Genesis 34:17 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 34:17, NIV: "But if you will not agree to be circumcised, we'll take our sister and go.'"

Genesis 34:17, ESV: "But if you will not listen to us and be circumcised, then we will take our daughter, and we will be gone.”"

Genesis 34:17, KJV: "But if ye will not hearken unto us, to be circumcised; then will we take our daughter, and we will be gone."

Genesis 34:17, NASB: "But if you do not listen to us to be circumcised, then we will take our daughter and go.'"

Genesis 34:17, NLT: "But if you don't agree to be circumcised, we will take her and be on our way.'"

Genesis 34:17, CSB: "But if you will not listen to us and be circumcised, then we will take our daughter and go.""

What does Genesis 34:17 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Dinah's wealthy and powerful rapist has offered to pay any price to be married to her and, presumedly, to not be held accountable for the crime (Genesis 34:1–12). Jacob's sons, however, want nothing but revenge (Genesis 34:13).

They pretend to agree to Shechem's proposal on one condition: all males in the community of Shechem must be circumcised, as Jacob's people are. Then the two peoples can freely intermarry and become one. In contrast, they claim, if all the male Shechemites are not circumcised, there would be no wedding and no joining of their peoples. The reference to "taking" Dinah back might have also been a form of a threat. She has not appeared on the scene since being assaulted, and it seems that she is being held by Shechem's people (Genesis 34:26).

Faced with what seems to be a choice between being held accountable, versus increased wealth and status, Hamor and Shechem will fall for this trap (Genesis 34:18).