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prayed; and that this was the occasion of his and complained of this unfair proceeding. La coning hither, as his mother had commanded | ban asked pardon for that necessity which him. For," said he, “ we are all brethren | forced him to do what he did; for he said he one to another ; but our mother esteems an | did not give him Lea out of any ill design, alliance with your family more than she does but as overcome by another greater necesone with the families of the country; so Isity; that, notwithstanding this, nothing should look upon yourself and God to be the sup- || binder him from marrying Rachel ; but that porters of my travels, and think myself safe in | when he had served another seven years he my present circumstances.”
would give him her whom he loved. Jacob Laban now promised to treat him with submitted to this condition ; for his love to the great humanity, both on account of his an- | damsel did not permit him to do otherwise ; cestors, and particularly for the sake of his and when seven years more were expired, he mother; towards whom he said he would shew | took Rachel to wife.* his kindness, even though she were absent, Now each of these had handmaids, by their by taking care of him. For he assured him father's donation. Zilpha was handmaid to he would make him the head shepherd of his Lea, and Bilba to Rachel ; by no means flock, and gave him authority sufficient for slaves,ť but subject to their mistresses. Now that purpose ; and when he should be inclined Lea was sorely troubled at her husband's love to return to his parents, he would send him to her sister; and she expected she should be back with presents, and this in as honorable better esteemed if she bare him children. She, a manner as their consanguinity should re- therefore, intreated God perpetually, and when quire. Jacob heard these promises gladly ; || she had borne a son, and her husband was on and said he would willingly undergo any sort that account better reconciled to her, she of pains while he tarried with him ; but de- named her son Reubel, because God had had sired as the reward of those pains that he mercy upon her in giving her a son, for that is might be permitted to marry Rachel, who the signification of this name. After some was not only on other accounts esteemed by | time she bare three more sons; Simeon, him ; but also because she was the means of which name signifies that God had hearkened his coming to him; for he said he was forced to her prayer; Levi, the confirmer of their by the love of the damsel to make this pro- friendship; and Judah, which denotes thanksposal. Laban was pleased with this agree-giving. But Rachel, fearing lest the fruit. ment, and consented to give the damsel to fulness of her sister should estrange Jacob's him, if he would stay with him some time; affection from herself, gave him her handmaid for he was not willing to send bis daughter Bilba, by whom Jacob had Dan: one nay to be among the Canaanites; for he repented interpret that name into the Greek tongue, a of the alliance he had made already by mar- divine judgment; and after him Nephthalim, rying his sister there. And when Jacob had
And when Jacob had as it were unconquerable in stratagems; since given his consent to this, he agreed to serve Rachel tried to conquer the fruitfulness of her his father-in-law seven years, that by giving sister by this stratagem. Accordingly Lea a specimen of his virtue, it might be better took the same method, and used a counter known what sort of a man he was. When stratagem to that of her sister's; for she gave the stated time was expired, Laban made the Jacob her own handmaid Zilpha, by whom he wedding feast; but when it was night, without | had a son, whose naine was Gad, which may Jacob's perceiving it, he put his other daugh | be interpreted fortune ; and after him Asher, ter into bed to him; who was both elder than which may be called a happy man, because he Rachel, and of no comely countenance. Ja- | added glory to Lea. cob slept with her that night; but when it Now Reubel, the eldest son of Lea, brought was day he knew what had been done to him, apples of mandrakes to his mother. When
* Gen. xxix. 28.
upon on both sides, and dismiss again after the time con. + Here we have the difference between slaves for life, tracted for is over, who are no slaves, but free men and and servants, such as we now hire for a time agreed | free women.
Rachel saw them, she desired that she would || suring him that if he despised their small numgive her the apples, for she longed to eatber, and attacked them in an hostile manner, them; but when she refused, and bid her be he would himself assist them. content that she had deprived her of the be Laban having been thus forewarned by nevolence she ought to have had from her hus- God, called Jacob to him the next day, in orband, Rachel, in order to mitigate her sister's der to treat with him, and shewed him what anger, said she would yield her husband to dream he had ; in dependence whereon he her that evening. She accepted of the favor, came confidently to him, and began to accuse and Jacob slept with Lea, who bare then him, alleging that he had entertained him these sons ; Issachar, denoting one born by when he was poor, and in want, and had bire; and Zebulon, one born as a pledge of be-given himn plenty of all things which he had; nevolence towards her; and a daughter, Dina. • For," said he, “ I have joined my daughters After some time Rachel had a son, named Jo-to thee in marriage, and supposed that thy seph, which signified there should be another kindness to me would be greater than before; added to him.
but thou hast had no regard to either thy Now Jacob fed the flocks of Laban all this own mother's relation to ine, nor to the af. time, being twenty years, * after which he definity more recently contracted between us, sired permission to take his wives, and gonor to those wives whom thou hast married ; home; but when his father-in-law would not nor to those children of whom I am the give him leave, he contrived to do it secretly. I grandfather : thou hast treated me He made trial, therefore, of the disposition enemy, by driving away my cattle, and by of his wives, what they thought of this jour- || persuading my daughters to run away from ney. When they appeared glad, and ap- || their father: and by carrying home those saproved of it, Rachel took along with her the cred paternal images which were worshipped images of the gods, which, according to their by my forefathers, and which have been holaws, they used to worship in their own coun- nored with worship by myself. In short, thou try, and ran away, together with her sister. hast done this whilst thou wert my kinsman, Their children also, and their handmaids, and and my sister's son, and the husband of my what possessions they had, went along with || daughters, and wast hospitably treated by me, them. Jacob also drove away half the cattle, || and didst eat at my table." without letting Laban know of it beforehand : When Laban had said this, Jacob replied but the reason why Rachel took the images of in his defence, that he was not the only perthe gods, although Jacob had taught her to son in whom God had implanted the love of despise such worship, was this, that in case his native country, but that he had made it they were pursued and taken by her father, natural to all men; and, therefore, it was but she might have recourse to these images, in reasonable that, after so long time, he should order to obtain his pardón.
go back to it. “ But as to the prey,” said Laban, after one day, being acquainted he,“ of whose driving away thou accusest with Jacob's and his daughters' departure, me, if any other person were the arbitrator, was much troubled, and pursued after them, thou wouldst be found in the wrong, for inleading a band of men with him; and on the stead of those thanks I ought to have had seventh day overtook them, and found them from thee, for both keeping thy cattle, and resting on a certain hill; but he did not then increasing them, how is it that thou art unmeddle with them, for it was even-tide. God || justly angry because I have taken a small stood by him in a dream the same night, and portion of them ? But then, as to thy daughwarned him to receive his son-in-law and his ters, it is not through any evil practices of daughters in a peaceable manner, and not to mine that they follow me in my return home, venture upon any thing rashly, or in wrath to but from that just affection which wives na: them, but to make a league with Jacob; as. || turally have for their husbands ; they follow,
therefore, not so properly myself, as their || pened; and Jacob made the like league, and
OF JACOB'S INTERVIEW WITH HIS BROTHER ESAU.
OW as Jacob was proceeding on his tainly Laban had used Jacob very ill; for journey to the land of Canaan, angels when he saw that God was assisting to Jacob | appeared to him, and suggested to him good in all that he desired, he promised him, that hope of his future condition, and that place of the young cattle which should be born, hehe named the Camp of God: and being deshould have sometimes what was of a white sirous of knowing his brother's intentions, he color, and sometimes what should be of a sent messengers to give him an exact account black color; but when those that came to Ja. of every thing, being afraid, on account of cob's share proved numerous, he did not keep the enmity between them. He charged his faith with him, but said he would give those that were sent to say to Esau, that them to him the next year, because of his " Jacob had thought it wrong to live together envying him the multitude of his possessions. with him, while he was incensed against him, He promised him as before, because he thought and so had gone out of the country ; but now, such an increase was not to be expected: but thinking the time of his absence must have when it appeared to be fact, he again deceived made up their differences, was returning ; that
he brought with him his wives and his chilBut with regard to the sacred images, Ja-dren, with what possessions he had gotten, cob bid them search for them; and when La- and delivered himself, with what was most han accepted of the offer, Rachel being in- dear to him, into his hands; and should think formed of it, put those images in that camel's it his greatest happiness to partake, together saddle on which she rode, and sat upon it; with his brother, of what God had bestowed and by a well-timed excuse * evaded the ne- on him." cessity of rising up; so Laban left off search. When this message was delivered, Esau ing any farther, not supposing that his daugh- was very glad, and met his brother with four ter would conceal his images. He then made hundred men: but when Jacob heard that he a league with Jacob, that he would not bear was coming to meet him with such a number, him any malice on account of what had hap- he was greatly afraid. However, he com
Gen. xxxi. 35.
(the general, or rather master of the horse,) Cheir Al* This league appears to have been made with pecu- || lah, with whom I had some acquaintance before. He liar circumstances: especially with the singular rite of immediately resigned his place to me, and applied himmaking an heap of stones, and cating upon it, and set self to draw together stones into an heap, to build himself ting up one stone for a pillar. Gen. xxxi. 45, 46. a new seat.” This management might be owing to vaNiebuhr, relating his audience with the rinain of Yemen, rious causes. The extreme heat of the ground might says, “ I had gone from my lodgings indisposed, and by render sitting there disagreeable. The same inconvenistanding so long found myself so faint, that I was obliged ence might arise also from its wetness. It was certainly to ask permission to quit the room. I found near the a very common practice; and, as it appeajs from the indoor some of the principal officers of the court, who were
restance of Jacob, a very ancient one. - Harmer's Observasitting in a scattered manner, in the shade, upon stones, tions, Vol. iii. p. 215. B. by the side of the wall. Among them was the nakit,
company of the children, and of the women ;
mitted his hope of deliverance to God; and for his power. He also commanded him to considered bow in his present circumstances be called Israel, t which in the Hebrew be might preserve himself
, and those that tongue signifies one that struggled with the were with him, and overcome his enemies, divine angel. These pronısses were made at if they attacked him injuriously. He there the prayer of Jacob ; for when he perceived fore distributed his company into parts ; some him to be the angel of God, he desired he be sent before the rest, * and the others he would signify to him what should befal him ordered to come close behind: that if the first hereafter, and when the angel had said what were overpowered, when his brother attacked is before related, he disappeared. Jacob was them, they might have those that followed pleased with these things, and named the as the refuge to flee anto; and when he had place Phanuel, which signifies the face of God. put his company in this order, be sent some But when he felt pain by this struggling upon of them to his brother, with presents of cattle, his broad sinews, he abstained from eating that and a great number of four-footed beasts of sinew himself afterward, and for his sake it is many kinds, such as would be very ac-, still not eaten by us. I ceptable to those that received them, on ac When Jacob understood that his brother count of their rarity. Those who were sent was approaching, he ordered bis wives to go proceeded at certain intervals of space asun-before, each by herself, with the handmaids, der, that by following thick one after ano- that they might see the actions of the men as ther, they might appear to be the more nu- they were fighting, if Esau were so disposed. merous, that Esau might remit of his anger. He then went and bowed down to his brother on account of these presents, if he were still Esau, who had no evil design upon him, but unappeased. Instructions were also given to salated him, g and asked him about the him.
and desired, when he had understood all'he When Jacob had made these appointments, wanted to know about them, that he would and night came on, he began to move with go along with him to their father ; but Jacob his company : and as they were gone over a pretending that the cattle were weary, Esaur certain river, called Jabboc, Jacob was left returned to Sier, for there was his place of behind ; and meeting with an angel,, he habitation, which he had named roughness, wrestled with him, the angel beginning the from his own hairy roughness. struggle; but he prevailed over the angel, who used a voice, and spake to him in words,
CHAP. XXI. exhorting him to be pleased with what had happened to him, and not to suppose that his victory was a trifling one, but that he had overcome a divine angels and to eisteen the AFTER this interview, Jacob Same to the come to him, and that his offspring should | Tents, whence he went to Sbechen, a city never fail, and that no man should be too hard of the Canaanites. Now as the Shechmites
* Jacob appears to have been very cautious in con. † Perhaps this may be the proper meaning of the word ducting both his family and his flocks in their journey. Israel by the present and the old Jerusalem analogy of the He was particularly desirous of preserving them. They Hebrew tongue. But it is certain that the Hellenists, of would have been exposed to great danger by haste.. Pre the first century, in Egypt and elsewhere, interpreted pared as the Arabs are for
speedy flight, a quick mo Is-ra-el, to be a man seeing God. tion is very destructive to the young of their flocks. Chardin
says, • Their flocks feed down the places of Gen. xxxii. 32. their encampment so quick, by the great numbers which they have, that they are obliged to remove them too § When Jacob and Esau met they, saluted each other. often, which is very destructive to their flocks, on ac Esau ran to meet Jacob, embraced him, fell on his neck, and count of the young ones, which have not strength enougb kissed him, Gen. xxxiii. 4. Such persons as are intimately to follow." This circumstance shews the energy of Ja- acquainted, or of equal age and dignity, mutually kiss the cob's apology to Esau for not attending him. Harmer's hand, the head, or the shoulder of each other. Shaw's Observations, i. 126. B.
Trad. p. 237. B. vol. 1. (4.)
OF THE VIOLATION OF DINA'S CHASTITY.
were keeping a festival, Dina, who was the and saw his vision. As he was therefore only daughter of Jacob, went into the city, || purifying bis followers, be found the gods of to see the women of that country; but when || Laban, (for he did not before know they were Shechem, the son of Hamor. the king, saw stolen by Rachel,) and he hid them in the her, he defiled ber by violence; and being earth, under an oak in Shechem; and de greatly in love with her, he desired his father parting thence, be offered sacrifice at Bethel, to procure the damsel for him in marriage. the place where he saw his vision wbien he To this request Hamor acceded, and came went first into Mesopotamia. to Jacob, desiring permission that his son When he was gone thence, and was comie Shechem might according to law, marry Di- over against Ephrata, be there buried Ra na ; but Jacob, not knowing how to deny the chel, $ who died in childbed; she was the desire of one of such great dignity, and yet only one of Jacob's kindred that had not the not thinking it lawful to marry his daughter honour of burial at Hebron ; and when he to a stranger, entreated leave to have a pre- had mourned for her a great while, he called vious consultation. So the king went away, the son that was born of her Benjamin, gibein hopes that Jacob would approve of this cause of the sorrow the mother had with him. marriage; but Jacob informed his sons of the These are all the children of Jacob, twelve defitement of their sister, and of the address males, and one female; of whom eight were of Hamor, and desired them to give him their legitimate, viz. six of Leah, and two of Rachel -advice, what they should do. Upon this the and four were of the handmaids, two of each, greatest part said nothing, not knowing what all whose names have been set down already advice to give; but Simeon and Levi, the
CHAP. XXII. bretbren of the damsel, by the same mother, agreed between themselves upon the action fohlewing sih being near the time loffe
festival FROM dihente adacimbe went to Hebron and feasting, they fell upon the watch when the residence of Isaac; and there they lived they were asleep, and entering into the city, * together for a little while: for as to Rebeka, slew all the males, as also the king and his Jacob did not find her alive. Isaac also died son with them, but spared the women; and not long after the coming of his son, and was when they had done this, without their father's buried, with his wife, in Hebron, where the consent, they brought away their sister. family had a monument belonging to them
Now, while Jacob was astonished at this from their forefathers. Now Isaac was a man daring act, and was severely blaming his sons who was beloved of God, and was vouchsafed for it, God stood by him, † and bid him be great instances of providence by God, after of good courage, but to purify his tents, and Abraham his father, and lived to be exceedto offer those sacrifices wbich he had vowed | ing old; for when he had lived virtuously one to offer when he went first into Mesopotamia, || hundred and eighty-five years, he then died:
OF ISAAC'S DEATH AND INTERMENT AT HEBRON.