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Bereshis 29

29
1Then Ya'akov went on his journey, and came into the eretz of the bnei kedem. 2And he looked, and hinei a be'er in the sadeh, and, hinei, there were shloshah edrei tzon lying by it; for out of that be'er they watered the edarim: and a great even (stone) was upon the mouth of the be'er. 3And to there were all the edarim gathered: and they rolled the even (stone) from the mouth of the be'er, and watered the tzon, and put the even (stone) again upon the mouth of the be'er in its place. 4And Ya'akov said unto them, My brethren, where are you from? And they said, Of Charan are we. 5And he said unto them, Know ye Lavan ben Nachor? And they said, We know him. 6And he said unto them, Is the shalom with him? And they said, Shalom; and, hinei, Rachel his bat cometh with the tzon. 7And he said, Look, the sun is still high, neither is it time that the flock should be gathered together; water ye the tzon, and go and feed them. 8And they said, We cannot, until all the edarim be gathered together, and till they roll the even (stone) from the mouth of the be'er; then we water the tzon. 9And while he yet spoke with them, Rachel came with the tzon of her av; for she was a ro'ah (shepherdess). 10And it came to pass, when Ya'akov saw Rachel bat Lavan achi immo, and the tzon of Lavan achi immo, that Ya'akov went near, and rolled the even (stone) from the mouth of the be'er, and watered the tzon of Lavan achi immo. 11And Ya'akov kissed Rachel, and lifted up his voice, and wept. 12And Ya'akov told Rachel that he was the relative of her av, and that he was ben Rivkah; and she ran and told her av. 13And it came to pass, when Lavan heard the news of Ya'akov ben achoto, that he ran to meet him, and embraced him, and kissed him, and brought him to his bais. And he told Lavan all these things. 14And Lavan said to him, Surely thou art my etzem (bone) and my basar. And he abode with him the space of a chodesh (month). 15And Lavan said unto Ya'akov, Because thou art my relative, shouldest thou therefore serve me for nothing? Tell me, what shall thy maskoret (wages) be? 16And Lavan had two banot: the shem of the elder was Leah, and the shem of the younger was Rachel. 17Leah had weak eyes; but Rachel was yafeh and lovely in form. 18And Ya'akov loved Rachel; and said, I will serve thee sheva shanim for Rachel thy bat haketannah (younger daughter). 19And Lavan said, It is better that I give her to thee, than that I should give her to another ish; abide with me. 20And Ya'akov served sheva shanim for Rachel; and they seemed unto him but a few yamim, because of the ahavah he had for her. 21And Ya'akov said unto Lavan, Give me my isha, for my yamim are completed, that I may go in unto her. 22And Lavan gathered together all the anshei hamakom, and made a mishteh (feast). 23And it came to pass in the erev, that he took Leah his bat, and brought her to him; and he went in unto her. 24And Lavan gave unto his daughter Leah Zilpah shifchato (his maid) for a shifchah. 25And it came to pass, that in the boker, hinei, it was Leah! And he said to Lavan, What is this thou hast done unto me? Did not I serve with thee for Rachel? So why then hast thou deceived me? 26And Lavan said, It must not be so done in our land, to give the younger before the bechirah. 27Finish her shvu'a (week), and we will give thee this also for the avodah (service, work) which thou shalt do for me yet sheva shanim acherot. 28And Ya'akov did so, and fulfilled her shvu'a; and he gave him Rachel his bat to be his isha also. 29And Lavan gave to his bat Rachel Bilhah his shifchah to be her shifchah. 30And he went in also unto Rachel, and he loved also Rachel more than Leah, and served him yet sheva shanim acherot. 31And when Hashem saw that Leah was hated, He opened her womb but Rachel was barren. 32And Leah conceived, and bore a ben, and she called shmo Reuven: for she said, Surely Hashem hath looked upon my misery; now therefore my ish will love me. 33And she conceived again, and bore ben; and said, Because Hashem hath heard I was hated, He hath therefore given me this also; and she called shmo Shimon. 34And she conceived again, and bore ben; and said, Now this time will my ish yillaveh (become attached) unto me, because I have born him shloshah banim: therefore was shmo called Levi. 35And she conceived again, and bore ben; and she said, Now will odeh (I praise) Hashem; therefore she called shmo Yehudah; and stopped giving birth.
29
1Jacob went quickly on his way,#29:1. “Went quickly on his way”: literally, “lifted up his feet.” and arrived in the land of the eastern people. 2As he looked around he saw a well in a field with three flocks of sheep lying down beside it, waiting to be given water. A large stone covered the top of the well. 3The usual practice was that#29:3. “The usual practice was that”: supplied for clarity. once all the flocks had arrived, the shepherds would roll away the stone from the well and give their sheep water. Then they would put the stone back again.
4Jacob asked them, “My brothers, where are you from?”
“We're from Haran,” they replied.
5“Do you know Laban, Nahor's grandson?” he asked.
“Yes, we know him,” they replied.
6“How is he?” he asked.
“He's well,” they replied. “Look! In fact here's his daughter Rachel coming with the sheep right now.”
7“Look, there's still plenty of daylight left,” said Jacob. “It's too early to round up the sheep yet. Why not let them drink so they can go back to grazing?”
8“We can't do that until all the flocks have arrived,” they told him. “Then we roll away the stone from the well and let the sheep drink.”
9While he was still talking with them Rachel arrived with the flock she was looking after for her father. 10When Jacob saw Rachel, the daughter of Laban, his mother's brother, he went over and rolled away the stone from the well so Laban's sheep could drink. 11Then Jacob kissed Rachel and wept for joy. 12(He had told her that he was the son of Laban's brother and Rebekah.) She ran and told her father what had happened.
13As soon as Laban heard the news about Jacob he ran out to meet him. He hugged him and kissed him, and took him home. After Jacob had explained everything to Laban, 14Laban told him, “No question about it—you're my own flesh and blood!” Jacob stayed with Laban for a month.
15One day Laban said to him, “You're my relative so you shouldn't be working for me for nothing! Tell me, what should I pay you?”
16Laban had two daughters. The older one was Leah, and the younger one was Rachel. 17Leah had kind#29:17. “Kind”: literally, “soft” or “gentle.” eyes, but Rachel had a shapely figure and beautiful looks. 18Jacob was in love with Rachel so he promised Laban, “I'll do seven years work#29:18. “Seven years work”: in contrast to Abraham's servant Eliezer (chapter 24) Jacob had arrived with no gifts or dowry, so he offers his service as payment in kind. for you for Rachel, your younger daughter.”
19“Well it's better for me to give her to you than anyone else,” Laban replied. “So stay here and work for me.” 20Jacob worked for Laban for seven years, but to him they seemed like just a few days because he really loved her.
21Then Jacob said to Laban, “I've completed the time we agreed. Now give me your daughter to be my wife.”
22So Laban organized a wedding banquet#29:22. “A wedding banquet”: the word actually means “a drinking party,” which is probably the only way the deception could have been successful. and invited everyone around to come. 23But once it was dark Laban brought his daughter Leah to Jacob, and he slept with her. 24(Laban also arranged for his servant Zilpah to be Leah's personal maid.)
25When morning came, he saw it was Leah! He went to Laban and asked angrily, “What have you done to me? It was for Rachel that I worked for you! Why have you deceived me?”
26“Here we don't give the younger daughter in marriage before the firstborn,” Laban replied. 27“Finish this week of wedding celebrations and then I'll give you the other daughter as well, as long as you work another seven years for me.”
28Jacob agreed. He finished the week of wedding celebrations for Leah, and then Laban gave Jacob his daughter Rachel as his wife as well. 29(Laban also arranged for his servant Bilhah to be Rachel's personal maid.) 30So Jacob slept with Rachel as well, and he loved Rachel more than Leah. He worked for Laban another seven years for Rachel.
31The Lord saw that Leah wasn't loved he helped Leah to have children, but not Rachel. 32Leah became pregnant, and had a son she named Reuben,#29:32. “Reuben”: means “Look, a son!” and also sounds like “he saw my suffering.” for she said, “The Lord saw how much I was suffering and now my husband will love me!”
33Then Leah became pregnant again, and had another son. She said, “The Lord has heard that I'm not loved so he gave me this son.” So she named him Simeon.#29:33. “Simeon”: means “he hears.”
34Leah became pregnant for the third time, and had another son. She said, “Finally my husband will be attached to me because now I've given him three sons.” That's why he was named Levi.#29:34. “Levi”: means “attached” or “joined.”
35Once again Leah became pregnant and had another son. She named him Judah,#29:35. “Judah”: means “praise.” for she said, “Now I can really praise the Lord!” After that she had no more children.