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Genesis 32

32
Jacob Sends Messages and Gifts to Esau
1 # 32:1 Genesis 32:1–32 in English Bibles is Genesis 32:2–33 in the Hebrew Bible. As Jacob went on his way, God’s angels met him. 2When he saw them, Jacob said, “This is God’s camp!” He named that place Mahanaim [Two Camps].
3Jacob sent messengers ahead of him to his brother Esau in Seir, the country of Edom. 4He commanded them to give this message to Esau, “Sir, this is what Jacob has to say, ‘I’ve been living with Laban and have stayed until now. 5I have cattle and donkeys, sheep and goats, and male and female slaves. I’ve sent ⌞these messengers⌟ to tell you ⌞this news⌟ in order to win your favor.’ ”
6When the messengers came back to Jacob, they said, “We went to your brother Esau. He is coming to meet you with 400 men.”
7Jacob was terrified and distressed. So he divided the people, the sheep and goats, the cattle, and the camels into two camps. 8He thought, “If Esau attacks the one camp, then the other camp will be able to escape.”
9Then Jacob prayed, “God of my grandfather Abraham and God of my father Isaac! Lord, you said to me, ‘Go back to your land and to your relatives, and I will make you prosperous.’ 10I’m not worthy of all the love and faithfulness you have shown me. I only had a shepherd’s staff when I crossed the Jordan River, but now I have two camps. 11Please save me from my brother Esau, because I’m afraid of him. I’m afraid that he’ll come and attack me and the mothers and children too. 12But you did say, ‘I will make sure that you are prosperous and that your descendants will be as many as the grains of sand on the seashore. No one will be able to count them because there are so many.’ ”
13He stayed there that night. Then he prepared a gift for his brother Esau from what he had brought with him: 14200 female goats and 20 male goats, 200 female sheep and 20 male sheep, 1530 female camels with their young, 40 cows and 10 bulls, 20 female donkeys and 10 male donkeys.
16He placed servants in charge of each herd. Then he said to his servants, “Go ahead of me, and keep a distance between the herds.” 17He commanded the first servant, “When my brother Esau meets you and asks you, ‘To whom do you belong, and where are you going, and whose animals are these ahead of you?’ 18then say, ‘Sir, they belong to your servant Jacob. This is a gift sent to you. Jacob is right behind us.’ ” 19He also commanded the second servant, the third, and all the others who followed the herds. He said, “Say the same thing to Esau when you find him. 20And be sure to add, ‘Jacob is right behind us, sir.’ ” He thought, “I’ll make peace with him by giving him this gift that I’m sending ahead of me. After that I will see him, and he’ll welcome me back.” 21So Jacob sent the gift ahead of him while he stayed in the camp that night.
Jacob’s Fourth Encounter with God—He Wrestles with God
22During that night he got up and gathered his two wives, his two slaves and his eleven children and crossed at the shallow part of the Jabbok River. 23After he sent them across the stream, he sent everything else across. 24So Jacob was left alone. Then a man wrestled with him until dawn. 25When the man saw that he could not win against Jacob, he touched the socket of Jacob’s hip so that it was dislocated as they wrestled. 26Then the man said, “Let me go; it’s almost dawn.”
But Jacob answered, “I won’t let you go until you bless me.”
27So the man asked him, “What’s your name?”
“Jacob,” he answered.
28The man said, “Your name will no longer be Jacob but Israel [He Struggles With God], because you have struggled with God and with men—and you have won.”
29Jacob said, “Please tell me your name.”
The man answered, “Why do you ask for my name?” Then he blessed Jacob there. 30So Jacob named that place Peniel [Face of God], because he said, “I have seen God face to face, but my life was saved.” 31The sun rose as he passed Penuel.#32:31 Another name for Peniel. He was limping because of his hip. 32(Therefore, even today the people of Israel do not eat the muscle of the thigh attached to the hip socket because God touched the socket of Jacob’s hip at the muscle of the thigh.)
32
Jacob Prepares to Meet Esau
1Jacob also left that place. While he was traveling, he saw God’s angels. 2When he saw them, he said, “This is God’s camp!” So Jacob named that place Mahanaim.#32:2 Mahanaim This name means “two camps.”
3Jacob’s brother Esau was living in the area called Seir in the hill country of Edom. Jacob sent messengers to Esau. 4He told them, “Tell this to my master Esau: ‘Your servant Jacob says, I have lived with Laban all these years. 5I have many cattle, donkeys, flocks, and servants. Sir, I am sending you this message to ask you to accept us.’”
6The messengers came back to Jacob and said, “We went to your brother Esau. He is coming to meet you. He has 400 men with him.”
7Jacob was very frightened and worried. He divided the people who were with him and all the flocks, herds, and camels into two groups. 8Jacob thought, “If Esau comes and destroys one group, the other group can run away and be saved.”
9Then Jacob said, “God of my father Abraham! God of my father Isaac! Lord, you told me to come back to my country and to my family. You said that you would do good to me. 10You have been very kind to me. You did many good things for me. The first time I traveled across the Jordan River, I owned nothing—only my walking stick. But now I own enough things to have two full groups. 11I ask you to please save me from my brother Esau. I am afraid that he will come and kill us all, even the mothers with the children. 12Lord, you said to me, ‘I will be good to you. I will increase your family and make your children as many as the sands of the sea. There will be too many to count.’”
13Jacob stayed in that place for the night. He prepared some things to give to Esau as a gift. 14He took 200 female goats and 20 male goats, 200 female sheep and 20 male sheep. 15He took 30 camels and their colts, 40 cows and 10 bulls, 20 female donkeys and 10 male donkeys. 16He gave each flock of animals to his servants. Then he said to them, “Separate each group of animals. Go ahead of me and keep some space between each herd.” 17Jacob gave them their orders. To the servant with the first group of animals he said, “When Esau my brother comes to you and asks you, ‘Whose animals are these? Where are you going? Whose servant are you?’ 18then you should answer, ‘These animals belong to your servant Jacob. He sent them as a gift to you, my master Esau. And he also is coming behind us.’”
19Jacob also ordered the second servant, the third servant, and all the other servants to do the same thing. He said, “You will say the same thing to Esau when you meet him. 20You will say, ‘This is a gift to you, and your servant Jacob is behind us.’”
Jacob thought, “If I send these men ahead with gifts, maybe Esau will forgive me and accept me.” 21So Jacob sent the gifts to Esau, but he stayed that night in the camp.
22During the night, Jacob got up and began moving his two wives, his two maids, and his eleven sons across the Jabbok River at the crossing. 23After he sent his family across the river, he sent across everything he had.
The Fight With God
24Jacob was left alone, and a man came and wrestled with him. The man fought with him until the sun came up. 25When the man saw that he could not defeat Jacob, he touched Jacob’s leg and put it out of joint.
26Then the man said to Jacob, “Let me go. The sun is coming up.”
But Jacob said, “I will not let you go. You must bless me.”
27And the man said to him, “What is your name?”
And Jacob said, “My name is Jacob.”
28Then the man said, “Your name will not be Jacob. Your name will now be Israel.#32:28 Israel This name might mean “he fights for God,” “he fights with God,” or “God fights.” I give you this name because you have fought with God and with men, and you have won.”
29Then Jacob asked him, “Please tell me your name.”
But the man said, “Why do you ask my name?” Then the man blessed Jacob at that place.
30So Jacob named that place Peniel.#32:30 Peniel A name that means “the face of God.” He said, “At this place, I saw God face to face, but my life was spared.” 31Then the sun came up as Jacob left Peniel. He was limping because of his leg. 32So even today, the people of Israel don’t eat the muscle that is on the hip joint, because this is the muscle where Jacob was hurt.