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Jacob Meets Esau

33:1 Jacob looked up1 and saw that Esau was coming2 along with four hundred men. So he divided the children among Leah, Rachel, and the two female servants. 33:2 He put the servants and their children in front, with Leah and her children behind them, and Rachel and Joseph behind them.3 33:3 But Jacob4 himself went on ahead of them, and he bowed toward the ground seven times as he approached5 his brother. 33:4 But Esau ran to meet him, embraced him, hugged his neck, and kissed him. Then they both wept. 33:5 When Esau6 looked up7 and saw the women and the children, he asked, “Who are these people with you?” Jacob8 replied, “The children whom God has graciously given9 your servant.” 33:6 The female servants came forward with their children and bowed down.10 33:7 Then Leah came forward with her children and they bowed down. Finally Joseph and Rachel came forward and bowed down.

33:8 Esau11 then asked, “What did you intend12 by sending all these herds to meet me?”13 Jacob14 replied, “To find favor in your sight, my lord.” 33:9 But Esau said, “I have plenty, my brother. Keep what belongs to you.” 33:10 “No, please take them,” Jacob said.15 “If I have found favor in your sight, accept16 my gift from my hand. Now that I have seen your face and you have accepted me,17 it is as if I have seen the face of God.18 33:11 Please take my present19 that was brought to you, for God has been generous20 to me and I have all I need.”21 When Jacob urged him, he took it.22

33:12 Then Esau23 said, “Let’s be on our way!24 I will go in front of you.” 33:13 But Jacob25 said to him, “My lord knows that the children are young,26 and that I have to look after the sheep and cattle that are nursing their young.27 If they are driven too hard for even a single day, all the animals will die. 33:14 Let my lord go on ahead of his servant. I will travel more slowly, at the pace of the herds and the children,28 until I come to my lord at Seir.”

33:15 So Esau said, “Let me leave some of my men with you.”29 “Why do that?” Jacob replied.30 “My lord has already been kind enough to me.”31

33:16 So that same day Esau made his way back32 to Seir. 33:17 But33 Jacob traveled to Succoth34 where he built himself a house and made shelters for his livestock. That is why the place was called35 Succoth.36

33:18 After he left Paddan Aram, Jacob came safely to the city of Shechem in the land of Canaan, and he camped near37 the city. 33:19 Then he purchased the portion of the field where he had pitched his tent; he bought it38 from the sons of Hamor, Shechem’s father, for a hundred pieces of money.39 33:20 There he set up an altar and called it “The God of Israel is God.”40


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