Jacob Returns to Bethel
1Then God said to Jacob, “Arise, go up to Bethel, and settle there. Build an altar there to the God who appeared to you when you fled from your brother Esau.”
2So Jacob told his household and all who were with him, “Get rid of the foreign gods that are among you. Purify yourselves and change your garments. 3Then let us arise and go to Bethel. I will build an altar there to God, who answered me in my day of distress. He has been with me wherever I have gone.”
4So they gave Jacob all their foreign gods and all their earrings, and Jacob buried them under the oak #35:4 Or terebinth or great tree near Shechem.
5As they set out, a terror from God fell over the surrounding cities, so that they did not pursue Jacob’s sons. 6So Jacob and everyone with him arrived in Luz (that is, Bethel) in the land of Canaan. 7There Jacob built an altar, and he called that place El-bethel,#35:7 El-bethel means God of Bethel. because it was there that God had revealed Himself to Jacob as he fled from his brother.
8Now Deborah, Rebekah’s nurse, died and was buried under the oak #35:8 Or great tree below Bethel. So Jacob named it Allon-bachuth.#35:8 Allon-bacuth means oak of weeping.
9After Jacob had returned from Paddan-aram,#35:9 That is, northwest Mesopotamia; also in verse 26 God appeared to him again and blessed him. 10And God said to him, “Though your name is Jacob,#35:10 Jacob means he grasps the heel or he deceives. you will no longer be called Jacob. Instead, your name will be Israel.#35:10 Israel means he struggles with God.” So God named him Israel.
11And God told him, “I am God Almighty.#35:11 Hebrew El-Shaddai Be fruitful and multiply. A nation—even a company of nations—shall come from you, and kings shall descend from you. 12The land that I gave to Abraham and Isaac I will give to you, and I will give this land to your descendants after you.”
13Then God went up from the place where He had spoken with him.
14So Jacob set up a pillar in the place where God had spoken with him—a stone marker—and he poured out a drink offering on it and anointed it with oil. 15Jacob called the place where God had spoken with him Bethel.#35:15 Bethel means house of God.
Benjamin Born, Rachel Dies
16Later, they set out from Bethel, and while they were still some distance from Ephrath, Rachel began to give birth, and her labor was difficult. 17During her severe labor, the midwife said to her, “Do not be afraid, for you are having another son.”
18And with her last breath—for she was dying—she named him Ben-oni.#35:18 Ben-oni could mean son of my sorrow or son of my strength. But his father called him Benjamin.#35:18 Benjamin means son of my right hand.
19So Rachel died and was buried on the way to Ephrath (that is, Bethlehem). 20Jacob set up a pillar on her grave; it marks Rachel’s tomb to this day.
The Sons of Jacob
(1 Chronicles 2:1–2)
21Israel again set out and pitched his tent beyond the Tower of Eder. 22While Israel was living in that region, Reuben went in and slept with his father’s concubine Bilhah, and Israel heard about it.
Jacob had twelve sons:
23The sons of Leah were Reuben the firstborn of Jacob, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, and Zebulun.
24The sons of Rachel were Joseph and Benjamin.
25The sons of Rachel’s maidservant Bilhah were Dan and Naphtali.
26And the sons of Leah’s maidservant Zilpah were Gad and Asher.
These are the sons of Jacob, who were born to him in Paddan-aram.
The Death of Isaac
27Jacob returned to his father Isaac at Mamre, near Kiriath-arba (that is, Hebron), where Abraham and Isaac had stayed.
28And Isaac lived 180 years. 29Then he breathed his last and died and was gathered to his people, old and full of years. And his sons Esau and Jacob buried him.
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