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Genesis 32 New International Version - UK (NIVUK)

Jacob prepares to meet Esau

32 [a]Jacob also went on his way, and the angels of God met him. When Jacob saw them, he said, ‘This is the camp of God!’ So he named that place Mahanaim.[b]

Jacob sent messengers ahead of him to his brother Esau in the land of Seir, the country of Edom. He instructed them: ‘This is what you are to say to my lord Esau: “Your servant Jacob says, I have been staying with Laban and have remained there till now. I have cattle and donkeys, sheep and goats, male and female servants. Now I am sending this message to my lord, that I may find favour in your eyes.”’

When the messengers returned to Jacob, they said, ‘We went to your brother Esau, and now he is coming to meet you, and four hundred men are with him.’

In great fear and distress Jacob divided the people who were with him into two groups,[c] and the flocks and herds and camels as well. He thought, ‘If Esau comes and attacks one group,[d] the group[e] that is left may escape.’

Then Jacob prayed, ‘O God of my father Abraham, God of my father Isaac, Lord, you who said to me, “Go back to your country and your relatives, and I will make you prosper,” 10 I am unworthy of all the kindness and faithfulness you have shown your servant. I had only my staff when I crossed this Jordan, but now I have become two camps. 11 Save me, I pray, from the hand of my brother Esau, for I am afraid he will come and attack me, and also the mothers with their children. 12 But you have said, “I will surely make you prosper and will make your descendants like the sand of the sea, which cannot be counted.”’

13 He spent the night there, and from what he had with him he selected a gift for his brother Esau: 14 two hundred female goats and twenty male goats, two hundred ewes and twenty rams, 15 thirty female camels with their young, forty cows and ten bulls, and twenty female donkeys and ten male donkeys. 16 He put them in the care of his servants, each herd by itself, and said to his servants, ‘Go ahead of me, and keep some space between the herds.’

17 He instructed the one in the lead: ‘When my brother Esau meets you and asks, “Who do you belong to, and where are you going, and who owns all these animals in front of you?” 18 then you are to say, “They belong to your servant Jacob. They are a gift sent to my lord Esau, and he is coming behind us.”’

19 He also instructed the second, the third and all the others who followed the herds: ‘You are to say the same thing to Esau when you meet him. 20 And be sure to say, “Your servant Jacob is coming behind us.”’ For he thought, ‘I will pacify him with these gifts I am sending on ahead; later, when I see him, perhaps he will receive me.’ 21 So Jacob’s gifts went on ahead of him, but he himself spent the night in the camp.

Jacob wrestles with God

22 That night Jacob got up and took his two wives, his two female servants and his eleven sons and crossed the ford of the Jabbok. 23 After he had sent them across the stream, he sent over all his possessions. 24 So Jacob was left alone, and a man wrestled with him till daybreak. 25 When the man saw that he could not overpower him, he touched the socket of Jacob’s hip so that his hip was wrenched as he wrestled with the man. 26 Then the man said, ‘Let me go, for it is daybreak.’

But Jacob replied, ‘I will not let you go unless you bless me.’

27 The man asked him, ‘What is your name?’

‘Jacob,’ he answered.

28 Then the man said, ‘Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel,[f] because you have struggled with God and with humans and have overcome.’

29 Jacob said, ‘Please tell me your name.’

But he replied, ‘Why do you ask my name?’ Then he blessed him there.

30 So Jacob called the place Peniel,[g] saying, ‘It is because I saw God face to face, and yet my life was spared.’

31 The sun rose above him as he passed Peniel,[h] and he was limping because of his hip. 32 Therefore to this day the Israelites do not eat the tendon attached to the socket of the hip, because the socket of Jacob’s hip was touched near the tendon.

Footnotes:

  1. Genesis 32:1 In Hebrew texts 32:1-32 is numbered 32:2-33.
  2. Genesis 32:2 Mahanaim means two camps.
  3. Genesis 32:7 Or camps
  4. Genesis 32:8 Or camp
  5. Genesis 32:8 Or camp
  6. Genesis 32:28 Israel probably means he struggles with God.
  7. Genesis 32:30 Peniel means face of God.
  8. Genesis 32:31 Hebrew Penuel, a variant of Peniel
New International Version - UK (NIVUK)

Holy Bible, New International Version® Anglicized, NIV® Copyright © 1979, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Genesis 32 New English Translation (NET Bible)

Jacob Wrestles at Peniel

32 So Jacob went on his way and the angels of God[a] met him. When Jacob saw them, he exclaimed,[b] “This is the camp of God!” So he named that place Mahanaim.[c]

Jacob sent messengers on ahead[d] to his brother Esau in the land of Seir, the region[e] of Edom. He commanded them, “This is what you must say to my lord Esau: ‘This is what your servant[f] Jacob says: I have been staying with Laban until now.[g] I have oxen, donkeys, sheep, and male and female servants. I have sent[h] this message[i] to inform my lord, so that I may find favor in your sight.’”

The messengers returned to Jacob and said, “We went to your brother Esau. He is coming to meet you and has 400 men with him.” 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. “If Esau attacks one camp,”[j] he thought,[k] “then the other camp will be able to escape.”[l]

Then Jacob prayed,[m] “O God of my father Abraham, God of my father Isaac, O Lord, you said[n] to me, ‘Return to your land and to your relatives and I will make you prosper.’[o] 10 I am not worthy of all the faithful love[p] you have shown[q] your servant. With only my walking stick[r] I crossed the Jordan,[s] but now I have become two camps. 11 Rescue me,[t] I pray, from the hand[u] of my brother Esau,[v] for I am afraid he will come[w] and attack me, as well as the mothers with their children.[x] 12 But you[y] said, ‘I will certainly make you prosper[z] and will make[aa] your descendants like the sand on the seashore, too numerous to count.’”[ab]

13 Jacob[ac] stayed there that night. Then he sent[ad] as a gift[ae] to his brother Esau 14 200 female goats and 20 male goats, 200 ewes and 20 rams, 15 30 female camels with their young, 40 cows and 10 bulls, and 20 female donkeys and 10 male donkeys. 16 He entrusted them to[af] his servants, who divided them into herds.[ag] He told his servants, “Pass over before me, and keep some distance between one herd and the next.” 17 He instructed the servant leading the first herd,[ah] “When my brother Esau meets you and asks, ‘To whom do you belong?[ai] Where are you going? Whose herds are you driving?’[aj] 18 then you must say,[ak] ‘They belong[al] to your servant Jacob.[am] They have been sent as a gift to my lord Esau.[an] In fact Jacob himself is behind us.’”[ao]

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.[ap] 20 You must also say, ‘In fact your servant Jacob is behind us.’”[aq] Jacob thought,[ar] “I will first appease him[as] by sending a gift ahead of me.[at] After that I will meet him.[au] Perhaps he will accept me.”[av] 21 So the gifts were sent on ahead of him[aw] while he spent that night in the camp.[ax]

22 During the night Jacob quickly took[ay] his two wives, his two female servants, and his eleven sons[az] and crossed the ford of the Jabbok.[ba] 23 He took them and sent them across the stream along with all his possessions.[bb] 24 So Jacob was left alone. Then a man[bc] wrestled[bd] with him until daybreak.[be] 25 When the man[bf] saw that he could not defeat Jacob,[bg] he struck[bh] the socket of his hip so the socket of Jacob’s hip was dislocated while he wrestled with him.

26 Then the man[bi] said, “Let me go, for the dawn is breaking.”[bj] “I will not let you go,” Jacob replied,[bk] “unless you bless me.”[bl] 27 The man asked him,[bm] “What is your name?”[bn] He answered, “Jacob.” 28 “No longer will your name be Jacob,” the man told him,[bo] “but Israel,[bp] because you have fought[bq] with God and with men and have prevailed.”

29 Then Jacob asked, “Please tell me your name.”[br] “Why[bs] do you ask my name?” the man replied.[bt] Then he blessed[bu] Jacob[bv] there. 30 So Jacob named the place Peniel,[bw] explaining,[bx] “Certainly[by] I have seen God face to face[bz] and have survived.”[ca]

31 The sun rose[cb] over him as he crossed over Penuel,[cc] but[cd] he was limping because of his hip. 32 That is why to this day[ce] the Israelites do not eat the sinew which is attached to the socket of the hip, because he struck[cf] the socket of Jacob’s hip near the attached sinew.

Footnotes:

  1. Genesis 32:1 sn The phrase angels of God occurs only here and in Gen 28:12 in the OT. Jacob saw a vision of angels just before he left the promised land. Now he encounters angels as he prepares to return to it. The text does not give the details of the encounter, but Jacob’s response suggests it was amicable. This location was a spot where heaven made contact with earth, and where God made his presence known to the patriarch. See C. Houtman, “Jacob at Mahanaim: Some Remarks on Genesis XXXII 2-3, ” VT 28 (1978): 37-44.
  2. Genesis 32:2 tn Heb “and Jacob said when he saw them.”
  3. Genesis 32:2 sn The name Mahanaim apparently means “two camps.” Perhaps the two camps were those of God and of Jacob.
  4. Genesis 32:3 tn Heb “before him.”
  5. Genesis 32:3 tn Heb “field.”
  6. Genesis 32:4 sn Your servant. The narrative recounts Jacob’s groveling in fear before Esau as he calls his brother his “lord,” as if to minimize what had been done twenty years ago.
  7. Genesis 32:4 tn Heb “Laban and have lingered until now.”
  8. Genesis 32:5 tn Or “I am sending.” The form is a preterite with the vav consecutive; it could be rendered as an English present tense—as the Hebrew perfect/preterite allows—much like an epistolary aorist in Greek. The form assumes the temporal perspective of the one who reads the message.
  9. Genesis 32:5 tn The words “this message” are not in the Hebrew text, but have been supplied in the translation for stylistic reasons.
  10. Genesis 32:8 tn Heb “If Esau comes to one camp and attacks it.”
  11. Genesis 32:8 tn Heb “and he said, ‘If Esau comes to one camp and attacks it.” The Hebrew verb אָמַר (ʾamar) here represents Jacob’s thought or reasoning, and is therefore translated “he thought.” The order of the introductory clause and the direct discourse has been rearranged in the translation for stylistic reasons.
  12. Genesis 32:8 tn Heb “the surviving camp will be for escape.” The word “escape” is a feminine noun. The term most often refers to refugees from war.
  13. Genesis 32:9 tn Heb “said.”
  14. Genesis 32:9 tn Heb “the one who said.”
  15. Genesis 32:9 tn Heb “I will cause good” or “I will treat well [or “favorably”].” The idea includes more than prosperity, though that is its essential meaning. Here the form is subordinated to the preceding imperative and indicates purpose or result. Jacob is reminding God of his promise in the hope that God will honor his word.
  16. Genesis 32:10 tn Heb “the loving deeds and faithfulness” (see 24:27, 49).
  17. Genesis 32:10 tn Heb “you have done with.”
  18. Genesis 32:10 tn Heb “for with my staff.” The Hebrew word מַקֵל (maqel), traditionally translated “staff,” has been rendered as “walking stick” because a “staff” in contemporary English refers typically to the support personnel in an organization.
  19. Genesis 32:10 tn Heb “this Jordan.”
  20. Genesis 32:11 tn The imperative has the force of a prayer here, not a command.
  21. Genesis 32:11 tn The “hand” here is a metonymy for “power.”
  22. Genesis 32:11 tn Heb “from the hand of my brother, from the hand of Esau.”
  23. Genesis 32:11 tn Heb “for I am afraid of him, lest he come.”
  24. Genesis 32:11 sn Heb “me, [the] mother upon [the] sons.” The first person pronoun “me” probably means here “me and mine,” as the following clause suggests.
  25. Genesis 32:12 tn Heb “But you, you said.” One of the occurrences of the pronoun “you” has been left untranslated for stylistic reasons.sn Some commentators have thought this final verse of the prayer redundant, but it actually follows the predominant form of a lament in which God is motivated to act. The primary motivation Jacob can offer to God is God’s promise, and so he falls back on that at the end of the prayer.
  26. Genesis 32:12 tn Or “will certainly deal well with you.” The infinitive absolute appears before the imperfect, underscoring God’s promise to bless. The statement is more emphatic than in v. 9.
  27. Genesis 32:12 tn The form is the perfect tense with a vav (ו) consecutive, carrying the nuance of the preceding verb forward.
  28. Genesis 32:12 tn Heb “which cannot be counted because of abundance.” The imperfect verbal form indicates potential here.
  29. Genesis 32:13 tn Heb “and he”; the referent (Jacob) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  30. Genesis 32:13 tn Heb “and he took from that which was going into his hand,” meaning that he took some of what belonged to him.
  31. Genesis 32:13 sn The Hebrew noun translated gift can in some contexts refer to the tribute paid by a subject to his lord. Such a nuance is possible here, because Jacob refers to Esau as his lord and to himself as Esau’s servant (v. 4).
  32. Genesis 32:16 tn Heb “and he put them in the hand of.”
  33. Genesis 32:16 tn Heb “a herd, a herd, by itself,” or “each herd by itself.” The distributive sense is expressed by repetition.
  34. Genesis 32:17 tn Heb “the first”; this has been specified as “the servant leading the first herd” in the translation for clarity.
  35. Genesis 32:17 tn Heb “to whom are you?”
  36. Genesis 32:17 tn Heb “and to whom are these before you?”
  37. Genesis 32:18 tn The form is the perfect tense with the vav (ו) consecutive; it has the nuance of an imperfect of instruction.
  38. Genesis 32:18 tn The words “they belong” have been supplied in the translation for stylistic reasons.
  39. Genesis 32:18 tn Heb “to your servant, to Jacob.”
  40. Genesis 32:18 tn Heb “to my lord, to Esau.”
  41. Genesis 32:18 tn Heb “and look, also he [is] behind us.” The referent of the pronoun “he” (Jacob) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  42. Genesis 32:19 tn Heb “And he commanded also the second, also the third, also all the ones going after the herds, saying: ‘According to this word you will speak when you find him.’”
  43. Genesis 32:20 tn Heb “and look, your servant Jacob [is] behind us.”
  44. Genesis 32:20 tn Heb “for he said.” The referent (Jacob) has been specified in the translation for clarity. The Hebrew verb אָמַר (ʾamar), traditionally represents Jacob’s thought or reasoning, and is therefore translated “thought.”
  45. Genesis 32:20 tn Heb “I will appease his face.” The cohortative here expresses Jacob’s resolve. In the Book of Leviticus the Hebrew verb translated “appease” has the idea of removing anger due to sin or guilt, a nuance that fits this passage very well. Jacob wanted to buy Esau off with a gift of more than 550 animals.
  46. Genesis 32:20 tn Heb “with a gift going before me.”
  47. Genesis 32:20 tn Heb “I will see his face.”
  48. Genesis 32:20 tn Heb “Perhaps he will lift up my face.” In this context the idiom refers to acceptance.
  49. Genesis 32:21 tn Heb “and the gift passed over upon his face.”
  50. Genesis 32:21 tn The disjunctive clause is circumstantial/temporal.
  51. Genesis 32:22 tn Heb “and he arose in that night and he took.” The first verb is adverbial, indicating that he carried out the crossing right away.
  52. Genesis 32:22 tn The Hebrew term used here is יֶלֶד (yeled) which typically describes male offspring. Some translations render the term “children” but this is a problem because by this time Jacob had twelve children in all, including one daughter, Dinah, born to Leah (Gen 30:21). Benjamin, his twelfth son and thirteenth child, was not born until later (Gen 35:16-19).
  53. Genesis 32:22 sn Hebrew narrative style often includes a summary statement of the whole passage followed by a more detailed report of the event. Here v. 22 is the summary statement, while v. 23 begins the detailed account.
  54. Genesis 32:23 tn Heb “and he sent across what he had.”
  55. Genesis 32:24 sn Reflecting Jacob’s perspective at the beginning of the encounter, the narrator calls the opponent simply “a man.” Not until later in the struggle does Jacob realize his true identity.
  56. Genesis 32:24 sn The verb translated “wrestled” (וַיֵּאָבֵק, vayyeʾaveq) sounds in Hebrew like the names “Jacob” (יַעֲקֹב, yaʿaqov) and “Jabbok” (יַבֹּק, yabboq). In this way the narrator links the setting, the main action, and the main participant together in the mind of the reader or hearer.
  57. Genesis 32:24 tn Heb “until the rising of the dawn.”
  58. Genesis 32:25 tn Heb “he”; the referent (the man) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  59. Genesis 32:25 tn Heb “him”; the referent (Jacob) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  60. Genesis 32:25 tn Or “injured”; traditionally “touched.” The Hebrew verb translated “struck” has the primary meanings “to touch; to reach; to strike.” It can, however, carry the connotation “to harm; to molest; to injure.” God’s “touch” cripples Jacob—it would be comparable to a devastating blow.
  61. Genesis 32:26 tn Heb “he”; the referent (the man) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  62. Genesis 32:26 tn Heb “dawn has arisen.”
  63. Genesis 32:26 tn Heb “and he said, ‘I will not let you go.’” The referent of the pronoun “he” (Jacob) has been specified for clarity, and the order of the introductory clause and the direct discourse has been rearranged in the translation for stylistic reasons.
  64. Genesis 32:26 sn Jacob wrestled with a man thinking him to be a mere man, and on that basis was equal to the task. But when it had gone on long enough, the night visitor touched Jacob and crippled him. Jacob’s request for a blessing can only mean that he now knew that his opponent was supernatural. Contrary to many allegorical interpretations of the passage that make fighting equivalent to prayer, this passage shows that Jacob stopped fighting, and then asked for a blessing.
  65. Genesis 32:27 tn Heb “and he said to him.” The referent of the pronoun “he” (the man who wrestled with Jacob) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  66. Genesis 32:27 sn What is your name? The question is rhetorical, since the Lord obviously knew Jacob’s identity. But since the Lord is going to change Jacob’s name, this question is designed to focus Jacob’s attention on all that his name had come to signify.
  67. Genesis 32:28 tn Heb “and he said.” The referent of the pronoun “he” (the man who wrestled with Jacob) has been specified for clarity, and the order of the introductory clause and the direct discourse has been rearranged in the translation for stylistic reasons.
  68. Genesis 32:28 sn The name Israel is a common construction, using a verb with a theophoric element (אֵל, ʾel) that usually indicates the subject of the verb. Here it means “God fights.” This name will replace the name Jacob; it will be both a promise and a call for faith. In essence, the Lord was saying that Jacob would have victory and receive the promises because God would fight for him.
  69. Genesis 32:28 sn You have fought. The explanation of the name Israel includes a sound play. In Hebrew the verb translated “you have fought” (שָׂרִיתָ, sarita) sounds like the name “Israel” (יִשְׂרָאֵל, yisraʾel), meaning “God fights” (although some interpret the meaning as “he fights [with] God”). The name would evoke the memory of the fight and what it meant. A. Dillmann says that ever after this the name would tell the Israelites that, when Jacob contended successfully with God, he won the battle with man (Genesis, 2:279). To be successful with God meant that he had to be crippled in his own self-sufficiency (A. P. Ross, “Jacob at the Jabboq, Israel at Peniel,” BSac 142 [1985]: 51-62).
  70. Genesis 32:29 sn Tell me your name. In primitive thought to know the name of a deity or supernatural being would enable one to use it for magical manipulation or power (A. S. Herbert, Genesis 12-50 [TBC], 108). For a thorough structural analysis of the passage discussing the plays on the names and the request of Jacob, see R. Barthes, “The Struggle with the Angel: Textual Analysis of Genesis 32:23-33, ” Structural Analysis and Biblical Exegesis (PTMS), 21-33.
  71. Genesis 32:29 tn The question uses the enclitic pronoun “this” to emphasize the import of the question.
  72. Genesis 32:29 tn Heb “and he said, ‘Why is it that you ask my name?’” The referent of the pronoun “he” (the man who wrestled with Jacob) has been specified for clarity, and the order of the introductory clause and the direct discourse has been rearranged in the translation for stylistic reasons.
  73. Genesis 32:29 tn The verb here means that the Lord endowed Jacob with success; he would be successful in everything he did, including meeting Esau.
  74. Genesis 32:29 tn Heb “him”; the referent (Jacob) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  75. Genesis 32:30 sn The name Peniel means “face of God.” Since Jacob saw God face-to-face here, the name is appropriate.
  76. Genesis 32:30 tn The word “explaining” is supplied in the translation for stylistic reasons.
  77. Genesis 32:30 tn Or “because.”
  78. Genesis 32:30 sn I have seen God face-to-face. See the note on the name “Peniel” earlier in the verse.
  79. Genesis 32:30 tn Heb “and my soul [= life] has been preserved.”sn I have survived. It was commonly understood that no one could see God and live (Gen 48:16; Exod 19:21; 24:10; Judg 6:11, 22). On the surface Jacob seems to be saying that he saw God and survived. But the statement may have a double meaning, in light of his prayer for deliverance in v. 11. Jacob recognizes that he has survived his encounter with God and that his safety has now been guaranteed.
  80. Genesis 32:31 tn Heb “shone.”
  81. Genesis 32:31 sn The name is spelled Penuel here, apparently a variant spelling of Peniel (see v. 30).
  82. Genesis 32:31 tn The disjunctive clause draws attention to an important fact: He may have crossed the stream, but he was limping.
  83. Genesis 32:32 sn On the use of the expression to this day, see B. S. Childs, “A Study of the Formula ‘Until This Day’,” JBL 82 (1963): 279-92.
  84. Genesis 32:32 tn Or “because the socket of Jacob’s hip was struck.” Some translations render this as an impersonal passive. On the translation of the word “struck” see the note on this term in v. 25.
New English Translation (NET)

NET Bible® copyright ©1996-2017 by Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. http://netbible.com All rights reserved.

Genesis 33 New International Version - UK (NIVUK)

Jacob meets Esau

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

But Esau ran to meet Jacob and embraced him; he threw his arms around his neck and kissed him. And they wept. 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.’

Then the female servants and their children approached and bowed down. Next, Leah and her children came and bowed down. Last of all came Joseph and Rachel, and they too bowed down.

Esau asked, ‘What’s the meaning of all these flocks and herds I met?’

‘To find favour in your eyes, my lord,’ he said.

But Esau said, ‘I already have plenty, my brother. Keep what you have for yourself.’

10 ‘No, please!’ said Jacob. ‘If I have found favour in your eyes, accept this gift from me. For to see your face is like seeing the face of God, now that you have received me favourably. 11 Please accept the present that was brought to you, for God has been gracious to me and I have all I need.’ And because Jacob insisted, 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 knows that the children are tender and that I must care for the ewes and cows that are nursing their young. 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 before me and the pace of the children, until I come to my lord in Seir.’

15 Esau said, ‘Then let me leave some of my men with you.’

‘But why do that?’ Jacob asked. ‘Just let me find favour in the eyes of my lord.’

16 So that day Esau started on his way back to Seir. 17 Jacob, however, went to Sukkoth, 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] he arrived safely at the city of Shechem in Canaan and camped within sight of the city. 19 For a hundred pieces of silver,[c] he bought from the sons of Hamor, the father of Shechem, the plot of ground where he pitched his tent. 20 There he set up an altar and called it El Elohe Israel.[d]

Footnotes:

  1. Genesis 33:17 Sukkoth means shelters.
  2. Genesis 33:18 That is, North-west 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.
New International Version - UK (NIVUK)

Holy Bible, New International Version® Anglicized, NIV® Copyright © 1979, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Genesis 33 New English Translation (NET Bible)

Jacob Meets Esau

33 Jacob looked up[a] and saw that Esau was coming[b] along with 400 men. So he divided the children among Leah, Rachel, and the two female servants. He put the servants and their children in front, with Leah and her children behind them, and Rachel and Joseph behind them.[c] But Jacob[d] himself went on ahead of them, and he bowed toward the ground seven times as he approached[e] his brother. But Esau ran to meet him, embraced him, hugged his neck, and kissed him. Then they both wept. When Esau[f] looked up[g] and saw the women and the children, he asked, “Who are these people with you?” Jacob[h] replied, “The children whom God has graciously given[i] your servant.” The female servants came forward with their children and bowed down.[j] Then Leah came forward with her children and they bowed down. Finally Joseph and Rachel came forward and bowed down.

Esau[k] then asked, “What did you intend[l] by sending all these herds to meet me?”[m] Jacob[n] replied, “To find favor in your sight, my lord.” But Esau said, “I have plenty, my brother. Keep what belongs to you.” 10 “No, please take them,” Jacob said.[o] “If I have found favor in your sight, accept[p] my gift from my hand. Now that I have seen your face and you have accepted me,[q] it is as if I have seen the face of God.[r] 11 Please take my present[s] that was brought to you, for God has been generous[t] to me and I have all I need.”[u] When Jacob urged him, he took it.[v]

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

15 So Esau said, “Let me leave some of my men with you.”[ac] “Why do that?” Jacob replied.[ad] “My lord has already been kind enough to me.”[ae]

16 So that same day Esau made his way back[af] to Seir. 17 But[ag] Jacob traveled to Sukkoth[ah] where he built himself a house and made shelters for his livestock. That is why the place was called[ai] Sukkoth.[aj]

18 After he left Paddan Aram, Jacob came safely to the city of Shechem in the land of Canaan, and he camped near[ak] the city. 19 Then he purchased the portion of the field where he had pitched his tent; he bought it[al] from the sons of Hamor, Shechem’s father, for 100 pieces of money.[am] 20 There he set up an altar and called it “The God of Israel is God.”[an]

Footnotes:

  1. Genesis 33:1 tn Heb “and Jacob lifted up his eyes.”
  2. Genesis 33:1 tn Or “and look, Esau was coming.” By the use of the particle הִנֵּה (hinneh, “look”), the narrator invites the reader to view the scene through Jacob’s eyes.
  3. Genesis 33:2 sn This kind of ranking according to favoritism no doubt fed the jealousy over Joseph that later becomes an important element in the narrative. It must have been painful to the family to see that they were expendable.
  4. Genesis 33:3 tn Heb “and he”; the referent (Jacob) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  5. Genesis 33:3 tn Heb “until his drawing near unto his brother.” The construction uses the preposition with the infinitive construct to express a temporal clause.
  6. Genesis 33:5 tn Heb “and he”; the referent (Esau) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  7. Genesis 33:5 tn Heb “lifted up his eyes.”
  8. Genesis 33:5 tn Heb “and he”; the referent (Jacob) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  9. Genesis 33:5 tn The Hebrew verb means “to be gracious; to show favor”; here it carries the nuance “to give graciously.”
  10. Genesis 33:6 tn Heb “and the female servants drew near, they and their children and they bowed down.”
  11. Genesis 33:8 tn Heb “and he”; the referent (Esau) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  12. Genesis 33:8 tn Heb “Who to you?”
  13. Genesis 33:8 tn Heb “all this camp which I met.”
  14. Genesis 33:8 tn Heb “and he”; the referent (Jacob) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  15. Genesis 33:10 tn Heb “and Jacob said, ‘No, please.’” The words “take them” have been supplied in the translation for clarity, and the order of the introductory clause and the direct discourse rearranged for stylistic reasons.
  16. Genesis 33:10 tn The form is the perfect tense with a vav (ו) consecutive, expressing a contingent future nuance in the “then” section of the conditional sentence.
  17. Genesis 33:10 tn The verbal form is the preterite with a vav (ו) consecutive, indicating result here.
  18. Genesis 33:10 tn Heb “for therefore I have seen your face like seeing the face of God and you have accepted me.”sn This is an allusion to the preceding episode (32:22-31) in which Jacob saw the face of God and realized his prayer was answered.
  19. Genesis 33:11 tn Heb “blessing.” It is as if Jacob is trying to repay what he stole from his brother twenty years earlier.
  20. Genesis 33:11 tn Or “gracious,” but in the specific sense of prosperity.
  21. Genesis 33:11 tn Heb “all.”
  22. Genesis 33:11 tn Heb “and he urged him and he took.” The referent of the first pronoun in the sequence (“he”) has been specified as “Jacob” in the translation for clarity.
  23. Genesis 33:12 tn Heb “and he”; the referent (Esau) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  24. Genesis 33:12 tn Heb “let us travel and let us go.” The two cohortatives are used in combination with the sense, “let’s travel along, get going, be on our way.”
  25. Genesis 33:13 tn Heb “he”; the referent (Jacob) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  26. Genesis 33:13 tn Heb “weak.”
  27. Genesis 33:13 tn Heb “and the sheep and the cattle nursing [are] upon me.”
  28. Genesis 33:14 tn Heb “and I, I will move along according to my leisure at the foot of the property which is before me and at the foot of the children.”
  29. Genesis 33:15 tn The cohortative verbal form here indicates a polite offer of help.
  30. Genesis 33:15 tn Heb “and he said, ‘Why this?’” The referent of the pronoun “he” (Jacob) has been specified for clarity, and the order of the introductory clause and the direct discourse has been rearranged in the translation for stylistic reasons.
  31. Genesis 33:15 tn Heb “I am finding favor in the eyes of my lord.”
  32. Genesis 33:16 tn Heb “returned on his way.”
  33. Genesis 33:17 tn The disjunctive clause contrasts Jacob’s action with Esau’s.
  34. Genesis 33:17 sn But Jacob traveled to Sukkoth. There are several reasons why Jacob chose not to go to Mt. Seir after Esau. First, as he said, his herds and children probably could not keep up with the warriors. Second, he probably did not fully trust his brother. The current friendliness could change, and he could lose everything. And third, God did tell him to return to his land, not Seir. But Jacob is still not able to deal truthfully, probably because of fear of Esau.
  35. Genesis 33:17 tn Heb “why he called.” One could understand “Jacob” as the subject of the verb, but it is more likely that the subject is indefinite, in which case the verb is better translated as passive.
  36. Genesis 33:17 sn The name Sukkoth means “shelters,” an appropriate name in light of the shelters Jacob built there for his livestock.
  37. Genesis 33:18 tn Heb “in front of.”
  38. Genesis 33:19 tn The words “he bought it” are supplied in the translation for stylistic reasons. In the Hebrew text v. 19 is one long sentence.
  39. Genesis 33:19 tn The Hebrew word קְשִׂיטָה (qesitah) is generally understood to refer to a unit of money, but the value is unknown. (However, cf. REB, which renders the term as “sheep”).
  40. Genesis 33:20 tn Heb “God, the God of Israel.” Rather than translating the name, a number of modern translations merely transliterate it from the Hebrew as “El Elohe Israel” (cf. NIV, NRSV, REB). It is not entirely clear how the name should be interpreted grammatically. One option is to supply an equative verb, as in the translation: “The God of Israel [is] God.” Another interpretive option is “the God of Israel [is] strong [or “mighty”].” Buying the land and settling down for a while was a momentous step for the patriarch, so the commemorative naming of the altar is significant.
New English Translation (NET)

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Psalm 36 New International Version - UK (NIVUK)

Psalm 36[a]

For the director of music. Of David the servant of the Lord.

I have a message from God in my heart
    concerning the sinfulness of the wicked:[b]
There is no fear of God
    before their eyes.

In their own eyes they flatter themselves
    too much to detect or hate their sin.
The words of their mouths are wicked and deceitful;
    they fail to act wisely or do good.
Even on their beds they plot evil;
    they commit themselves to a sinful course
    and do not reject what is wrong.

Your love, Lord, reaches to the heavens,
    your faithfulness to the skies.
Your righteousness is like the highest mountains,
    your justice like the great deep.
    You, Lord, preserve both people and animals.
How priceless is your unfailing love, O God!
    People take refuge in the shadow of your wings.
They feast in the abundance of your house;
    you give them drink from your river of delights.
For with you is the fountain of life;
    in your light we see light.

10 Continue your love to those who know you,
    your righteousness to the upright in heart.
11 May the foot of the proud not come against me,
    nor the hand of the wicked drive me away.
12 See how the evildoers lie fallen –
    thrown down, not able to rise!

Footnotes:

  1. Psalm 36:1 In Hebrew texts 36:1-12 is numbered 36:2-13.
  2. Psalm 36:1 Or A message from God: The transgression of the wicked / resides in their hearts.
New International Version - UK (NIVUK)

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Psalm 36 New English Translation (NET Bible)

Psalm 36[a]

For the music director, an oracle, written by the Lord’s servant David.[b]

36 An evil man is rebellious to the core.[c]
He does not fear God,[d]
for he is too proud
to recognize and give up his sin.[e]
The words he speaks are sinful and deceitful;
he does not care about doing what is wise and right.[f]
While he lies in bed he plans ways to sin.
He is committed to a sinful lifestyle;[g]
he does not reject what is evil.[h]
O Lord, your loyal love reaches to the sky,[i]
your faithfulness to the clouds.[j]
Your justice is like the highest mountains,[k]
your fairness like the deepest sea;
you, Lord, preserve[l] mankind and the animal kingdom.[m]
How precious[n] is your loyal love, O God!
The human race finds shelter under your wings.[o]
They are filled with food from your house,
and you allow them to drink from the river of your delicacies.
For with you is the fountain of life;
in your light we see light.[p]
10 Extend[q] your loyal love to your faithful followers,[r]
and vindicate[s] the morally upright.[t]
11 Do not let arrogant men overtake me,
or let evil men make me homeless.[u]
12 I can see the evildoers! They have fallen.[v]
They have been knocked down and are unable to get up.[w]

Footnotes:

  1. Psalm 36:1 sn Psalm 36. Though evil men plan to harm others, the psalmist is confident that the Lord is the just ruler of the earth who gives and sustains all life. He prays for divine blessing and protection and anticipates God’s judgment of the wicked.
  2. Psalm 36:1 tn In the Hebrew text the word נאם (“oracle”) appears at the beginning of the next verse (v. 2 in the Hebrew text because the superscription is considered v. 1). The resulting reading, “an oracle of rebellion for the wicked [is] in the midst of my heart” (cf. NIV) apparently means that the psalm, which foresees the downfall of the wicked, is a prophetic oracle about the rebellion of the wicked which emerges from the soul of the psalmist. One could translate, “Here is a poem written as I reflected on the rebellious character of evil men.” Another option, followed in the translation above, is to attach נאם (ne’um, “oracle”) with the superscription. For another example of a Davidic poem being labeled an “oracle,” see 2 Sam 23:1.
  3. Psalm 36:1 tn Heb “[the] rebellion of an evil man [is] in the midst of my heart.” The translation assumes a reading “in the midst of his heart” (i.e., “to the core”) instead of “in the midst of my heart,” a change which finds support in a few medieval Hebrew mss, the Hebrew text of Origen’s Hexapla, and the Syriac.
  4. Psalm 36:1 tn Heb “there is no dread of God before his eyes.” The phrase “dread of God” refers here to a healthy respect for God which recognizes that he will punish evil behavior.
  5. Psalm 36:2 tn Heb “for it causes to be smooth to him in his eyes to find his sin to hate.” The meaning of the Hebrew text is unclear. Perhaps the point is this: His rebellious attitude makes him reject any notion that God will hold him accountable. His attitude also prevents him from recognizing and repudiating his sinful ways.
  6. Psalm 36:3 tn Heb “he ceases to exhibit wisdom to do good.” The Hiphil forms are exhibitive, indicating the outward expression of an inner attitude.
  7. Psalm 36:4 tn Heb “he takes a stand in a way [that is] not good.” The word “way” here refers metaphorically to behavior or life style.
  8. Psalm 36:4 tn The three imperfect verbal forms in v. 4 highlight the characteristic behavior of the typical evildoer.
  9. Psalm 36:5 tn Heb “[is] in the heavens.”
  10. Psalm 36:5 sn The Lord’s loyal love/faithfulness is almost limitless. He is loyal and faithful to his creation and blesses mankind and the animal kingdom with physical life and sustenance (vv. 6-9).
  11. Psalm 36:6 tn Heb “mountains of God.” The divine name אֵל (ʾel, “God”) is here used in an idiomatic manner to indicate the superlative.
  12. Psalm 36:6 tn Or “deliver.”
  13. Psalm 36:6 sn God’s justice/fairness is firm and reliable like the highest mountains and as abundant as the water in the deepest sea. The psalmist uses a legal metaphor to describe God’s preservation of his creation. Like a just judge who vindicates the innocent, God protects his creation from destructive forces.
  14. Psalm 36:7 tn Or “valuable.”
  15. Psalm 36:7 tn Heb “and the sons of man in the shadow of your wings find shelter.” The preservation of physical life is in view, as the next verse makes clear.
  16. Psalm 36:9 sn Water (note “fountain”) and light are here metaphors for life.
  17. Psalm 36:10 tn Heb “draw out to full length.”
  18. Psalm 36:10 tn Heb “to those who know you.” The Hebrew verb יָדַע (yadaʿ, “know”) is used here of those who “know” the Lord in the sense that they recognize his royal authority and obey his will (see Jer 22:16).
  19. Psalm 36:10 tn Heb “and your justice to.” The verb “extend” is understood by ellipsis in the second line (see the previous line).
  20. Psalm 36:10 tn Heb “the pure of heart.” The “heart” is here viewed as the seat of one’s moral character and motives. The “pure of heart” are God’s faithful followers who trust in and love the Lord and, as a result, experience his deliverance (see Pss 7:10; 11:2; 32:11; 64:10; 94:15; 97:11).
  21. Psalm 36:11 tn Heb “let not a foot of pride come to me, and let not the hand of the evil ones cause me to wander as a fugitive.”
  22. Psalm 36:12 tn Heb “there the workers of wickedness have fallen.” The adverb שָׁם (sham, “there”) is used here for dramatic effect, as the psalmist envisions the evildoers lying fallen at a spot that is vivid in his imagination (BDB 1027 s.v.).
  23. Psalm 36:12 tn The psalmist uses perfect verbal forms in v. 12 to describe the demise of the wicked as if it has already taken place.
New English Translation (NET)

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Matthew 21 New International Version - UK (NIVUK)

Jesus comes to Jerusalem as king

21 As they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, ‘Go to the village ahead of you, and at once you will find a donkey tied there, with her colt by her. Untie them and bring them to me. If anyone says anything to you, say that the Lord needs them, and he will send them right away.’

This took place to fulfil what was spoken through the prophet:

‘Say to Daughter Zion,
    “See, your king comes to you,
gentle and riding on a donkey,
    and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.”’[a]

The disciples went and did as Jesus had instructed them. They brought the donkey and the colt and placed their cloaks on them for Jesus to sit on. A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted,

‘Hosanna[b] to the Son of David!’

‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!’[c]

‘Hosanna[d] in the highest heaven!’

10 When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred and asked, ‘Who is this?’

11 The crowds answered, ‘This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee.’

Jesus at the temple

12 Jesus entered the temple courts and drove out all who were buying and selling there. He overturned the tables of the money-changers and the benches of those selling doves. 13 ‘It is written,’ he said to them, ‘“My house will be called a house of prayer,”[e] but you are making it “a den of robbers.”[f]

14 The blind and the lame came to him at the temple, and he healed them. 15 But when the chief priests and the teachers of the law saw the wonderful things he did and the children shouting in the temple courts, ‘Hosanna to the Son of David,’ they were indignant.

16 ‘Do you hear what these children are saying?’ they asked him.

‘Yes,’ replied Jesus, ‘have you never read,

‘“From the lips of children and infants
    you, Lord, have called forth your praise”[g]?’

17 And he left them and went out of the city to Bethany, where he spent the night.

Jesus curses a fig-tree

18 Early in the morning, as Jesus was on his way back to the city, he was hungry. 19 Seeing a fig-tree by the road, he went up to it but found nothing on it except leaves. Then he said to it, ‘May you never bear fruit again!’ Immediately the tree withered.

20 When the disciples saw this, they were amazed. ‘How did the fig-tree wither so quickly?’ they asked.

21 Jesus replied, ‘Truly I tell you, if you have faith and do not doubt, not only can you do what was done to the fig-tree, but also you can say to this mountain, “Go, throw yourself into the sea,” and it will be done. 22 If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.’

The authority of Jesus questioned

23 Jesus entered the temple courts, and, while he was teaching, the chief priests and the elders of the people came to him. ‘By what authority are you doing these things?’ they asked. ‘And who gave you this authority?’

24 Jesus replied, ‘I will also ask you one question. If you answer me, I will tell you by what authority I am doing these things. 25 John’s baptism – where did it come from? Was it from heaven, or of human origin?’

They discussed it among themselves and said, ‘If we say, “From heaven”, he will ask, “Then why didn’t you believe him?” 26 But if we say, “Of human origin”– we are afraid of the people, for they all hold that John was a prophet.’

27 So they answered Jesus, ‘We don’t know.’

Then he said, ‘Neither will I tell you by what authority I am doing these things.

The parable of the two sons

28 ‘What do you think? There was a man who had two sons. He went to the first and said, “Son, go and work today in the vineyard.”

29 ‘“I will not,” he answered, but later he changed his mind and went.

30 ‘Then the father went to the other son and said the same thing. He answered, “I will, sir,” but he did not go.

31 ‘Which of the two did what his father wanted?’

‘The first,’ they answered.

Jesus said to them, ‘Truly I tell you, the tax collectors and the prostitutes are entering the kingdom of God ahead of you. 32 For John came to you to show you the way of righteousness, and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the prostitutes did. And even after you saw this, you did not repent and believe him.

The parable of the tenants

33 ‘Listen to another parable: there was a landowner who planted a vineyard. He put a wall round it, dug a winepress in it and built a watchtower. Then he rented the vineyard to some farmers and moved to another place. 34 When the harvest time approached, he sent his servants to the tenants to collect his fruit.

35 ‘The tenants seized his servants; they beat one, killed another, and stoned a third. 36 Then he sent other servants to them, more than the first time, and the tenants treated them in the same way. 37 Last of all, he sent his son to them. “They will respect my son,” he said.

38 ‘But when the tenants saw the son, they said to each other, “This is the heir. Come, let’s kill him and take his inheritance.” 39 So they took him and threw him out of the vineyard and killed him.

40 ‘Therefore, when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those tenants?’

41 ‘He will bring those wretches to a wretched end,’ they replied, ‘and he will rent the vineyard to other tenants, who will give him his share of the crop at harvest time.’

42 Jesus said to them, ‘Have you never read in the Scriptures:

‘“The stone the builders rejected
    has become the cornerstone;
the Lord has done this,
    and it is marvellous in our eyes”[h]?

43 ‘Therefore I tell you that the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people who will produce its fruit. 44 Anyone who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; anyone on whom it falls will be crushed.’[i]

45 When the chief priests and the Pharisees heard Jesus’ parables, they knew he was talking about them. 46 They looked for a way to arrest him, but they were afraid of the crowd because the people held that he was a prophet.

Footnotes:

  1. Matthew 21:5 Zech. 9:9
  2. Matthew 21:9 A Hebrew expression meaning ‘Save!’ which became an exclamation of praise; also in verse 15
  3. Matthew 21:9 Psalm 118:25,26
  4. Matthew 21:9 A Hebrew expression meaning ‘Save!’ which became an exclamation of praise; also in verse 15
  5. Matthew 21:13 Isaiah 56:7
  6. Matthew 21:13 Jer. 7:11
  7. Matthew 21:16 Psalm 8:2 (see Septuagint)
  8. Matthew 21:42 Psalm 118:22,23
  9. Matthew 21:44 Some manuscripts do not have verse 44.
New International Version - UK (NIVUK)

Holy Bible, New International Version® Anglicized, NIV® Copyright © 1979, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Matthew 21 New English Translation (NET Bible)

The Triumphal Entry

21 Now[a] when they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage,[b] at the Mount of Olives,[c] Jesus sent two disciples, telling them, “Go to the village ahead of you.[d] Right away you will find a donkey tied there, and a colt with her. Untie them and bring them to me. If anyone says anything to you, you are to say, ‘The Lord needs them,’[e] and he will send them at once.” This[f] took place to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet:[g]

Tell the people of Zion,[h]
Look, your king is coming to you,
unassuming and seated on a donkey,
and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’”[i]

So[j] the disciples went and did as Jesus had instructed them. They brought the donkey and the colt and placed their cloaks[k] on them, and he sat on them. A[l] very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road. Others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. The crowds that went ahead of him and those following kept shouting,[m]Hosanna[n] to the Son of David! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord![o] Hosanna in the highest!” 10 As he entered Jerusalem the whole city was thrown into an uproar,[p] saying, “Who is this?” 11 And the crowds were saying, “This is the prophet Jesus, from Nazareth in Galilee.”

Cleansing the Temple

12 Then[q] Jesus entered the temple area[r] and drove out all those who were selling and buying in the temple courts,[s] and turned over the tables of the money changers and the chairs of those selling doves. 13 And he said to them, “It is written, ‘My house will be called a house of prayer,[t] but you are turning it into a den[u] of robbers!”[v]

14 The blind and lame came to him in the temple courts, and he healed them. 15 But when the chief priests and the experts in the law[w] saw the wonderful things he did and heard the children crying out in the temple courts,[x] “Hosanna to the Son of David,” they became indignant 16 and said to him, “Do you hear what they are saying?” Jesus said to them, “Yes. Have you never read, ‘Out of the mouths of children and nursing infants you have prepared praise for yourself’?”[y] 17 And leaving them, he went out of the city to Bethany and spent the night there.

The Withered Fig Tree

18 Now early in the morning, as he returned to the city, he was hungry. 19 After noticing a fig tree[z] by the road he went to it, but found nothing on it except leaves. He said to it, “Never again will there be fruit from you!” And the fig tree withered at once. 20 When the disciples saw it they were amazed, saying, “How did the fig tree wither so quickly?” 21 Jesus[aa] answered them, “I tell you the truth,[ab] if you have faith and do not doubt, not only will you do what was done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, ‘Be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ it will happen. 22 And whatever you ask in prayer, if you believe,[ac] you will receive.”

The Authority of Jesus

23 Now after Jesus[ad] entered the temple courts,[ae] the chief priests and elders of the people came up to him as he was teaching and said, “By what authority[af] are you doing these things, and who gave you this authority?” 24 Jesus[ag] answered them, “I will also ask you one question. If you answer me then I will also tell you by what authority I do these things. 25 Where did John’s baptism come from? From heaven or from people?”[ah] They discussed this among themselves, saying, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ he will say, ‘Then why did you not believe him?’ 26 But if we say, ‘From people,’ we fear the crowd, for they all consider John to be a prophet.” 27 So[ai] they answered Jesus,[aj] “We don’t know.”[ak] Then he said to them, “Neither will I tell you[al] by what authority[am] I am doing these things.

The Parable of the Two Sons

28 “What[an] do you think? A man had two sons. He went to the first and said, ‘Son, go and work in the vineyard today.’ 29 The boy answered,[ao] ‘I will not.’ But later he had a change of heart[ap] and went. 30 The father[aq] went to the other son and said the same thing. This boy answered,[ar] ‘I will, sir,’ but did not go. 31 Which of the two did his father’s will?” They said, “The first.”[as] Jesus said to them, “I tell you the truth,[at] tax collectors[au] and prostitutes will go ahead of you into the kingdom of God! 32 For John came to you in the way of righteousness, and you did not believe him. But the tax collectors and prostitutes did believe. Although[av] you saw this, you did not later change your minds[aw] and believe him.

The Parable of the Tenants

33 “Listen to another parable: There was a landowner[ax] who planted a vineyard.[ay] He put a fence around it, dug a pit for its winepress, and built a watchtower. Then[az] he leased it to tenant farmers[ba] and went on a journey. 34 When the harvest time was near, he sent his slaves[bb] to the tenants to collect his portion of the crop.[bc] 35 But the tenants seized his slaves, beat one,[bd] killed another, and stoned another. 36 Again he sent other slaves, more than the first, and they treated them the same way. 37 Finally he sent his son to them,[be] saying, ‘They will respect my son.’ 38 But when the tenants saw the son, they said to themselves, ‘This is the heir. Come, let’s kill him and get his inheritance!’ 39 So[bf] they seized him,[bg] threw him out of the vineyard,[bh] and killed him. 40 Now when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those tenants?” 41 They said to him, “He will utterly destroy those evil men! Then he will lease the vineyard to other tenants who will give him his portion at the harvest.”

42 Jesus said to them, “Have you never read in the scriptures:

The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone.[bi]
This is from the Lord, and it is marvelous in our eyes’?[bj]

43 For this reason I tell you that the kingdom of God will be taken from you and given to a people[bk] who will produce its fruit. 44 The one who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces, and the one on whom it falls will be crushed.”[bl] 45 When[bm] the chief priests and the Pharisees[bn] heard his parables, they realized that he was speaking about them. 46 They wanted to arrest him, but they were afraid of the crowds, because the crowds[bo] regarded him as a prophet.

Footnotes:

  1. Matthew 21:1 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “now” to indicate the transition to a new topic.
  2. Matthew 21:1 sn The exact location of the village of Bethphage is not known. Most put it on the southeast side of the Mount of Olives and northwest of Bethany, about 1.5 miles (3 km) east of Jerusalem.
  3. Matthew 21:1 sn “Mountain” in English generally denotes a higher elevation than it often does in reference to places in Palestine. The Mount of Olives is really a ridge running north to south about 3 kilometers (1.8 miles) long, east of Jerusalem across the Kidron Valley. Its central elevation is about 30 meters (100 ft) higher than Jerusalem. It was named for the large number of olive trees which grew on it.
  4. Matthew 21:2 tn Grk “the village lying before you” (BDAG 530 s.v. κατέναντι 2.b).
  5. Matthew 21:3 sn The custom called angaria allowed the impressment of animals for service to a significant figure.
  6. Matthew 21:4 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
  7. Matthew 21:4 tn Grk “what was spoken by the prophet, saying.” The present participle λέγοντος (legontos) is redundant and has not been translated.
  8. Matthew 21:5 tn Grk “Tell the daughter of Zion” (the phrase “daughter of Zion” is an idiom for the inhabitants of Jerusalem: “people of Zion”). The idiom “daughter of Zion” has been translated as “people of Zion” because the original idiom, while firmly embedded in the Christian tradition, is not understandable to most modern English readers.
  9. Matthew 21:5 tn Grk “the foal of an animal under the yoke,” i.e., a hard-working animal. This is a quotation from Zech 9:9.
  10. Matthew 21:6 tn Here δέ (de) has been translated as “so” to indicate the implied result of Jesus’ instructions in vv. 2-3.
  11. Matthew 21:7 tn Grk “garments”; but this refers in context to their outer cloaks. The action is like 2 Kgs 9:13.
  12. Matthew 21:8 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
  13. Matthew 21:9 tn Grk “were shouting, saying.” The participle λέγοντας (legontas) is redundant here in contemporary English and has not been translated.
  14. Matthew 21:9 tn The expression ῾Ωσαννά (hōsanna, literally in Hebrew, “O Lord, save”) in the quotation from Ps 118:25-26 was probably by this time a familiar liturgical expression of praise, on the order of “Hail to the king,” although both the underlying Aramaic and Hebrew expressions meant “O Lord, save us.” In words familiar to every Jew, the author is indicating that at this point every messianic expectation is now at the point of realization. It is clear from the words of the psalm shouted by the crowd that Jesus is being proclaimed as messianic king. See E. Lohse, TDNT 9:682-84.sn Hosanna is an Aramaic expression that literally means, “help, I pray,” or “save, I pray.” By Jesus’ time it had become a strictly liturgical formula of praise, however, and was used as an exclamation of praise to God.
  15. Matthew 21:9 sn A quotation from Ps 118:25-26.
  16. Matthew 21:10 tn Grk “was shaken.” The translation “thrown into an uproar” is given by L&N 25.233.
  17. Matthew 21:12 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “then” to indicate the implied sequence of events within the narrative.
  18. Matthew 21:12 tn Grk “the temple.”sn The merchants (those who were selling) would have been located in the Court of the Gentiles.
  19. Matthew 21:12 tn Grk “the temple.”sn Matthew (here, 21:12-27), Mark (11:15-19) and Luke (19:45-46) record this incident of the temple cleansing at the end of Jesus’ ministry. John (2:13-16) records a cleansing of the temple at the beginning of Jesus’ ministry. See the note on the word temple courts in John 2:14 for a discussion of the relationship of these accounts to one another.
  20. Matthew 21:13 sn A quotation from Isa 56:7.
  21. Matthew 21:13 tn Or “a hideout” (see L&N 1.57).
  22. Matthew 21:13 sn A quotation from Jer 7:11. The meaning of Jesus’ statement about making the temple courts a den of robbers probably operates here at two levels. Not only were the religious leaders robbing the people financially, but because of this they had also robbed them spiritually by stealing from them the opportunity to come to know God genuinely. It is possible that these merchants had recently been moved to this location for convenience.
  23. Matthew 21:15 tn Or “and the scribes.” See the note on the phrase “experts in the law” in 2:4.
  24. Matthew 21:15 tn Grk “crying out in the temple [courts] and saying.” The participle λέγοντας (legontas) is somewhat redundant here in contemporary English and has not been translated.
  25. Matthew 21:16 sn A quotation from Ps 8:2.
  26. Matthew 21:19 tn Grk “one fig tree.”sn The fig tree is a variation on the picture of a vine as representing the nation; see Isa 5:1-7.
  27. Matthew 21:21 tn Grk “And answering, Jesus said.” This is somewhat redundant and has been simplified in the translation.
  28. Matthew 21:21 tn Grk “Truly (ἀμήν, amēn), I say to you.”
  29. Matthew 21:22 tn Grk “believing”; the participle here is conditional.
  30. Matthew 21:23 tn Grk “he.”
  31. Matthew 21:23 tn Grk “the temple.”
  32. Matthew 21:23 tn On this phrase, see BDAG 844 s.v. ποῖος 2.a.γ.1
  33. Matthew 21:24 tn Grk “answering, Jesus said to them.” This is somewhat redundant and has been simplified in the translation. Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
  34. Matthew 21:25 tn The plural Greek term ἀνθρώπων (anthrōpōn) is used here (and in v. 26) in a generic sense, referring to both men and women (cf. NAB, NRSV, “of human origin”; TEV, “from human beings”; NLT, “merely human”).sn The question is whether John’s ministry was of divine or human origin.
  35. Matthew 21:27 tn Here δέ (de) has been translated as “So” to indicate that the clause is a result of the deliberations of the leaders.
  36. Matthew 21:27 tn Grk “answering Jesus, they said.” This construction is somewhat awkward in English and has been simplified in the translation.
  37. Matthew 21:27 sn Very few questions could have so completely revealed the wicked intentions of the religious leaders. Jesus’ question revealed the motivation of the religious leaders and exposed them for what they really were—hypocrites. They indicted themselves when they cited only two options and chose neither of them (“We do not know”). The point of Matt 21:23-27 is that no matter what Jesus said in response to their question, they were not going to believe it and would in the end use it against him.
  38. Matthew 21:27 sn Neither will I tell you. Though Jesus gave no answer, the analogy he used to their own question makes his view clear. His authority came from heaven.
  39. Matthew 21:27 tn On this phrase, see BDAG 844 s.v. ποῖος 2.a.γ. This is exactly the same phrase as in v. 23.
  40. Matthew 21:28 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
  41. Matthew 21:29 tn Grk “And answering, he said.” This is somewhat redundant and has been simplified in the translation. Here the referent (“the boy”) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  42. Matthew 21:29 tn The Greek text reads here μεταμέλομαι (metamelomai): “to change one’s mind about something, with the probable implication of regret” (L&N 31.59); cf. also BDAG 639 s.v. The idea in this context involves more than just a change of mind, for the son regrets his initial response. The same verb is used in v. 32.
  43. Matthew 21:30 tn “And he”; here δέ (de) has not been translated.
  44. Matthew 21:30 tn Grk “And answering, he said.” This is somewhat redundant and has been simplified in the translation. Here δέ (de) has not been translated. Here the referent (“this boy”) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  45. Matthew 21:31 tc Verses 29-31 involve a rather complex and difficult textual problem. The variants cluster into three different groups: (1) The first son says “no” and later has a change of heart, and the second son says “yes” but does not go. The second son is called the one who does his father’s will. This reading is found in the Western witnesses (D it). But the reading is so hard as to be nearly impossible. One can only suspect some tampering with the text, extreme carelessness on the part of the scribe, or possibly a recognition of the importance of not shaming one’s parent in public. (Any of these reasons is not improbable with this group of witnesses, and with codex D in particular.) The other two major variants are more difficult to assess. Essentially, the responses make sense (the son who does his father’s will is the one who changes his mind after saying “no”): (2) The first son says “no” and later has a change of heart, and the second son says “yes” but does not go. But here, the first son is called the one who does his father’s will (unlike the Western reading). This is the reading found in א C L W (Z) Δ 0102 0281 ƒ1 33 565 579 1241 1424*,c M and several versional witnesses. (3) The first son says “yes” but does not go, and the second son says “no” but later has a change of heart. This is the reading found in B Θ ƒ13 700 and several versional witnesses. Both of these latter two variants make good sense and have significantly better textual support than the first reading. The real question, then, is this: Is the first son or the second the obedient one? If one were to argue simply from the parabolic logic, the second son would be seen as the obedient one (hence, the third reading). The first son would represent the Pharisees (or Jews) who claim to obey God, but do not (cf. Matt 23:3). This accords well with the parable of the prodigal son (in which the oldest son represents the unbelieving Jews). Further, the chronological sequence of the second son being obedient fits well with the real scene: Gentiles, tax collectors, and prostitutes were not, collectively, God’s chosen people, but they did repent and come to God, while the Jewish leaders claimed to be obedient to God but did nothing. At the same time, the external evidence is weaker for this reading (though stronger than the first reading), not as widespread, and certainly suspect because of how neatly it fits. One suspects scribal manipulation at this point. Thus the second reading looks to be superior to the other two on both external and transcriptional grounds. But what about intrinsic evidence? One can surmise that Jesus didn’t always give predictable responses. In this instance, he may well have painted a picture in which the Pharisees saw themselves as the first son, only to stun them with his application (v. 32). For more discussion see TCGNT 44-46.
  46. Matthew 21:31 tn Grk “Truly (ἀμήν, amēn), I say to you.”
  47. Matthew 21:31 sn See the note on tax collectors in 5:46.
  48. Matthew 21:32 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
  49. Matthew 21:32 sn The word translated change your minds is the same verb used in v. 29 (there translated had a change of heart). Jesus is making an obvious comparison here, in which the religious leaders are viewed as the disobedient son.
  50. Matthew 21:33 tn The term here refers to the owner and manager of a household.
  51. Matthew 21:33 sn The vineyard is a figure for Israel in the OT (Isa 5:1-7). The nation and its leaders are the tenants, so the vineyard here may well refer to the promise that resides within the nation. The imagery is like that in Rom 11:11-24.
  52. Matthew 21:33 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “then” to indicate the implied sequence of events within the narrative.
  53. Matthew 21:33 sn The leasing of land to tenant farmers was common in this period.
  54. Matthew 21:34 tn See the note on the word “slave” in 8:9.sn These slaves represent the prophets God sent to the nation, who were mistreated and rejected.
  55. Matthew 21:34 tn Grk “to collect his fruits.”
  56. Matthew 21:35 sn The image of the tenants mistreating the owner’s slaves pictures the nation’s rejection of the prophets and their message.
  57. Matthew 21:37 sn The owner’s decision to send his son represents God sending Jesus.
  58. Matthew 21:39 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “so” to indicate the implied result of the tenants’ decision to kill the son in v. 38.
  59. Matthew 21:39 tn Grk “seizing him.” The participle λαβόντες (labontes) has been translated as attendant circumstance.
  60. Matthew 21:39 sn Throwing the heir out of the vineyard pictures Jesus’ death outside of Jerusalem.
  61. Matthew 21:42 tn Or “capstone,” “keystone.” Although these meanings are lexically possible, the imagery in Eph 2:20-22 and 1 Cor 3:11 indicates that the term κεφαλὴ γωνίας (kephalē gōnias) refers to a cornerstone, not a capstone.sn The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone. The use of Ps 118:22-23 and the “stone imagery” as a reference to Christ and his suffering and exaltation is common in the NT (see also Mark 12:10; Luke 20:17; Acts 4:11; 1 Pet 2:6-8; cf. also Eph 2:20). The irony in the use of Ps 118:22-23 here is that in the OT, Israel was the one rejected (or perhaps her king) by the Gentiles, but in the NT it is Jesus who is rejected by Israel.
  62. Matthew 21:42 sn A quotation from Ps 118:22-23.
  63. Matthew 21:43 tn Or “to a nation” (so KJV, NASB, NLT).
  64. Matthew 21:44 tc A few witnesses, especially of the Western text (D 33 it sys Irlat Or Eussyr), do not contain 21:44. However, the verse is found in א B C L W Z Δ (Θ) 0102 ƒ1, 13 565 579 700 1241 1424 M lat syc,p,h co. The NA27 and NA28 put this verse in brackets, which normally indicates some doubt as to its authenticity, but Metzger’s Textual Commentary claims that the committee concluded that the verse was an “accretion,” including it not because of authenticity but because of its longstanding role in the textual tradition (TCGNT 47). Some scholars see the verse as scribally borrowed from the parallel in Luke 20:18, but both the wording and word order are different enough that such an imperfect assimilation cannot account for the great variety of witnesses that have a uniform reading here. In light of the lack of adequate explanation for the rise of this verse as it is written, the longer reading should be preferred.tn Grk “on whomever it falls, it will crush him.”sn This proverb basically means that the stone crushes, without regard to whether it falls on someone or someone falls on it. On the stone as a messianic image, see Isa 28:16 and Dan 2:44-45.
  65. Matthew 21:45 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated.
  66. Matthew 21:45 sn See the note on Pharisees in 3:7.
  67. Matthew 21:46 tn Grk “they”; the referent (the crowds) has been specified in the translation for clarity. Both previous occurrences of “they” in this verse refer to the chief priests and the Pharisees.
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