Book of Jasher 31

Book of Jasher 31

Chapter 31


And in the seventh year, Jacob’s
service which he served Laban was completed, and Jacob said unto Laban, Give me
my wife, for the days of my service are fulfilled; and Laban did so, and Laban
and Jacob assembled all the people of that place and they made a feast.

And in the evening Laban came to the
house, and afterward Jacob came there with the people of the feast, and Laban
extinguished all the lights that were there in the house.

And Jacob said unto Laban, Wherefore
dost thou do this thing unto us? and Laban answered, Such is our custom to act
in this land.

And afterward Laban took his daughter
Leah, and he brought her to Jacob, and he came to her and Jacob did not know
that she was Leah.

And Laban gave his daughter Leah his
maid Zilpah for a handmaid.

And all the people at the feast knew
what Laban had done to Jacob, but they did not tell the thing to Jacob.

And all the neighbors came that night
to Jacob’s house, and they ate and drank and rejoiced, and played before Leah
upon timbrels, and with dances, and they responded before Jacob, Heleah,

And Jacob heard their words but did
not understand their meaning, but he thought such might be their custom in this

And the neighbors spoke these words
before Jacob during the night, and all the lights that were in the house Laban
had that night extinguished.

And in the morning, when daylight
appeared, Jacob turned to his wife and he saw, and behold it was Leah that had
been lying in his bosom, and Jacob said, Behold now I know what the neighbors
said last night, Heleah, they said, and I knew it not.

And Jacob called unto Laban, and said
unto him, What is this that thou didst unto me? Surely I served thee for
Rachel, and why didst thou deceive me and didst give me Leah?

And Laban answered Jacob, saying, Not
so is it done in our place to give the younger before the elder now therefore
if thou desirest to take her sister likewise, take her unto thee for the
service which thou wilt serve me for another seven years.

And Jacob did so, and he also took
Rachel for a wife, and he served Laban seven years more, and Jacob also came to
Rachel, and he loved Rachel more than Leah, and Laban gave her his maid Bilhah
for a handmaid.

And when the Lord saw that Leah was
hated, the Lord opened her womb, and she conceived and bare Jacob four sons in
those days.

And these are their names, Reuben
Simeon, Levi, and
Judah, and she
afterward left bearing.

And at that time Rachel was barren,
and she had no offspring, and Rachel envied her sister Leah, and when Rachel
saw that she bare no children to Jacob, she took her handmaid Bilhah, and she
bare Jacob two sons, Dan and Naphtali.

And when Leah saw that she had left
bearing, she also took her handmaid Zilpah, and she gave her to Jacob for a
wife, and Jacob also came to Zilpah, and she also bare Jacob two sons, Gad and

And Leah again conceived and bare
Jacob in those days two sons and one daughter, and these are their names,
Issachar, Zebulon, and their sister Dinah.

And Rachel was still barren in those
days, and Rachel prayed unto the Lord at that time, and she said, O Lord God
remember me and visit me, I beseech thee, for now my husband will cast me off,
for I have borne him no children.

Now O Lord God, hear my supplication
before thee, and see my affliction, and give me children like one of the
handmaids, that I may no more bear my reproach.

And God heard her and opened her
womb, and Rachel conceived and bare a son, and she said, The Lord has taken
away my reproach, and she called his name Joseph, saying, May the Lord add to
me another son; and Jacob was ninety-one years old when she bare him.

At that time Jacob’s mother, Rebecca,
sent her nurse Deborah the daughter of Uz, and two of Isaac’s servants unto

And they came to Jacob to Haran and they
said unto him, Rebecca has sent us to thee that thou shalt return to thy
father’s house to the
land of Canaan; and Jacob
hearkened unto them in this which his mother had spoken.

At that time, the other seven years
which Jacob served Laban for Rachel were completed, and it was at the end of
fourteen years that he had dwelt in Haran that Jacob said unto Laban, give me
my wives and send me away, that I may go to my land, for behold my mother did
send unto me from the land at Canaan that I should return to my father’s house.

And Laban said unto him, Not so I
pray thee; if I have found favor in thy sight do not leave me; appoint me thy
wages and I will give them, and remain with me.

And Jacob said unto him, This is what
thou shalt give me for wages, that I shall this day pass through all thy flock
and take away from them every lamb that is speckled and spotted and such as are
brown amongst the sheep, and amongst the goats, and if thou wilt do this thing
for me I will return and feed thy flock and keep them as at first.

And Laban did so, and Laban removed
from his flock all that Jacob had said and gave them to him.

And Jacob placed all that he had
removed from Laban’s flock in the hands of his sons, and Jacob was feeding the
remainder of Laban’s flock.

And when the servants of Isaac which he
had sent unto Jacob saw that Jacob would not then return with them to the
land of Canaan to his
father, they then went away from him, and they returned home to the
land of Canaan.

And Deborah remained with Jacob in Haran, and she did
not return with the servants of Isaac to the
land of Canaan, and Deborah
resided with Jacob’s wives and children in

And Jacob served Laban six years
longer, and when the sheep brought forth, Jacob removed from them such as were
speckled and spotted, as he had determined with Laban, and Jacob did so at
Laban’s for six years, and the man increased abundantly and he had cattle and
maid servants and men servants, camels, and asses.

And Jacob had two hundred drove of
cattle, and his cattle were of large size and of beautiful appearance and were
very productive, and all the families of the sons of men desired to get some of
the cattle of Jacob, for they were exceedingly prosperous.

And many of the sons of men came to
procure some of Jacob’s flock, and Jacob gave them a sheep for a man servant or
a maid servant or for an ass or a camel, or whatever Jacob desired from them
they gave him.

And Jacob obtained riches and honor
and possessions by means of these transactions with the sons of men, and the
children of Laban envied him of this honor.

And in the course of time he heard
the words of Laban’s sons, saying, Jacob has taken away all that was our
father’s, and of that which was our father’s has he acquired all this glory.

And Jacob beheld the countenance of
Laban and of his children, and behold it was not toward him in those days as it
had been before.

And the Lord appeared to Jacob at the
expiration of the six years, and said unto him, Arise, go forth out of this
land, and return to the land of thy birthplace and I will be with thee.

And Jacob rose up at that time and he
mounted his children and wives and all belonging to him upon camels, and he
went forth to go to the
land of Canaan to his
father Isaac.

And Laban did not know that Jacob had
gone from him, for Laban had been that day sheep-shearing.

And Rachel stole her father’s images,
and she took them and she concealed them upon the camel upon which she sat, and
she went on.

And this is the manner of the images;
in taking a man who is the first born and slaying him and taking the hair off
his head, and taking salt and salting the head and anointing it in oil, then
taking a small tablet of copper or a tablet of gold and writing the name upon
it, and placing the tablet under his tongue, and taking the head with the
tablet under the tongue and putting it in the house, and lighting up lights
before it and bowing down to it.

And at the time when they bow down to
it, it speaketh to them in all matters that they ask of it, through the power
of the name which is written in it.

And some make them in the figures of
men, of gold and silver, and go to them in times known to them, and the figures
receive the influence of the stars, and tell them future things, and in this
manner were the images which Rachel stole from her father.

And Rachel stole these images which
were her father’s, in order that Laban might not know through them where Jacob
had gone.

And Laban came home and he asked
concerning Jacob and his household, and he was not to be found, and Laban
sought his images to know where Jacob had gone, and could not find them, and he
went to some other images, and he inquired of them and they told him that Jacob
had fled from him to his father’s, to the land of Canaan.

And Laban then rose up and he took
his brothers and all his servants, and he went forth and pursued Jacob, and he
overtook him in mount Gilead.

And Laban said unto Jacob, What is
this thou hast done to me to flee and deceive me, and lead my daughters and
their children as captives taken by the sword?

And thou didst not suffer me to kiss
them and send them away with joy, and thou didst steal my gods and didst go

And Jacob answered Laban, saying,
Because I was afraid lest thou wouldst take thy daughters by force from me; and
now with whomsoever thou findest thy gods he shall die.

And Laban searched for the images and
he examined in all Jacob’s tents and furniture, but could not find them.

And Laban said unto Jacob, We will
make a covenant together and it shall be a testimony between me and thee; if
thou shalt afflict my daughters, or shalt take other wives besides my
daughters, even God shall be a witness between me and thee in this matter.

And they took stones and made a heap,
and Laban said, This heap is a witness between me and thee, therefore he called
the name thereof

And Jacob and Laban offered sacrifice
upon the mount, and they ate there by the heap, and they tarried in the mount
all night, and Laban rose up early in the morning, and he wept with his
daughters and he kissed them, and he returned unto his place.

And he hastened and sent off his son
Beor, who was seventeen years old, with Abichorof the son of Uz, the son of
Nahor, and with them were ten men.

And they hastened and went and passed
on the road before Jacob, and they came by another road to the land of Seir.

And they came unto Esau and said unto
him, Thus saith thy brother and relative, thy mother’s brother Laban, the son
of Bethuel, saying,

Hast thou heard what Jacob thy
brother has done unto me, who first came to me naked and bare, and I went to meet
him, and brought him to my house with honor, and I made him great, and I gave
him my two daughters for wives and also two of my maids.

And God blessed him on my account,
and he increased abundantly, and had sons, daughters and maid servants.

He has also an immense stock of
flocks and herds, camels and asses, also silver and gold in abundance; and when
he saw that his wealth increased, he left me whilst I went to shear my sheep,
and he rose up and fled in secrecy.

And he lifted his wives and children
upon camels, and he led away all his cattle and property which he acquired in
my land, and he lifted up his countenance to go to his father Isaac, to the
land of Canaan.

And he did not suffer me to kiss my
daughters and their children, and he led my daughters as captives taken by the
sword, and he also stole my gods and he fled.

And now I have left him in the
mountain of the brook of Jabuk, him and all belonging to him; he lacketh

If it be thy wish to go to him, go
then and there wilt thou find him, and thou canst do unto him as thy soul
desireth; and Laban’s messengers came and told Esau all these things.

And Esau heard all the words of
Laban’s messengers, and his anger was greatly kindled against Jacob, and he
remembered his hatred, and his anger burned within him.

And Esau hastened and took his
children and servants and the souls of his household, being sixty men, and he
went and assembled all the children of Seir the Horite and their people, being
three hundred and forty men, and took all this number of four hundred men with
drawn swords, and he went unto Jacob to smite him.

And Esau divided this number into
several parts, and he took the sixty men of his children and servants and the
souls of his household as one head, and gave them in care of Eliphaz his eldest

And the remaining heads he gave to
the care of the six sons of Seir the Horite, and he placed every man over his
generations and children.

And the whole of this camp went as it
was, and Esau went amongst them toward Jacob, and he conducted them with speed.

And Laban’s messengers departed from
Esau and went to the
land of Canaan, and they
came to the house of Rebecca the mother of Jacob and Esau.

And they told her saying, Behold thy
son Esau has gone against his brother Jacob with four hundred men, for he heard
that he was coming, and he is gone to make war with him, and to smite him and
to take all that he has.

And Rebecca hastened and sent seventy
two men from the servants of Isaac to meet Jacob on the road; for she said,
Peradventure, Esau may make war in the road when he meets him.

And these messengers went on the road
to meet Jacob, and they met him in the road of the brook on the opposite side
of the brook Jabuk, and Jacob said when he saw them, This camp is destined to
me from God, and Jacob called the name of that place Machnayim.

And Jacob knew all his father’s
people, and he kissed them and embraced them and came with them, and Jacob
asked them concerning his father and mother, and they said, They were well.

And these messengers said unto Jacob,
Rebecca thy mother has sent us to thee, saying, I have heard, my son, that thy
brother Esau has gone forth against thee on the road with men from the children
of Seir the Horite.

And therefore, my son, hearken to my
voice and see with thy counsel what thou wilt do, and when he cometh up to
thee, supplicate him, and do not speak rashly to him, and give him a present
from what thou possessest, and from what God has favored thee with.

And when he asketh thee concerning
thy affairs, conceal nothing from him, perhaps he may turn from his anger
against thee and thou wilt thereby save thy soul, thou and all belonging to
thee, for it is thy duty to honor him, for he is thy elder brother.

And when Jacob heard the words of his
mother which the messengers had spoken to him, Jacob lifted up his voice and
wept bitterly, and did as his mother then commanded him.

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