Genesis 32-34 Contemporary English Version (CEV)
Jacob Gets Ready To Meet Esau
32 As Jacob was on his way back home, some of God’s angels came and met him. 2 When Jacob saw them, he said, “This is God’s camp.” So he named the place Mahanaim.[a]
3 Jacob sent messengers on ahead to Esau, who lived in the land of Seir, also known as Edom. 4 Jacob told them to say to Esau, “Master, I am your servant! I have lived with Laban all this time, 5 and now I own cattle, donkeys, and sheep, as well as many slaves. Master, I am sending these messengers in the hope that you will be kind to me.”
6 When the messengers returned, they told Jacob, “We went to your brother Esau, and now he is heading this way with four hundred men.”
7 Jacob was so frightened that he divided his people, sheep, cattle, and camels into two groups. 8 He thought, “If Esau attacks one group, perhaps the other can escape.”
9 Then Jacob prayed:
You, Lord, are the God who was worshiped by my grandfather Abraham and by my father Isaac. You told me to return home to my family, and you promised to be with me and make me successful. 10 I don’t deserve all the good things you have done for me, your servant. When I first crossed the Jordan, I had only my walking stick, but now I have two large groups of people and animals. 11 Please rescue me from my brother. I am afraid he will come and attack not only me, but my wives and children as well. 12 But you have promised that I would be a success and that someday it will be as hard to count my descendants as it is to count the stars in the sky.
13 After Jacob had spent the night there, he chose some animals as gifts for Esau: 14-15 two hundred female goats and twenty males, two hundred female sheep and twenty males, thirty female camels with their young, forty cows and ten bulls, and twenty female donkeys and ten males.
16 Jacob put servants in charge of each herd and told them, “Go ahead of me and keep a space between each herd.” 17 Then he said to the servant in charge of the first herd, “When Esau meets you, he will ask whose servant you are. He will want to know where you are going and who owns those animals in front of you. 18 So tell him, ‘They belong to your servant Jacob, who is coming this way. He is sending them as a gift to his master Esau.’”
19 Jacob also told the men in charge of the second and third herds and those who followed to say the same thing when they met Esau. 20 And Jacob told them to be sure to say that he was right behind them. Jacob hoped the gifts would make Esau friendly, so Esau would be glad to see him when they met. 21 Jacob’s men took the gifts on ahead of him, but he spent the night in camp.
Jacob’s Name Is Changed to Israel
22-23 Jacob got up in the middle of the night and took his wives, his eleven children, and everything he owned across to the other side of the Jabbok River for safety. 24 Afterwards, Jacob went back and spent the rest of the night alone.
A man came and fought with Jacob until just before daybreak. 25 When the man saw that he could not win, he struck Jacob on the hip and threw it out of joint. 26 They kept on wrestling until the man said, “Let go of me! It’s almost daylight.”
“You can’t go until you bless me,” Jacob replied.
27 Then the man asked, “What is your name?”
“Jacob,” he answered.
28 The man said, “Your name will no longer be Jacob. You have wrestled with God and with men, and you have won. That’s why your name will be Israel.”[b]
29 Jacob said, “Now tell me your name.”
“Don’t you know who I am?” he asked. And he blessed Jacob.
30 Jacob said, “I have seen God face to face, and I am still alive.” So he named the place Peniel.[c] 31 The sun was coming up as Jacob was leaving Peniel. He was limping because he had been struck on the hip, 32 and the muscle on his hip joint had been injured. That’s why even today the people of Israel don’t eat the hip muscle of any animal.
Jacob Meets Esau
33 Later that day Jacob met Esau coming with his four hundred men. So Jacob had his children walk with their mothers. 2 The two servant women, Zilpah and Bilhah, together with their children went first, followed by Leah and her children, then by Rachel and Joseph. 3 Jacob himself walked in front of them all, bowing to the ground seven times as he came near his brother.
4 But Esau ran toward Jacob and hugged and kissed him. Then the two brothers started crying.
5 When Esau noticed the women and children he asked, “Whose children are these?”
Jacob answered, “These are the ones the Lord has been kind enough to give to me, your servant.”
6 Then the two servant women and their children came and bowed down to Esau. 7 Next, Leah and her children came and bowed down; finally, Joseph and Rachel also came and bowed down.
8 Esau asked Jacob, “What did you mean by these herds I met along the road?”
“Master,” Jacob answered, “I sent them so that you would be friendly to me.”
9 “But, brother, I already have plenty,” Esau replied. “Keep them for yourself.”
10 “No!” Jacob said. “Please accept these gifts as a sign of your friendship for me. When you welcomed me and I saw your face, it was like seeing the face of God. 11 Please accept these gifts I brought to you. God has been good to me, and I have everything I need.” Jacob kept insisting until Esau accepted the gifts.
12 “Let’s get ready to travel,” Esau said. “I’ll go along with you.”
13 But Jacob answered, “Master, you know traveling is hard on children, and I have to look after the sheep and goats that are nursing their young. If my animals travel too much in one day, they will all die. 14 Why don’t you go on ahead and let me travel along slowly with the children, the herds, and the flocks. We can meet again in the country of Edom.”
15 Esau replied, “Let me leave some of my men with you.”
“You don’t have to do that,” Jacob answered. “I am happy, simply knowing that you are friendly to me.”
16 So Esau left for Edom. 17 But Jacob went to Succoth,[d] where he built a house for himself and set up shelters for his animals. That’s why the place is called Succoth.
Jacob Arrives at Shechem
18 After leaving northern Syria,[e] Jacob arrived safely at Shechem in Canaan and set up camp outside the city. 19 The land where he camped was owned by the descendants of Hamor, the father of Shechem. So Jacob paid them one hundred pieces of silver[f] for the property, 20 then he set up his tents and built an altar there to honor the God of Israel.
Dinah Is Raped
34 Dinah, the daughter of Jacob and Leah, went to visit some of the women who lived there. 2 She was seen by Hamor’s son Shechem, the leader of the Hivites, and he grabbed her and raped her. 3 But Shechem was attracted to Dinah, so he told her how much he loved her. 4 He even asked his father to get her for his wife.
5 Meanwhile, Jacob heard what had happened. But his sons were out in the fields with the cattle, so he did not do anything at the time. 6 Hamor arrived at Jacob’s home 7 just as Jacob’s sons were coming in from work. When they learned that their sister had been raped, they became furiously angry. Nothing is more disgraceful than rape, and it should not be tolerated in Israel.
8 Hamor said to Jacob and his sons:
My son Shechem really loves Dinah. Please let him marry her. 9 Why don’t you start letting your families marry into our families and ours marry into yours? 10 You can share this land with us. Move freely about until you find the property you want; then buy it and settle down here.
11 Shechem added, “Do this favor for me, and I’ll give whatever you want. 12 Ask anything, no matter how expensive. I’ll do anything, just let me marry Dinah.”
13 Jacob’s sons wanted to get even with Shechem and his father because of what had happened to their sister. 14 So they tricked them by saying:
You’re not circumcised![g] It would be a disgrace for us to let you marry Dinah now. 15 But we will let you marry her, if you and the other men in your tribe get circumcised. 16 Then your families can marry into ours, and ours can marry into yours, and we can live together like one nation. 17 But if you don’t agree to get circumcised, we’ll take Dinah and leave this place.
18 Hamor and Shechem liked what was said. 19 Shechem was the most respected person in his family, and he was so in love with Dinah that he hurried off to get everything done. 20 The two men met with the other leaders of their city and told them:
21 These people really are friendly. Why not let them move freely about until they find the property they want? There’s enough land here for them and for us. Then our families can marry into theirs, and theirs can marry into ours.
22 We have to do only one thing before they will agree to stay here and become one nation with us. Our men will have to be circumcised like their men. 23 Just think! We’ll get their property, as well as their flocks and herds. All we have to do is to agree, and they will live here with us.
24 Every grown man followed this advice and got circumcised.
Dinah’s Brothers Take Revenge
25 Three days later the men who had been circumcised were still weak from pain. So Simeon and Levi,[h] two of Dinah’s brothers, attacked with their swords and killed every man in town, 26 including Hamor and Shechem. Then they took Dinah and left. 27 Jacob’s other sons came and took everything they wanted. All this was done because of the horrible thing that had happened to their sister. 28 They took sheep, goats, donkeys, and everything else that was in the town or the fields. 29 After taking everything of value from the houses, they dragged away the wives and children of their victims.
30 Jacob said to Simeon and Levi, “Look what you’ve done! Now I’m in real trouble with the Canaanites and Perizzites who live around here. There aren’t many of us, and if they attack, they’ll kill everyone in my household.”
31 They answered, “Was it right to let our own sister be treated that way?”
Psalm 145 Contemporary English Version (CEV)
(By David for praise.)
The Lord Is Kind and Merciful
145 I will praise you,
4 Each generation will announce
8 You are merciful, Lord!
10 All creation will thank you,
Our Lord, you keep your word
17 Our Lord, everything you do
21 I will praise you, Lord,
Mark 13 Contemporary English Version (CEV)
The Temple Will Be Destroyed
13 As Jesus was leaving the temple, one of his disciples said to him, “Teacher, look at these beautiful stones and wonderful buildings!”
2 Jesus replied, “Do you see these huge buildings? They will certainly be torn down! Not one stone will be left in place.”
Warning about Trouble
3 Later, as Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives across from the temple, Peter, James, John, and Andrew came to him in private. 4 They asked, “When will these things happen? What will be the sign that they are about to take place?”
5 Jesus answered:
Watch out and don’t let anyone fool you! 6 Many will come and claim to be me. They will use my name and fool many people.
7 When you hear about wars and threats of wars, don’t be afraid. These things will have to happen first, but that isn’t the end. 8 Nations and kingdoms will go to war against each other. There will be earthquakes in many places, and people will starve to death. But this is just the beginning of troubles.
9 Be on your guard! You will be taken to courts and beaten with whips in their meeting places. And because of me, you will have to stand before rulers and kings to tell about your faith. 10 But before the end comes, the good news must be preached to all nations.
11 When you are arrested, don’t worry about what you will say. You will be given the right words when the time comes. But you will not really be the ones speaking. Your words will come from the Holy Spirit.
12 Brothers and sisters will betray each other and have each other put to death. Parents will betray their own children, and children will turn against their parents and have them killed. 13 Everyone will hate you because of me. But if you keep on being faithful right to the end, you will be saved.
The Horrible Thing
14 Someday you will see that “Horrible Thing” where it should not be.[a] Everyone who reads this must try to understand! If you are living in Judea at that time, run to the mountains. 15 If you are on the roof[b] of your house, don’t go inside to get anything. 16 If you are out in the field, don’t go back for your coat. 17 It will be an awful time for women who are expecting babies or nursing young children. 18 Pray that it won’t happen in winter.[c] 19 This will be the worst time of suffering since God created the world, and nothing this terrible will ever happen again. 20 If the Lord doesn’t make the time shorter, no one will be left alive. But because of his chosen and special ones, he will make the time shorter.
21 If someone should say, “Here is the Messiah!” or “There he is!” don’t believe it. 22 False messiahs and false prophets will come and work miracles and signs. They will even try to fool God’s chosen ones. 23 But be on your guard! That’s why I am telling you these things now.
When the Son of Man Appears
24 In those days, right after that time of suffering,
“The sun will become dark,
26 Then the Son of Man will be seen coming in the clouds with great power and glory. 27 He will send his angels to gather his chosen ones from all over the earth.
A Lesson from a Fig Tree
28 Learn a lesson from a fig tree. When its branches sprout and start putting out leaves, you know summer is near. 29 So when you see all these things happening, you will know that the time has almost come.[e] 30 You can be sure that some of the people of this generation will still be alive when all this happens. 31 The sky and the earth will not last forever, but my words will.
No One Knows the Day or Time
32 No one knows the day or the time. The angels in heaven don’t know, and the Son himself doesn’t know. Only the Father knows. 33 So watch out and be ready! You don’t know when the time will come. 34 It is like what happens when a man goes away for a while and places his servants in charge of everything. He tells each of them what to do, and he orders the guard to keep alert. 35 So be alert! You don’t know when the master of the house will come back. It could be in the evening or at midnight or before dawn or in the morning. 36 But if he comes suddenly, don’t let him find you asleep. 37 I tell everyone just what I have told you. Be alert!
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