The Story Of Dinah
As far as we know, Dinah was Jacob’s only daughter. She lived among ten older and two younger brothers. She grew up in a family rocked by struggle between two sisters married to the same man. Dinah’s mother, Leah, knew that Jacob loved her sister and rival, Rachel. We don’t know how the bitterness and jealousy between these women affected Dinah. By the time she was a teenager, her family was living in Shechem, a town north of Bethel and Jerusalem in the Promised Land.
One day, Dinah went out for a walk in town. She was noticed and raped by Shechem, the son of the ruler of the city. Violated and shamed, Dinah found herself in the center of a family crisis. Shechem asked his father to arrange a marriage with Dinah. But in Jacobs and his son’s eyes, Dinah have been wronged and their family had been insulted. Jacob failed to provide any fatherly leadership in this situation and his sons took matters into their own hands. The results were treacherous and bloody.
In all of this, the victim was overlooked. Dinah was neither comforted nor consulted. Instead, her family treated her with almost as much disrespect as she had been by Shechem. By handing her over to Shechem, they used Dinah as bait in a trap that led to the murder of all the men in Shechem’s village. Dinah’s brothers profited from the massacre of Shechem. Jacob was angry at his son’s for their actions, but did nothing. Meanwhile, Dinah slipped back into oblivion. Her story reminds us of the tragedies that occur when family members are careless with each other. Someone ends up paying a high price.
You probably know someone who can identify closely with Dinah. Perhaps you have experience that same anonymity as a victim who is unnoticed or forgotten. Remember several glimmers of hope:
- Even when everyone else forgets, God Doesn’t;
- When no one seems to notice, God Sees;
- When no one seems to care, God Cares;
- When you feel all alone, you aren’t.
And one of the first lessons God will teach as you depend on him is that there are others who also care and are willing to help. Begin to speak to God today in prayer about your past.
|NLT Chronological Life Application Study Bible, Hardcover
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The Bible is the story of God’s interaction with his creation. It is a story that occurs over time, in many places, and through many events. It includes the lives and lessons learned by many people from many cultures. It’s often easy to lose sight of the way in which God’s story fits together when our primary way of looking at the Bible is a bit here and a bit there.
The new four-color Chronological Life Application Study Bible combines the proven resources of the Life Application Study Bible with a chronological format and several brand-new resources. The Bible is arranged in 10 chronological sections that help the reader to see how the various pieces of the Bible fit together. New section intros and timelines set the stage for the passages in each section. New archaeological notes and photographs help to bring God’s story to life in a whole new way. And of course, the Life Application resources answer the all-important question—”so what?”