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Genesis 29

29
Jacob Meets Rachel
1So Jacob went on his journey #Gen. 25:6; Num. 23:7; Judg. 6:3, 33; Hos. 12:12and came to the land of the people of the East. 2And he looked, and saw a #Gen. 24:10, 11; Ex. 2:15, 16well in the field; and behold, there were three flocks of sheep lying by it; for out of that well they watered the flocks. A large stone was on the well’s mouth. 3Now all the flocks would be gathered there; and they would roll the stone from the well’s mouth, water the sheep, and put the stone back in its place on the well’s mouth.
4And Jacob said to them, “My brethren, where are you from?”
And they said, “We are from #Gen. 11:31; 28:10Haran.”
5Then he said to them, “Do you know #Gen. 24:24, 29; 28:2Laban the son of Nahor?”
And they said, “We know him.”
6So he said to them, #Gen. 43:27“Is he well?”
And they said, “He is well. And look, his daughter Rachel #Gen. 24:11; Ex. 2:16, 17is coming with the sheep.”
7Then he said, “Look, it is still high day; it is not time for the cattle to be gathered together. Water the sheep, and go and feed them.
8But they said, “We cannot until all the flocks are gathered together, and they have rolled the stone from the well’s mouth; then we water the sheep.”
9Now while he was still speaking with them, #Ex. 2:16Rachel came with her father’s sheep, for she was a shepherdess. 10And it came to pass, when Jacob saw Rachel the daughter of Laban his mother’s brother, and the sheep of Laban his mother’s brother, that Jacob went near and #Ex. 2:17rolled the stone from the well’s mouth, and watered the flock of Laban his mother’s brother. 11Then Jacob #Gen. 33:4; 45:14, 15kissed Rachel, and lifted up his voice and wept. 12And Jacob told Rachel that he was #Gen. 13:8; 14:14, 16; 28:5her father’s relative and that he was Rebekah’s son. #Gen. 24:28So she ran and told her father.
13Then it came to pass, when Laban heard the report about Jacob his sister’s son, that #Gen. 24:29–31; Luke 15:20he ran to meet him, and embraced him and kissed him, and brought him to his house. So he told Laban all these things. 14And Laban said to him, #Gen. 2:23; 37:27; Judg. 9:2; 2 Sam. 5:1; 19:12, 13“Surely you are my bone and my flesh.” And he stayed with him for a month.
Jacob Marries Leah and Rachel
15Then Laban said to Jacob, “Because you are my relative, should you therefore serve me for nothing? Tell me, #Gen. 30:28; 31:41what should your wages be?16Now Laban had two daughters: the name of the elder was Leah, and the name of the younger was Rachel. 17Leah’s eyes were delicate, but Rachel was #Gen. 12:11, 14; 26:7beautiful of form and appearance.
18Now Jacob loved Rachel; so he said, #Gen. 31:41; 2 Sam. 3:14; Hos. 12:12“I will serve you seven years for Rachel your younger daughter.”
19And Laban said, “It is better that I give her to you than that I should give her to another man. Stay with me.” 20So Jacob #Gen. 30:26; Hos. 12:12served seven years for Rachel, and they seemed only a few days to him because of the love he had for her.
21Then Jacob said to Laban, “Give me my wife, for my days are fulfilled, that I may #Judg. 15:1go in to her.” 22And Laban gathered together all the men of the place and #Judg. 14:10; John 2:1, 2made a feast. 23Now it came to pass in the evening, that he took Leah his daughter and brought her to Jacob; and he went in to her. 24And Laban gave his maid #Gen. 30:9, 10Zilpah to his daughter Leah as a maid. 25So it came to pass in the morning, that behold, it was Leah. And he said to Laban, “What is this you have done to me? Was it not for Rachel that I served you? Why then have you #Gen. 27:35; 31:7; 1 Sam. 28:12deceived me?”
26And Laban said, “It must not be done so in our country, to give the younger before the firstborn. 27#Gen. 31:41; Judg. 14:2Fulfill her week, and we will give you this one also for the service which you will serve with me still another seven years.”
28Then Jacob did so and fulfilled her week. So he gave him his daughter Rachel as wife also. 29And Laban gave his maid #Gen. 30:3–5Bilhah to his daughter Rachel as a maid. 30Then Jacob also went in to Rachel, and he also #Gen. 29:17–20; Deut. 21:15–17loved Rachel more than Leah. And he served with Laban #Gen. 30:26; 31:41; Hos. 12:12still another seven years.
The Children of Jacob
31When the Lord #Ps. 127:3saw that Leah was unloved, He #Gen. 30:1opened her womb; but Rachel was barren. 32So Leah conceived and bore a son, and she called his name Reuben; for she said, “The Lord has surely #Gen. 16:11; 31:42; Ex. 3:7; 4:31; Deut. 26:7; Ps. 25:18looked on my affliction. Now therefore, my husband will love me.” 33Then she conceived again and bore a son, and said, “Because the Lord has heard that I am unloved, He has therefore given me this son also.” And she called his name Simeon. 34She conceived again and bore a son, and said, “Now this time my husband will become attached to me, because I have borne him three sons.” Therefore his name was called Levi. 35And she conceived again and bore a son, and said, “Now I will praise the Lord.” Therefore she called his name #Gen. 49:8; Matt. 1:2Judah. Then she stopped bearing.
29
1(ii) Continuing his journey, Ya‘akov came to the land of the people of the east. 2As he looked, he saw a well in a field; and there were three flocks of sheep lying there next to it; because they watered the sheep from that well. The stone on the well’s mouth was large, 3and only when all the flocks had gathered there would they roll the stone away from the opening of the well and water the sheep. Then they would put the stone back in its place on the well’s opening.
4Ya‘akov said to them, “My brothers, where are you from?” They answered, “We’re from Haran.” 5He asked them, “Do you know Lavan the [grand]son of Nachor?” They said, “We do.” 6He asked them, “Are things going well with him?” “Yes,” they answered, “and here comes his daughter Rachel with the sheep.” 7He said, “Look, there’s still plenty of daylight left; and it isn’t time to bring the animals home; so water the sheep; then go, and put them out to pasture.” 8They answered, “We can’t, not until all the flocks have been gathered together, and they roll the stone away from the opening of the well. That’s when we water the sheep.”
9While he was still speaking with them, Rachel came with her father’s sheep, because she took care of them. 10When Ya‘akov saw Rachel the daughter of Lavan his mother’s brother, and the sheep of Lavan his mother’s brother, Ya‘akov went up and rolled the stone away from the opening of the well and watered the flock of Lavan his mother’s brother. 11Ya‘akov kissed Rachel and wept aloud. 12Ya‘akov told Rachel that he was her father’s relative, and that he was Rivkah’s son; and she ran and told her father. 13When Lavan heard the news of Ya‘akov his sister’s son, he ran to meet him, hugged him and kissed him, and brought him to his house. Ya‘akov told Lavan all that had happened. 14Lavan said to him, “You are indeed my own flesh and blood.”
After Ya‘akov had stayed with him for a whole month, 15Lavan said to him, “Why should you work for me for nothing, just because you are my relative? Tell me how much I should pay you.” 16Now Lavan had two daughters; the name of the older was Le’ah, and the name of the younger was Rachel. 17Le’ah’s eyes were weak; but Rachel was good-looking, with beautiful features.
(iii) 18Ya‘akov had fallen in love with Rachel and said, “I will work for you seven years in exchange for Rachel your younger daughter.” 19Lavan answered, “Better that I give her to you than to someone else; stay with me.” 20So Ya‘akov worked seven years for Rachel, and it seemed only a few days to him, because he was so much in love with her.
21Ya‘akov said to Lavan, “Give me my wife, since my time is finished, so that I can start living with her.” 22Lavan gathered all the men of the place and gave a banquet. 23In the evening he took Le’ah his daughter and brought her to Ya‘akov, and he went in and slept with her. 24Lavan also gave his slave-girl Zilpah to his daughter Le’ah as her slave-girl.
25In the morning Ya‘akov saw that he was with Le’ah, and he said to Lavan, “What kind of thing is this that you’ve done to me? Didn’t I work for you for Rachel? Why have you deceived me?” 26Lavan answered, “In our place that isn’t how it’s done, to give the younger daughter before the firstborn. 27Finish the marriage week of this one, and we’ll give you the other one also in exchange for the work you will do for me during yet another seven years.” 28Ya‘akov agreed to this, so he finished her week, and Lavan gave him his daughter Rachel as his wife. 29Lavan also gave to his daughter Rachel his slave-girl Bilhah as her slave-girl. 30So not only did Ya‘akov go in and sleep with Rachel, but he also loved Rachel more than Le’ah. Then he served Lavan another seven years.
31Adonai saw that Le’ah was unloved, so he made her fertile, while Rachel remained childless. 32Le’ah conceived and gave birth to a son, whom she named Re’uven [see, a son!], for she said, “It is because Adonai has seen how humiliated I have been, but now my husband will love me.” 33She conceived again, gave birth to a son and said, “It is because Adonai has heard that I am unloved; therefore he has given me this son also.” So she named him Shim‘on [hearing]. 34Once more she conceived and had a son; and she said, “Now this time my husband will be joined to me, because I have borne him three sons.” Therefore she named him Levi [joining]. 35She conceived yet again, had a son and said, “This time I will praise Adonai”; therefore she named him Y’hudah [praise]. Then she stopped having children.