New King James Version
Jacob’s Agreement with Laban
25 And it came to pass, when Rachel had borne Joseph, that Jacob said to Laban, (A)“Send me away, that I may go to (B)my own place and to my country. 26 Give me my wives and my children (C)for whom I have served you, and let me go; for you know my service which I have done for you.”
27 And Laban said to him, “Please stay, if I have found favor in your eyes, for (D)I have learned by experience that the Lord has blessed me for your sake.” 28 Then he said, (E)“Name me your wages, and I will give it.”
29 So Jacob said to him, (F)“You know how I have served you and how your livestock has been with me. 30 For what you had before I came was little, and it has increased to a great amount; the Lord has blessed you [a]since my coming. And now, when shall I also (G)provide for my own house?”
31 So he said, “What shall I give you?”
And Jacob said, “You shall not give me anything. If you will do this thing for me, I will again feed and keep your flocks: 32 Let me pass through all your flock today, removing from there all the speckled and spotted sheep, and all the brown ones among the lambs, and the spotted and speckled among the goats; and (H)these shall be my wages. 33 So my (I)righteousness will answer for me in time to come, when the subject of my wages comes before you: every one that is not speckled and spotted among the goats, and brown among the lambs, will be considered stolen, if it is with me.”
34 And Laban said, “Oh, that it were according to your word!” 35 So he removed that day the male goats that were (J)speckled and spotted, all the female goats that were speckled and spotted, every one that had some white in it, and all the brown ones among the lambs, and gave them into the hand of his sons. 36 Then he put three days’ journey between himself and Jacob, and Jacob fed the rest of Laban’s flocks.
37 Now (K)Jacob took for himself rods of green poplar and of the almond and chestnut trees, peeled white strips in them, and exposed the white which was in the rods. 38 And the rods which he had peeled, he set before the flocks in the gutters, in the watering troughs where the flocks came to drink, so that they should conceive when they came to drink. 39 So the flocks conceived before the rods, and the flocks brought forth streaked, speckled, and spotted. 40 Then Jacob separated the lambs, and made the flocks face toward the streaked and all the brown in the flock of Laban; but he put his own flocks by themselves and did not put them with Laban’s flock.
41 And it came to pass, whenever the stronger livestock conceived, that Jacob placed the rods before the eyes of the livestock in the gutters, that they might conceive among the rods. 42 But when the flocks were feeble, he did not put them in; so the feebler were Laban’s and the stronger Jacob’s. 43 Thus the man (L)became exceedingly prosperous, and (M)had large flocks, female and male servants, and camels and donkeys.
Jacob Flees from Laban
31 Now Jacob heard the words of Laban’s sons, saying, “Jacob has taken away all that was our father’s, and from what was our father’s he has acquired all this (N)wealth.” 2 And Jacob saw the (O)countenance of Laban, and indeed it was not (P)favorable toward him as before. 3 Then the Lord said to Jacob, (Q)“Return to the land of your fathers and to your family, and I will (R)be with you.”
4 So Jacob sent and called Rachel and Leah to the field, to his flock, 5 and said to them, (S)“I see your father’s [b]countenance, that it is not favorable toward me as before; but the God of my father (T)has been with me. 6 And (U)you know that with all my might I have served your father. 7 Yet your father has deceived me and (V)changed my wages (W)ten times, but God (X)did not allow him to hurt me. 8 If he said thus: (Y)‘The speckled shall be your wages,’ then all the flocks bore speckled. And if he said thus: ‘The streaked shall be your wages,’ then all the flocks bore streaked. 9 So God has (Z)taken away the livestock of your father and given them to me.
10 “And it happened, at the time when the flocks conceived, that I lifted my eyes and saw in a dream, and behold, the rams which leaped upon the flocks were streaked, speckled, and gray-spotted. 11 Then (AA)the Angel of God spoke to me in a dream, saying, ‘Jacob.’ And I said, ‘Here I am.’ 12 And He said, ‘Lift your eyes now and see, all the rams which leap on the flocks are streaked, speckled, and gray-spotted; for (AB)I have seen all that Laban is doing to you. 13 I am the God of Bethel, (AC)where you anointed the pillar and where you made a vow to Me. Now (AD)arise, get out of this land, and return to the land of your family.’ ”
14 Then Rachel and Leah answered and said to him, (AE)“Is there still any portion or inheritance for us in our father’s house? 15 Are we not considered strangers by him? For (AF)he has sold us, and also completely consumed our money. 16 For all these riches which God has taken from our father are really ours and our children’s; now then, whatever God has said to you, do it.”
17 Then Jacob rose and set his sons and his wives on camels. 18 And he carried away all his livestock and all his possessions which he had gained, his acquired livestock which he had gained in Padan Aram, to go to his father Isaac in the land of (AG)Canaan. 19 Now Laban had gone to shear his sheep, and Rachel had stolen the (AH)household[c] idols that were her father’s. 20 And Jacob stole away, unknown to Laban the Syrian, in that he did not tell him that he intended to flee. 21 So he fled with all that he had. He arose and crossed the river, and (AI)headed[d] toward the mountains of Gilead.
Laban Pursues Jacob
22 And Laban was told on the third day that Jacob had fled. 23 Then he took (AJ)his brethren with him and pursued him for seven days’ journey, and he overtook him in the mountains of Gilead. 24 But God (AK)had come to Laban the Syrian in a dream by night, and said to him, “Be careful that you (AL)speak to Jacob neither good nor bad.”
25 So Laban overtook Jacob. Now Jacob had pitched his tent in the mountains, and Laban with his brethren pitched in the mountains of Gilead.
26 And Laban said to Jacob: “What have you done, that you have stolen away unknown to me, and (AM)carried away my daughters like captives taken with the sword? 27 Why did you flee away secretly, and steal away from me, and not tell me; for I might have sent you away with joy and songs, with timbrel and harp? 28 And you did not allow me (AN)to kiss my sons and my daughters. Now (AO)you have done foolishly in so doing. 29 It is in my power to do you harm, but the (AP)God of your father spoke to me (AQ)last night, saying, ‘Be careful that you speak to Jacob neither good nor bad.’ 30 And now you have surely gone because you greatly long for your father’s house, but why did you (AR)steal my gods?”
31 Then Jacob answered and said to Laban, “Because I was (AS)afraid, for I said, ‘Perhaps you would take your daughters from me by force.’ 32 With whomever you find your gods, (AT)do not let him live. In the presence of our brethren, identify what I have of yours and take it with you.” For Jacob did not know that Rachel had stolen them.
33 And Laban went into Jacob’s tent, into Leah’s tent, and into the two maids’ tents, but he did not find them. Then he went out of Leah’s tent and entered Rachel’s tent. 34 Now Rachel had taken the [e]household idols, put them in the camel’s saddle, and sat on them. And Laban [f]searched all about the tent but did not find them. 35 And she said to her father, “Let it not displease my lord that I cannot (AU)rise before you, for the manner of women is with me.” And he searched but did not find the [g]household idols.
36 Then Jacob was angry and rebuked Laban, and Jacob answered and said to Laban: “What is my [h]trespass? What is my sin, that you have so hotly pursued me? 37 Although you have searched all my things, what part of your household things have you found? Set it here before my brethren and your brethren, that they may judge between us both! 38 These twenty years I have been with you; your ewes and your female goats have not miscarried their young, and I have not eaten the rams of your flock. 39 (AV)That which was torn by beasts I did not bring to you; I bore the loss of it. (AW)You required it from my hand, whether stolen by day or stolen by night. 40 There I was! In the day the drought consumed me, and the frost by night, and my sleep departed from my eyes. 41 Thus I have been in your house twenty years; I (AX)served you fourteen years for your two daughters, and six years for your flock, and (AY)you have changed my wages ten times. 42 (AZ)Unless the God of my father, the God of Abraham and (BA)the Fear of Isaac, had been with me, surely now you would have sent me away empty-handed. (BB)God has seen my affliction and the labor of my hands, and (BC)rebuked you last night.”
Laban’s Covenant with Jacob
43 And Laban answered and said to Jacob, “These daughters are my daughters, and these children are my children, and this flock is my flock; all that you see is mine. But what can I do this day to these my daughters or to their children whom they have borne? 44 Now therefore, come, (BD)let us make a [i]covenant, (BE)you and I, and let it be a witness between you and me.”
45 So Jacob (BF)took a stone and set it up as a pillar. 46 Then Jacob said to his brethren, “Gather stones.” And they took stones and made a heap, and they ate there on the heap. 47 Laban called it [j]Jegar Sahadutha, but Jacob called it [k]Galeed. 48 And Laban said, (BG)“This heap is a witness between you and me this day.” Therefore its name was called Galeed, 49 also (BH)Mizpah,[l] because he said, “May the Lord watch between you and me when we are absent one from another. 50 If you afflict my daughters, or if you take other wives besides my daughters, although no man is with us—see, God is witness between you and me!”
51 Then Laban said to Jacob, “Here is this heap and here is this pillar, which I have placed between you and me. 52 This heap is a witness, and this pillar is a witness, that I will not pass beyond this heap to you, and you will not pass beyond this heap and this pillar to me, for harm. 53 The God of Abraham, the God of Nahor, and the God of their father (BI)judge between us.” And Jacob (BJ)swore by (BK)the [m]Fear of his father Isaac. 54 Then Jacob offered a sacrifice on the mountain, and called his brethren to eat bread. And they ate bread and stayed all night on the mountain. 55 And early in the morning Laban arose, and (BL)kissed his sons and daughters and (BM)blessed them. Then Laban departed and (BN)returned to his place.
- Genesis 30:30 Lit. at my foot
- Genesis 31:5 Lit. face
- Genesis 31:19 Heb. teraphim
- Genesis 31:21 Lit. set his face toward
- Genesis 31:34 Heb. teraphim
- Genesis 31:34 Lit. felt
- Genesis 31:35 Heb. teraphim
- Genesis 31:36 transgression
- Genesis 31:44 treaty
- Genesis 31:47 Lit., in Aram., Heap of Witness
- Genesis 31:47 Lit., in Heb., Heap of Witness
- Genesis 31:49 Lit. Watch
- Genesis 31:53 A reference to God