Genesis 30–31; Psalm 11; Mark 12

30 When Rachel saw that bshe bore Jacob no children, she envied her sister. She said to Jacob, Give me children, or I shall die! Jacob’s anger was kindled against Rachel, and he said, Am I in the place of God, cwho has withheld from you the fruit of the womb? Then she said, Here is my servant dBilhah; go in to her, so that she may give birth eon my behalf,1 that even I may have children2 through her. So she gave him her servant Bilhah as a wife, and Jacob went in to her. And Bilhah conceived and bore Jacob a son. Then Rachel said, God has fjudged me, and has also heard my voice and given me a son. Therefore she called his name Dan.3 Rachel’s servant Bilhah conceived again and bore Jacob a second son. Then Rachel said, With mighty wrestlings4 I have wrestled with my sister and have prevailed. So she called his name gNaphtali.5

When Leah saw that she had ceased bearing children, she took her servant Zilpah and hgave her to Jacob as a wife. 10 Then Leah’s servant Zilpah bore Jacob a son. 11 And Leah said, iGood fortune has come! so she called his name iGad.6 12 Leah’s servant Zilpah bore Jacob a second son. 13 And Leah said, Happy am I! For women jhave called me happy. So she called his name Asher.7

14 In the days of wheat harvest Reuben went and found kmandrakes in the field and brought them to his mother Leah. Then Rachel said to Leah, Please give me some of your son’s mandrakes. 15 But she said to her, Is it a small matter that you have taken away my husband? Would you take away my son’s mandrakes also? Rachel said, Then he may lie with you tonight in exchange for your son’s mandrakes. 16 When Jacob came from the field in the evening, Leah went out to meet him and said, You must come in to me, for I have hired you with my son’s mandrakes. So he lay with her that night. 17 And God listened to Leah, and she conceived and bore Jacob a fifth son. 18 Leah said, God has given me my wages because I gave my servant to my husband. So she called his name Issachar.8

19 And Leah conceived again, and she bore Jacob a sixth son. 20 Then Leah said, God has endowed me with a good endowment; now my husband will honor me, because I have borne him six sons. So she called his name lZebulun.9 21 Afterward she bore a daughter and called her name Dinah.

22 Then God mremembered Rachel, and God listened to her and nopened her womb. 23 She conceived and bore a son and said, God has taken away omy reproach. 24 And she called his name Joseph,10 saying, pMay the Lord add to me another son!

Jacob’s Prosperity

25 As soon as Rachel had borne Joseph, Jacob said to Laban, Send me away, that I may go to my own home and country. 26 Give me my wives and my children qfor whom I have served you, that I may go, for you know the service that I have given you. 27 But Laban said to him, If I have found favor in your sight, I have learned by divination that11 the Lord has blessed me because of you. 28 rName your wages, and I will give it. 29 Jacob said to him, sYou yourself know how I have served you, and how your livestock has fared with me. 30 For you had little before I came, tand it has increased abundantly, and the Lord has blessed you wherever I turned. But now when shall I uprovide for my own household also? 31 He said, What shall I give you? Jacob said, You shall not give me anything. If you will do this for me, I will again pasture your flock and keep it: 32 let me pass through all your flock today, removing from it every speckled and spotted sheep and every black lamb, and the spotted and speckled among the goats, and vthey shall be my wages. 33 So my honesty will answer for me later, when you come to look into my wages with you. Every one that is not speckled and spotted among the goats and black among the lambs, if found with me, shall be counted stolen. 34 Laban said, Good! Let it be as you have said. 35 But that day Laban removed the male goats that were striped and spotted, and all the female goats that were speckled and spotted, every one that had white on it, and every lamb that was black, and put them in the charge of his sons. 36 And he set a distance of three days’ journey between himself and Jacob, and Jacob pastured the rest of Laban’s flock.

37 Then wJacob took fresh sticks of poplar and almond and plane trees, and peeled white streaks in them, exposing the white of the sticks. 38 He set the sticks that he had peeled in front of the flocks in the troughs, that is, the xwatering places, where the flocks came to drink. And since they bred when they came to drink, 39 the flocks bred in front of the sticks and so the flocks brought forth striped, speckled, and spotted. 40 And Jacob separated the lambs and set the faces of the flocks toward the striped and all the black in the flock of Laban. He put his own droves apart and did not put them with Laban’s flock. 41 Whenever the stronger of the flock were breeding, Jacob would lay the sticks in the troughs before the eyes of the flock, that they might breed among the sticks, 42 but for the feebler of the flock he would not lay them there. So the feebler would be Laban’s, and the stronger Jacob’s. 43 Thus the man yincreased greatly and zhad large flocks, female servants and male servants, and camels and donkeys.

Jacob Flees from Laban

31 Now Jacob heard that the sons of Laban were saying, Jacob has taken all that was our father’s, and from what was our father’s he has gained all this wealth. And Jacob saw athat Laban did not regard him with favor as before. Then the Lord said to Jacob, bReturn to the land of your fathers and to your kindred, and I will be with you.

So Jacob sent and called Rachel and Leah into the field where his flock was and said to them, cI see that your father does not regard me with favor as he did before. But the God of my father dhas been with me. eYou know that I have served your father with all my strength, yet your father has cheated me and changed my wages ften times. But God did not permit him to harm me. If he said, gThe spotted shall be your wages, then all the flock bore spotted; and if he said, The striped shall be your wages, then all the flock bore striped. Thus God has htaken away the livestock of your father and given them to me. 10 In the breeding season of the flock I lifted up my eyes and saw in a dream that the goats that mated with the flock were striped, spotted, and mottled. 11 Then the angel of God said to me in the dream, Jacob, and I said, Here I am! 12 And he said, Lift up your eyes and see, all the goats that mate with the flock are striped, spotted, and mottled, for iI have seen all that Laban is doing to you. 13 I am the God of Bethel, jwhere you anointed a pillar and made a vow to me. Now karise, go out from this land and return to the land of your kindred. 14 Then Rachel and Leah answered and said to him, Is there lany portion or inheritance left to us in our father’s house? 15 Are we not regarded by him as foreigners? For mhe has sold us, and he has indeed devoured our money. 16 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.

17 So Jacob arose and set his sons and his wives on camels. 18 He drove away all his livestock, all his property that he had gained, the livestock in his possession that he had acquired in nPaddan-aram, to go to the land of Canaan to his father Isaac. 19 Laban had gone to shear his sheep, and Rachel stole her father’s ohousehold gods. 20 And Jacob tricked12 Laban the Aramean, by not telling him that he intended to flee. 21 He fled with all that he had and arose and crossed the pEuphrates,13 and qset his face toward the hill country of Gilead.

22 When it was told Laban on the third day that Jacob had fled, 23 he took his kinsmen with him and pursued him for seven days and followed close after him into the hill country of Gilead. 24 But God came to Laban the Aramean rin a dream by night and said to him, Be careful not to say anything to Jacob, seither good or bad.

25 And Laban overtook Jacob. Now Jacob had pitched his tent in the hill country, and Laban with his kinsmen pitched tents in the hill country of Gilead. 26 And Laban said to Jacob, What have you done, that you have ttricked me and driven away my daughters like captives of the sword? 27 Why did you flee secretly tand trick me, and did not tell me, so that I might have sent you away with mirth and songs, with tambourine and lyre? 28 And why did you not permit me uto kiss my sons and my daughters farewell? Now you have done foolishly. 29 It is vin my power to do you harm. But the wGod of your14 father spoke to me last night, saying, Be careful not to say anything to Jacob, xeither good or bad. 30 And now you have gone away because you longed greatly for your father’s house, but why did you ysteal my gods? 31 Jacob answered and said to Laban, Because I was afraid, for I thought that you would take your daughters from me by force. 32 zAnyone with whom you find your gods shall not live. In the presence of our kinsmen point out what I have that is yours, and take it. Now Jacob did not know that Rachel had stolen them.

33 So Laban went into Jacob’s tent and into Leah’s tent and into the tent of the two female servants, but he did not find them. And he went out of Leah’s tent and entered Rachel’s. 34 Now Rachel had taken the household gods and put them in the camel’s saddle and sat on them. Laban felt all about the tent, but did not find them. 35 And she said to her father, Let not my lord be angry that I cannot arise before you, for the way of women is upon me. So he searched but did not find the household gods.

36 Then Jacob became angry and berated Laban. Jacob said to Laban, What is my offense? What is my sin, that you have hotly pursued me? 37 For you have felt through all my goods; what have you found of all your household goods? Set it here before my kinsmen and byour kinsmen, that they may decide between us two. 38 These twenty years I have been with you. Your ewes and your female goats have not miscarried, and I have not eaten the rams of your flocks. 39 What was torn by wild beasts I did not bring to you. I bore the loss of it myself. cFrom my hand you required it, whether stolen by day or stolen by night. 40 There I was: by day the heat consumed me, and the cold by night, and my sleep fled from my eyes. 41 These twenty years I have been in your house. dI served you fourteen years for your two daughters, and six years for your flock, and eyou have changed my wages ten times. 42 fIf the God of my father, the God of Abraham and the gFear of Isaac, had not been on my side, surely now you would have sent me away empty-handed. hGod saw my affliction and the labor of my hands and irebuked you last night.

43 Then Laban answered and said to Jacob, The daughters are my daughters, the children are my children, the flocks are my flocks, and all that you see is mine. But what can I do this day for these my daughters or for their children whom they have borne? 44 Come now, jlet us make a covenant, you and I. kAnd let it be a witness between you and me. 45 So Jacob ltook a stone and set it up as a pillar. 46 And Jacob said to his kinsmen, Gather stones. And they took stones and made a heap, and they ate there by the heap. 47 Laban called it Jegar-sahadutha,15 but Jacob called it Galeed.16 48 Laban said, mThis heap is a witness between you and me today. Therefore he named it Galeed, 49 nand Mizpah,17 for he said, The Lord watch between you and me, when we are out of one another’s sight. 50 If you oppress my daughters, or if you take wives besides my daughters, although no one is with us, see, oGod is witness between you and me.

51 Then Laban said to Jacob, See this heap and the pillar, which I have set between you and me. 52 pThis heap is a witness, and the pillar is a witness, that I will not pass over this heap to you, and you will not pass over this heap and this pillar to me, to do harm. 53 The God of Abraham and the God of Nahor, the God of their father, judge between us. So Jacob swore by the qFear of his father Isaac, 54 and Jacob offered a sacrifice in the hill country and called rhis kinsmen to eat bread. They ate bread and spent the night in the hill country.

55 18 Early in the morning Laban arose and kissed shis grandchildren and his daughters and blessed them. Then Laban departed and returned home.


The Lord Is in His Holy Temple

To the choirmaster. Of David.

11  In the Lord I take refuge;

how can you say to my soul,

zFlee like a bird to your mountain,

for behold, the wicked abend the bow;

bthey have fitted their arrow to the string

to shoot in the dark at the upright in heart;

if cthe foundations are destroyed,

what can the righteous do?1

dThe Lord is in his holy temple;

the Lord’s ethrone is in heaven;

his eyes see, his eyelids ftest the children of man.

The Lord gtests the righteous,

but hhis soul hates the wicked and the one who loves violence.

Let him rain coals on the wicked;

ifire and sulfur and a scorching wind shall be jthe portion of their cup.

For the Lord is righteous;

he kloves righteous deeds;

lthe upright shall behold his face.


The Parable of the Tenants

12 bAnd he began to speak to them in parables. A man planted ca vineyard dand put a fence around it and dug a pit for the winepress and built a tower, and eleased it to tenants and fwent into another country. When the season came, he sent a servant1 to the tenants to get from them some of the fruit of the vineyard. gAnd they took him and beat him and sent him away empty-handed. gAgain hhe sent to them another servant, and ithey struck him on the head and jtreated him shamefully. gAnd he sent another, and him they killed. And so with many others: some they beat, and some they killed. He had still one other, ka beloved son. lFinally he sent him to them, saying, They will respect my son. But those tenants said to one another, mThis is the heir. Come, nlet us kill him, and the inheritance will be ours. And they took him and killed him and othrew him out of the vineyard. What will the owner of the vineyard do? pHe will qcome and destroy the tenants and rgive the vineyard to others. 10 sHave you not read tthis Scripture:

uThe stone that the builders rejected

has become the cornerstone;2

11  this was the Lord’s doing,

and it is marvelous in our eyes?

12 And vthey were seeking to arrest him wbut feared the people, for they perceived that he had told the parable against them. So they xleft him and went away.

Paying Taxes to Caesar

13 yAnd they sent to him some of zthe Pharisees and some of zthe Herodians, to atrap him in his talk. 14 And they came and said to him, Teacher, bwe know that you are true and do not care about anyone’s opinion. For cyou are not swayed by appearances,3 but truly teach dthe way of God. Is it lawful to pay etaxes to fCaesar, or not? Should we pay them, or should we not? 15 But, knowing gtheir hypocrisy, he said to them, Why hput me to the test? Bring me ia denarius4 and let me look at it. 16 And they brought one. And he said to them, Whose likeness and inscription is this? They said to him, Caesar’s. 17 Jesus said to them, jRender to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s. And they marveled at him.

The Sadducees Ask About the Resurrection

18 And kSadducees came to him, lwho say that there is no resurrection. And they asked him a question, saying, 19 Teacher, Moses wrote for us that mif a man’s brother dies and leaves a wife, but leaves no child, the man5 must take the widow and raise up offspring for his brother. 20 There were seven brothers; the first took a wife, and when he died left no offspring. 21 And the second took her, and died, leaving no offspring. And the third likewise. 22 And the seven left no offspring. Last of all the woman also died. 23 In the resurrection, when they rise again, whose wife will she be? For the seven had her as wife.

24 Jesus said to them, Is this not the reason you are wrong, because nyou know neither the Scriptures nor othe power of God? 25 For when they rise from the dead, they neither pmarry nor pare given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven. 26 And as for the dead being raised, qhave you not read in rthe book of Moses, in sthe passage about the bush, how God spoke to him, saying, tI am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? 27 He is not God of the dead, but of the living. You are quite wrong.

The Great Commandment

28 uAnd one of the scribes came up and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that he answered them well, asked him, Which commandment is the most important of all? 29 Jesus answered, The most important is, vHear, O Israel: The Lord our God, wthe Lord is one. 30 And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. 31 xThe second is this: yYou shall love your neighbor as yourself. There is no other commandment zgreater than these. 32 And the scribe said to him, You are right, Teacher. You have truly said that whe is one, and athere is no other besides him. 33 And to love him with all the heart and with all bthe understanding and with all the strength, and to love one’s neighbor as oneself, cis much more than all dwhole burnt offerings and sacrifices. 34 And when Jesus saw that he answered wisely, he said to him, You are not far from the kingdom of God. eAnd after that no one dared to ask him any more questions.

Whose Son Is the Christ?

35 fAnd as gJesus taught in the temple, he said, How can the scribes say that hthe Christ is the son of David? 36 David himself, iin the Holy Spirit, declared,

jThe Lord said to my Lord,

Sit at my right hand,

until I put your enemies kunder your feet.

37 David himself calls him Lord. So lhow is he his son? And the great throng mheard him gladly.

Beware of the Scribes

38 nAnd in his teaching he said, Beware of the scribes, who like to walk around in long robes and like greetings in the marketplaces 39 and have the best seats in the synagogues and othe places of honor at feasts, 40 pwho devour widows’ houses and qfor a pretense make long prayers. They will receive the greater condemnation.

The Widow’s Offering

41 rAnd he sat down opposite sthe treasury and watched the people tputting money into the offering box. Many rich people put in large sums. 42 And a poor widow came and put in two usmall copper coins, which make a penny.6 43 And he called his disciples to him and said to them, Truly, I say to you, vthis poor widow has put in more than all those who are contributing to the offering box. 44 For they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her wpoverty has put in everything she had, all xshe had to live on.