One Year Bible Reflections - Flipbook - Page 55
longs to you! Set it out here in front of
us, before our relatives, for all to see. Let
them judge between us!
38 “For twenty years I have been with
you, caring for your flocks. In all that
time your sheep and goats never miscarried. In all those years I never used
a single ram of yours for food. 39If any
were attacked and killed by wild animals, I never showed you the carcass
and asked you to reduce the count of
your flock. No, I took the loss myself!
You made me pay for every stolen animal, whether it was taken in broad daylight or in the dark of night.
40 “I worked for you through the
scorching heat of the day and through
cold and sleepless nights. 41 Yes, for
twenty years I slaved in your house! I
worked for fourteen years earning your
two daughters, and then six more years
for your flock. And you changed my
wages ten times! 42In fact, if the God of
my father had not been on my side—the
God of Abraham and the fearsome God
of Isaac*—you would have sent me away
empty-handed. But God has seen your
abuse and my hard work. That is why he
appeared to you last night and rebuked
43Then Laban replied to Jacob, “These
women are my daughters, these children
are my grandchildren, and these flocks
are my flocks—in fact, everything you
see is mine. But what can I do now about
my daughters and their children? 44So
come, let’s make a covenant, you and I,
and it will be a witness to our commitment.”
45So Jacob took a stone and set it up as
a monument. 46Then he told his family
members, “Gather some stones.” So they
gathered stones and piled them in a heap.
Then Jacob and Laban sat down beside
the pile of stones to eat a covenant meal.
47 To commemorate the event, Laban
called the place Jegar-sahadutha (which
means “witness pile” in Aramaic), and Jacob called it Galeed (which means “witness pile” in Hebrew).
48 Then Laban declared, “This pile of
stones will stand as a witness to remind
us of the covenant we have made today.”
This explains why it was called Galeed—
“Witness Pile.” 49But it was also called
Mizpah (which means “watchtower”),
for Laban said, “May the Lord keep
watch between us to make sure that
we keep this covenant when we are out
of each other’s sight. 50If you mistreat
my daughters or if you marry other
wives, God will see it even if no one else
does. He is a witness to this covenant
51 “See this pile of stones,” Laban continued, “and see this monument I have
set between us. 52They stand between
us as witnesses of our vows. I will never
pass this pile of stones to harm you, and
you must never pass these stones or this
monument to harm me. 53I call on the
God of our ancestors—the God of your
grandfather Abraham and the God of
my grandfather Nahor—to serve as a
judge between us.”
So Jacob took an oath before the fearsome God of his father, Isaac,* to respect the boundary line. 54Then Jacob
offered a sacrifice to God there on the
mountain and invited everyone to a covenant feast. After they had eaten, they
spent the night on the mountain.
55* Laban got up early the next morning, and he kissed his grandchildren
and his daughters and blessed them.
Then he left and returned home.
Jacob started on his way again,
angels of God came to meet him.
2 When Jacob saw them, he exclaimed,
“This is God’s camp!” So he named the
3 Then Jacob sent messengers ahead
to his brother, Esau, who was living in
the region of Seir in the land of Edom.
4 He told them, “Give this message to my
master Esau: ‘Humble greetings from
your servant Jacob. Until now I have
been living with Uncle Laban, 5and now
I own cattle, donkeys, flocks of sheep
and goats, and many servants, both men
and women. I have sent these messengers to inform my lord of my coming,
hoping that you will be friendly to me.’”