The Holy Bible – Knox Translation
The Book of Genesis
And now Jacob looked in front of him, and there was Esau coming towards him, with four hundred men at his back. So he divided up his children into families, Lia’s sons and Rachel’s and those of the two serving-women.
He put these first, with their children, and Lia second with hers; Rachel and Joseph came last of all.
He himself, as he came up, prostrated himself seven times before his brother reached him.
Seeing this, Esau ran to meet his brother, embraced him, clung to his neck and kissed him, in tears.
Then, as he looked round him and saw the women with their sons, he asked, What are these? Are they part of thy company? And he was told, They are the children God has granted to thy servant.
So the serving-women and their children came up first, and made their obeisance,
then Lia with her children; and when they had done the like, Joseph and Rachel made theirs last of all.
And when Esau asked, What of those companies I met on my way? Jacob answered, A gift, my lord, to secure me thy good will.
I have abundance, said he; keep what is thine.
But Jacob said, No, I entreat thee; do me the favour to accept this present of mine; to gain audience with thee is like gaining audience with God himself. Assure me of thy favour
by receiving the offering I have brought thee, God’s gift to me, who has given me all I have. So at last Esau consented, overcome by his brother’s persuasions;
then he said, Let us travel on together, so that I can be the companion of thy journey.
But Jacob answered, My lord, bethink thee that I have young children with me; that I have ewes here in lamb, and cows in calf, so that I may lose a whole herd if I overdrive them.
Pass on, my lord, in advance of thy servant; I will follow slowly, at whatever pace suits these children of mine, and meet thee again, my lord, in Seir.
Pray then, said Esau, take some of my followers to escort thee on thy journey. No need for that, answered Jacob; enough for me, my lord, that I should have thy good will.
So that day, Esau went back to Seir the way he had come;
Jacob went as far as Socoth, and there built himself a house, with sheds for his cattle; that is why he called the place Socoth, which means Sheds.
He passed on from there to Salem, a city belonging to Sichem,✻ thus returning to Chanaan after his journey to Mesopotamia of the Syrians. Here he dwelt near the town;
he bought the piece of ground where he encamped from the men of Hemor’s clan, that was father to Sichem, at the price of a hundred lambs.
And here he built an altar, and dedicated it to the almighty God, the God of Israel.
The Holy Bible