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1Then Ya'akov went on his journey, and came into the eretz of the bnei kedem. 2And he looked, and hinei a be'er in the sadeh, and, hinei, there were shloshah edrei tzon lying by it; for out of that be'er they watered the edarim: and a great even (stone) was upon the mouth of the be'er. 3And to there were all the edarim gathered: and they rolled the even (stone) from the mouth of the be'er, and watered the tzon, and put the even (stone) again upon the mouth of the be'er in its place. 4And Ya'akov said unto them, My brethren, where are you from? And they said, Of Charan are we. 5And he said unto them, Know ye Lavan ben Nachor? And they said, We know him. 6And he said unto them, Is the shalom with him? And they said, Shalom; and, hinei, Rachel his bat cometh with the tzon. 7And he said, Look, the sun is still high, neither is it time that the flock should be gathered together; water ye the tzon, and go and feed them. 8And they said, We cannot, until all the edarim be gathered together, and till they roll the even (stone) from the mouth of the be'er; then we water the tzon. 9And while he yet spoke with them, Rachel came with the tzon of her av; for she was a ro'ah (shepherdess). 10And it came to pass, when Ya'akov saw Rachel bat Lavan achi immo, and the tzon of Lavan achi immo, that Ya'akov went near, and rolled the even (stone) from the mouth of the be'er, and watered the tzon of Lavan achi immo. 11And Ya'akov kissed Rachel, and lifted up his voice, and wept. 12And Ya'akov told Rachel that he was the relative of her av, and that he was ben Rivkah; and she ran and told her av. 13And it came to pass, when Lavan heard the news of Ya'akov ben achoto, that he ran to meet him, and embraced him, and kissed him, and brought him to his bais. And he told Lavan all these things. 14And Lavan said to him, Surely thou art my etzem (bone) and my basar. And he abode with him the space of a chodesh (month). 15And Lavan said unto Ya'akov, Because thou art my relative, shouldest thou therefore serve me for nothing? Tell me, what shall thy maskoret (wages) be? 16And Lavan had two banot: the shem of the elder was Leah, and the shem of the younger was Rachel. 17Leah had weak eyes; but Rachel was yafeh and lovely in form. 18And Ya'akov loved Rachel; and said, I will serve thee sheva shanim for Rachel thy bat haketannah (younger daughter). 19And Lavan said, It is better that I give her to thee, than that I should give her to another ish; abide with me. 20And Ya'akov served sheva shanim for Rachel; and they seemed unto him but a few yamim, because of the ahavah he had for her. 21And Ya'akov said unto Lavan, Give me my isha, for my yamim are completed, that I may go in unto her. 22And Lavan gathered together all the anshei hamakom, and made a mishteh (feast). 23And it came to pass in the erev, that he took Leah his bat, and brought her to him; and he went in unto her. 24And Lavan gave unto his daughter Leah Zilpah shifchato (his maid) for a shifchah. 25And it came to pass, that in the boker, hinei, it was Leah! And he said to Lavan, What is this thou hast done unto me? Did not I serve with thee for Rachel? So why then hast thou deceived me? 26And Lavan said, It must not be so done in our land, to give the younger before the bechirah. 27Finish her shvu'a (week), and we will give thee this also for the avodah (service, work) which thou shalt do for me yet sheva shanim acherot. 28And Ya'akov did so, and fulfilled her shvu'a; and he gave him Rachel his bat to be his isha also. 29And Lavan gave to his bat Rachel Bilhah his shifchah to be her shifchah. 30And he went in also unto Rachel, and he loved also Rachel more than Leah, and served him yet sheva shanim acherot. 31And when Hashem saw that Leah was hated, He opened her womb but Rachel was barren. 32And Leah conceived, and bore a ben, and she called shmo Reuven: for she said, Surely Hashem hath looked upon my misery; now therefore my ish will love me. 33And she conceived again, and bore ben; and said, Because Hashem hath heard I was hated, He hath therefore given me this also; and she called shmo Shimon. 34And she conceived again, and bore ben; and said, Now this time will my ish yillaveh (become attached) unto me, because I have born him shloshah banim: therefore was shmo called Levi. 35And she conceived again, and bore ben; and she said, Now will odeh (I praise) Hashem; therefore she called shmo Yehudah; and stopped giving birth.
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2002,2003,2008,2010,2011 by Artists for Israel International, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.