Jacob prepares to meet Esau
1Jacob went on his way, and God’s messengers approached him. 2When Jacob saw them, he said, “This is God’s camp,” and he named that sacred place Mahanaim.#32.2 Or two camps 3Jacob sent messengers ahead of him to his brother Esau, toward the land of Seir, the open country of Edom. 4He gave them these orders: “Say this to my master Esau. This is the message of your servant Jacob: ‘I’ve lived as an immigrant with Laban, where I’ve stayed till now. 5I own cattle, donkeys, flocks, men servants, and women servants. I’m sending this message to my master now to ask that he#32.5 Or you be kind.’”
6The messengers returned to Jacob and said, “We went out to your brother Esau, and he’s coming to meet you with four hundred men.”
7Jacob was terrified and felt trapped, so he divided the people with him, and the flocks, cattle, and camels, into two camps. 8He thought, If Esau meets the first camp and attacks it, at least one camp will be left to escape.
9Jacob said, “LORD, God of my father Abraham, God of my father Isaac, who said to me, ‘Go back to your country and your relatives, and I’ll make sure things go well for you,’ 10I don’t deserve how loyal and truthful you’ve been to your servant. I went away across the Jordan with just my staff, but now I’ve become two camps. 11Save me from my brother Esau! I’m afraid he will come and kill me, the mothers, and their children. 12You were the one who told me, ‘I will make sure things go well for you, and I will make your descendants like the sand of the sea, so many you won’t be able to count them.’”
13Jacob spent that night there. From what he had acquired, he set aside a gift for his brother Esau: 14two hundred female goats and twenty male goats, two hundred ewes and twenty rams, 15thirty nursing camels with their young, forty cows and ten bulls, and twenty female donkeys and ten male donkeys. 16He separated these herds and gave them to his servants. He said to them, “Go ahead of me and put some distance between each of the herds.” 17He ordered the first group, “When my brother Esau meets you and asks you, ‘Who are you with? Where are you going? And whose herds are these in front of you?’ 18say, ‘They are your servant Jacob’s, a gift sent to my master Esau. And Jacob is actually right behind us.’” 19He also ordered the second group, the third group, and everybody following the herds, “Say exactly the same thing to Esau when you find him. 20Say also, ‘Your servant Jacob is right behind us.’” Jacob thought, I may be able to pacify Esau with the gift I’m sending ahead. When I meet him, perhaps he will be kind to me. 21So Jacob sent the gift ahead of him, but he spent that night in the camp.
Jacob wrestles with God
22Jacob got up during the night, took his two wives, his two women servants, and his eleven sons, and crossed the Jabbok River’s shallow water. 23He took them and everything that belonged to him, and he helped them cross the river. 24But Jacob stayed apart by himself, and a man wrestled with him until dawn broke. 25When the man saw that he couldn’t defeat Jacob, he grabbed Jacob’s thigh and tore a muscle in Jacob’s thigh as he wrestled with him. 26The man said, “Let me go because the dawn is breaking.”
But Jacob said, “I won’t let you go until you bless me.”
27He said to Jacob, “What’s your name?” and he said, “Jacob.” 28Then he said, “Your name won’t be Jacob any longer, but Israel,#32.28 Or God struggles or one who struggles with God because you struggled with God and with men and won.”
29Jacob also asked and said, “Tell me your name.”
But he said, “Why do you ask for my name?” and he blessed Jacob there. 30Jacob named the place Peniel,#32.30 Or face of God “because I’ve seen God face-to-face, and my life has been saved.” 31The sun rose as Jacob passed Penuel, limping because of his thigh. 32Therefore, Israelites don’t eat the tendon attached to the thigh muscle to this day, because he grabbed Jacob’s thigh muscle at the tendon.
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1Jacob also went on the journey he had begun: and the angels of God met him.
2And when he saw them, he said: These are the camps of God. And he called the name of that place Mahanaim, that is, Camps.
3And he sent messengers before him to Esau his brother to the land of Seir to the country of Edom:
4And he commanded them, saying: Thus shall ye speak to my lord Esau: Thus saith thy brother Jacob: I have sojourned with Laban, and have been with him until this day.
5I have oxen, and asses, and sheep, and men-servants, and women-servants: and now I send a message to my lord, that I may find favor in thy sight.
6And the messengers returned to Jacob, saying: We came to Esau thy brother, and, behold, he cometh with speed to meet thee with four hundred men.
7Then Jacob was greatly afraid; and in his fear divided the people that was with him, and the flocks, and the sheep, and the oxen, and the camels, into two companies,
8Saying: If Esau come to one company and destroy it, the other company that is left shall escape.
9And Jacob said: O God of my father Abraham, and God of my father Isaac, O Lord, who saidst to me: Return to thy land and to the place of thy birth, and I will do well for thee,
10I am not worthy of the least of all thy mercies, and of thy truth which thou hast fulfilled to thy servant. With my staff I passed over this Jordan; and now I return with two companies.
11Deliver me from the hand of my brother Esau, for I am greatly afraid of him: lest perhaps he come, and kill the mother with the children.
12Thou didst say that thou wouldst do well by me, and multiply my seed like the sand of the sea, which cannot be numbered for the multitude.
13And when he had slept there that night, he set apart, of the things which he had, presents for his brother Esau.
14Two hundred she-goats, twenty he-goats, two hundred ewes, and twenty rams,
15Thirty milch camels with their colts, forty kine, and twenty bulls, twenty she-asses, and ten of their foals.
16And he sent them by the hands of his servants, every drove by itself, and he said to his servants: Go before me, and let there be a space between drove and drove.
17And he commanded the first, saying: If thou meet my brother Esau, and he ask thee: Whose art thou? Or, Whither goest thou? Or, Whose are these before thee?
18Thou shalt answer: Thy servant Jacob's: he hath sent them as a present to my lord Esau: and he cometh after us.
19In like manner he commanded the second and the third, and all that followed the droves, saying: Speak ye the same words to Esau, when ye find him.
20And ye shall add: Thy servant Jacob himself also followeth after us. For he said: I will appease him with the presents that go before, and afterwards I will see him. Perhaps he will be gracious to me.
21So the presents went before him; but himself lodged that night in the camp.
22And rising early he took his two wives, and his two handmaids, with his eleven sons, and passed over the ford of Jaboc.
23And when all things were brought over that belonged to him,
24He remained alone: and, behold, a man wrestled with him till morning.
25And when he saw that he could not overcome him, he touched the sinew of his thigh, and forthwith it shrank.
26And he said to him: Let me go, for it is break of day. He answered. I will not let thee go except thou bless me.
27And he said: What is thy name? He answered: Jacob.
28But he said: Thy name shall not be called Jacob, but Israel: for if thou hast been strong against God, how much more shalt thou prevail against men?
29Jacob asked him, Tell me by what name art thou called? He answered: Why dost thou ask my name? And he blessed him in the same place.
30And Jacob called the name of the place Phanuel, saying: I have seen God face to face, and my soul has been saved.
31And immediately the sun rose upon him, after he was past Phanuel; but he halted on his foot.
32Therefore the children of Israel, unto this day, eat not the sinew, that shrank in Jacob's thigh: because he touched the sinew of his thigh and it shrank.
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