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The Blue Letter Bible

Genesis 30 :: New Living Translation (NLT)

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Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:1 - When Rachel saw that she wasn’t having any children for Jacob, she became jealous of her sister. She pleaded with Jacob, “Give me children, or I’ll die!”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:2 - Then Jacob became furious with Rachel. “Am I God?” he asked. “He’s the one who has kept you from having children!”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:3 - Then Rachel told him, “Take my maid, Bilhah, and sleep with her. She will bear children for me,[fn] and through her I can have a family, too.”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:4 - So Rachel gave her servant, Bilhah, to Jacob as a wife, and he slept with her.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:5 - Bilhah became pregnant and presented him with a son.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:6 - Rachel named him Dan,[fn] for she said, “God has vindicated me! He has heard my request and given me a son.”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:7 - Then Bilhah became pregnant again and gave Jacob a second son.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:8 - Rachel named him Naphtali,[fn] for she said, “I have struggled hard with my sister, and I’m winning!”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:9 - Meanwhile, Leah realized that she wasn’t getting pregnant anymore, so she took her servant, Zilpah, and gave her to Jacob as a wife.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:10 - Soon Zilpah presented him with a son.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:11 - Leah named him Gad,[fn] for she said, “How fortunate I am!”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:12 - Then Zilpah gave Jacob a second son.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:13 - And Leah named him Asher,[fn] for she said, “What joy is mine! Now the other women will celebrate with me.”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:14 - One day during the wheat harvest, Reuben found some mandrakes growing in a field and brought them to his mother, Leah. Rachel begged Leah, “Please give me some of your son’s mandrakes.”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:15 - But Leah angrily replied, “Wasn’t it enough that you stole my husband? Now will you steal my son’s mandrakes, too?”
Rachel answered, “I will let Jacob sleep with you tonight if you give me some of the mandrakes.”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:16 - So that evening, as Jacob was coming home from the fields, Leah went out to meet him. “You must come and sleep with me tonight!” she said. “I have paid for you with some mandrakes that my son found.” So that night he slept with Leah.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:17 - And God answered Leah’s prayers. She became pregnant again and gave birth to a fifth son for Jacob.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:18 - She named him Issachar,[fn] for she said, “God has rewarded me for giving my servant to my husband as a wife.”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:19 - Then Leah became pregnant again and gave birth to a sixth son for Jacob.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:20 - She named him Zebulun,[fn] for she said, “God has given me a good reward. Now my husband will treat me with respect, for I have given him six sons.”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:21 - Later she gave birth to a daughter and named her Dinah.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:22 - Then God remembered Rachel’s plight and answered her prayers by enabling her to have children.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:23 - She became pregnant and gave birth to a son. “God has removed my disgrace,” she said.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:24 - And she named him Joseph,[fn] for she said, “May the LORD add yet another son to my family.”
Jacob’s Wealth Increases
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:25 - Soon after Rachel had given birth to Joseph, Jacob said to Laban, “Please release me so I can go home to my own country.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:26 - Let me take my wives and children, for I have earned them by serving you, and let me be on my way. You certainly know how hard I have worked for you.”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:27 - “Please listen to me,” Laban replied. “I have become wealthy, for[fn] the LORD has blessed me because of you.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:28 - Tell me how much I owe you. Whatever it is, I’ll pay it.”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:29 - Jacob replied, “You know how hard I’ve worked for you, and how your flocks and herds have grown under my care.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:30 - You had little indeed before I came, but your wealth has increased enormously. The LORD has blessed you through everything I’ve done. But now, what about me? When can I start providing for my own family?”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:31 - “What wages do you want?” Laban asked again.
Jacob replied, “Don’t give me anything. Just do this one thing, and I’ll continue to tend and watch over your flocks.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:32 - Let me inspect your flocks today and remove all the sheep and goats that are speckled or spotted, along with all the black sheep. Give these to me as my wages.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:33 - In the future, when you check on the animals you have given me as my wages, you’ll see that I have been honest. If you find in my flock any goats without speckles or spots, or any sheep that are not black, you will know that I have stolen them from you.”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:34 - “All right,” Laban replied. “It will be as you say.”
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:35 - But that very day Laban went out and removed the male goats that were streaked and spotted, all the female goats that were speckled and spotted or had white patches, and all the black sheep. He placed them in the care of his own sons,
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:36 - who took them a three-days’ journey from where Jacob was. Meanwhile, Jacob stayed and cared for the rest of Laban’s flock.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:37 - Then Jacob took some fresh branches from poplar, almond, and plane trees and peeled off strips of bark, making white streaks on them.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:38 - Then he placed these peeled branches in the watering troughs where the flocks came to drink, for that was where they mated.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:39 - And when they mated in front of the white-streaked branches, they gave birth to young that were streaked, speckled, and spotted.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:40 - Jacob separated those lambs from Laban’s flock. And at mating time he turned the flock to face Laban’s animals that were streaked or black. This is how he built his own flock instead of increasing Laban’s.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:41 - Whenever the stronger females were ready to mate, Jacob would place the peeled branches in the watering troughs in front of them. Then they would mate in front of the branches.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:42 - But he didn’t do this with the weaker ones, so the weaker lambs belonged to Laban, and the stronger ones were Jacob’s.
Unchecked Copy BoxGen 30:43 - As a result, Jacob became very wealthy, with large flocks of sheep and goats, female and male servants, and many camels and donkeys.
NLT Footnotes
Hebrew bear children on my knees.
Dan means “he judged” or “he vindicated.”
Naphtali means “my struggle.”
Gad means “good fortune.”
Asher means “happy.”
Issachar sounds like a Hebrew term that means “reward.”
Zebulun probably means “honor.”
Joseph means “may he add.”
Or I have learned by divination that.

Holy Bible, New Living Translation copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

Full copyright information is provided here. Visit the New Living Translation website.

For more information on this translation, see the NLT Preface.

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