Genesis 33:10 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 33:10, NIV: "No, please!' said Jacob. 'If I have found favor in your eyes, accept this gift from me. For to see your face is like seeing the face of God, now that you have received me favorably."

Genesis 33:10, ESV: "Jacob said, “No, please, if I have found favor in your sight, then accept my present from my hand. For I have seen your face, which is like seeing the face of God, and you have accepted me."

Genesis 33:10, KJV: "And Jacob said, Nay, I pray thee, if now I have found grace in thy sight, then receive my present at my hand: for therefore I have seen thy face, as though I had seen the face of God, and thou wast pleased with me."

Genesis 33:10, NASB: "Jacob said, 'No, please, if now I have found favor in your sight, then accept my gift from my hand, for I see your face as one sees the face of God, and you have received me favorably."

Genesis 33:10, NLT: "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!"

Genesis 33:10, CSB: "But Jacob said, "No, please! If I have found favor with you, take this gift from me. For indeed, I have seen your face, and it is like seeing God's face, since you have accepted me."

What does Genesis 33:10 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Esau has told Jacob to keep his perhaps overly generous gift of 550 animals (Genesis 32:13–17). Esau insists he has enough. Some of this refusal might have been cultural custom: to make a show of refusing a gift as a sign of humility. Then again, Esau really doesn't need Jacob's livestock. Even though his blessing was far, far less than the one stolen by Jacob (Genesis 27:38–40), he is still a powerful and successful man. His approach to Jacob, after all, was one accompanied by some 400 men (Genesis 32:6).

Now Jacob insists. He urges Esau to keep the gift as evidence that Jacob has found favor in Esau's sight. The specific Hebrew words used by Jacob in this statement are min'hāt 'ani, meaning "my gift." In the following verse, however, Jacob will refer to this present as bir'kāt 'ani, meaning "my blessing." This may be Jacob's way of implying that he means to share his stolen blessing with his twin brother (Genesis 27:19–29).

Jacob describes his feelings of extreme gratitude for having been accepted by Esau. In fact, Jacob says that seeing Esau's face is like seeing the face of God. In this particular phrase, it's unlikely Jacob means to flatter his brother. Just hours before this, Jacob has come face-to-face with God (Genesis 32:22–32). Seeing joy and acceptance on Esau's face may have served as evidence for Jacob that God was at work on his behalf even in the face of Esau. Jacob viewed Esau's acceptance of him as God's protection.