Bible: Gen 27-35

Jacob Cheats Esau out of the Blessing

27:1 When 1  Isaac was old and his eyes were so weak that he was almost blind, 2  he called his older 3  son Esau and said to him, “My son!” “Here I am!” Esau 4  replied. 27:2 Isaac 5  said, “Since 6  I am so old, I could die at any time. 7  27:3 Therefore, take your weapons – your quiver and your bow – and go out into the open fields and hunt down some wild game 8  for me. 27:4 Then prepare for me some tasty food, the kind I love, and bring it to me. Then 9  I will eat it so that I may bless you 10  before I die.”

27:5 Now Rebekah had been listening while Isaac spoke to his son Esau. 11  When Esau went out to the open fields to hunt down some wild game and bring it back, 12  27:6 Rebekah said to her son Jacob, “Look, I overheard your father tell your brother Esau, 27:7 Bring me some wild game and prepare for me some tasty food. Then I will eat 13  it and bless you 14  in the presence of the Lord 15  before I die.’ 27:8 Now then, my son, do 16  exactly what I tell you! 17  27:9 Go to the flock and get me two of the best young goats. I’ll prepare 18  them in a tasty way for your father, just the way he loves them. 27:10 Then you will take 19  it to your father. Thus he will eat it 20  and 21  bless you before he dies.”

27:11But Esau my brother is a hairy man,” Jacob protested to his mother Rebekah, “and I have smooth skin! 22  27:12 My father may touch me! Then he’ll think I’m mocking him 23  and I’ll bring a curse on myself instead of a blessing.” 27:13 So his mother told him, “Any curse against you will fall on me, 24  my son! Just obey me! 25  Go and get them for me!

27:14 So he went and got the goats 26  and brought them to his mother. She 27  prepared some tasty food, just the way his father loved it. 27:15 Then Rebekah took her older son Esau’s best clothes, which she had with her in the house, and put them on her younger son Jacob. 27:16 She put the skins of the young goats 28  on his hands 29  and the smooth part of his neck. 27:17 Then she handed 30  the tasty food and the bread she had made to her son Jacob.

27:18 He went to his father and said, “My father!” Isaac 31  replied, “Here I am. Which are you, my son? 32  27:19 Jacob said to his father, “I am Esau, your firstborn. I’ve done as you told me. Now sit up 33  and eat some of my wild game so that you can bless me.” 34  27:20 But Isaac asked his son, “How in the world 35  did you find it so quickly, 36  my son?” “Because the Lord your God brought it to me,” 37  he replied. 38  27:21 Then Isaac said to Jacob, “Come closer so I can touch you, 39  my son, and know for certain if you really are my son Esau.” 40  27:22 So Jacob went over to his father Isaac, who felt him and said, “The voice is Jacob’s, but the hands are Esau’s.” 27:23 He did not recognize him because his hands were hairy, like his brother Esau’s hands. So Isaac blessed Jacob. 41  27:24 Then he asked, “Are you really my son Esau?” “I am,” Jacob 42  replied. 27:25 Isaac 43  said, “Bring some of the wild game for me to eat, my son. 44  Then I will bless you.” 45  So Jacob 46  brought it to him, and he ate it. He also brought him wine, and Isaac 47  drank. 27:26 Then his father Isaac said to him, “Come here and kiss me, my son.” 27:27 So Jacob 48  went over and kissed him. When Isaac caught the scent 49  of his clothing, he blessed him, saying,

Yes, 50  my son smells

like the scent of an open field

which the Lord has blessed.

27:28 May God give you

the dew of the sky 51 

and the richness 52  of the earth,

and plenty of grain and new wine.

27:29 May peoples serve you

and nations bow down to you.

You will be 53  lord 54  over your brothers,

and the sons of your mother will bow down to you. 55 

May those who curse you be cursed,

and those who bless you be blessed.”

27:30 Isaac had just finished blessing Jacob, and Jacob had scarcely left 56  his father’s 57  presence, when his brother Esau returned from the hunt. 58  27:31 He also prepared some tasty food and brought it to his father. Esau 59  said to him, “My father, get up 60  and eat some of your son’s wild game. Then you can bless me.” 61  27:32 His father Isaac asked, 62  “Who are you?” “I am your firstborn son,” 63  he replied, “Esau! 27:33 Isaac began to shake violently 64  and asked, “Then who else hunted game and brought it to me? I ate all of it just before you arrived, and I blessed him. 65  He will indeed be blessed!

27:34 When Esau heard 66  his father’s words, he wailed loudly and bitterly. 67  He said to his father, “Bless me too, my father! 27:35 But Isaac 68  replied, “Your brother came in here deceitfully and took away 69  your blessing.” 27:36 Esau exclaimed, “‘Jacobis the right name for him! 70  He has tripped me up 71  two times! He took away my birthright, and now, look, he has taken away my blessing!” Then he asked, “Have you not kept back a blessing for me?

27:37 Isaac replied to Esau, “Look! I have made him lord over you. I have made all his relatives his servants and provided him with grain and new wine. What is left that I can do for you, my son? 27:38 Esau said to his father, “Do you have only that one blessing, my father? Bless me too!” 72  Then Esau wept loudly. 73 

27:39 So his father Isaac said to him,

Indeed, 74  your home will be

away from the richness 75  of the earth,

and away from the dew of the sky above.

27:40 You will live by your sword

but you will serve your brother.

When you grow restless,

you will tear off his yoke

from your neck.” 76 

27:41 So Esau hated 77  Jacob because of the blessing his father had given to his brother. 78  Esau said privately, 79 The time 80  of mourning for my father is near; then I will kill 81  my brother Jacob!

27:42 When Rebekah heard what her older son Esau had said, 82  she quickly summoned 83  her younger son Jacob and told him, “Look, your brother Esau is planning to get revenge by killing you. 84  27:43 Now then, my son, do what I say. 85  Run away immediately 86  to my brother Laban in Haran. 27:44 Live with him for a little while 87  until your brother’s rage subsides. 27:45 Stay there 88  until your brother’s anger against you subsides and he forgets what you did to him. Then I’ll send someone to bring you back from there. 89  Why should I lose both of you in one day? 90 

27:46 Then Rebekah said to Isaac, “I am deeply depressed 91  because of these daughters of Heth. 92  If Jacob were to marry one of these daughters of Heth who live in this land, I would want to die! 93 

28:1 So Isaac called for Jacob and blessed him. Then he commanded him, “You must not marry a Canaanite woman! 94  28:2 Leave immediately 95  for Paddan Aram! Go to the house of Bethuel, your mother’s father, and find yourself a wife there, among the daughters of Laban, your mother’s brother. 28:3 May the sovereign God 96  bless you! May he make you fruitful and give you a multitude of descendants! 97  Then you will become 98  a large nation. 99  28:4 May he give you and your descendants the blessing he gave to Abraham 100  so that you may possess the land 101  God gave to Abraham, the land where you have been living as a temporary resident.” 102  28:5 So Isaac sent Jacob on his way, and he went to Paddan Aram, to Laban son of Bethuel the Aramean and brother of Rebekah, the mother of Jacob and Esau.

28:6 Esau saw that Isaac had blessed Jacob and sent him off to Paddan Aram to find a wife there. 103  As he blessed him, 104  Isaac commanded him, “You must not marry a Canaanite woman.” 105  28:7 Jacob obeyed his father and mother and left for Paddan Aram. 28:8 Then Esau realized 106  that the Canaanite women 107  were displeasing to 108  his father Isaac. 28:9 So Esau went to Ishmael and married 109  Mahalath, the sister of Nebaioth and daughter of Abraham’s son Ishmael, along with the wives he already had.

Jacob’s Dream at Bethel

28:10 Meanwhile Jacob left Beer Sheba and set out for Haran. 28:11 He reached a certain place 110  where he decided to camp because the sun had gone down. 111  He took one of the stones 112  and placed it near his head. 113  Then he fell asleep 114  in that place 28:12 and had a dream. 115  He saw 116  a stairway 117  erected on the earth with its top reaching to the heavens. The angels of God were going up and coming down it 28:13 and the Lord stood at its top. He said, “I am the Lord, the God of your grandfather Abraham and the God of your father Isaac. 118  I will give you and your descendants the ground 119  you are lying on. 28:14 Your descendants will be like the dust of the earth, 120  and you will spread out 121  to the west, east, north, and south. All the families of the earth will pronounce blessings on one another 122  using your name and that of your descendants. 123  28:15 I am with you! 124  I will protect you wherever you go and will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have done what I promised you!

28:16 Then Jacob woke up 125  and thought, 126 Surely the Lord is in this place, but I did not realize it! 28:17 He was afraid and said, “What an awesome place this is! This is nothing else than the house of God! This is the gate of heaven!

28:18 Early 127  in the morning Jacob 128  took the stone he had placed near his head 129  and set it up as a sacred stone. 130  Then he poured oil on top of it. 28:19 He called that place Bethel, 131  although the former name of the town was Luz. 28:20 Then Jacob made a vow, saying, “If God is with me and protects me on this journey I am taking and gives me food 132  to eat and clothing to wear, 28:21 and I return safely to my father’s home, 133  then the Lord will become my God. 28:22 Then this stone 134  that I have set up as a sacred stone will be the house of God, and I will surely 135  give you back a tenth of everything you give me.” 136 

The Marriages of Jacob

29:1 So Jacob moved on 137  and came to the land of the eastern people. 138  29:2 He saw 139  in the field a well with 140  three flocks of sheep lying beside it, because the flocks were watered from that well. Now 141  a large stone covered the mouth of the well. 29:3 When all the flocks were gathered there, the shepherds 142  would roll the stone off the mouth of the well and water the sheep. Then they would put the stone back in its place over the well’s mouth.

29:4 Jacob asked them, “My brothers, where are you from?” They replied, “We’re from Haran.” 29:5 So he said to them, “Do you know Laban, the grandson 143  of Nahor?” “We know him,” 144  they said. 29:6 Is he well?” 145  Jacob asked. They replied, “He is well. 146  Now look, here comes his daughter Rachel with the sheep.” 29:7 Then Jacob 147  said, “Since it is still the middle of the day, 148  it is not time for the flocks to be gathered. You should water the sheep and then go and let them graze some more.” 149  29:8 We can’t,” they said, “until all the flocks are gathered and the stone is rolled off the mouth of the well. Then we water 150  the sheep.”

29:9 While he was still speaking with them, Rachel arrived with her father’s sheep, for she was tending them. 151  29:10 When Jacob saw Rachel, the daughter of his uncle Laban, 152  and the sheep of his uncle Laban, he 153  went over 154  and rolled the stone off the mouth of the well and watered the sheep of his uncle Laban. 155  29:11 Then Jacob kissed Rachel and began to weep loudly. 156  29:12 When Jacob explained 157  to Rachel that he was a relative of her father 158  and the son of Rebekah, she ran and told her father. 29:13 When Laban heard this news about Jacob, his sister’s son, he rushed out to meet him. He embraced him and kissed him and brought him to his house. Jacob 159  told Laban how he was related to him. 160  29:14 Then Laban said to him, “You are indeed my own flesh and blood.” 161  So Jacob 162  stayed with him for a month. 163 

29:15 Then Laban said to Jacob, “Should you work 164  for me for nothing because you are my relative? 165  Tell me what your wages should be.” 29:16 (Now Laban had two daughters; 166  the older one was named Leah, and the younger one Rachel. 29:17 Leah’s eyes were tender, 167  but Rachel had a lovely figure and beautiful appearance.) 168  29:18 Since Jacob had fallen in love with 169  Rachel, he said, “I’ll serve you seven years in exchange for your younger daughter Rachel.” 29:19 Laban replied, “I’d rather give her to you than to another man. 170  Stay with me.” 29:20 So Jacob worked for seven years to acquire Rachel. 171  But they seemed like only a few days to him 172  because his love for her was so great. 173 

29:21 Finally Jacob said 174  to Laban, “Give me my wife, for my time of service is up. 175  I want to have marital relations with her.” 176  29:22 So Laban invited all the people 177  of that place and prepared a feast. 29:23 In the evening he brought his daughter Leah 178  to Jacob, 179  and Jacob 180  had marital relations with her. 181  29:24 (Laban gave his female servant Zilpah to his daughter Leah to be her servant.) 182 

29:25 In the morning Jacob discovered it was Leah! 183  So Jacob 184  said to Laban, “What in the world have you done to me! 185  Didn’t I work for you in exchange for Rachel? Why have you tricked 186  me? 29:26 It is not our custom here,” 187  Laban replied, “to give the younger daughter in marriage 188  before the firstborn. 29:27 Complete my older daughter’s bridal week. 189  Then we will give you the younger one 190  too, in exchange for seven more years of work.” 191 

29:28 Jacob did as Laban said. 192  When Jacob 193  completed Leah’s bridal week, 194  Laban gave him his daughter Rachel to be his wife. 195  29:29 (Laban gave his female servant Bilhah to his daughter Rachel to be her servant.) 196  29:30 Jacob 197  had marital relations 198  with Rachel as well. He loved Rachel more than Leah, so he worked for Laban 199  for seven more years. 200 

The Family of Jacob

29:31 When the Lord saw that Leah was unloved, 201  he enabled her to become pregnant 202  while Rachel remained childless. 29:32 So Leah became pregnant 203  and gave birth to a son. She named him Reuben, 204  for she said, “The Lord has looked with pity on my oppressed condition. 205  Surely my husband will love me now.”

29:33 She became pregnant again and had another son. She said, “Because the Lord heard that I was unloved, 206  he gave me this one too.” So she named him Simeon. 207 

29:34 She became pregnant again and had another son. She said, “Now this time my husband will show me affection, 208  because I have given birth to three sons for him.” That is why he was named Levi. 209 

29:35 She became pregnant again and had another son. She said, “This time I will praise the Lord.” That is why she named him Judah. 210  Then she stopped having children.

30:1 When Rachel saw that she could not give Jacob children, she 211  became jealous of her sister. She said to Jacob, “Give me children 212  or I’ll die! 30:2 Jacob became furious 213  with Rachel and exclaimed, “Am I in the place of God, who has kept you from having children? 214  30:3 She replied, “Here is my servant Bilhah! Have sexual relations with 215  her so that she can bear 216  children 217  for me 218  and I can have a family through her.” 219 

30:4 So Rachel 220  gave him her servant Bilhah as a wife, and Jacob had marital relations with 221  her. 30:5 Bilhah became pregnant 222  and gave Jacob a son. 223  30:6 Then Rachel said, “God has vindicated me. He has responded to my prayer 224  and given me a son.” That is why 225  she named him Dan. 226 

30:7 Bilhah, Rachel’s servant, became pregnant again and gave Jacob another son. 227  30:8 Then Rachel said, “I have fought a desperate struggle with my sister, but I have won.” 228  So she named him Naphtali. 229 

30:9 When Leah saw that she had stopped having children, she gave 230  her servant Zilpah to Jacob as a wife. 30:10 Soon Leah’s servant Zilpah gave Jacob a son. 231  30:11 Leah said, “How fortunate!” 232  So she named him Gad. 233 

30:12 Then Leah’s servant Zilpah gave Jacob another son. 234  30:13 Leah said, “How happy I am, 235  for women 236  will call me happy!” So she named him Asher. 237 

30:14 At the time 238  of the wheat harvest Reuben went out and found some mandrake plants 239  in a field and brought them to his mother Leah. Rachel said to Leah, “Give me some of your son’s mandrakes.” 30:15 But Leah replied, 240 Wasn’t it enough that you’ve taken away my husband? Would you take away my son’s mandrakes too?” “All right,” 241  Rachel said, “he may sleep 242  with you tonight in exchange for your son’s mandrakes.” 30:16 When Jacob came in from the fields that evening, Leah went out to meet him and said, “You must sleep 243  with me because I have paid for your services 244  with my son’s mandrakes.” So he had marital relations 245  with her that night. 30:17 God paid attention 246  to Leah; she became pregnant 247  and gave Jacob a son for the fifth time. 248  30:18 Then Leah said, “God has granted me a reward 249  because I gave my servant to my husband as a wife.” 250  So she named him Issachar. 251 

30:19 Leah became pregnant again and gave Jacob a son for the sixth time. 252  30:20 Then Leah said, “God has given me a good gift. Now my husband will honor me because I have given him six sons.” So she named him Zebulun. 253 

30:21 After that she gave birth to a daughter and named her Dinah.

30:22 Then God took note of 254  Rachel. He paid attention to her and enabled her to become pregnant. 255  30:23 She became pregnant 256  and gave birth to a son. Then she said, “God has taken away my shame.” 257  30:24 She named him Joseph, 258  saying, “May the Lord give me yet another son.”

The Flocks of Jacob

30:25 After Rachel had given birth 259  to Joseph, Jacob said to Laban, “Send 260  me on my way so that I can go 261  home to my own country. 262  30:26 Let me take my wives and my children whom I have acquired by working for you. 263  Then I’ll depart, 264  because you know how hard I’ve worked for you.” 265 

30:27 But Laban said to him, “If I have found favor in your sight, please stay here, 266  for I have learned by divination 267  that the Lord has blessed me on account of you.” 30:28 He added, “Just name your wages – I’ll pay whatever you want.” 268 

30:29You know how I have worked for you,” Jacob replied, 269 and how well your livestock have fared under my care. 270  30:30 Indeed, 271  you had little before I arrived, 272  but now your possessions have increased many times over. 273  The Lord has blessed you wherever I worked. 274  But now, how long must it be before I do something for my own family too? 275 

30:31 So Laban asked, 276  “What should I give you?” “You don’t need to give me a thing,” 277  Jacob replied, 278 but if you agree to this one condition, 279  I will continue to care for 280  your flocks and protect them: 30:32 Let me walk among 281  all your flocks today and remove from them every speckled or spotted sheep, every dark-colored lamb, 282  and the spotted or speckled goats. 283  These animals will be my wages. 284  30:33 My integrity will testify for me 285  later on. 286  When you come to verify that I’ve taken only the wages we agreed on, 287  if I have in my possession any goat that is not speckled or spotted or any sheep that is not dark-colored, it will be considered stolen.” 288  30:34 Agreed!” said Laban, “It will be as you say.” 289 

30:35 So that day Laban 290  removed the male goats that were streaked or spotted, all the female goats that were speckled or spotted (all that had any white on them), and all the dark-colored lambs, and put them in the care 291  of his sons. 30:36 Then he separated them from Jacob by a three-day journey, 292  while 293  Jacob was taking care of the rest of Laban’s flocks.

30:37 But Jacob took fresh-cut branches from poplar, almond, and plane trees. He made white streaks by peeling them, making the white inner wood in the branches visible. 30:38 Then he set up the peeled branches in all the watering troughs where the flocks came to drink. He set up the branches in front of the flocks when they were in heat and came to drink. 294  30:39 When the sheep mated 295  in front of the branches, they 296  gave birth to young that were streaked or speckled or spotted. 30:40 Jacob removed these lambs, but he made the rest of the flock face 297  the streaked and completely dark-colored animals in Laban’s flock. So he made separate flocks for himself and did not mix them with Laban’s flocks. 30:41 When the stronger females were in heat, 298  Jacob would set up the branches in the troughs in front of the flock, so they would mate near the branches. 30:42 But if the animals were weaker, he did not set the branches there. 299  So the weaker animals ended up belonging to Laban 300  and the stronger animals to Jacob. 30:43 In this way Jacob 301  became extremely prosperous. He owned 302  large flocks, male and female servants, camels, and donkeys.

Jacob’s Flight from Laban

31:1 Jacob heard that Laban’s sons were complaining, 303 Jacob has taken everything that belonged to our father! He has gotten rich 304  at our father’s expense! 305  31:2 When Jacob saw the look on Laban’s face, he could tell his attitude toward him had changed. 306 

31:3 The Lord said to Jacob, “Return to the land of your fathers 307  and to your relatives. I will be with you.” 308  31:4 So Jacob sent a message for Rachel and Leah 309  to come to the field 310  where his flocks were. 311  31:5 There he said to them, “I can tell that your father’s attitude toward me has changed, 312  but the God of my father has been with me. 31:6 You know that I’ve worked for your father as hard as I could, 313  31:7 but your father has humiliated 314  me and changed my wages ten times. But God has not permitted him to do me any harm. 31:8 If he said, 315 The speckled animals 316  will be your wage,’ then the entire flock gave birth to speckled offspring. But if he said, ‘The streaked animals will be your wage,’ then the entire flock gave birth to streaked offspring. 31:9 In this way God has snatched away your father’s livestock and given them to me.

31:10Once 317  during breeding season I saw 318  in a dream that the male goats mating with 319  the flock were streaked, speckled, and spotted. 31:11 In the dream the angel of God said to me, ‘Jacob!’ ‘Here I am!’ I replied. 31:12 Then he said, ‘Observe 320  that all the male goats mating with 321  the flock are streaked, speckled, or spotted, for I have observed all that Laban has done to you. 31:13 I am the God of Bethel, 322  where you anointed 323  the sacred stone and made a vow to me. 324  Now leave this land immediately 325  and return to your native land.’

31:14 Then Rachel and Leah replied to him, “Do we still have any portion or inheritance 326  in our father’s house? 31:15 Hasn’t he treated us like foreigners? He not only sold us, but completely wasted 327  the money paid for us! 328  31:16 Surely all the wealth that God snatched away from our father belongs to us and to our children. So now do everything God has told you.”

31:17 So Jacob immediately put his children and his wives on the camels. 329  31:18 He took 330  away all the livestock he had acquired in Paddan Aram and all his moveable property that he had accumulated. Then he set out toward the land of Canaan to return to his father Isaac. 331 

31:19 While Laban had gone to shear his sheep, 332  Rachel stole the household idols 333  that belonged to her father. 31:20 Jacob also deceived 334  Laban the Aramean by not telling him that he was leaving. 335  31:21 He left 336  with all he owned. He quickly crossed 337  the Euphrates River 338  and headed for 339  the hill country of Gilead.

31:22 Three days later Laban discovered Jacob had left. 340  31:23 So he took his relatives 341  with him and pursued Jacob 342  for seven days. 343  He caught up with 344  him in the hill country of Gilead. 31:24 But God came to Laban the Aramean in a dream at night and warned him, 345  “Be careful 346  that you neither bless nor curse Jacob.” 347 

31:25 Laban overtook Jacob, and when Jacob pitched his tent in the hill country of Gilead, Laban and his relatives set up camp there too. 348  31:26 What have you done?” Laban demanded of Jacob. “You’ve deceived me 349  and carried away my daughters as if they were captives of war! 350  31:27 Why did you run away secretly 351  and deceive me? 352  Why didn’t you tell me so I could send you off with a celebration complete with singing, tambourines, and harps? 353  31:28 You didn’t even allow me to kiss my daughters and my grandchildren 354  good-bye. You have acted foolishly! 31:29 I have 355  the power to do you harm, but the God of your father told me last night, ‘Be careful 356  that you neither bless nor curse Jacob.’ 357  31:30 Now I understand that 358  you have gone away 359  because you longed desperately 360  for your father’s house. Yet why did you steal my gods? 361 

31:31I left secretly because I was afraid!” 362  Jacob replied to Laban. “I thought 363  you might take your daughters away from me by force. 364  31:32 Whoever has taken your gods will be put to death! 365  In the presence of our relatives 366  identify whatever is yours and take it.” 367  (Now Jacob did not know that Rachel had stolen them.) 368 

31:33 So Laban entered Jacob’s tent, and Leah’s tent, and the tent of the two female servants, but he did not find the idols. 369  Then he left Leah’s tent and entered Rachel’s. 370  31:34 (Now Rachel had taken the idols and put them inside her camel’s saddle 371  and sat on them.) 372  Laban searched the whole tent, but did not find them. 373  31:35 Rachel 374  said to her father, “Don’t be angry, 375  my lord. I cannot stand up 376  in your presence because I am having my period.” 377  So he searched thoroughly, 378  but did not find the idols.

31:36 Jacob became angry 379  and argued with Laban. “What did I do wrong?” he demanded of Laban. 380 What sin of mine prompted you to chase after me in hot pursuit? 381  31:37 When you searched through all my goods, did you find anything that belonged to you? 382  Set it here before my relatives and yours, 383  and let them settle the dispute between the two of us! 384 

31:38I have been with you for the past twenty years. Your ewes and female goats have not miscarried, nor have I eaten rams from your flocks. 31:39 Animals torn by wild beasts I never brought to you; I always absorbed the loss myself. 385  You always made me pay for every missing animal, 386  whether it was taken by day or at night. 31:40 I was consumed by scorching heat 387  during the day and by piercing cold 388  at night, and I went without sleep. 389  31:41 This was my lot 390  for twenty years in your house: I worked like a slave 391  for you – fourteen years for your two daughters and six years for your flocks, but you changed my wages ten times! 31:42 If the God of my father – the God of Abraham, the one whom Isaac fears 392 had not been with me, you would certainly have sent me away empty-handed! But God saw how I was oppressed and how hard I worked, 393  and he rebuked you last night.”

31:43 Laban replied 394  to Jacob, “These women 395  are my daughters, these children are my grandchildren, 396  and these flocks are my flocks. All that you see belongs to me. But how can I harm these daughters of mine today 397  or the children to whom they have given birth? 31:44 So now, come, let’s make a formal agreement, 398  you and I, and it will be 399  proof that we have made peace.” 400 

31:45 So Jacob took a stone and set it up as a memorial pillar. 31:46 Then he 401  said to his relatives, “Gather stones.” So they brought stones and put them in a pile. 402  They ate there by the pile of stones. 31:47 Laban called it Jegar Sahadutha, 403  but Jacob called it Galeed. 404 

31:48 Laban said, “This pile of stones is a witness of our agreement 405  today.” That is why it was called Galeed. 31:49 It was also called Mizpah 406  because he said, “May the Lord watch 407  between us 408  when we are out of sight of one another. 409  31:50 If you mistreat my daughters or if you take wives besides my daughters, although no one else is with us, realize 410  that God is witness to your actions.” 411 

31:51Here is this pile of stones and this pillar I have set up between me and you,” Laban said to Jacob. 412  31:52 This pile of stones and the pillar are reminders that I will not pass beyond this pile to come to harm you and that you will not pass beyond this pile and this pillar to come to harm me. 413  31:53 May the God of Abraham and the god of Nahor, 414  the gods of their father, judge between us.” Jacob took an oath by the God whom his father Isaac feared. 415  31:54 Then Jacob offered a sacrifice 416  on the mountain and invited his relatives to eat the meal. 417  They ate the meal and spent the night on the mountain.

31:55 418  Early in the morning Laban kissed 419  his grandchildren 420  and his daughters goodbye and blessed them. Then Laban left and returned home. 421 

Jacob Wrestles at Peniel

32:1 So Jacob went on his way and the angels of God 422  met him. 32:2 When Jacob saw them, he exclaimed, 423  “This is the camp of God!” So he named that place Mahanaim. 424 

32:3 Jacob sent messengers on ahead 425  to his brother Esau in the land of Seir, the region 426  of Edom. 32:4 He commanded them, “This is what you must say to my lord Esau: ‘This is what your servant 427  Jacob says: I have been staying with Laban until now. 32:5 I have oxen, donkeys, sheep, and male and female servants. I have sent 428  this message 429  to inform my lord, so that I may find favor in your sight.’

32:6 The messengers returned to Jacob and said, “We went to your brother Esau. He is coming to meet you and has four hundred men with him.” 32:7 Jacob was very afraid and upset. So he divided the people who were with him into two camps, as well as the flocks, herds, and camels. 32:8 If Esau attacks one camp,” 430  he thought, 431 then the other camp will be able to escape.” 432 

32:9 Then Jacob prayed, 433  “O God of my father Abraham, God of my father Isaac, O Lord, you said 434  to me, ‘Return to your land and to your relatives and I will make you prosper.’ 435  32:10 I am not worthy of all the faithful love 436  you have shown 437  your servant. With only my walking stick 438  I crossed the Jordan, 439  but now I have become two camps. 32:11 Rescue me, 440  I pray, from the hand 441  of my brother Esau, 442  for I am afraid he will come 443  and attack me, as well as the mothers with their children. 444  32:12 But you 445  said, ‘I will certainly make you prosper 446  and will make 447  your descendants like the sand on the seashore, too numerous to count.’ 448 

32:13 Jacob 449  stayed there that night. Then he sent 450  as a gift 451  to his brother Esau 32:14 two hundred female goats and twenty male goats, two hundred ewes and twenty rams, 32:15 thirty female camels with their young, forty cows and ten bulls, and twenty female donkeys and ten male donkeys. 32:16 He entrusted them to 452  his servants, who divided them into herds. 453  He told his servants, “Pass over before me, and keep some distance between one herd and the next.” 32:17 He instructed the servant leading the first herd, 454  “When my brother Esau meets you and asks, ‘To whom do you belong? 455  Where are you going? Whose herds are you driving?’ 456  32:18 then you must say, 457 They belong 458  to your servant Jacob. 459  They have been sent as a gift to my lord Esau. 460  In fact Jacob himself is behind us.’ 461 

32:19 He also gave these instructions to the second and third servants, as well as all those who were following the herds, saying, “You must say the same thing to Esau when you meet him. 462  32:20 You must also say, ‘In fact your servant Jacob is behind us.’” 463  Jacob thought, 464 I will first appease him 465  by sending a gift ahead of me. 466  After that I will meet him. 467  Perhaps he will accept me.” 468  32:21 So the gifts were sent on ahead of him 469  while he spent that night in the camp. 470 

32:22 During the night Jacob quickly took 471  his two wives, his two female servants, and his eleven sons 472  and crossed the ford of the Jabbok. 473  32:23 He took them and sent them across the stream along with all his possessions. 474  32:24 So Jacob was left alone. Then a man 475  wrestled 476  with him until daybreak. 477  32:25 When the man 478  saw that he could not defeat Jacob, 479  he struck 480  the socket of his hip so the socket of Jacob’s hip was dislocated while he wrestled with him.

32:26 Then the man 481  said, “Let me go, for the dawn is breaking.” 482  “I will not let you go,” Jacob replied, 483 unless you bless me.” 484  32:27 The man asked him, 485 What is your name?” 486  He answered, “Jacob.” 32:28 No longer will your name be Jacob,” the man told him, 487  “but Israel, 488  because you have fought 489  with God and with men and have prevailed.”

32:29 Then Jacob asked, “Please tell me your name.” 490 Why 491  do you ask my name?” the man replied. 492  Then he blessed 493  Jacob 494  there. 32:30 So Jacob named the place Peniel, 495  explaining, 496  “Certainly 497  I have seen God face to face 498  and have survived.” 499 

32:31 The sun rose 500  over him as he crossed over Penuel, 501  but 502  he was limping because of his hip. 32:32 That is why to this day 503  the Israelites do not eat the sinew which is attached to the socket of the hip, because he struck 504  the socket of Jacob’s hip near the attached sinew.

Jacob Meets Esau

33:1 Jacob looked up 505  and saw that Esau was coming 506  along with four hundred men. So he divided the children among Leah, Rachel, and the two female servants. 33:2 He put the servants and their children in front, with Leah and her children behind them, and Rachel and Joseph behind them. 507  33:3 But Jacob 508  himself went on ahead of them, and he bowed toward the ground seven times as he approached 509  his brother. 33:4 But Esau ran to meet him, embraced him, hugged his neck, and kissed him. Then they both wept. 33:5 When Esau 510  looked up 511  and saw the women and the children, he asked, “Who are these people with you?” Jacob 512  replied, “The children whom God has graciously given 513  your servant.” 33:6 The female servants came forward with their children and bowed down. 514  33:7 Then Leah came forward with her children and they bowed down. Finally Joseph and Rachel came forward and bowed down.

33:8 Esau 515  then asked, “What did you intend 516  by sending all these herds to meet me?” 517  Jacob 518  replied, “To find favor in your sight, my lord.” 33:9 But Esau said, “I have plenty, my brother. Keep what belongs to you.” 33:10 No, please take them,” Jacob said. 519 If I have found favor in your sight, accept 520  my gift from my hand. Now that I have seen your face and you have accepted me, 521  it is as if I have seen the face of God. 522  33:11 Please take my present 523  that was brought to you, for God has been generous 524  to me and I have all I need.” 525  When Jacob urged him, he took it. 526 

33:12 Then Esau 527  said, “Let’s be on our way! 528  I will go in front of you.” 33:13 But Jacob 529  said to him, “My lord knows that the children are young, 530  and that I have to look after the sheep and cattle that are nursing their young. 531  If they are driven too hard for even a single day, all the animals will die. 33:14 Let my lord go on ahead of his servant. I will travel more slowly, at the pace of the herds and the children, 532  until I come to my lord at Seir.”

33:15 So Esau said, “Let me leave some of my men with you.” 533  “Why do that?” Jacob replied. 534 My lord has already been kind enough to me.” 535 

33:16 So that same day Esau made his way back 536  to Seir. 33:17 But 537  Jacob traveled to Succoth 538  where he built himself a house and made shelters for his livestock. That is why the place was called 539  Succoth. 540 

33:18 After he left Paddan Aram, Jacob came safely to the city of Shechem in the land of Canaan, and he camped near 541  the city. 33:19 Then he purchased the portion of the field where he had pitched his tent; he bought it 542  from the sons of Hamor, Shechem’s father, for a hundred pieces of money. 543  33:20 There he set up an altar and called it “The God of Israel is God.” 544 

Dinah and the Shechemites

34:1 Now Dinah, Leah’s daughter whom she bore to Jacob, went to meet 545  the young women 546  of the land. 34:2 When Shechem son of Hamor the Hivite, who ruled that area, saw her, he grabbed her, forced himself on her, 547  and sexually assaulted her. 548  34:3 Then he became very attached 549  to Dinah, Jacob’s daughter. He fell in love with the young woman and spoke romantically to her. 550  34:4 Shechem said to his father Hamor, “Acquire this young girl as my wife.” 551  34:5 When 552  Jacob heard that Shechem 553  had violated his daughter Dinah, his sons were with the livestock in the field. So Jacob remained silent 554  until they came in.

34:6 Then Shechem’s father Hamor went to speak with Jacob about Dinah. 555  34:7 Now Jacob’s sons had come in from the field when they heard the news. 556  They 557  were offended 558  and very angry because Shechem 559  had disgraced Israel 560  by sexually assaulting 561  Jacob’s daughter, a crime that should not be committed. 562 

34:8 But Hamor made this appeal to them: “My son Shechem is in love with your daughter. 563  Please give her to him as his wife. 34:9 Intermarry with us. 564  Let us marry your daughters, and take our daughters as wives for yourselves. 565  34:10 You may live 566  among us, and the land will be open to you. 567  Live in it, travel freely in it, 568  and acquire property in it.”

34:11 Then Shechem said to Dinah’s 569  father and brothers, “Let me find favor in your sight, and whatever you require of me 570  I’ll give. 571  34:12 You can make the bride price and the gift I must bring very expensive, 572  and I’ll give 573  whatever you ask 574  of me. Just give me the young woman as my wife!

34:13 Jacob’s sons answered Shechem and his father Hamor deceitfully when they spoke because Shechem 575  had violated their sister Dinah. 34:14 They said to them, “We cannot give 576  our sister to a man who is not circumcised, for it would be a disgrace 577  to us. 34:15 We will give you our consent on this one condition: You must become 578  like us by circumcising 579  all your males. 34:16 Then we will give 580  you our daughters to marry, 581  and we will take your daughters as wives for ourselves, and we will live among you and become one people. 34:17 But if you do not agree to our terms 582  by being circumcised, then we will take 583  our sister 584  and depart.”

34:18 Their offer pleased Hamor and his son Shechem. 585  34:19 The young man did not delay in doing what they asked 586  because he wanted Jacob’s daughter Dinah 587  badly. (Now he was more important 588  than anyone in his father’s household.) 589  34:20 So Hamor and his son Shechem went to the gate 590  of their city and spoke to the men of their city, 34:21 These men are at peace with us. So let them live in the land and travel freely in it, for the land is wide enough 591  for them. We will take their daughters for wives, and we will give them our daughters to marry. 592  34:22 Only on this one condition will these men consent to live with us and become one people: They demand 593  that every male among us be circumcised just as they are circumcised. 34:23 If we do so, 594  won’t their livestock, their property, and all their animals become ours? So let’s consent to their demand, so they will live among us.”

34:24 All the men who assembled at the city gate 595  agreed with 596  Hamor and his son Shechem. Every male who assembled at the city gate 597  was circumcised. 34:25 In three days, when they were still in pain, two of Jacob’s sons, Simeon and Levi, Dinah’s brothers, each took his sword 598  and went to the unsuspecting city 599  and slaughtered every male. 34:26 They killed Hamor and his son Shechem with the sword, took Dinah from Shechem’s house, and left. 34:27 Jacob’s sons killed them 600  and looted the city because their sister had been violated. 601  34:28 They took their flocks, herds, and donkeys, as well as everything in the city and in the surrounding fields. 602  34:29 They captured as plunder 603  all their wealth, all their little ones, and their wives, including everything in the houses.

34:30 Then Jacob said to Simeon and Levi, “You have brought ruin 604  on me by making me a foul odor 605  among the inhabitants of the land – among the Canaanites and the Perizzites. I 606  am few in number; they will join forces against me and attack me, and both I and my family will be destroyed! 34:31 But Simeon and Levi replied, 607 Should he treat our sister like a common prostitute?

The Return to Bethel

35:1 Then God said to Jacob, “Go up at once 608  to Bethel 609  and live there. Make an altar there to God, who appeared to you when you fled from your brother Esau.” 610  35:2 So Jacob told his household and all who were with him, “Get rid of the foreign gods you have among you. 611  Purify yourselves and change your clothes. 612  35:3 Let us go up at once 613  to Bethel. Then I will make 614  an altar there to God, who responded to me in my time of distress 615  and has been with me wherever I went.” 616 

35:4 So they gave Jacob all the foreign gods that were in their possession 617  and the rings that were in their ears. 618  Jacob buried them 619  under the oak 620  near Shechem 35:5 and they started on their journey. 621  The surrounding cities were afraid of God, 622  and they did not pursue the sons of Jacob.

35:6 Jacob and all those who were with him arrived at Luz (that is, Bethel) 623  in the land of Canaan. 624  35:7 He built an altar there and named the place El Bethel 625  because there God had revealed himself 626  to him when he was fleeing from his brother. 35:8 (Deborah, 627  Rebekah’s nurse, died and was buried under the oak below Bethel; thus it was named 628  Oak of Weeping.) 629 

35:9 God appeared to Jacob again after he returned from Paddan Aram and blessed him. 35:10 God said to him, “Your name is Jacob, but your name will no longer be called Jacob; Israel will be your name.” So God named him Israel. 630  35:11 Then God said to him, “I am the sovereign God. 631  Be fruitful and multiply! A nation – even a company of nations – will descend from you; kings will be among your descendants! 632  35:12 The land I gave 633  to Abraham and Isaac I will give to you. To your descendants 634  I will also give this land.” 35:13 Then God went up from the place 635  where he spoke with him. 35:14 So Jacob set up a sacred stone pillar in the place where God spoke with him. 636  He poured out a drink offering on it, and then he poured oil on it. 637  35:15 Jacob named the place 638  where God spoke with him Bethel. 639 

35:16 They traveled on from Bethel, and when Ephrath was still some distance away, 640  Rachel went into labor 641 and her labor was hard. 35:17 When her labor was at its hardest, 642  the midwife said to her, “Don’t be afraid, for you are having another son.” 643  35:18 With her dying breath, 644  she named him Ben-Oni. 645  But his father called him Benjamin instead. 646  35:19 So Rachel died and was buried on the way to Ephrath (that is, Bethlehem). 647  35:20 Jacob set up a marker 648  over her grave; it is 649  the Marker of Rachel’s Grave to this day.

35:21 Then Israel traveled on and pitched his tent beyond Migdal Eder. 650  35:22 While Israel was living in that land, Reuben had sexual relations with 651  Bilhah, his father’s concubine, and Israel heard about it.

Jacob had twelve sons:

35:23 The sons of Leah were Reuben, Jacob’s firstborn, as well as Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, and Zebulun.

35:24 The sons of Rachel were Joseph and Benjamin.

35:25 The sons of Bilhah, Rachel’s servant, were Dan and Naphtali.

35:26 The sons of Zilpah, Leah’s servant, were Gad and Asher.

These were the sons of Jacob who were born to him in Paddan Aram.

35:27 So Jacob came back to his father Isaac in Mamre, 652  to Kiriath Arba 653  (that is, Hebron), where Abraham and Isaac had stayed. 654  35:28 Isaac lived to be 180 years old. 655  35:29 Then Isaac breathed his last and joined his ancestors. 656  He died an old man who had lived a full life. 657  His sons Esau and Jacob buried him.

NET Bible Study Environment