Rachel became jealous of her sister when she couldn’t have children. She pleased with Jacob, “Give me children or give me death!”
Then Jacob became furious and said “Am I God? He’s the one you should be pleading with!”
Then Rachel told him to have sex with her maid, Bilhah. “Through here I can have a family, too.” Bilhah became pregnant and gave them a son. Rachel named him Dan and said “God has vindicated me! He has heard my request and gave me a son.” Then Bilhaha gave birth to another son. Rachel named him Naphtali and said “I have struggled hard with my sister, and I’m winning!”
Meanwhile, Leah realized she wasn’t getting pregnant anymore, so she let Jacob have sex with her servant, Zilpah. (I always heard sisters fight over the silliest things.) Soon Zilpah gave birth to a son. Leah named him Gad. Zilpah gave birth to another son and Leah named him Asher. She said “What joy is mine! Now the other women will celebrate with me.”
One day during the wheat harvest, Reuben found some mandrakes and brought them to his mother, Leah. Rachel begged Leah, “Please give me some mandrakes.”
But Leah said angrily, “Wasn’t it enough that you stole my husband? Now will you steal my son’s mandrakes, too?”
Rachel answered, “Um, no. I was just asking. But I’ll let Jacob sleep with you tonight if you give me some mandrakes.”
So that evening, Leah met Jacob as he was coming home from the fields. “You must sleep with me tonight. I have paid for you with some mandrakes.” They slept together and God answered her prayers. She gave birth to a fifth son, named Issachar. She said “God has rewarded me for giving my servant to my husband as a wife.” (Um…I don’t think so.) Then she gave birth to a sixth son named Zebulum. She said “God has given me a good reward. Now my husband will treat me with respect, for I have given him six sons.” Later she gave birth to a daughter named Dinah.
Then God remembered Rachel’s plight (he’d backed himself into a corner with these two) and she gave birth to a son named Joseph. “God has removed my disgrace,” she said. “May the Lord add yet another son to my family.”
Jacob said to Laban, “Please release me so I can go home to my country. Let me take my wives and children, for I have earned them by serving you. You know how hard I’ve worked for you.”
Laban replied, “I have become wealthy because the Lord has blessed me. Tell me how much I owe you. Whatever it is, I’ll pay it.”
“Your flocks and herds have grown under my care. You had little before I came. The Lord has blessed you through everything I’ve done. What about me? When can I start providing for my family?”
“Did you listen to anything I just said. How much do you want?”
“Don’t give me anything.”
“Jesus, why are you making this so difficult?”
“Let me do one thing and I’ll continue to tend and watch over your flocks. Let me remove all the sheep an goats that are speckled or spotted, along with the black sheep. Give these to me as my wages. When you inspect my animals, if you find any that are not speckled, spotted or black, you will know I have stolen from you.”
“Whatever.” But that same day, Laban removed the speckled and spotted goats, along with the black sheep, and gave them to his son who took them far away. Meanwhile, Jacob stayed and cared for the rest of Laban’s flock.
Then Jacob made wizard wands out of tree branches, peeling off strips of bark to make white strips on them. He place these in the watering troughs, for that is where they mated. (Unhygienic.) When they mated in front of the wizard wand, they gave birth to young that were speckled, spotted, streaked and black. Jacob separated those lambs from Laban’s flock. And at mating time he turned the flock to face Laban’s animals that were streaked or black. This is how he built his own flock instead of increasing Laban’s.
Jacob only placed the wands in the watering trough when the strong females were ready to mate, that way Laban would be left with the weaker ones. As a result, he became very wealthy.