New American Standard Bible

Genesis 33

Jacob Meets Esau

1Then Jacob lifted his eyes and looked, and behold, Esau was coming, and four hundred men with him. So he divided the children [a]among Leah and Rachel and the two maids. He put the maids and their children [b]in front, and Leah and her children [c]next, and Rachel and Joseph [d]last. But he himself passed on ahead of them and bowed down to the ground seven times, until he came near to his brother.

Then Esau ran to meet him and embraced him, and fell on his neck and kissed him, and they wept. He lifted his eyes and saw the women and the children, and said, “[e]Who are these with you?” So he said, “The children whom God has graciously given your servant.” Then the maids came near [f]with their children, and they bowed down. Leah likewise came near with her children, and they bowed down; and afterward Joseph came near with Rachel, and they bowed down. And he said, “What do you mean by all this company which I have met?” And he said, “To find favor in the sight of my lord.” But Esau said, “I have plenty, my brother; let what you have be your own.” 10 Jacob said, “No, please, if now I have found favor in your sight, then take my present from my hand, [g]for I see your face as one sees the face of God, and you have received me favorably. 11 Please take my [h]gift which has been brought to you, because God has dealt graciously with me and because I have [i]plenty.” Thus he urged him and he took it.

12 Then [j]Esau said, “Let us take our journey and go, and I will go before you.” 13 But he said to him, “My lord knows that the children are frail and that the flocks and herds which are nursing are [k]a care to me. And if they are driven hard one day, all the flocks will die. 14 Please let my lord pass on before his servant, and I will proceed at my leisure, according to the pace of the cattle that are before me and according to the pace of the children, until I come to my lord at Seir.”

15 Esau said, “Please let me leave with you some of the people who are with me.” But he said, “[l]What need is there? Let me find favor in the sight of my lord.” 16 So Esau returned that day on his way to Seir. 17 Jacob journeyed to [m]Succoth, and built for himself a house and made booths for his livestock; therefore the place is named Succoth.

Jacob Settles in Shechem

18 Now Jacob came safely to the city of Shechem, which is in the land of Canaan, when he came from Paddan-aram, and camped before the city. 19 He bought the piece of land where he had pitched his tent from the hand of the sons of Hamor, Shechem’s father, for one hundred [n]pieces of money. 20 Then he erected there an altar and called it [o]El-Elohe-Israel.

  1. Genesis 33:1 Or to
  2. Genesis 33:2 Lit first
  3. Genesis 33:2 Lit behind
  4. Genesis 33:2 Lit behind
  5. Genesis 33:5 Or What relation are these to you?
  6. Genesis 33:6 Lit they and
  7. Genesis 33:10 Lit for therefore I have seen your face like seeing God’s face
  8. Genesis 33:11 Lit blessing
  9. Genesis 33:11 Lit all
  10. Genesis 33:12 Lit he
  11. Genesis 33:13 Lit upon me
  12. Genesis 33:15 Lit Why this?
  13. Genesis 33:17 I.e. booths
  14. Genesis 33:19 Heb qesitah
  15. Genesis 33:20 I.e. God, the God of Israel

New Living Translation

Genesis 33

Jacob and Esau Make Peace

1Then Jacob looked up and saw Esau coming with his 400 men. So he divided the children among Leah, Rachel, and his two servant wives. He put the servant wives and their children at the front, Leah and her children next, and Rachel and Joseph last. Then Jacob went on ahead. As he approached his brother, he bowed to the ground seven times before him. Then Esau ran to meet him and embraced him, threw his arms around his neck, and kissed him. And they both wept.

Then Esau looked at the women and children and asked, “Who are these people with you?”

“These are the children God has graciously given to me, your servant,” Jacob replied. Then the servant wives came forward with their children and bowed before him. Next came Leah with her children, and they bowed before him. Finally, Joseph and Rachel came forward and bowed before him.

“And what were all the flocks and herds I met as I came?” Esau asked.

Jacob replied, “They are a gift, my lord, to ensure your friendship.”

“My brother, I have plenty,” Esau answered. “Keep what you have for yourself.”

10 But Jacob insisted, “No, if I have found favor with you, please accept this gift from me. And what a relief to see your friendly smile. It is like seeing the face of God! 11 Please take this gift I have brought you, for God has been very gracious to me. I have more than enough.” And because Jacob insisted, Esau finally accepted the gift.

12 “Well,” Esau said, “let’s be going. I will lead the way.”

13 But Jacob replied, “You can see, my lord, that some of the children are very young, and the flocks and herds have their young, too. If they are driven too hard, even for one day, all the animals could die. 14 Please, my lord, go ahead of your servant. We will follow slowly, at a pace that is comfortable for the livestock and the children. I will meet you at Seir.”

15 “All right,” Esau said, “but at least let me assign some of my men to guide and protect you.”

Jacob responded, “That’s not necessary. It’s enough that you’ve received me warmly, my lord!”

16 So Esau turned around and started back to Seir that same day. 17 Jacob, on the other hand, traveled on to Succoth. There he built himself a house and made shelters for his livestock. That is why the place was named Succoth (which means “shelters”).

18 Later, having traveled all the way from Paddan-aram, Jacob arrived safely at the town of Shechem, in the land of Canaan. There he set up camp outside the town. 19 Jacob bought the plot of land where he camped from the family of Hamor, the father of Shechem, for 100 pieces of silver.[a] 20 And there he built an altar and named it El-Elohe-Israel.[b]

  1. 33:19 Hebrew 100 kesitahs; the value or weight of the kesitah is no longer known.
  2. 33:20 El-Elohe-Israel means “God, the God of Israel.”