Genesis 29:13 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 29:13, NIV: "As soon as Laban heard the news about Jacob, his sister's son, he hurried to meet him. He embraced him and kissed him and brought him to his home, and there Jacob told him all these things."

Genesis 29:13, ESV: "As soon as Laban heard the news about Jacob, his sister’s son, he ran to meet him and embraced him and kissed him and brought him to his house. Jacob told Laban all these things,"

Genesis 29:13, KJV: "And it came to pass, when Laban heard the tidings of Jacob his sister's son, that he ran to meet him, and embraced him, and kissed him, and brought him to his house. And he told Laban all these things."

Genesis 29:13, NASB: "So when Laban heard the news about Jacob, his sister’s son, he ran to meet him, and embraced him and kissed him, and brought him to his house. Then he told Laban all these things."

Genesis 29:13, NLT: "As soon as Laban heard that his nephew Jacob had arrived, he ran out to meet him. He embraced and kissed him and brought him home. When Jacob had told him his story,"

Genesis 29:13, CSB: "When Laban heard the news about his sister's son Jacob, he ran to meet him, hugged him, and kissed him. Then he took him to his house, and Jacob told him all that had happened."

What does Genesis 29:13 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Many years earlier, Laban had heard about the arrival of the servant of a relative and had run out of the city to greet him (Genesis 24:28–29). That time it was Abraham's servant who came to offer great wealth as part of his request to take Rebekah away and marry her to Isaac (Genesis 24:34–38). Perhaps when Laban heard from Rachel that Rebekah's son had arrived, he expected to find a similar opportunity for wealth. Or perhaps he was just excited to meet his nephew. As the events of this chapter will reveal, it is often difficult to know whether Laban is driven by greed or by love.

Whatever Laban's initial motives, he would have quickly seen that Jacob arrived without great wealth. He was likely traveling alone, and in the prior chapter he was described as sleeping in the wilderness with a rock for a pillow (Genesis 28:10–11)! We're told of no servants or caravan of camels. Still, Laban warmly greets Jacob, hugging and kissing him in the manor of the day and welcoming his nephew into his home.

Jacob, also overjoyed, is said to have told Laban "all these things." We assume that means that Jacob told Laban some of the story of his family and his reason for coming to Haran (Genesis 28:1–2). We don't know, however, if Jacob revealed all of his family's business, including his own deception of his father to get Esau's blessing (Genesis 27:41) or of his encounter with the Lord in a dream (Genesis 28:12).