Leah: Our Matriarch of Prayer

Leah is the fourth and final matriarch in the Jewish Bible. Although all the matriarchs are considered the spiritual mothers of Israel, Leah is the biological mother of half the 12 tribes of Israel (eight if you include Gad and Asher, born to Leah’s handmaid Zilpah). This is remarkable considering the fact that Leah only became a matriarch because her duplicitous father, Laban, tricked Jacob into marrying her.

Leah started out as a young woman with “weak eyes” (Genesis 29:17), and became the wife who was unloved (Genesis 29:31), but ultimately fulfilled her role as a respected and important figure in the development of the nation of Israel. In the book of Ruth, we find the following blessing made upon Ruth before her marriage to Boaz: “May the Lord make the woman who is coming into your home like Rachel and Leah, who together built up the family of Israel” (Ruth 4:11).


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