Jacob Fears Esau
1Jacob went on his way, and the angels of God met him. 2And when Jacob saw them he said, "This is God's camp!" So he called the name of that place Mahanaim.
3And Jacob sent messengers before him to Esau his brother in the land of Seir, the country of Edom, 4instructing them, "Thus you shall say to my lord Esau: Thus says your servant Jacob, 'I have sojourned with Laban and stayed until now. 5I have oxen, donkeys, flocks, male servants, and female servants. I have sent to tell my lord, in order that I may find favor in your sight.'"
6And the messengers returned to Jacob, saying, "We came to your brother Esau, and he is coming to meet you, and there are four hundred men with him." 7Then Jacob was greatly afraid and distressed. He divided the people who were with him, and the flocks and herds and camels, into two camps, 8thinking, "If Esau comes to the one camp and attacks it, then the camp that is left will escape."
9And Jacob said, "O God of my father Abraham and God of my father Isaac, O Lord who said to me, 'Return to your country and to your kindred, that I may do you good,' 10I am not worthy of the least of all the deeds of steadfast love and all the faithfulness that you have shown to your servant, for with only my staff I crossed this Jordan, and now I have become two camps. 11Please deliver me from the hand of my brother, from the hand of Esau, for I fear him, that he may come and attack me, the mothers with the children. 12But you said, 'I will surely do you good, and make your offspring as the sand of the sea, which cannot be numbered for multitude.'"
13So he stayed there that night, and from what he had with him he took a present for his brother Esau, 14two hundred female goats and twenty male goats, two hundred ewes and twenty rams, 15thirty milking camels and their calves, forty cows and ten bulls, twenty female donkeys and ten male donkeys. 16These he handed over to his servants, every drove by itself, and said to his servants, "Pass on ahead of me and put a space between drove and drove." 17He instructed the first, "When Esau my brother meets you and asks you, 'To whom do you belong? Where are you going? And whose are these ahead of you?' 18then you shall say, 'They belong to your servant Jacob. They are a present sent to my lord Esau. And moreover, he is behind us.'" 19He likewise instructed the second and the third and all who followed the droves, "You shall say the same thing to Esau when you find him, 20and you shall say, 'Moreover, your servant Jacob is behind us.'" For he thought, "I may appease him with the present that goes ahead of me, and afterward I shall see his face. Perhaps he will accept me." 21So the present passed on ahead of him, and he himself stayed that night in the camp.
Jacob Wrestles with God
22The same night he arose and took his two wives, his two female servants, and his eleven children, and crossed the ford of the Jabbok. 23He took them and sent them across the stream, and everything else that he had. 24And Jacob was left alone. And a man wrestled with him until the breaking of the day. 25When the man saw that he did not prevail against Jacob, he touched his hip socket, and Jacob's hip was put out of joint as he wrestled with him. 26Then he said, "Let me go, for the day has broken." But Jacob said, "I will not let you go unless you bless me." 27And he said to him, "What is your name?" And he said, "Jacob." 28Then he said, "Your name shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel, for you have striven with God and with men, and have prevailed." 29Then Jacob asked him, "Please tell me your name." But he said, "Why is it that you ask my name?" And there he blessed him. 30So Jacob called the name of the place Peniel, saying, "For I have seen God face to face, and yet my life has been delivered." 31The sun rose upon him as he passed Penuel, limping because of his hip. 32Therefore to this day the people of Israel do not eat the sinew of the thigh that is on the hip socket, because he touched the socket of Jacob's hip on the sinew of the thigh.
Jacob Meets Esau
1And Jacob lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, Esau was coming, and four hundred men with him. So he divided the children among Leah and Rachel and the two female servants. 2And he put the servants with their children in front, then Leah with her children, and Rachel and Joseph last of all. 3He himself went on before them, bowing himself to the ground seven times, until he came near to his brother.
4But Esau ran to meet him and embraced him and fell on his neck and kissed him, and they wept. 5And when Esau lifted up his eyes and saw the women and children, he said, "Who are these with you?" Jacob said, "The children whom God has graciously given your servant." 6Then the servants drew near, they and their children, and bowed down. 7Leah likewise and her children drew near and bowed down. And last Joseph and Rachel drew near, and they bowed down. 8Esau said, "What do you mean by all this company that I met?" Jacob answered, "To find favor in the sight of my lord." 9But Esau said, "I have enough, my brother; keep what you have for yourself." 10Jacob said, "No, please, if I have found favor in your sight, then accept my present from my hand. For I have seen your face, which is like seeing the face of God, and you have accepted me. 11Please accept my blessing that is brought to you, because God has dealt graciously with me, and because I have enough." Thus he urged him, and he took it.
12Then Esau said, "Let us journey on our way, and I will go ahead of you." 13But Jacob said to him, "My lord knows that the children are frail, and that the nursing flocks and herds are a care to me. If they are driven hard for one day, all the flocks will die. 14Let my lord pass on ahead of his servant, and I will lead on slowly, at the pace of the livestock that are ahead of me and at the pace of the children, until I come to my lord in Seir."
15So Esau said, "Let me leave with you some of the people who are with me." But he said, "What need is there? Let me find favor in the sight of my lord." 16So Esau returned that day on his way to Seir. 17But Jacob journeyed to Succoth, and built himself a house and made booths for his livestock. Therefore the name of the place is called Succoth.
18And Jacob came safely to the city of Shechem, which is in the land of Canaan, on his way from Paddan-aram, and he camped before the city. 19And from the sons of Hamor, Shechem's father, he bought for a hundred pieces of money the piece of land on which he had pitched his tent. 20There he erected an altar and called it El-Elohe-Israel.
The Defiling of Dinah
1Now Dinah the daughter of Leah, whom she had borne to Jacob, went out to see the women of the land. 2And when Shechem the son of Hamor the Hivite, the prince of the land, saw her, he seized her and lay with her and humiliated her. 3And his soul was drawn to Dinah the daughter of Jacob. He loved the young woman and spoke tenderly to her. 4So Shechem spoke to his father Hamor, saying, "Get me this girl for my wife."
5Now Jacob heard that he had defiled his daughter Dinah. But his sons were with his livestock in the field, so Jacob held his peace until they came. 6And Hamor the father of Shechem went out to Jacob to speak with him. 7The sons of Jacob had come in from the field as soon as they heard of it, and the men were indignant and very angry, because he had done an outrageous thing in Israel by lying with Jacob's daughter, for such a thing must not be done.
8But Hamor spoke with them, saying, "The soul of my son Shechem longs for your daughter. Please give her to him to be his wife. 9Make marriages with us. Give your daughters to us, and take our daughters for yourselves. 10You shall dwell with us, and the land shall be open to you. Dwell and trade in it, and get property in it." 11Shechem also said to her father and to her brothers, "Let me find favor in your eyes, and whatever you say to me I will give. 12Ask me for as great a bride price and gift as you will, and I will give whatever you say to me. Only give me the young woman to be my wife."
13The sons of Jacob answered Shechem and his father Hamor deceitfully, because he had defiled their sister Dinah. 14They said to them, "We cannot do this thing, to give our sister to one who is uncircumcised, for that would be a disgrace to us. 15Only on this condition will we agree with you—that you will become as we are by every male among you being circumcised. 16Then we will give our daughters to you, and we will take your daughters to ourselves, and we will dwell with you and become one people. 17But if you will not listen to us and be circumcised, then we will take our daughter, and we will be gone."
18Their words pleased Hamor and Hamor's son Shechem. 19And the young man did not delay to do the thing, because he delighted in Jacob's daughter. Now he was the most honored of all his father's house. 20So Hamor and his son Shechem came to the gate of their city and spoke to the men of their city, saying, 21"These men are at peace with us; let them dwell in the land and trade in it, for behold, the land is large enough for them. Let us take their daughters as wives, and let us give them our daughters. 22Only on this condition will the men agree to dwell with us to become one people—when every male among us is circumcised as they are circumcised. 23Will not their livestock, their property and all their beasts be ours? Only let us agree with them, and they will dwell with us." 24And all who went out of the gate of his city listened to Hamor and his son Shechem, and every male was circumcised, all who went out of the gate of his city.
25On the third day, when they were sore, two of the sons of Jacob, Simeon and Levi, Dinah's brothers, took their swords and came against the city while it felt secure and killed all the males. 26They killed Hamor and his son Shechem with the sword and took Dinah out of Shechem's house and went away. 27The sons of Jacob came upon the slain and plundered the city, because they had defiled their sister. 28They took their flocks and their herds, their donkeys, and whatever was in the city and in the field. 29All their wealth, all their little ones and their wives, all that was in the houses, they captured and plundered.
30Then Jacob said to Simeon and Levi, "You have brought trouble on me by making me stink to the inhabitants of the land, the Canaanites and the Perizzites. My numbers are few, and if they gather themselves against me and attack me, I shall be destroyed, both I and my household." 31But they said, "Should he treat our sister like a prostitute?"
Why Do You Hide Yourself?
1 Why, O Lord, do you stand far away?
Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble?
2 In arrogance the wicked hotly pursue the poor;
let them be caught in the schemes that they have devised.
3 For the wicked boasts of the desires of his soul,
and the one greedy for gain curses and renounces the Lord.
4 In the pride of his face the wicked does not seek him;
all his thoughts are, "There is no God."
5 His ways prosper at all times;
your judgments are on high, out of his sight;
as for all his foes, he puffs at them.
6 He says in his heart, "I shall not be moved;
throughout all generations I shall not meet adversity."
7 His mouth is filled with cursing and deceit and oppression;
under his tongue are mischief and iniquity.
8 He sits in ambush in the villages;
in hiding places he murders the innocent.
His eyes stealthily watch for the helpless;
9 he lurks in ambush like a lion in his thicket;
he lurks that he may seize the poor;
he seizes the poor when he draws him into his net.
10 The helpless are crushed, sink down,
and fall by his might.
11 He says in his heart, "God has forgotten,
he has hidden his face, he will never see it."
12 Arise, O Lord; O God, lift up your hand;
forget not the afflicted.
13 Why does the wicked renounce God
and say in his heart, "You will not call to account"?
14 But you do see, for you note mischief and vexation,
that you may take it into your hands;
to you the helpless commits himself;
you have been the helper of the fatherless.
15 Break the arm of the wicked and evildoer;
call his wickedness to account till you find none.
16 The Lord is king forever and ever;
the nations perish from his land.
17 O Lord, you hear the desire of the afflicted;
you will strengthen their heart; you will incline your ear
18 to do justice to the fatherless and the oppressed,
so that man who is of the earth may strike terror no more.