Laban Pursues Jacob
22On the third day Laban
was told that Jacob had
23Taking his relatives with him, he pursued Jacob for seven days and
caught up with him in the
hill country of Gilead.
24Then God came to
Laban the Aramean in a
dream at night and said to him, “Be careful not to
say anything to Jacob, either good or bad.”
25Jacob had pitched his
tent in the hill country of
Gilead when Laban overtook him, and Laban
and his relatives camped
26Then Laban said to
Jacob, “What have you done? You’ve deceived
me, and you’ve carried
off my daughters like
captives in war.
27Why did you run off
secretly and deceive me?Why didn’t you tell me, so I could send you away
with joy and singing to
the music of timbrels and
28You didn’t even let me
kiss my grandchildren
and my daughters goodbye. You have done
a foolish thing.
29I have the power to
harm you; but last night the God of your father said to me, ‘Be careful
not to say anything to Jacob, either good or bad.’
30Now you have gone
off because you longed
to return to your father’s
household. But why did
you steal my gods?”
31Jacob answered Laban,
“I was afraid, because I thought you would take your daughters away from me by force.
32But if you find anyone
who has your gods, that
person shall not live. In the presence of our relatives, see for yourself
whether there is anything
of yours here with me; and if so, take it.” Now Jacob did not know that
Rachel had stolen the
33So Laban went into Jacob’s tent and into Leah’s tent and into the
tent of the two female
servants, but he found
nothing. After he came out of Leah’s tent, he
entered Rachel’s tent.
34Now Rachel had taken
the household gods and put them inside her camel’s saddle and was sitting on them. Laban searched through
everything in the tent but
35Rachel said to her father, “Don’t be angry,
my lord, that I cannot stand up in your presence; I’m having my period.” So he searched
but could not find the household gods.
36Jacob was angry and took Laban to task.
“What is my crime?” he
asked Laban. “How have
I wronged you that you
hunt me down?
37Now that you have searched through all my
goods, what have you found that belongs to
your household? Put it
here in front of your relatives and mine, and let them judge between
the two of us.
38“I have been with you for twenty years now. Your sheep and goats
have not miscarried, nor have I eaten rams from
39I did not bring you
animals torn by wild beasts; I bore the loss myself. And you demanded payment from
me for whatever was stolen by day or night.
40This was my situation:
The heat consumed me in
the daytime and the cold
at night, and sleep fled from my eyes.
41It was like this for the
twenty years I was in your household. I worked
for you fourteen years for
your two daughters and six years for your flocks,
and you changed my wages ten times.
42If the God of my father, the God of Abraham and the Fear of
Isaac, had not been with
me, you would surely
have sent me away empty-handed. But God has seen my hardship and
the toil of my hands, and
last night he rebuked you.”
43Laban answered Jacob,
“The women are my daughters, the children
are my children, and the flocks are my flocks. All
you see is mine. Yet what can I do today about these daughters of mine, or about the children they have borne?
44Come now, let’s make
a covenant, you and I,
and let it serve as a witness between us.”
45So Jacob took a stone and set it up as a pillar.
46He said to his relatives, “Gather some
stones.” So they took stones and piled them in a heap, and they ate there
by the heap.
47Laban called it Jegar Sahadutha, and Jacob called it Galeed.
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