Jacob Meets Esau

33 Jacob looked up and there was Esau, coming with his four hundred men;(A) so he divided the children among Leah, Rachel and the two female servants.(B) He put the female servants and their children(C) in front, Leah and her children next, and Rachel and Joseph(D) in the rear. He himself went on ahead and bowed down to the ground(E) seven times(F) as he approached his brother.

But Esau(G) ran to meet Jacob and embraced him; he threw his arms around his neck and kissed him.(H) And they wept.(I) Then Esau looked up and saw the women and children. “Who are these with you?” he asked.

Jacob answered, “They are the children God has graciously given your servant.(J)

Then the female servants and their children(K) approached and bowed down.(L) Next, Leah and her children(M) came and bowed down.(N) Last of all came Joseph and Rachel,(O) and they too bowed down.

Esau asked, “What’s the meaning of all these flocks and herds I met?”(P)

“To find favor in your eyes, my lord,”(Q) he said.

But Esau said, “I already have plenty,(R) my brother. Keep what you have for yourself.”

10 “No, please!” said Jacob. “If I have found favor in your eyes,(S) accept this gift(T) from me. For to see your face is like seeing the face of God,(U) now that you have received me favorably.(V) 11 Please accept the present(W) that was brought to you, for God has been gracious to me(X) and I have all I need.”(Y) And because Jacob insisted,(Z) Esau accepted it.

12 Then Esau said, “Let us be on our way; I’ll accompany you.”

13 But Jacob said to him, “My lord(AA) knows that the children are tender and that I must care for the ewes and cows that are nursing their young.(AB) If they are driven hard just one day, all the animals will die. 14 So let my lord go on ahead of his servant, while I move along slowly at the pace of the flocks and herds(AC) before me and the pace of the children, until I come to my lord in Seir.(AD)

15 Esau said, “Then let me leave some of my men with you.”

“But why do that?” Jacob asked. “Just let me find favor in the eyes of my lord.”(AE)

16 So that day Esau started on his way back to Seir.(AF) 17 Jacob, however, went to Sukkoth,(AG) where he built a place for himself and made shelters for his livestock. That is why the place is called Sukkoth.[a]

18 After Jacob came from Paddan Aram,[b](AH) he arrived safely at the city of Shechem(AI) in Canaan and camped within sight of the city. 19 For a hundred pieces of silver,[c] he bought from the sons of Hamor,(AJ) the father of Shechem,(AK) the plot of ground(AL) where he pitched his tent.(AM) 20 There he set up an altar(AN) and called it El Elohe Israel.[d]

Dinah and the Shechemites

34 Now Dinah,(AO) the daughter Leah had borne to Jacob, went out to visit the women of the land. When Shechem(AP) son of Hamor(AQ) the Hivite,(AR) the ruler of that area, saw her, he took her and raped her.(AS) His heart was drawn to Dinah(AT) daughter of Jacob;(AU) he loved(AV) the young woman and spoke tenderly(AW) to her. And Shechem said to his father Hamor, “Get me this girl as my wife.”(AX)

When Jacob heard that his daughter Dinah had been defiled,(AY) his sons were in the fields with his livestock; so he did nothing about it until they came home.

Then Shechem’s father Hamor went out to talk with Jacob.(AZ) Meanwhile, Jacob’s sons had come in from the fields as soon as they heard what had happened. They were shocked(BA) and furious,(BB) because Shechem had done an outrageous thing in[e] Israel(BC) by sleeping with Jacob’s daughter—a thing that should not be done.(BD)

But Hamor said to them, “My son Shechem has his heart set on your daughter. Please give her to him as his wife.(BE) Intermarry with us; give us your daughters and take our daughters for yourselves.(BF) 10 You can settle among us;(BG) the land is open to you.(BH) Live in it, trade[f] in it,(BI) and acquire property in it.(BJ)

11 Then Shechem said to Dinah’s father and brothers, “Let me find favor in your eyes,(BK) and I will give you whatever you ask. 12 Make the price for the bride(BL) and the gift I am to bring as great as you like, and I’ll pay whatever you ask me. Only give me the young woman as my wife.”

13 Because their sister Dinah had been defiled,(BM) Jacob’s sons replied deceitfully(BN) as they spoke to Shechem and his father Hamor. 14 They said to them, “We can’t do such a thing; we can’t give our sister to a man who is not circumcised.(BO) That would be a disgrace to us. 15 We will enter into an agreement with you on one condition(BP) only: that you become like us by circumcising all your males.(BQ) 16 Then we will give you our daughters and take your daughters for ourselves.(BR) We’ll settle among you and become one people with you.(BS) 17 But if you will not agree to be circumcised, we’ll take our sister and go.”

18 Their proposal seemed good to Hamor and his son Shechem. 19 The young man, who was the most honored(BT) of all his father’s family, lost no time in doing what they said, because he was delighted with Jacob’s daughter.(BU) 20 So Hamor and his son Shechem went to the gate of their city(BV) to speak to the men of their city. 21 “These men are friendly toward us,” they said. “Let them live in our land and trade in it;(BW) the land has plenty of room for them. We can marry their daughters and they can marry ours.(BX) 22 But the men will agree to live with us as one people only on the condition that our males be circumcised,(BY) as they themselves are. 23 Won’t their livestock, their property and all their other animals become ours?(BZ) So let us agree to their terms, and they will settle among us.(CA)

24 All the men who went out of the city gate(CB) agreed with Hamor and his son Shechem, and every male in the city was circumcised.

25 Three days later, while all of them were still in pain,(CC) two of Jacob’s sons, Simeon(CD) and Levi,(CE) Dinah’s brothers, took their swords(CF) and attacked the unsuspecting city,(CG) killing every male.(CH) 26 They put Hamor and his son Shechem to the sword(CI) and took Dinah(CJ) from Shechem’s house and left. 27 The sons of Jacob came upon the dead bodies and looted the city(CK) where[g] their sister had been defiled.(CL) 28 They seized their flocks and herds and donkeys(CM) and everything else of theirs in the city and out in the fields.(CN) 29 They carried off all their wealth and all their women and children,(CO) taking as plunder(CP) everything in the houses.(CQ)

30 Then Jacob said to Simeon and Levi, “You have brought trouble(CR) on me by making me obnoxious(CS) to the Canaanites and Perizzites, the people living in this land.(CT) We are few in number,(CU) and if they join forces against me and attack me, I and my household will be destroyed.”

31 But they replied, “Should he have treated our sister like a prostitute?(CV)

Jacob Returns to Bethel

35 Then God said to Jacob, “Go up to Bethel(CW) and settle there, and build an altar(CX) there to God,(CY) who appeared to you(CZ) when you were fleeing from your brother Esau.”(DA)

So Jacob said to his household(DB) and to all who were with him, “Get rid of the foreign gods(DC) you have with you, and purify yourselves and change your clothes.(DD) Then come, let us go up to Bethel, where I will build an altar to God,(DE) who answered me in the day of my distress(DF) and who has been with me wherever I have gone.(DG) So they gave Jacob all the foreign gods they had and the rings in their ears,(DH) and Jacob buried them under the oak(DI) at Shechem.(DJ) Then they set out, and the terror of God(DK) fell on the towns all around them so that no one pursued them.(DL)

Jacob and all the people with him came to Luz(DM) (that is, Bethel) in the land of Canaan.(DN) There he built an altar,(DO) and he called the place El Bethel,[h](DP) because it was there that God revealed himself to him(DQ) when he was fleeing from his brother.(DR)

Now Deborah, Rebekah’s nurse,(DS) died and was buried under the oak(DT) outside Bethel.(DU) So it was named Allon Bakuth.[i]

After Jacob returned from Paddan Aram,[j](DV) God appeared to him again and blessed him.(DW) 10 God said to him, “Your name is Jacob,[k] but you will no longer be called Jacob; your name will be Israel.[l](DX) So he named him Israel.

11 And God said to him, “I am God Almighty[m];(DY) be fruitful and increase in number.(DZ) A nation(EA) and a community of nations will come from you, and kings will be among your descendants.(EB) 12 The land I gave to Abraham and Isaac I also give to you, and I will give this land to your descendants after you.(EC)(ED) 13 Then God went up from him(EE) at the place where he had talked with him.

14 Jacob set up a stone pillar(EF) at the place where God had talked with him, and he poured out a drink offering(EG) on it; he also poured oil on it.(EH) 15 Jacob called the place where God had talked with him Bethel.[n](EI)

The Deaths of Rachel and Isaac(EJ)

16 Then they moved on from Bethel. While they were still some distance from Ephrath,(EK) Rachel(EL) began to give birth and had great difficulty. 17 And as she was having great difficulty in childbirth, the midwife(EM) said to her, “Don’t despair, for you have another son.”(EN) 18 As she breathed her last—for she was dying—she named her son Ben-Oni.[o](EO) But his father named him Benjamin.[p](EP)

19 So Rachel died and was buried on the way to Ephrath(EQ) (that is, Bethlehem(ER)). 20 Over her tomb Jacob set up a pillar, and to this day(ES) that pillar marks Rachel’s tomb.(ET)

21 Israel moved on again and pitched his tent beyond Migdal Eder.(EU) 22 While Israel was living in that region, Reuben went in and slept with his father’s concubine(EV) Bilhah,(EW) and Israel heard of it.

Jacob had twelve sons:

23 The sons of Leah:(EX)

Reuben the firstborn(EY) of Jacob,

Simeon, Levi, Judah,(EZ) Issachar and Zebulun.(FA)

24 The sons of Rachel:

Joseph(FB) and Benjamin.(FC)

25 The sons of Rachel’s servant Bilhah:(FD)

Dan and Naphtali.(FE)

26 The sons of Leah’s servant Zilpah:(FF)

Gad(FG) and Asher.(FH)

These were the sons of Jacob,(FI) who were born to him in Paddan Aram.(FJ)

27 Jacob came home to his father Isaac(FK) in Mamre,(FL) near Kiriath Arba(FM) (that is, Hebron),(FN) where Abraham and Isaac had stayed.(FO) 28 Isaac lived a hundred and eighty years.(FP) 29 Then he breathed his last and died and was gathered to his people,(FQ) old and full of years.(FR) And his sons Esau and Jacob buried him.(FS)


  1. Genesis 33:17 Sukkoth means shelters.
  2. Genesis 33:18 That is, Northwest Mesopotamia
  3. Genesis 33:19 Hebrew hundred kesitahs; a kesitah was a unit of money of unknown weight and value.
  4. Genesis 33:20 El Elohe Israel can mean El is the God of Israel or mighty is the God of Israel.
  5. Genesis 34:7 Or against
  6. Genesis 34:10 Or move about freely; also in verse 21
  7. Genesis 34:27 Or because
  8. Genesis 35:7 El Bethel means God of Bethel.
  9. Genesis 35:8 Allon Bakuth means oak of weeping.
  10. Genesis 35:9 That is, Northwest Mesopotamia; also in verse 26
  11. Genesis 35:10 Jacob means he grasps the heel, a Hebrew idiom for he deceives.
  12. Genesis 35:10 Israel probably means he struggles with God.
  13. Genesis 35:11 Hebrew El-Shaddai
  14. Genesis 35:15 Bethel means house of God.
  15. Genesis 35:18 Ben-Oni means son of my trouble.
  16. Genesis 35:18 Benjamin means son of my right hand.

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