life, kung papaano niyang pinangalanan yung kaniyang mga anak. We see her situations. Verse 32, Reuben because the Lord, the Lord using the covenantal name of God. This is not God in a general sense, God, Elohim. This is God, Yahweh, this is the covenantal name personal name of God. She addressed the personal name of God. They have a relationship, a covenantal relationship. Leah understood and acknowledged that she has that relationship with God. That is the name that she used because the Lord has looked upon my affliction. She knew that God saw because she knew that, because she has that relationship with God. And then afterwards, Simeon, sabi niya, dahil, ito raw ang ibig sabihin ng Simeon, because the Lord has heard, saw and heard that I am hated. He has given me this son also. In other words, the Lord knows that I am hated that probably the whole, para sa mata sa perspective ni Leah, the whole world hates her. And there is this one Lord, one God who knows and for Leah to feel loved, He has given me this son also, Simeon. Verse 34, now this time, sabi niya, itong time na ito, a, baka maging mas malapit na sa akin ang aking asawang lalaking si Jacob. My husband will be attached to me because I have borne him three sons. And then we see, verse 35, the end of chapter 29, Judah, this time, I will praise the Lord.

Now, we have read chapter 30 and we have read how Rebekah named her sons. There is a stark contrast between the responses, we see the names, yung meaning ng names for Rachel was full of pride and selfishness. But with Leah, we see how there’s this transition, there’s transformation from being unloved by her husband and by being supplied by love for Leah to be able to respond, I will, this time I will praise the Lord! You see the provision of God of love for Leah who asked for love. God knows how she felt that time, being hated by her entire family. And yet there’s this one God who showed her love. Praising the Lord was her response to something that she has received. In fact, it continued until the end. Verse 20 of chapter 30.

In-acknowledge pa rin niya ang probisyon ng Panginoon after niyang magkaroon ng anak uli Si Zebulun. Ang sabi niya, God has endowed me with the good endowment. She’s still acknowledged that this is from God. And what she has received was, yes, we can say that it was the the blessing of having children, but most importantly, the blessing of having his Lord. The Lord who listens, the Lord who sees. That’s the true blessing. The love that she felt, the love that she experienced of her Creator, loving her. Leah also did not use the word God there nung pinangalanan niya si, uh, uh, isa sa mga, again, dun sa mga nauna, although yung dun kay Zebulun, ginamit niya yung general sense ng meaning ng God but it doesn’t mean that she has fallen apostate, no. Pinapakita pa rin yung faith niya na ito’y galing pa rin sa Diyos. Leah understood who gave the blessings to her. In-acknowledge niya ang mga anak na nakuha niya, na nabigay sa kanya ay galing pa rin sa Diyos. It appears that her feeling of being unloved. Kumbaga parang na-cover ng praises, ‘no. Makikita natin sa unang text na ating binasa chapter 29 verse 31, hated. And then, nakita niyo yung transition how that hatred ay paunti-unting nawawala sa picture. It becomes blurred. Nakikita natin as God blesses her with children, kada bigay ng Diyos ng anak, nararamdaman ni Leah, alam rin ni Leah na ito’y galing sa Diyos, ito’y galing sa pagmamahal ng Diyos, itong probisyon na ito.

God responded to the pleas of Leah. God provided Leah with children. God blessed the unloved Leah. And that is true also, my brethren, to all of us, unloving as a feeling, it’s something that happens also to us christians. Unloving as an objective sense na talagang hindi ka talaga mahal ng kahit, ng probably ng mahal mo. It’s something that happens to us. And you know what the truth that we can see in this chapter is also true for us. God has compassion, and I would say unending compassion towards sinners who feel unloved and unwanted. Malinaw yan sa Psalm 103 verse 13 As a father shows compassion to his children, so the Lord shows compassion to those who fear him. This is true for Leah, this is also true for us. As we humble ourselves and fear God, He has compassion toward us. Just as God responded to the pleas of the unloved Leah, God does hear, God responds as well to His people, especially when His people suffers from being unloved. Yes, because we all live in this sinful world, we and we live as sinners, there will be a lot of unloving that’s going to happen as we live here on earth. You would feel that many times and remember we learned last week, while it is true that love is an action, but it is not equated to sacrificial action alone, natutunan natin iyan. It is more than feelings but at the same time it is not less than feelings. Meron pa ring motivation, tamang motivation. Meron pa ring feeling, ‘no. Hindi lang siya basta action. Again, uulitin ko yung sinabi ni John Piper. Sabi niya, it is first a deeply satisfying. Piper explains love, he said, and I quote “it is first a deeply satisfying experience of the fullness of God’s grace.” So there’s a feeling. I would say that’s what Leah felt, that satisfactory, that’s, rather satisfying experience of the fullness of God’s grace. But lalo sa ating naka-receive ng pagmamahal ng Panginoon through Christ, mas lalo yun. Yun talaga ang fullness.

Marahil yung kay Leah ay dahil sa probisyon lamang ng anak. Pero ibang probisyon ng anak ang ibinigay sa atin. Much better Son and that is none other than Jesus Christ. So, doon talaga papasok yung feeling ng pagmamahal na galing sa Diyos. it is first a deeply satisfying experience of the fullness of God’s grace, there’s the feeling. And then he continues, Piper said and I quote, and then a doubly satisfying experience of sharing that grace with another person. there’s the action. You will experience it. There will be that satisfying experience that as the Holy Spirit changes the heart of a repentant and faithful sinner who comes to Christ, there is that satisfying experience in the heart that you now desire God, that you now desire holiness, pursuing holiness. Now you hate sin. Now you want to be like Christ. There is that feeling of love coming from God. And at times as christians, we may not feel loved. And yes, pwedeng dumating yung panahon, dumadating talaga kahit sa isang kristiyano, naiisip mo, mahal ba ako ng Panginoon? Hey! It’s a common struggle.

Even a christian, a faithful one, may struggle ng ganun. Now, kung doon pa lang nag-s-struggle ka na, eh of course you would also feel unloved by other people, probably your family members, probably the church. You would feel unloved because many are not motivated by the grace of God. But it is a lie to say that we are never loved at all. Because as we have seen here, God is compassionate, and we learn that He is through, He is compassionate through His provisions. But most importantly because of the provision of Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is compassion-incarnate. In Him, we see the compassion of God Himself.

Nakita natin yun sa Mark chapter 2 verse 17 Jesus dined, Jesus ate with unwanted sinners, with unwanted tax collectors. Anong sabi ng Pharisees sa Kanya? Ba’t ka kumakain? Why are you eating with these tax collectors and sinners? Ang sabi ni Kristo, those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I come not to call the righteous but sinners. And His compassion was not just limited to just dining with sinners. We know that He is indeed compassion-incarnate because His compassion-incarnate died on the cross. But God shows His love for us in that while we are still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans chapter 5 verse 8.

On the cross for the payment of our sins, to be the sacrifice that would satisfy the justice of God, so you and I won’t experience the wrath of God. That is the love, the compassion of God as seen in Jesus Christ. We can definitely say that God loved Leah through His provisions of children or we are definitely loved by God through His provision of God the Son. We are loved by Him. So if you’re not in Jesus Christ and you have you don’t have this love, the bible calls you to repent of your sins and believe in the son of God, Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins so that you would be justified and you would be sanctified and you will be in eternity with Him. But if you are in Jesus Christ, the challenge for you and I, the challenge for us is to always remember, always turn, because of the temptation is for us to see that God is not loving, hindi tayo mahal ng Diyos. Lagi nating makakalimutan ito. Hence, tayo’y bibigay sa temptations ng kalaban, no. The challenge is to always turn to the undying love of Christ. Turn to the love of Christ. Perhaps you are like Leah, unwanted, unloved.

Perhaps you are like the tax collector or probably you are the wounded man in the parable of the Samaritan where the priest, ay dumaan na yung priest and then afterwards, dumaan na yung Levite. You are unwanted, and yet here comes the Samaritan. At ano yung sinabi doon sa parable? He has compassion. But maybe you are unwanted, you are unloved. And when you are feeling this and you will feel this most of the times. Remember that God hears, remember that God sees, remember that God knows. And there could be no greater or higher manifestation of His love than the sending of His Son for us and for our redemption. Jesus’ love was sacrificial. It is a love that transforms us, it is a love that changes our hearts, it is a love that sanctifies us because that’s what true love is. It results to transformation. It’s so easy to say that you are loved by your husband, that you are loved by your wife, I love you. But if that is a love that does not point you to true transformation, it’s better to evaluate that love. Jesus died on the cross to transform us into His likeness. that is love. Jesus died on the cross having His people in mind. So, see, hindi lang sacrificial action yung kay Kristo. It is in fact motivated by love. Motivated to the point that we are in His mind and in His heart in eternity past.

Ephesians 1 verse 4 to 5 he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ. So that we, His people are on the mind and heart of God is truly incomprehensible, my friends, brethren. And again there are times that even though we know this truth, that God is compassionate, that God loves us in Christ, we still feel unloved. Dadating pa rin ito, alam natin itong objective truth na ito. But come Monday, boom! anxiety, probably depression comes, and then external things that may affect yourself come and then you forget all these things.

We respond in sin because of it. Brethren, this is why you need to be reminded of it, be reminded of His love in His word. This is God’s means to communicate to us His love. When that happens, turn back to the word of God brethren. And you know maybe, maybe our struggles is not being unloving, maybe we are like Rachel, maybe we are like Jacob, maybe we are like Laban, at hindi tayo, hindi problema natin yung unloved tayo, tayo pala yung unloving. Maybe that’s our problem. And I say to you the same thing, look to Christ. See how His love transforms us into His likeness, to be loving also to others. And so do you feel unloved by family members? by your spouse? by your brethren? Well God knows, God sees and God responds to you in His daily provisions, that’s true. But ultimately God responds to you on the cross of Christ.

My last point upon looking at the unloving Leah and we see God providing for her. Meron pa tayong isang character sa story natin. At yun ay ang kaniyang kapatid, the envious Rachel.

Brethren, it was Rachel who was loved. Siya yung loved. But it was Leah who had the children. Loved si Rachel pero si Leah yung maraming anak. Apparently, the love of Jacob was not enough. She wants children. Gusto niya ng anak. E di ba nga, makita mo palang yung motivation ni Rachel. Gusto niya ng mandrakes. Ang sabi niya kay Leah, o sige, go in to Jacob, right. Wala sa kaniya yung, hindi, you go ahead, here’s also my husband and your husband. Mas importante sa kaniya ang pagkakaroon ng anak. Kasi yung mandrakes ay mayroong superstition nung time nila, mayroong aphrodisiac properties ang mandrakes. So kapag ito ay probably binoil or pinakain or pinainom doon sa kaniyang asawa, ay mas magde-desire ng sexual relation sa kaniyang asawa, okay. And so, malinaw pa lang kung papaanong in- introduce si Rachel sa Chapter 30. Rachel envied her sister, right.

She was loved, and yet it was Leah who had many children, and so she envied that. Kina-inggitan niya yung pagkarami ng anak ni Leah. Sabi pa nga niya kay Jacob, nakita niyo kung papaanong naapektuhan ng kaniyang pagka-inggit yung ugali niya even yung how she treated her husband. Sabi niya o: “give me children or I shall die.” Wow. Hindi ba niya na-imagine na pag namatay siya, e di lalong wala siyang children. With disrespect to her husband. Now Jacob replied, aba, syempre, ayaw patalo ng head of the family. Sabi niya, “am I in the place of God who has withheld from you the fruit of the womb?” Now, tama yung theology ni ano, tama yung theology ni Jacob, right. It is God who withholds and yet it’s coming from a bad spirit, ‘no. Theology correct, bad spirit, right. Dysfunctional. And so nagpatuloy again, yung envy ni Rachel, makikita natin dito, it resulted to also, ano pa? She gave her servant to Jacob. Again, it’s a custom in their time, in fact a sinful custom to be specific. Because she was, she so wanted to have a child. In fact, we can see her disposition when she named the second son of Bilhah na si Naphtali. Ang sabi niya doon, verse 8 with mighty wrestlings I have wrestled with my sister and have prevailed. Nakita mo yung motivation niya, right. Oh I have prevailed. contrasting the I praise the Lord. This became a competition for Rachel. In fact I would say pati kay Leah, naaapektuhan na siya. Leah also responded in a sinful way kasi pino-forward din niya, gi-nive away din niya yung kaniyang servant na si Zilpah kay Jacob. But again, let’s focus on Rachel. She responds by resorting to some, again, yung superstition na mandrakes na mayroong aphrodisiac properties, so that her husband will have sex with her more and there will be more chances of having babies, ganun na siya. Ganun na ang kompetitor. Ganun na ‘to si Rachel.

But in the end of our passage, makikita rin natin may change kay Rachel. When it says, when God remembered Rachel, she acknowledged. Rachel acknowledge that it is God who gives. Sabi niya, God has taken away my reproach. Tinanggal ng Diyos ang aking kahihiyan. Binigyan Niya ako, bin-less Niya ako ng anak. And she even said at the end using the covenantal name of God, may Yahweh, may the Lord add to me another son. She knows, kanino galing ang anak.

She knows, sino lang ang makakapagbigay. Hindi yung mandrakes, but God Himself. May change kay Rachel. Ibig sabihin, kita natin yung patuloy na envy niya, na nag-result to many more sins, and yet it was able to, she was able to stop it. God was able to stop it, enabling Rachel to stop that envy and acknowledge God’s provision.

So there is hope there is that good news! But again, there’s is this reality of the sin of envy. And unless you stop it, unless you seek the help of God to mortify it, then you would see the same results na bubunga at bubunga at bubunga ito ng marami pang kasalanan. The reality is that envy destroys a sinner. And envy is rooted from another sin and it is called discontentment. Rachel was not content with the love of Jacob or she wants more children. And so it bore the fruit of envy in her heart. She made a way to be better, to be a better wife than her sibling. But envy and contentment are just fruits of the major sin na tinatawag nating COVETOUSNESS. What is your neighbours do not covet? We are discontent. And so, we are discontent, so we want what others have. And the worst of it, ang pinaka-worse nito, we want to have it and we don’t want them to have it. That’s worst! Nag-escalate into that, yung sin ni Rachel. Do you know here’s the reality, Rachel is like us. If the sin of envy is unmortified, we will find more things to be envious of. See the focus is not the thing that you are envious of. Let’s say, naiinggit ka sa pera, naiinggit ka na isang tao ay maraming pera. Hindi solusyon na okay, ayoko makita yang tao na iyan o ayokong makakita ng pera kasi maiinggit ako sa pera. O ayokong makita yang tao na yan kasi pag makita ko siya, mayaman siya, marami siyang gamit, then yes, mag-f-fail lang ako’t ma-te-tempt ako sa aking sin of discontent, sa aking sin of covetousness. No, the problem is not the thing they have, the problem is not because they have it, the problem is the heart. And the solution is fixing the heart that is envious. Because even if you get rid of money, or in the case of Rachel, children. Even if you get rid of them, the envious heart is still there. At may kaiinggitan, at kaiinggitan ka pa rin. And we will always want more just like other sins, just like other sins. When you struggle with your anger, unless you mortify your angry heart, you will find things that you would be angry about. Just like when you

struggle with pride, unless you mortify the prideful heart, you will be proud about more accomplishments, more things about you. Does your pride say, okay, this is enough pride for today. Does your anger say oh I have vented enough, let’s stop, that’s enough. Does your envy say, oh I have envied enough, let us stop. Envy is like all other sins. If we don’t put it to death, it will not stop. But we see in the life of Rachel that it can’t be stopped. To fight the sin of envy, we must remember that as christians, we have everything in Jesus Christ. Meron tayo, lahat kay Kristo. In fact si Kristo, enough. Now ang tanong, do you realise it? All promises of God are found in one Person in the God- man, Jesus Christ. All promises of God are found in Him. Promise of protection, promise of presence, promise of provision, promise of redemption, promise of transformation, of sanctification, promise of eternal life, promise of the inheritance of the whole earth, of the heavenly city, of the new heaven in the new earth, promise of holiness, promise of glory, promise of eternity with God, and we have all of these because Christ who was rich, who was in glory, was made poor. In His incarnation He became human. He was obedient to the will of the Father, to the point of death on the cross so that you and I will become spiritually rich. You have all of these things in Christ.

Why are you discontent? Why do you look for other things? Why do you put your heart and why do you treat others as your idol? It could be a relationship, it could be a man, it could be a woman, it could be a thing. In the case of Rachel, children. Makuntento ka kapatid!

Yan ang challenge ko sa inyo, find contentment in Christ. This is how you mortify the sin of envy. As you realise that all these things ay hindi as important, hindi kailangan ito ng kaluluwa mo. At ang kailangan lamang ng kaluluwa mo ay si Kristo at si Kristo ay iyo!

Hangga’t hindi mo yun nare-realise, kapatid, then you will always find something to be envious of. Lalo kang madi-discontent sa mga, sa iyong buhay. Find contentment in Christ and trust God in every situation. Find contentment in Him alone. And whatever is happening in your life, how messy it is, God is active so trust Him in every situation.

A lot of times we are tempted to put our contentment on things. Naiinggit tayo sa mga nangayari sa mga tao, buti pa sila may ganito! Buti pa sila ganito, ganyan! Pero hindi matatapos ito kapatid! Ano bang meron tayo? Si Kristo! Makuntento ka kay Kristo. Tignan natin si Paul sa Philippians chapter 4 verses 11 to 13. Alalahanin natin, yung scene kung nasaan si Paul. Siya ay naka-kadena sa isang Roman soldier and he writes this letter to the church of Philippi. He says in Chapter 4 verses 11 to 13. He said and he was saying na na-a-appreciate niya yung regalo sa kaniya ng Church of Philippi. Although sinasabi niyang hindi ko ito kailangan, pero salamat, salamat sa binigay ninyo. And he said in chapter 4 verses 11 to 13, he says, Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned, take note, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, alam ko. Dumating na ako sa time na sobrang hirap ko, sobrang paghihirap ko, brought low, and I know how to abound. Alam ko din. Dumaan na ako sa buhay ko na sobrang successful ako mayaman ako, marami akong pag-aari. In any and every circumstance, take note again of this phrase, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me. Sometimes the learning part is the difficult part when he, when Paul had everything, he learned that his contentment is not found on the things he had. He learned that his contentment is in Christ. When he lost everything, all the more he learned that his contentment are not found on those things but In Christ Alone. Because whether he has everything or not what he has is Christ. Therefore he is rich. This is why he can say that he can do all things, he can have patience in prison, he can rejoice even when he is in prison, why? Because he has Christ. And it is Christ who strengthens him, so he is content. Why would he look for any, for anyone else for anything else? That is contentment.

Sabi ni Jeremiah Burroughs, sometimes you will learn, di ba, I have learned, you need to be trained. And God may put you in that situation that you’re actually trained. It may be 20 years like Jacob or a lesser time, but you may be put by God in that situation that you will also learn how to be content. That you may lose things in order for you to realise that you are already rich in Christ. That is how you mortify the sin of envy. It is realising that everything is in Christ and you have Christ, therefore, you must be content. Do you find yourself being envious of a lot of things? Is this rooted from a heart of this content of covetousness? Because we have remaining sins. Christ provides you all that you truly need. Christ provides you Himself. And because of this, may we just like Leah, praise the Lord

So no matter what our situation is, remember that Christ is our contentment and His love will never leave us. May the word of God enrich our knowledge of Him and may it stir us to live in light of these truths. Let us pray.

Panginoong Diyos, marami pong salamat sa Inyong pagmamahal sa amin. Sa inyong undying love. Lord, Your word says that Your love has infinite value. Paul describes it as it has a breath with length, height. It is incomprehensible oh Lord! But You know Lord, you have made it in a sense comprehensible for us that by looking at the cross we would understand the the the depth, breadth, height and length of this love. Lord thank You that You have given us the compassion incarnate Christ. Lord, may we always be reminded of Your love for us in Christ whenever we feel unloved, whenever we feel, we whenever we are tempted also to be unloving toward others. And Lord, may we be content in You alone. May we always realise oh Lord how rich we are already. Lord, that we all, we only need the gospel. I pray Lord that You would train our hearts in a way that whenever we are tempted to be envy, that we would always be reminded of Christ that we have everything in Him. In fact, we have Him. And so Lord, we thank You for Your grace and mercy in Jesus’ name, amen.

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