Genesis 31:1 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 31:1, NIV: "Jacob heard that Laban's sons were saying, 'Jacob has taken everything our father owned and has gained all this wealth from what belonged to our father.'"

Genesis 31:1, ESV: "Now Jacob heard that the sons of Laban were saying, “Jacob has taken all that was our father’s, and from what was our father’s he has gained all this wealth.”"

Genesis 31:1, KJV: "And he heard the words of Laban's sons, saying, Jacob hath taken away all that was our father's; and of that which was our father's hath he gotten all this glory."

Genesis 31:1, NASB: "Now Jacob heard the words of Laban’s sons, saying, 'Jacob has taken away all that was our father’s, and from what belonged to our father he has made all this wealth.'"

Genesis 31:1, NLT: "But Jacob soon learned that Laban's sons were grumbling about him. 'Jacob has robbed our father of everything!' they said. 'He has gained all his wealth at our father's expense.'"

Genesis 31:1, CSB: "Now Jacob heard what Laban's sons were saying: "Jacob has taken all that was our father's and has built this wealth from what belonged to our father.""

What does Genesis 31:1 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

In the previous chapter, Laban admitted that he knew he had grown rich because of the Lord's blessing on Jacob. In spite of that, Laban immediately attempted to cheat Jacob—again—while making a new deal with his son-in-law. Jacob had asked for his wages to be all the future off-color sheep and goats born to Laban's flocks. Laban had attempted to make that already-low percentage of the flock even smaller by immediately removing all of the existing off-color animals from the flock and giving those to his sons to take a three-day's journey away.

The Lord intervened on Jacob's behalf, however. God blessed Jacob's unusual breeding methods, causing a great number of off-color sheep and goats to come from a flock that began with none. In addition, Jacob's selective breeding caused his animals to be stronger than Laban's animals. This chapter reveals that Jacob's tactics were based on a revelation from God, not an actual belief in the power of striped sticks (Genesis 31:10–12).

The previous chapter ended by revealing that Jacob had grown enormously wealthy. Now we learn that Laban's wealth has been diminished as a result of his arrangement with Jacob. Laban's latest attempt at cheating Jacob has backfired. Laban's sons, watching their inheritance slipping away, are growing resentful for Jacob. From their perspective, Jacob's wealth has come straight out of their own pockets.