ImmerseBeginnings NLT - Page 62


Then Jacob prayed, “O God of my grandfather Abraham, and God of my
father, ­Isaac—­O Lord, you told me, ‘Return to your own land and to your
relatives.’ And you promised me, ‘I will treat you kindly.’ I am not worthy of
all the unfailing love and faithfulness you have shown to me, your servant.
When I left home and crossed the Jordan River, I owned nothing except
a walking stick. Now my household fills two large camps! O Lord, please
rescue me from the hand of my brother, Esau. I am afraid that he is coming to attack me, along with my wives and children. But you promised me,
‘I will surely treat you kindly, and I will multiply your descendants until
they become as numerous as the sands along the s­ eashore—­too many
to count.’”
Jacob stayed where he was for the night. Then he selected these gifts
from his possessions to present to his brother, Esau: 200 female goats,
20 male goats, 200 ewes, 20 rams, 30 female camels with their young,
40 cows, 10 bulls, 20 female donkeys, and 10 male donkeys. He divided
these animals into herds and assigned each to different servants. Then
he told his servants, “Go ahead of me with the animals, but keep some
distance between the herds.”
He gave these instructions to the men leading the first group: “When
my brother, Esau, meets you, he will ask, ‘Whose servants are you? Where
are you going? Who owns these animals?’ You must reply, ‘They belong
to your servant Jacob, but they are a gift for his master Esau. Look, he is
coming right behind us.’”
Jacob gave the same instructions to the second and third herdsmen and
to all who followed behind the herds: “You must say the same thing to
Esau when you meet him. And be sure to say, ‘Look, your servant Jacob
is right behind us.’”
Jacob thought, “I will try to appease him by sending gifts ahead of me.
When I see him in person, perhaps he will be friendly to me.” So the gifts
were sent on ahead, while Jacob himself spent that night in the camp.
During the night Jacob got up and took his two wives, his two servant
wives, and his eleven sons and crossed the Jabbok River with them. After
taking them to the other side, he sent over all his possessions.
This left Jacob all alone in the camp, and a man came and wrestled with
him until the dawn began to break. When the man saw that he would not
win the match, he touched Jacob’s hip and wrenched it out of its socket.
Then the man said, “Let me go, for the dawn is breaking!”
But Jacob said, “I will not let you go unless you bless me.”
“What is your name?” the man asked.

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