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31 Revised Standard Version BHS Hebrew Text Reference
Now Jacob heard that the sons of Laban were saying, "Jacob has taken all that was our father's; and from what was our father's he has gained all this wealth." וַיִּשְׁמַע אֶת־דִּבְרֵי בְנֵי־לָבָן לֵאמֹר לָקַח יַעֲקֹב אֵת כָּל־אֲשֶׁר לְאָבִינוּ וּמֵאֲשֶׁר לְאָבִינוּ עָשָׂה אֵת כָּל־הַכָּבֹד הַזֶּה׃ E source Gn.31.1
JACOB flees from Laban. Gn.31.1-21
And Jacob saw that Laban did not regard him with favor as before. וַיַּרְא יַעֲקֹב אֶת־פְּנֵי לָבָן וְהִנֵּה אֵינֶנּוּ עִמֹּו כִּתְמֹול שִׁלְשֹׁום׃ E source Gn.31.2
 
Then the LORD said to Jacob, "Return to the land of your fathers and to your kindred, and I will be with you." וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוָה אֶל־יַעֲקֹב שׁוּב אֶל־אֶרֶץ אֲבֹותֶיךָ וּלְמֹולַדְתֶּךָ וְאֶהְיֶה עִמָּךְ׃ J source Gn.31.3
 
So Jacob sent and called Rachel and Leah into the field where his flock was, וַיִּשְׁלַח יַעֲקֹב וַיִּקְרָא לְרָחֵל וּלְלֵאָה הַשָּׂדֶה אֶל־צֹאנֹו׃ E source Gn.31.4-18a
 
and said to them, "I see that your father does not regard me with favor as he did before. But the God of my father has been with me. וַיֹּאמֶר לָהֶן רֹאֶה אָנֹכִי אֶת־פְּנֵי אֲבִיכֶן כִּי־אֵינֶנּוּ אֵלַי כִּתְמֹל שִׁלְשֹׁם וֵאלֹהֵי אָבִי הָיָה עִמָּדִי׃  
You know that I have served your father with all my strength; וְאַתֵּנָה יְדַעְתֶּן כִּי בְּכָל־כֹּחִי עָבַדְתִּי אֶת־אֲבִיכֶן׃  
yet your father has cheated me and changed my wages ten times, but God did not permit him to harm me. וַאֲבִיכֶן הֵתֶל בִּי וְהֶחֱלִפ אֶת־מַשְׂכֻּרְתִּי עֲשֶׂרֶת מֹנִים וְלֹא־נְתָנֹו אֱלֹהִים לְהָרַע עִמָּדִי׃ 
If he said, 'The spotted shall be your wages,' then all the flock bore spotted; and if he said, 'The striped shall be your wages,' then all the flock bore striped. אִם־כֹּה יֹאמַר נְקֻדִּים יִהְיֶה שְׂכָרֶךָ וְיָלְדוּ כָל־הַצֹּאן נְקֻדִּים וְאִם־כֹּה יֹאמַר עֲקֻדִּים יִהְיֶה שְׂכָרֶךָ וְיָלְדוּ כָל־הַצֹּאן עֲקֻדִּים׃  
Thus God has taken away the cattle of your father, and given them to me. וַיַּצֵּל אֱלֹהִים אֶת־מִקְנֵה אֲבִיכֶם וַיִּתֶּן־לִי׃  
In the mating season of the flock I lifted up my eyes, and saw in a dream that the he-goats which leaped upon the flock were striped, spotted, and mottled. וַיְהִי בְּעֵת יַחֵם הַצֹּאן וָאֶשָּׂא עֵינַי וָאֵרֶא בַּחֲלֹום וְהִנֵּה הָעַתֻּדִים הָעֹלִים עַל־הַצֹּאן עֲקֻדִּים נְקֻדִּים וּבְרֻדִּים׃  
Then the angel of God said to me in the dream, 'Jacob,' and I said, 'Here I am!' וַיֹּאמֶר אֵלַי מַלְאַךְ הָאֱלֹהִים בַּחֲלֹום יַעֲקֹב וָאֹמַר הִנֵּנִי׃  
And he said, 'Lift up your eyes and see, all the goats that leap upon the flock are striped, spotted, and mottled; for I have seen all that Laban is doing to you. וַיֹּאמֶר שָׂא־נָא עֵינֶיךָ וּרְאֵה כָּל־הָעַתֻּדִים הָעֹלִים עַל־הַצֹּאן עֲקֻדִּים נְקֻדִּים וּבְרֻדִּים כִּי רָאִיתִי אֵת כָּל־אֲשֶׁר לָבָן עֹשֶׂה לָּךְ׃  
I am the God of Bethel, where you anointed a pillar and made a vow to me. Now arise, go forth from this land, and return to the land of your birth.'" אָנֹכִי הָאֵל בֵּית־אֵל אֲשֶׁר מָשַׁחְתָּ שָּׁם מַצֵּבָה אֲשֶׁר נָדַרְתָּ לִּי שָׁם נֶדֶר עַתָּה קוּם צֵא מִן־הָאָרֶץ הַזֹּאת וְשׁוּב אֶל־אֶרֶץ מֹולַדְתֶּךָ׃  
Then Rachel and Leah answered him, "Is there any portion or inheritance left to us in our father's house? וַתַּעַן רָחֵל וְלֵאָה וַתֹּאמַרְנָה לֹו הַעֹוד לָנוּ חֵלֶק וְנַחֲלָה בְּבֵית אָבִינוּ׃  
Are we not regarded by him as foreigners? For he has sold us, and he has been using up the money given for us. הֲלֹוא נָכְרִיֹּות נֶחְשַׁבְנוּ לֹו כִּי מְכָרָנוּ וַיֹּאכַל גַּם־אָכֹול אֶת־כַּסְפֵּנוּ׃  
All the property which God has taken away from our father belongs to us and to our children; now then, whatever God has said to you, do." כִּי כָל־הָעֹשֶׁר אֲשֶׁר הִצִּיל אֱלֹהִים מֵאָבִינוּ לָנוּ הוּא וּלְבָנֵינוּ וְעַתָּה כֹּל אֲשֶׁר אָמַר אֱלֹהִים אֵלֶיךָ עֲשֵׂה׃  
So Jacob arose, and set his sons and his wives on camels; וַיָּקָם יַעֲקֹב וַיִּשָּׂא אֶת־בָּנָיו וְאֶת־נָשָׁיו עַל־הַגְּמַלִּים׃  
and he drove away all his cattle, all his livestock which he had gained, the cattle in his possession which he had acquired in Paddan-aram, to go to the land of Canaan to his father Isaac. וַיִּנְהַג אֶת־כָּל־מִקְנֵהוּ וְאֶת־כָּל־רְכֻשֹׁו אֲשֶׁר רָכָשׁ מִקְנֵה קִנְיָנֹו אֲשֶׁר רָכַשׁ בְּפַדַּן אֲרָם לָבֹוא אֶל־יִצְחָק אָבִיו אַרְצָה כְּנָעַן׃ P source Gn.31.18b
 
Laban had gone to shear his sheep, and Rachel stole her father's household gods. וְלָבָן הָלַךְ לִגְזֹז אֶת־צֹאנֹו וַתִּגְנֹב רָחֵל אֶת־הַתְּרָפִים אֲשֶׁר לְאָבִיהָ׃ E source Gn.31.19a (J); Gn.31.19b-20 (E)
 
And Jacob outwitted Laban the Aramean, in that he did not tell him that he intended to flee. וַיִּגְנֹב יַעֲקֹב אֶת־לֵב לָבָן הָאֲרַמִּי עַל־בְּלִי הִגִּיד לֹו כִּי בֹרֵחַ הוּא׃  
He fled with all that he had, and arose and crossed the Euphra'tes, and set his face toward the hill country of Gilead. וַיִּבְרַח הוּא וְכָל־אֲשֶׁר־לֹו וַיָּקָם וַיַּעֲבֹר אֶת־הַנָּהָר וַיָּשֶׂם אֶת־פָּנָיו הַר הַגִּלְעָד׃ J source Gn.31.21
 
When it was told Laban on the third day that Jacob had fled, וַיֻּגַּד לְלָבָן בַּיֹּום הַשְּׁלִישִׁי כִּי בָרַח יַעֲקֹב׃ E source Gn.31.22-24
Laban pursues Jacob. Gn.31.22-55
he took his kinsmen with him and pursued him for seven days and followed close after him into the hill country of Gilead. וַיִּקַּח אֶת־אֶחָיו עִמֹּו וַיִּרְדֹּף אַחֲרָיו דֶּרֶךְ שִׁבְעַת יָמִים וַיַּדְבֵּק אֹתֹו בְּהַר הַגִּלְעָד׃  
But God came to Laban the Aramean in a dream by night, and said to him, "Take heed that you say not a word to Jacob, either good or bad." וַיָּבֹא אֱלֹהִים אֶל־לָבָן הָאֲרַמִּי בַּחֲלֹם הַלָּיְלָה וַיֹּאמֶר לֹו הִשָּׁמֶר לְךָ פֶּן־תְּדַבֵּר עִם־יַעֲקֹב מִטֹּוב עַד־רָע׃  
And Laban overtook Jacob. Now Jacob had pitched his tent in the hill country, and Laban with his kinsmen encamped in the hill country of Gilead. וַיַּשֵּׂג לָבָן אֶת־יַעֲקֹב וְיַעֲקֹב תָּקַע אֶת־אָהֳלֹו בָּהָר וְלָבָן תָּקַע אֶת־אֶחָיו בְּהַר הַגִּלְעָד׃ J source Gn.31.25a (E); Gn.31.25b (J)
 
And Laban said to Jacob, "What have you done, that you have cheated me, and carried away my daughters like captives of the sword? וַיֹּאמֶר לָבָן לְיַעֲקֹב מֶה עָשִׂיתָ וַתִּגְנֹב אֶת־לְבָבִי וַתְּנַהֵג אֶת־בְּנֹתַי כִּשְׁבֻיֹות חָרֶב׃ E source Gn.31.26
 
Why did you flee secretly, and cheat me, and did not tell me, so that I might have sent you away with mirth and songs, with tambourine and lyre? לָמָּה נַחְבֵּאתָ לִבְרֹחַ וַתִּגְנֹב אֹתִי וְלֹא־הִגַּדְתָּ לִּי וָאֲשַׁלֵּחֲךָ בְּשִׂמְחָה וּבְשִׁרִים בְּתֹף וּבְכִנֹּור׃ J source Gn.31.27
 
And why did you not permit me to kiss my sons and my daughters farewell? Now you have done foolishly. וְלֹא נְטַשְׁתַּנִי לְנַשֵּׁק לְבָנַי וְלִבְנֹתָי עַתָּה הִסְכַּלְתָּ עֲשֹׂו׃ E source Gn.31.28-30
 
It is in my power to do you harm; but the God of your father spoke to me last night, saying, 'Take heed that you speak to Jacob neither good nor bad.' יֶשׁ־לְאֵל יָדִי לַעֲשֹׂות עִםָּכֶם רָע וֵאלֹהֵי אֲבִיכֶם אֶמֶשׁ אָמַר אֵלַי לֵאמֹר הִשָּׁמֶר לְךָ מִדַּבֵּר עִם־יַעֲקֹב מִטֹּוב עַד־רָע׃  
And now you have gone away because you longed greatly for your father's house, but why did you steal my gods?" וְעַתָּה הָלֹךְ הָלַכְתָּ כִּי־נִכְסֹף נִכְסַפְתָּה לְבֵית אָבִיךָ לָמָּה גָנַבְתָּ אֶת־אֱלֹהָי׃  
Jacob answered Laban, "Because I was afraid, for I thought that you would take your daughters from me by force. וַיַּעַן יַעֲקֹב וַיֹּאמֶר לְלָבָן כִּי יָרֵאתִי כִּי אָמַרְתִּי פֶּן־תִּגְזֹל אֶת־בְּנֹותֶיךָ מֵעִמִּי׃ J source Gn.31.31a (E?); Gn.31.31b (J)
 
Any one with whom you find your gods shall not live. In the presence of our kinsmen point out what I have that is yours, and take it." Now Jacob did not know that Rachel had stolen them. עִם אֲשֶׁר תִּמְצָא אֶת־אֱלֹהֶיךָ לֹא יִחְיֶה נֶגֶד אַחֵינוּ הַכֶּר־לְךָ מָה עִמָּדִי וְקַח־לָךְ וְלֹא־יָדַע יַעֲקֹב כִּי רָחֵל גְּנָבָתַם׃ E source Gn.31.32-35
 
So Laban went into Jacob's tent, and into Leah's tent, and into the tent of the two maidservants, but he did not find them. And he went out of Leah's tent, and entered Rachel's. וַיָּבֹא לָבָן בְּאֹהֶל יַעֲקֹב וּבְאֹהֶל לֵאָה וּבְאֹהֶל שְׁתֵּי הָאֲמָהֹת וְלֹא מָצָא וַיֵּצֵא מֵאֹהֶל לֵאָה וַיָּבֹא בְּאֹהֶל רָחֵל׃  
Now Rachel had taken the household gods and put them in the camel's saddle, and sat upon them. Laban felt all about the tent, but did not find them. וְרָחֵל לָקְחָה אֶת־הַתְּרָפִים וַתְּשִׂםֵם בְּכַר הַגָּמָל וַתֵּשֶׁב עֲלֵיהֶם וַיְמַשֵּׁשׁ לָבָן אֶת־כָּל־הָאֹהֶל וְלֹא מָצָא׃  
And she said to her father, "Let not my lord be angry that I cannot rise before you, for the way of women is upon me." So he searched, but did not find the household gods. וַתֹּאמֶר אֶל־אָבִיהָ אַל־יִחַר בְּעֵינֵי אֲדֹנִי כִּי לֹוא אוּכַל לָקוּם מִפָּנֶיךָ כִּי־דֶרֶךְ נָשִׁים לִי וַיְחַפֵּשׂ וְלֹא מָצָא אֶת־הַתְּרָפִים׃  
Then Jacob became angry, and upbraided Laban; Jacob said to Laban, "What is my offense? What is my sin, that you have hotly pursued me? וַיִּחַר לְיַעֲקֹב וַיָּרֶב בְּלָבָן וַיַּעַן יַעֲקֹב וַיֹּאמֶר לְלָבָן מַה־פִּשְׁעִי מַה חַטָּאתִי כִּי דָלַקְתָּ אַחֲרָי׃ E source Gn.31.36a (J); Gn.31.36b-37 (E)
 
Although you have felt through all my goods, what have you found of all your household goods? Set it here before my kinsmen and your kinsmen, that they may decide between us two. כִּי־מִשַּׁשְׁתָּ אֶת־כָּל־כֵּלַי מַה־מָּצָאתָ מִכֹּל כְּלֵי־בֵיתֶךָ שִׂים כֹּה נֶגֶד אַחַי וְאַחֶיךָ וְיֹוכִיחוּ בֵּין שְׁנֵינוּ׃  
These twenty years I have been with you; your ewes and your she-goats have not miscarried, and I have not eaten the rams of your flocks. זֶה עֶשְׂרִים שָׁנָה אָנֹכִי עִמָּךְ רְחֵלֶיךָ וְעִזֶּיךָ לֹא שִׁכֵּלוּ וְאֵילֵי צֹאנְכָ לֹא אָכָלְתִּי׃J source Gn.31.38-40
 
That which was torn by wild beasts I did not bring to you; I bore the loss of it myself; of my hand you required it, whether stolen by day or stolen by night. טְרֵפָה לֹא־הֵבֵאתִי אֵלֶיךָ אָנֹכִי אֲחַטֶּנָּה מִיָּדִי תְּבַקְשֶׁנָּה גְּנֻבְתִי יֹום וּגְנֻבְתִי לָיְלָה׃  
Thus I was; by day the heat consumed me, and the cold by night, and my sleep fled from my eyes. הָיִיתִי בַיֹּום אֲכָלַנִי חֹרֶב וְקֶרַח בַּלָּיְלָה וַתִּדַּד שְׁנָתִי מֵעֵינָי׃  
These twenty years I have been in your house; I served you fourteen years for your two daughters, and six years for your flock, and you have changed my wages ten times. זֶה־לִּי עֶשְׂרִים שָׁנָה בְּבֵיתֶךָ עֲבַדְתִּיךָ אַרְבַּע־עֶשְׂרֵה שָׁנָה בִּשְׁתֵּי בְנֹתֶיךָ וְשֵׁשׁ שָׁנִים בְּצֹאנֶךָ וַתַּחֲלֵף אֶת־מַשְׂכֻּרְתִּי עֲשֶׂרֶת מֹנִים׃ E source Gn.31.41-43
 
If the God of my father, the God of Abraham and the Fear of Isaac, had not been on my side, surely now you would have sent me away empty-handed. God saw my affliction and the labor of my hands, and rebuked you last night." לוּלֵי אֱלֹהֵי אָבִי אֱלֹהֵי אַבְרָהָם וּפַחַד יִצְחָק הָיָה לִי כִּי עַתָּה רֵיקָם שִׁלַּחְתָּנִי אֶת־עָנְיִי וְאֶת־יְגִיעַ כַּפַּי רָאָה אֱלֹהִים וַיֹּוכַח אָמֶשׁ׃ 
Then Laban answered and said to Jacob, "The daughters are my daughters, the children are my children, the flocks are my flocks, and 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? וַיַּעַן לָבָן וַיֹּאמֶר אֶל־יַעֲקֹב הַבָּנֹות בְּנֹתַי וְהַבָּנִים בָּנַי וְהַצֹּאן צֹאנִי וְכֹל אֲשֶׁר־אַתָּה רֹאֶה לִי־הוּא וְלִבְנֹתַי מָה־אֶעֱשֶׂה לָאֵלֶּה הַיֹּום אֹו לִבְנֵיהֶן אֲשֶׁר יָלָדוּ׃  
Come now, let us make a covenant, you and I; and let it be a witness between you and me." וְעַתָּה לְכָה נִכְרְתָה בְרִית אֲנִי וָאָתָּה וְהָיָה לְעֵד בֵּינִי וּבֵינֶךָ׃ J source Gn.31.44
 
So Jacob took a stone, and set it up as a pillar. וַיִּקַּח יַעֲקֹב אָבֶן וַיְרִימֶהָ מַצֵּבָה׃ E source Gn.31.45
 
And Jacob said to his kinsmen, "Gather stones," and they took stones, and made a heap; and they ate there by the heap. וַיֹּאמֶר יַעֲקֹב לְאֶחָיו לִקְטוּ אֲבָנִים וַיִּקְחוּ אֲבָנִים וַיַּעֲשׂוּ־גָל וַיֹּאכְלוּ שָׁם עַל־הַגָּל׃ J source Gn.31.46
 
Laban called it Je'gar-sahadu'tha: but Jacob called it Galeed. וַיִּקְרָא־לֹו לָבָן יְגַר שָׂהֲדוּתָא וְיַעֲקֹב קָרָא לֹו גַּלְעֵד׃ E source Gn.31.47
 
Laban said, "This heap is a witness between you and me today." Therefore he named it Galeed, וַיֹּאמֶר לָבָן הַגַּל הַזֶּה עֵד בֵּינִי וּבֵינְךָ הַיֹּום עַל־כֵּן קָרָא־שְׁמֹו גַּלְעֵד׃ J source Gn.31.48
 
and the pillar Mizpah, for he said, "The LORD watch between you and me, when we are absent one from the other. וְהַמִּצְפָּה אֲשֶׁר אָמַר יִצֶף יְהוָה בֵּינִי וּבֵינֶךָ כִּי נִסָּתֵר אִישׁ מֵרֵעֵהוּ׃ E source Gn.31.49-50
 
If you ill-treat my daughters, or if you take wives besides my daughters, although no man is with us, remember, God is witness between you and me." אִם־תְּעַנֶּה אֶת־בְּנֹתַי וְאִם־תִּקַּח נָשִׁים עַל־בְּנֹתַי אֵין אִישׁ עִמָּנוּ רְאֵה אֱלֹהִים עֵד בֵּינִי וּבֵינֶךָ׃  
Then Laban said to Jacob, "See this heap and the pillar, which I have set between you and me. וַיֹּאמֶר לָבָן לְיַעֲקֹב הִנֵּה הַגַּל הַזֶּה וְהִנֵּה הַמַצֵּבָה אֲשֶׁר יָרִיתִי בֵּינִי וּבֵינֶךָ׃ J source Gn.31.51-53a
 
This heap is a witness, and the pillar is a witness, that I will not pass over this heap to you, and you will not pass over this heap and this pillar to me, for harm. עֵד הַגַּל הַזֶּה וְעֵדָה הַמַּצֵּבָה אִם־אָנִי לֹא־אֶעֱבֹר אֵלֶיךָ אֶת־הַגַּל הַזֶּה וְאִם־אַתָּה לֹא־תַעֲבֹר אֵלַי אֶת־הַגַּל הַזֶּה וְאֶת־הַמַּצֵּבָה הַזֹּאת לְרָעָה׃  
The God of Abraham and the God of Nahor, the God of their father, judge between us." So Jacob swore by the Fear of his father Isaac, אֱלֹהֵי אַבְרָהָם וֵאלֹהֵי נָחֹור יִשְׁפְּטוּ בֵינֵינוּ אֱלֹהֵי אֲבִיהֶם וַיִּשָּׁבַע יַעֲקֹב בְּפַחַד אָבִיו יִצְחָק׃ E source Gn.31.53b-32.1
 
and Jacob offered a sacrifice on the mountain and called his kinsmen to eat bread; and they ate bread and tarried all night on the mountain. וַיִּזְבַּח יַעֲקֹב זֶבַח בָּהָר וַיִּקְרָא לְאֶחָיו לֶאֱכָל־לָחֶם וַיֹּאכְלוּ לֶחֶם וַיָּלִינוּ בָּהָר׃  
Early in the morning Laban arose, and kissed his grandchildren and his daughters and blessed them; then he departed and returned home. וַיַּשְׁכֵּם לָבָן בַּבֹּקֶר וַיְנַשֵּׁק לְבָנָיו וְלִבְנֹותָיו וַיְבָרֶךְ אֶתְהֶם וַיֵּלֶךְ וַיָּשָׁב לָבָן לִמְקֹמֹו׃  
      << | Genesis: 31 | >>

Notes: Documentary sources have been extracted from (1) "An Introduction to the Old Testament " by Oesterley & Robinson (1955 ed.), & (2) "Who Wrote the Bible" © Richard Friedman, 1987, Jonathan Cape Ltd.
© Paul Ingram 2006.
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