Genesis 34:21 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 34:21, NIV: "These men are friendly toward us,' they said. 'Let them live in our land and trade in it; the land has plenty of room for them. We can marry their daughters and they can marry ours."

Genesis 34:21, ESV: "“These men are at peace with us; let them dwell in the land and trade in it, for behold, the land is large enough for them. Let us take their daughters as wives, and let us give them our daughters."

Genesis 34:21, KJV: "These men are peaceable with us; therefore let them dwell in the land, and trade therein; for the land, behold, it is large enough for them; let us take their daughters to us for wives, and let us give them our daughters."

Genesis 34:21, NASB: "'These men are friendly to us; therefore let them live in the land and trade in it, for behold, the land is large enough for them. We will take their daughters in marriage, and give our daughters to them."

Genesis 34:21, NLT: "'These men are our friends,' they said. 'Let's invite them to live here among us and trade freely. Look, the land is large enough to hold them. We can take their daughters as wives and let them marry ours."

Genesis 34:21, CSB: ""These men are peaceful toward us," they said. "Let them live in our land and move about in it, for indeed, the region is large enough for them. Let us take their daughters as our wives and give our daughters to them."

What does Genesis 34:21 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Jacob's sons have told Hamor and Shechem that they'll allow their sister, Dinah, to marry Shechem (Genesis 34:14–16). This, however, is a lie (Genesis 34:13). The brothers are plotting revenge against Shechem for raping their sister (Genesis 34:1–3). Their deceptive condition is that every man in the city must be circumcised as they are. In the prior verse, Hamor and his son began their appeal to the townspeople.

They start with the easy part: Let's intermarry with Jacob's people and allow them to live peacefully with us. There's plenty of room for everyone. Jacob has come into this region with considerable wealth (Genesis 30:43), so this is an attractive benefit.

Father and son start off mentioning peace, which might mean the townspeople are concerned about revenge. This might be a way of putting pressure on everyone to maintain good diplomacy. What they don't realize is that they're negotiating their own destruction.