31 Jacob heard what Laban’s sons were saying. “Jacob has taken everything our father owned,” they said. “He has gained all of this wealth from what belonged to our father.”
7“But your father has cheated me. He has changed my pay ten times. In spite of everything that’s happened, God hasn’t let him harm me. 8Sometimes Laban would say, ‘The speckled ones will be your pay.’ Then all the flocks had little ones with speckles. At other times he would say, ‘The striped ones will be your pay.’ Then all the flocks had little ones with stripes. 9So God has taken away your father’s livestock and given it to me.
11“The angel of God said to me in the dream, ‘Jacob.’ I answered, ‘Here I am.’ 12He said, ‘Look up. See the male goats mating with the flock. All of them have stripes, speckles or spots. That is because I have seen everything that Laban has been doing to you.
14Rachel and Leah replied, “Do we still have any share in our father’s property? 15Doesn’t our father think of us as strangers? First he sold us. Now he has used up what he was paid for us. 16All of the wealth God took away from our father really belongs to us and our children. So do what God has told you to do.”
17Then Jacob put his children and wives on camels. 18He drove all of his livestock ahead of him. He also took with him everything he had gotten in Paddan Aram. He left to go to his father Isaac in the land of Canaan.
19Laban had gone to clip the wool from his sheep. While he was gone, Rachel stole the statues of family gods that belonged to her father. 20And that’s not all. Jacob tricked Laban the Aramean. He didn’t tell him he was running away.
26Laban said to Jacob, “What have you done? You have tricked me. You have taken my daughters away like prisoners of war. 27Why did you run away in secret and trick me? Why didn’t you tell me? Then I could have sent you away happily. We could have sung to the music of tambourines and harps. 28You didn’t even let me kiss my grandchildren and my daughters good-by. You have done a foolish thing.
32“But if you find anyone who has your gods, he will not remain alive. While our relatives are watching, look for yourself. See if there’s anything of yours here with me. If you find anything belonging to you, take it.” But Jacob didn’t know that Rachel had stolen the gods.
After he came out of Leah’s tent, he entered Rachel’s tent. 34Rachel was the one who had taken his family gods. She had put them inside her camel’s saddle. She was sitting on them. Laban searched the whole tent. But he didn’t find anything.
36Jacob was very angry with Laban. “What have I done wrong?” he asked. “What sin have I committed to make you hunt me down like this? 37You have searched through all of my things. What have you found that belongs to your family? Put it here in front of your relatives and mine. Let them decide between the two of us.
38“I’ve been with you for 20 years now. The little ones of your sheep and goats were not dead when they were born. I haven’t eaten rams from your flocks. 39I didn’t bring you animals that were torn apart by wild beasts. I made up for the loss myself. Also, you made me pay for anything that was stolen by day or night.
“I worked for 14 years to get your two daughters. I worked for six years to get my share of your flocks. You changed my pay ten times.
42“But the God of my father was with me. He is the God of Abraham and the God Isaac worshiped. If he hadn’t been with me, you would certainly have sent me away without anything to show for all of my work. But God has seen my hard times. He has seen all of the work my hands have done. So last night he warned you.”
43Laban answered Jacob, “The women are my daughters. The children are my children. The flocks are my flocks. Everything you see is mine. But what can I do today about these daughters of mine? What can I do about the children they’ve had?
48Laban said, “This pile of stones is a witness between you and me today.” That’s why it was named Galeed. 49It was also called Mizpah. That’s because Laban said, “May the Lord keep watch between you and me when we are away from each other. 50Don’t treat my daughters badly. Don’t get married to any women besides my daughters. There isn’t anyone here to see what we’re doing. But remember that God is a witness between you and me.”
51Laban also said to Jacob, “Here is this pile of stones. And here is this pillar. I’ve set them up between you and me. 52This pile is a witness. And this pillar is a witness. They give witness that I won’t go past this pile to harm you. And they give witness that you won’t go past this pile and pillar to harm me.
So Jacob took an oath in the name of the God his father Isaac worshiped. 54He offered a sacrifice there in the hill country. And he invited his relatives to a meal. After they had eaten, they spent the night there.
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