Genesis 35:16
Parallel Verses
New International Version
Then they moved on from Bethel. While they were still some distance from Ephrath, Rachel began to give birth and had great difficulty.

New Living Translation
Leaving Bethel, Jacob and his clan moved on toward Ephrath. But Rachel went into labor while they were still some distance away. Her labor pains were intense.

English Standard Version
Then they journeyed from Bethel. When they were still some distance from Ephrath, Rachel went into labor, and she had hard labor.

New American Standard Bible
Then they journeyed from Bethel; and when there was still some distance to go to Ephrath, Rachel began to give birth and she suffered severe labor.

King James Bible
And they journeyed from Bethel; and there was but a little way to come to Ephrath: and Rachel travailed, and she had hard labour.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
They set out from Bethel. When they were still some distance from Ephrath, Rachel began to give birth, and her labor was difficult.

International Standard Version
Later, they set out from Beth-el. While still a long way from Ephrathah, Rachel started to have trouble giving birth.

NET Bible
They traveled on from Bethel, and when Ephrath was still some distance away, Rachel went into labor--and her labor was hard.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Then they moved on from Bethel. When they were still some distance from Ephrath, Rachel went into labor and was having severe labor pains.

Jubilee Bible 2000
And they journeyed from Bethel, and there was but a little way to come to Ephrath when Rachel travailed, and she had hard labour.

King James 2000 Bible
And they journeyed from Bethel; and there was but a little way to come to Ephrath: and Rachel travailed, and she had hard labor.

American King James Version
And they journeyed from Bethel; and there was but a little way to come to Ephrath: and Rachel travailed, and she had hard labor.

American Standard Version
And they journeyed from Beth-el; and there was still some distance to come to Ephrath: and Rachel travailed, and she had hard labor.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And going forth from thence, he came in the springtime to the land which leadeth to Ephrata: wherein when Rachel was in travail,

Darby Bible Translation
And they journeyed from Bethel. And there was yet a certain distance to come to Ephrath, when Rachel travailed in childbirth; and it went hard with her in her childbearing.

English Revised Version
And they journeyed from Beth-el; and there was still some way to come to Ephrath: and Rachel travailed, and she had hard labour.

Webster's Bible Translation
And they journeyed from Beth-el; and there was but a little way to come to Ephrath: and Rachel travailed, and she had hard labor.

World English Bible
They traveled from Bethel. There was still some distance to come to Ephrath, and Rachel travailed. She had hard labor.

Young's Literal Translation
And they journey from Bethel, and there is yet a kibrath of land before entering Ephratha, and Rachel beareth, and is sharply pained in her bearing;
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

35:16-20 Rachel had passionately said, Give me children, or else I die; and now that she had children, she died! The death of the body is but the departure of the soul to the world of spirits. When shall we learn that it is God alone who really knows what is best for his people, and that in all worldly affairs the safest path for the Christian is to say from the heart, It is the Lord, let him do what seemeth him good. Here alone is our safety and our comfort, to know no will but his. Her dying lips called her newborn son Ben-oni, the son of my sorrow; and many a son proves to be the heaviness of her that bare him. Children are enough the sorrow of their mothers; they should, therefore, when they grow up, study to be their joy, and so, if possible, to make them some amends. But Jacob, because he would not renew the sorrowful remembrance of the mother's death every time he called his son, changed his name to Benjamin, the son of my right hand: that is, very dear to me; the support of my age, like the staff in my right hand.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 16. - And they journeyed - not in opposition to the Divine commandment (ver. 1), which did not enjoin a permanent settlement at Bethel, but in accordance probably with his own desire, if not also Heaven's counsel, to proceed to Mamre to visit Isaac - from Bethel (southwards in the direction of Hebron); and there was but a little way (literally, there was yet a space of land; probably a few furlongs (Murphy), about four English miles (Gerlach). The Vulgate translates, "in the spring-time," and the LXX. render, ἐγένετο δὲ ἡνίκα ἤγγισεν εἰς χαβραθὰ, both of which are misunderstandings of the original - to come to Ephrath: - Fruitful; the ancient name of Bethlehem (vide infra ver. 19) - and Rachel travailed, and she had hard labor - literally, she had hard labor in her parturition, which was perhaps all the more severe that sixteen or seventeen years had elapsed since her first son, Joseph, was born.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

And they journeyed from Bethel,.... Jacob and his family; how long they stayed there is not certain, some say four months (z); hence they removed towards Bethlehem, which was twelve miles from Bethel (a), in their way to Hebron:

and there was but a little way to come to Ephrath; or Bethlehem, as it was also called, Genesis 35:19; a mile off of it, according to the Targums of Onkelos and Jerusalem; or about a mile, as Saadiah Gaon; for it was not a precise exact mile, but something less than a mile, as Ben Melech observes; and so Benjamin of Tudela, who was on the spot, says (b), that Rachel's grave is about half a mile from Bethlehem. Ben Gersom thinks the word here used signifies cultivated land, and that the sense is, that there were only fields, vineyards, and gardens to go through to the city, see Genesis 48:7,

and Rachel travailed, and she had hard labour; the time of childbirth was come, and which came suddenly upon her, as travail does, even while journeying, which obliged them to stop; and her pains came upon her, and these very sharp and severe, so that she had a difficult time of it: pains and sorrow in childbearing are the fruit of sin, and more or less attend all in such a circumstance; but, in some, labour is more painful than in others, and more at one time than at another, and is the most painful in women than in other creatures.

(z) Shalshalet Hakabala, fol. 5. 1.((a) Bunting's Travels, p. 72. (b) Itinerar. p. 47.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

Ge 35:16-27. Birth of Benjamin—Death of Rachel, &c.

16. And they journeyed from Beth-el—There can be no doubt that much enjoyment was experienced at Beth-el, and that in the religious observances solemnized, as well as in the vivid recollections of the glorious vision seen there, the affections of the patriarch were powerfully animated and that he left the place a better and more devoted servant of God. When the solemnities were over, Jacob, with his family, pursued a route directly southward, and they reached Ephrath, when they were plunged into mourning by the death of Rachel, who sank in childbirth, leaving a posthumous son [Ge 35:18]. A very affecting death, considering how ardently the mind of Rachel had been set on offspring (compare Ge 30:1).

Genesis 35:16 Additional Commentaries
Context
Benjamin is Born, Rachel Dies
16Then they journeyed from Bethel; and when there was still some distance to go to Ephrath, Rachel began to give birth and she suffered severe labor. 17When she was in severe labor the midwife said to her, "Do not fear, for now you have another son."…
Cross References
Genesis 35:19
So Rachel died and was buried on the way to Ephrath (that is, Bethlehem).

Genesis 48:7
As I was returning from Paddan, to my sorrow Rachel died in the land of Canaan while we were still on the way, a little distance from Ephrath. So I buried her there beside the road to Ephrath" (that is, Bethlehem).

Ruth 4:11
Then the elders and all the people at the gate said, "We are witnesses. May the LORD make the woman who is coming into your home like Rachel and Leah, who together built up the family of Israel. May you have standing in Ephrathah and be famous in Bethlehem.

1 Samuel 4:20
As she was dying, the women attending her said, "Don't despair; you have given birth to a son." But she did not respond or pay any attention.

1 Samuel 10:2
When you leave me today, you will meet two men near Rachel's tomb, at Zelzah on the border of Benjamin. They will say to you, 'The donkeys you set out to look for have been found. And now your father has stopped thinking about them and is worried about you. He is asking, "What shall I do about my son?"'

Micah 5:2
"But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times."
Treasury of Scripture

And they journeyed from Bethel; and there was but a little way to come to Ephrath: and Rachel travailed, and she had hard labor.

a little way to come. Heb. a little piece of ground.

2 Kings 5:19 And he said to him, Go in peace. So he departed from him a little way.

Ephrath.

Genesis 48:7 And as for me, when I came from Padan, Rachel died by me in the land …

Ruth 1:2 And the name of the man was Elimelech, and the name of his wife Naomi, …

1 Chronicles 2:19 And when Azubah was dead, Caleb took to him Ephrath, which bore him Hur.

Psalm 132:6 See, we heard of it at Ephratah: we found it in the fields of the wood.

Micah 5:2 But you, Bethlehem Ephratah, though you be little among the thousands …

Matthew 2:1,16,18 Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod …

hard labour.

Genesis 3:16 To the woman he said, I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your …

1 Timothy 2:15 Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue …

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