Genesis 30:5 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 30:5, NIV: and she became pregnant and bore him a son.

Genesis 30:5, ESV: And Bilhah conceived and bore Jacob a son.

Genesis 30:5, KJV: And Bilhah conceived, and bare Jacob a son.

Genesis 30:5, NASB: Bilhah conceived and bore Jacob a son.

Genesis 30:5, NLT: Bilhah became pregnant and presented him with a son.

Genesis 30:5, CSB: Bilhah conceived and bore Jacob a son.

What does Genesis 30:5 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Even though Jacob loves his wife Rachel (Genesis 29:16–18), and "hates" his unintended wife Leah, Leah has been able to bear several children (Genesis 29:31–35). Rachel has had no sons or daughters, yet, and absurdly attempts to blame Jacob for this situation (Genesis 30:1), though he reminds her that it is ultimately God, not man, who controls the birth of children. Desperate to "keep up" with her sister, and have a child of her own, Rachel turns to the same plot used by her grandparents, Abraham and Sarah (Genesis 16:1–4). According to customs of the time, children born to a woman's servant were considered children of the owner.

Rachel's plan works, at least in the sense that it results in a child. Bilhah does indeed give birth to Jacob's fifth son. Rachel, though still conflicted, will receive the boy as God's gift to her. Rather than making things better, this event will help fuel a competition between Rachel and Leah (Genesis 30:8).