Jacob did so, and fulfilled her week. He gave him Rachel his daughter as wife. Laban gave to Rachel his daughter Bilhah, his handmaid, to be her handmaid. He went in also to Rachel, and he loved also Rachel more than Leah, and served with him yet seven other years.
Yahweh saw that Leah was hated, and he opened her womb, but Rachel was barren. Leah conceived, and bore a son, and she named him Reuben. For she said, “Because Yahweh has looked at my affliction. For now my husband will love me.” She conceived again, and bore a son, and said, “Because Yahweh has heard that I am hated, he has therefore given me this son also.” She named him Simeon. She conceived again, and bore a son. Said, “Now this time will my husband be joined to me, because I have borne him three sons.” Therefore his name was called Levi. She conceived again, and bore a son. She said, “This time will I praise Yahweh.” Therefore she named him Judah. Then she stopped bearing.
It should be pretty obvious that polygamy isn’t what God wanted for mankind. It is true that Jacob was tricked into Leah, but shouldn’t he have been happy with just one wife, even if it wasn’t his first pick? That may sound odd, but God always knows what is best for us. What happened happened and God was going to make something good out of things anyway. That’s the way God is. Even when we make a big mess out of things, God uses them to show how great and loving He is. Even the bad things that happen are used for good.
God saw that Leah was actually being hated by Jacob. It is interesting because the text also says that “he loved also Rachel more than Leah.” Perhaps Jacob simply thought he liked Rachel more, but God knew that it was actually a hate problem. Sometimes, we don’t even know our own motives, but God does.
So here we read that God had Leah give birth to four sons. These sons would go on to become large families. Not only that, Leah’s son Judah was to become the one from which Jesus the Messiah would someday be born.
Even if we have had bad lives before we became believers, and even if we are believers who have very little to show for it, God can take our circumstances and turn them around starting today. He can even make bad things into good things. There are usually still consequences for our sin, but God can make miracles where we thought that there was no hope.