What does Genesis 31:16 mean?
ESV: All the wealth that God has taken away from our father belongs to us and to our children. Now then, whatever God has said to you, do."
NIV: Surely all the wealth that God took away from our father belongs to us and our children. So do whatever God has told you."
NASB: Surely all the wealth which God has taken away from our father belongs to us and our children; now then, do whatever God has told you.'
CSB: In fact, all the wealth that God has taken away from our father belongs to us and to our children. So do whatever God has said to you."
NLT: All the wealth God has given you from our father legally belongs to us and our children. So go ahead and do whatever God has told you.'
KJV: For all the riches which God hath taken from our father, that is ours, and our children's: now then, whatsoever God hath said unto thee, do.
NKJV: For all these riches which God has taken from our father are really ours and our children’s; now then, whatever God has said to you, do it.”
Verse Commentary:
Rachel and Leah are telling Jacob why they will support him in what will become a quick and secret move away from Laban, and toward Jacob's homeland in Canaan (Genesis 31:3). Both feel their father has mistreated them, in part, by treating Jacob so badly (Genesis 30:31–36). From their perspective, their father more or less sold them to gain free labor from Jacob (Genesis 29:20–28), leaving them no gain, and has continued to cheat their husband, further harming their finances. He might also have been cold or unfriendly to them after their marriage. Neither woman expects to receive any inheritance from Laban when he dies.

Finally, in this verse, they declare they already have their father's wealth, anyway. They repeat what Jacob has already said: God took Laban's wealth and gave it to them. In fact, they say their father's wealth already "belongs to us and our children." In other words, they have no financial incentive not to run away from their father never to return again.

It's interesting to note that Rachel and Leah focus their reply on financial issues. This might be a deliberate slam against Laban—since his interests are purely about money, they can make a good case to leave him, based on money. It might also reveal how little emotional attachment they have to their father or brothers or homeland. They offer no reason not to support Jacob in this move. They conclude by saying he should do whatever God has said to do—a welcome point of unity between sisters who are also bitter rivals (Genesis 30:8).

Did Jacob feel he needed their permission to do what God had told him? It's not clear, but Jacob's wives did give him their support. That was the last piece he was waiting for to take action.
Verse Context:
Genesis 31:1–21 describes the events that propel Jacob to sneak away from Laban and head toward his homeland of Canaan. First, he learns that Laban and his sons are dangerously unhappy with him for taking so many of Laban's profits. Then God commands Jacob to go, promising to be with him. After securing the support of his wives, Jacob packs up his large family and property and sneaks away toward Gilead and then home.
Chapter Summary:
Genesis 31 describes Jacob's difficult separation from Laban, his father-in-law, as well as his boss for twenty years. During that time, Jacob was routinely mistreated and cheated by his master. Commanded by God to return to the land of Canaan, Jacob packs up his wives, children, and all of his possessions and leaves without telling Laban. Laban soon catches up with the large company. Laban and Jacob confront each other bitterly. Eventually, though, they make a covenant of separation and peace.
Chapter Context:
Genesis 30 described the dramatic expansion of Jacob's family and property. Now, after twenty years of working for Laban, the time comes for Jacob to return to his own people. He attempts to sneak away without telling Laban, but Laban soon catches up with him. After bitter confrontations, father and son-in-law make a covenant of separation and peace. Jacob is finally free to begin the next chapter of his life in the Promised Land. First, though, he will need to deal with his brother Esau, whose rage was the main reason Jacob fled in the first place. That encounter is described over the following two chapters.
Book Summary:
The book of Genesis establishes fundamental truths about God. Among these are His role as the Creator, His holiness, His hatred of sin, His love for mankind, and His willingness to provide for our redemption. We learn not only where mankind has come from, but why the world is in its present form. The book also presents the establishment of Israel, God's chosen people. Many of the principles given in other parts of Scripture depend on the basic ideas presented here in the book of Genesis. Within the framework of the Bible, Genesis explains the bare-bones history of the universe leading up to the captivity of Israel in Egypt, setting the stage for the book of Exodus.
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