Genesis 31:31
New International Version
Jacob answered Laban, "I was afraid, because I thought you would take your daughters away from me by force.

New Living Translation
"I rushed away because I was afraid," Jacob answered. "I thought you would take your daughters from me by force.

English Standard Version
Jacob answered and said to Laban, “Because I was afraid, for I thought that you would take your daughters from me by force.

Berean Study Bible
“I was afraid,” Jacob answered, “for I thought you would take your daughters from me by force.

New American Standard Bible
Then Jacob replied to Laban, "Because I was afraid, for I thought that you would take your daughters from me by force.

King James Bible
And Jacob answered and said to Laban, Because I was afraid: for I said, Peradventure thou wouldest take by force thy daughters from me.

Christian Standard Bible
Jacob answered, "I was afraid, for I thought you would take your daughters from me by force.

Contemporary English Version
Jacob answered, "I left secretly because I was afraid you would take your daughters from me by force.

Good News Translation
Jacob answered, "I was afraid, because I thought that you might take your daughters away from me.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Jacob answered, "I was afraid, for I thought you would take your daughters from me by force.

International Standard Version
"I was afraid," Jacob replied. "I thought you might take your daughters from me.

NET Bible
"I left secretly because I was afraid!" Jacob replied to Laban. "I thought you might take your daughters away from me by force.

New Heart English Bible
Jacob answered Laban, "Because I was afraid, for I said, 'Lest you should take your daughters from me by force.'

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Jacob answered Laban, "I left because I was afraid. I thought you would take your daughters away from me by force.

JPS Tanakh 1917
And Jacob answered and said to Laban: 'Because I was afraid; for I said: Lest thou shouldest take thy daughters from me by force.

New American Standard 1977
Then Jacob answered and said to Laban, “Because I was afraid, for I said, ‘Lest you would take your daughters from me by force.’

Jubilee Bible 2000
And Jacob answered and said to Laban, Because I was afraid; for I said, Peradventure thou would take by force thy daughters from me.

King James 2000 Bible
And Jacob answered and said to Laban, Because I was afraid: for I said, Perhaps you would take by force your daughters from me.

American King James Version
And Jacob answered and said to Laban, Because I was afraid: for I said, Peradventure you would take by force your daughters from me.

American Standard Version
And Jacob answered and said to Laban, Because I was afraid: for I said, Lest thou shouldest take thy daughters from me by force.

Brenton Septuagint Translation
And Jacob answered and said to Laban, Because I was afraid; for I said, Lest at any time thou shouldest take away thy daughters from me, and all my possessions.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Jacob answered: That I departed unknown to thee, it was for fear lest thou wouldst take away thy daughters by force.

Darby Bible Translation
And Jacob answered and said to Laban, I was afraid; for I said, Lest thou shouldest take by force thy daughters from me.

English Revised Version
And Jacob answered and said to Laban, Because I was afraid: for I said, Lest thou shouldest take thy daughters from me by force.

Webster's Bible Translation
And Jacob answered and said to Laban, Because I was afraid: for I said, It may be thou wouldest take thy daughters from me by force.

World English Bible
Jacob answered Laban, "Because I was afraid, for I said, 'Lest you should take your daughters from me by force.'

Young's Literal Translation
And Jacob answereth and saith to Laban, 'Because I was afraid, for I said, Lest thou take violently away thy daughters from me;
Study Bible
Laban Pursues Jacob
30Now you have gone off because you long for your father’s house. But why have you stolen my gods?” 31“I was afraid,” Jacob answered, “for I thought you would take your daughters from me by force. 32If you find your gods with anyone here, he shall not live! In the presence of our relatives, see for yourself if anything is yours, and take it back.” For Jacob did not know that Rachel had stolen the idols.…
Cross References
Genesis 31:30
Now you have gone off because you long for your father's house. But why have you stolen my gods?"

Genesis 31:32
If you find your gods with anyone here, he shall not live! In the presence of our relatives, see for yourself if anything is yours, and take it back." For Jacob did not know that Rachel had stolen the idols.

Treasury of Scripture

And Jacob answered and said to Laban, Because I was afraid: for I said, Peradventure you would take by force your daughters from me.

Because.

Genesis 31:26,27
And Laban said to Jacob, What hast thou done, that thou hast stolen away unawares to me, and carried away my daughters, as captives taken with the sword? …

Genesis 20:11
And Abraham said, Because I thought, Surely the fear of God is not in this place; and they will slay me for my wife's sake.

Proverbs 29:25
The fear of man bringeth a snare: but whoso putteth his trust in the LORD shall be safe.







Lexicon
“I was afraid,”
יָרֵ֔אתִי (yā·rê·ṯî)
Verb - Qal - Perfect - first person common singular
Strong's Hebrew 3372: To fear, to revere, caus, to frighten

Jacob
יַעֲקֹ֖ב (ya·‘ă·qōḇ)
Noun - proper - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 3290: Jacob -- a son of Isaac, also his desc

answered,
וַיַּ֥עַן (way·ya·‘an)
Conjunctive waw | Verb - Qal - Consecutive imperfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 6030: To answer, respond

“for
כִּ֣י (kî)
Conjunction
Strong's Hebrew 3588: A relative conjunction

I thought
וַיֹּ֣אמֶר (way·yō·mer)
Conjunctive waw | Verb - Qal - Consecutive imperfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 559: To utter, say

[you]
לְלָבָ֑ן (lə·lā·ḇān)
Preposition-l | Noun - proper - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 3837: Laban -- father-in-law of Jacob

would take your daughters
בְּנוֹתֶ֖יךָ (bə·nō·w·ṯe·ḵā)
Noun - feminine plural construct | second person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 1323: A daughter

from me
מֵעִמִּֽי׃ (mê·‘im·mî)
Preposition-m | first person common singular
Strong's Hebrew 5973: With, equally with

by force.
תִּגְזֹ֥ל (tiḡ·zōl)
Verb - Qal - Imperfect - second person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 1497: To pluck off, to flay, strip, rob
(31, 32) Jacob answered.--Jacob gives the true reason for his flight; after which, indignant at the charge of theft, he returns, in his anger, as rash an answer about the teraphim as Joseph's brethren subsequently did about the stolen cup (Genesis 44:9).

Let him not live.--The Rabbins regard this as a prophecy, fulfilled in Rachel's premature death. Its more simple meaning is, I yield him up to thee even to be put to death.

Verses 31, 32. - And Jacob answered - "in an able and powerful speech" (Kalisch) - and said to Laban (replying to his first interrogation as to why Jacob had stolen away unawares), Because I was afraid: for I said (sc. to myself), Peradventure (literally, lest, i.e. I must depart without informing thee lest) thou wouldest (or shoudest) take by force - the verb signifies to strip off as skin from flesh (vide Micah 3:2), and hence to forcibly remove - thy daughters from me (after which, in response to Laban's question about his stolen gods, he proceeds). With whomsoever thou findest thy gods, let him not live. If Jacob meant he shall not live, but I will slay him with mine own hand (Aben Ezra), let God destroy him (Abarbanel), I give him up to thee to put to death (Rosenmüller), let him instantly die (Drusius), he was guilty of great unadvisedness in speech. Accordingly, the import of his words has been mollified by regarding them simply as a prediction, "he will not live," i.e. he will die before his time (Jonathan), a prediction which, the Rabbins note, was fulfilled in Rachel (vide Genesis 35:16, 18); or by connecting them with clause following, "he will not live before our brethren," i.e. let him be henceforth cut off from the society of his kinsmen (LXX., Bush). Yet, even as thus explained, the language of Jacob was precipitats, since he ought first to have inquired at his wives and children before pronouncing so emphatically on a matter of which he was entirely ignorant (Calvin). Before our brethren - not Jacob's sons, but Laban's kinsmen (ver. 23) - discern thou - literally, examine closely for thyself, the hiph. of נָכַר (to be strange) meaning to press strongly into a thing, i.e. to perceive it by finding out its distinguishing characteristics (vide Furst, sub voce) - what is thine with me, and take it to thee. For (literally, and) Jacob knew not that Rachel had stolen them - otherwise he would have spoken with less heat and more caution. 31:22-35 God can put a bridle in the mouth of wicked men, to restrain their malice, though he do not change their hearts. Though they have no love to God's people, they will pretend to it, and try to make a merit of necessity. Foolish Laban! to call those things his gods which could be stolen! Enemies may steal our goods, but not our God. Here Laban lays to Jacob's charge things that he knew not. Those who commit their cause to God, are not forbidden to plead it themselves with meekness and fear. When we read of Rachel's stealing her father's images, what a scene of iniquity opens! The family of Nahor, who left the idolatrous Chaldees; is this family itself become idolatrous? It is even so. The truth seems to be, that they were like some in after-times, who sware by the Lord and by Malcham, Zep 1:5; and like others in our times, who wish to serve both God and mammon. Great numbers will acknowledge the true God in words, but their hearts and houses are the abodes of spiritual idolatry. When a man gives himself up to covetousness, like Laban, the world is his god; and he has only to reside among gross idolaters in order to become one, or at least a favourer of their abominations.
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