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Genesis 35

35
Jacob Returns to Bethel
1Then God said to Jacob, “Go up to Bethel and live there. Build an altar there to honor me. That’s where I appeared to you when you were running away from your brother Esau.”
2So Jacob spoke to his family and to everyone with him. He said, “Get rid of the statues of false gods you have with you. Make yourselves pure by washing and changing your clothes. 3Come, let’s go up to Bethel. There I’ll build an altar to honor God. He answered me when I was in trouble. He’s been with me everywhere I’ve gone.” 4So they gave Jacob all the statues of false gods they had. They also gave him their earrings. Jacob buried those things under the oak tree at Shechem. 5Then Jacob and everyone with him started out. The terror of God fell on the towns all around them. So no one chased them.
6Jacob and all the people with him came to Luz. Luz is also called Bethel. It’s in the land of Canaan. 7Jacob built an altar at Luz. He named the place El Bethel. There God made himself known to Jacob when he was running away from his brother.
8Rebekah’s attendant Deborah died. They buried her body under the oak tree outside Bethel. So it was called Allon Bakuth.
9After Jacob returned from Paddan Aram, God appeared to him again. And God blessed him. 10God said to him, “Your name is Jacob. But you will not be called Jacob anymore. Your name will be Israel.” So he named him Israel.
11God said to him, “I am the Mighty God. Have children so that there will be many of you. You will become the father of a nation and a community of nations. Your later family will include kings. 12I am giving you the land I gave to Abraham and Isaac. I will also give it to your children after you.” 13Then God left him at the place where he had talked with him.
14Jacob set up a sacred stone at the place where God had talked with him. He poured out a drink offering on it. He also poured olive oil on it. 15Jacob named the place Bethel. That’s where God had talked with him.
Rachel and Isaac Die
16They moved on from Bethel. Ephrath wasn’t very far away when Rachel began to have a baby. She was having a very hard time of it. 17The woman who helped her saw that she was having problems. So she said to Rachel, “Don’t be afraid. You have another son.” 18But Rachel was dying. As she took her last breath, she named her son Ben-Oni. But his father named him Benjamin.
19So Rachel died. She was buried beside the road to Ephrath. Ephrath was also called Bethlehem. 20Jacob set up a stone marker over her tomb. To this day, the stone marks the place where Rachel was buried.
21Israel moved on again. He set up his tent beyond Migdal Eder. 22While Israel was living in that area, Reuben went in and slept with Bilhah. She was the concubine of Reuben’s father. And Israel heard about it.
Here are the 12 sons Jacob had.
23Leah was the mother of
Reuben, Jacob’s oldest son.
Her other sons were Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar and Zebulun.
24The sons of Rachel were
Joseph and Benjamin.
25The sons of Rachel’s female servant Bilhah were
Dan and Naphtali.
26The sons of Leah’s female servant Zilpah were
Gad and Asher.
These were Jacob’s sons. They were born in Paddan Aram.
27Jacob came home to his father Isaac in Mamre. Mamre is near Kiriath Arba, where Abraham and Isaac had stayed. The place is also called Hebron. 28Isaac lived 180 years. 29Then he took his last breath and died. He was very old when he joined the members of his family who had already died. His sons Esau and Jacob buried him.
35
Jacob returns to Bethel
1God told Jacob, “Return to Bethel, where I appeared to you when you were running from your brother Esau. Make your home there and build an altar for me.”#Gn 28.11-17.
2Jacob said to his family and to everyone else who was travelling with him:
Get rid of your foreign gods! Then make yourselves acceptable to worship God and put on clean clothes. 3Afterwards, we'll go to Bethel. I will build an altar there for God, who answered my prayers when I was in trouble and who has always been at my side.
4So everyone gave Jacob their idols and their earrings,#35.4 earrings: These would have had symbols of foreign gods on them. and he buried them under the oak tree near Shechem.
5While Jacob and his family were travelling through Canaan, God terrified the people in the towns so much that no one dared bother them. 6Finally, they reached Bethel, also known as Luz. 7Jacob built an altar there and called it “God of Bethel”, because that was the place where God had appeared to him when he was running from Esau. 8While they were there, Rebekah's personal servant Deborah#35.8 Deborah: See 24.59 and the note there. died. They buried her under an oak tree and called it “Weeping Oak”.
God blesses Jacob at Bethel
9-11After Jacob came back to the land of Canaan, God appeared to him again. This time he gave Jacob a new name and blessed him by saying:#Gn 32.28.#Gn 17.4-8.
I am God All-Powerful, and from now on your name will be Israel#35.9-11 Israel: See the note at 32.28. instead of Jacob. You will have many children. Your descendants will become nations, and some of the men in your family will even be kings. 12I will give you the land that I promised Abraham and Isaac, and it will belong to your family for ever.
13After God had gone, 14Jacob set up a large rock, so that he would remember what had happened there. Then he poured wine and olive oil on the rock to show that it was dedicated to God,#Gn 28.18,19. 15and he named the place Bethel.#35.15 Bethel: See the note at 28.19.
Benjamin is born
16Jacob and his family had left Bethel and were still a long way from Ephrath, when the time came for Rachel's baby to be born. 17She was having a rough time, but the woman who was helping her said, “Don't worry! It's a boy.” 18Rachel was at the point of death, and just before dying, she said, “I'll name him Benoni.”#35.18 Benoni: In Hebrew “Benoni” means “Son of my Sorrow”. But Jacob called him Benjamin.#35.18 Benjamin: In Hebrew “Benjamin” can mean “Son at my Right Side” (the place of power).
19Rachel was buried beside the road to Ephrath, which is also called Bethlehem. 20Jacob set up a tombstone over her grave, and it is still there. 21Jacob, also known as Israel, travelled to the south of Eder Tower, where he set up camp.
22During their time there, Jacob's eldest son Reuben slept with Bilhah, who was one of Jacob's other wives.#35.22 other wives: See the note at 22.24. Bilhah had been Rachel's servant woman (see 29.28-30). And Jacob found out about it.#Gn 49.4.
Jacob's twelve sons
23-26Jacob had twelve sons while living in northern Syria.#35.23-26 northern Syria: See the note at 24.10. His firstborn Reuben was the son of Leah, who later gave birth to Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, and Zebulun. Leah's servant Zilpah had two sons: Gad and Asher.
Jacob and his wife Rachel had Joseph and Benjamin. Rachel's servant woman Bilhah had two more sons: Dan and Naphtali.
Isaac dies
27Jacob went to his father Isaac at Hebron, also called Mamre or Kiriath-Arba, where Isaac's father Abraham had lived as a foreigner.#Gn 13.18. 28-29Isaac died at the ripe old age of one hundred and eighty, then his sons Esau and Jacob buried him.