Genesis 31:55
Early the next morning, Laban got up and kissed his grandchildren and daughters and blessed them. Then he left to return home.
LessonsG. Hughes, B. D.Genesis 31:49-55
LessonsG. Hughes, B. D.Genesis 31:49-55
LessonsG. Hughes, B. D.Genesis 31:49-55
LessonsG. Hughes, B. D.Genesis 31:49-55
LessonsG. Hughes, B. D.Genesis 31:49-55
MizpahF. Bourdillon, M. A.Genesis 31:49-55
Mizpah TokensF. Bourdillon, M. A.Genesis 31:49-55
Final Covenant Between Jacob and LabanR.A. Redford Genesis 31:51-55

I. ENTIRE SEPARATION FROM TEMPTATION IS THE ONLY SAFETY. Very imperfect knowledge in the Mesopotamian family. Rachel's theft of the household gods a sign of both moral and spiritual deficiency. The religion of Jacob and his descendants must be preserved from contamination. Intercourse with the unenlightened and unsanctified, though necessary for a time and in some degree, must not be suffered to obscure the higher light, or surround us with practical entanglements which hinder our faithfulness to God.

II. WHEREVER THE SPIRITUAL LIFE IS FEEBLE IT IS WELL THAT THERE SHOULD BE SOLEMN PUBLIC ACTS OF COVENANT AND TESTIMONY. We want the Galeed and the Mizpah, the heap of witness and the watch-tower of faith. Many united together in the covenant, and thus became witnesses in whose presence the oath was taken. We are helped to faithfulness by the publicity of our vows. But the higher the spiritual life, the less we shall call in material things to support it. Jacob with Laban is not the true Jacob. All dependence upon the symbol and rite is more or less compromise.

III. THE CONTACT OF THE HIGHER FORM OF RELIGION WITH THE LOWER ONE, OF THE MEANS OF PREPARING THE WORLD FOR THE TRUTH. Laban and his family types of the lower order of religious knowledge and life. The covenant between the father-in-law and son-in-law in the name of the God of Abraham and the God of Nahor points to a rising light in the Mesopotamian family. We may be sure that the influence of Christianity will be supreme wherever it is brought face to face with men's religions. That influence may be embodied in matters of common life, in covenants between man and man, in laws and commercial regulations and social arrangements.

IV. THE SEED OF THE DIVINE LIFE IS PLANTED IN THE SOIL OF NATURE, BUT REVEALS ITS SUPERIORITY TO NATURE BY BRINGING ALL THINGS AND MEN INTO SUBJECTION TO ITSELF. Jacob, Rachel, and afterwards Joseph, present to the Spirit of God elements of character which require both elevation and renovation. The grace is given. On a natural foundation inherited from others God rears by his grace a lofty structure. The crafty and the thoughtful are often nearly allied. It is one of the spiritual dangers to which specially energetic and subtle minds are exposed, that they may so easily fall into an abuse of their superior mental quickness to the injury of their moral purity and simplicity. Jacob and Laban making their covenant together, and erecting their witnessing monuments, are another illustration of the homage which even very imperfect characters pay to the God of truth. They appeal to him, and they do so in the presence of a world which they know will justify God, and not the sinner. The God of Abraham, the God of Nahor, the God of Isaac, judged between them. Jacob offered sacrifice upon the mount, and invited his brethren to a sacrificial banquet; and it was in that atmosphere of mingled reverence for God and human affection that the heir of the covenant bade farewell to all that held him in restraint. and set his face once more towards the land of promise. - R.

The Lord watch between me and thee.
1. Injurious persons are most apt to suspect the innocent for doing wrong.

2. Wicked men would not have others wrong their children though they do it themselves.

3. Nature denieth polygamy though men's lusts design and plead for it.

4. Want of human witness to require fealty is no ground of breaking covenant security.

5. God Himself is witness to the covenants of men, and will see right to be done by them or judge for it.

6. The most fraudulent men may be strict upon others to press on them the testimony of God (ver. 50).

(G. Hughes, B. D.)

1. Treacherous, deceitful men are most fearful of hurt pursuing them. So Laban.

2. Guilty fear makes men solicitous and intent to save themselves.

3. Sinful solicitousness for safety is full of words to little purpose (ver. 51).

4. Jealousy groundless contents not itself with God's witness, but will have visible assurance.

5. Wickedness may sometimes be content not to do harm to others when it is afraid itself.

6. The most injurious are most solicitous to secure themselves from the innocent, who think no harm unto them (ver. 52).

(G. Hughes, B. D.)

1. An oath of God is a just means of confirmation to a lawful covenant for setting things out of doubt.

2. Superstitious men, though convinced of the true way of God, yet worship and swear in old corrupt ways.

3. Oaths taken by false gods, or the true in false ways, are yet binding.

4. in making peace with idolaters it is lawful to take their corrupt swearing, but net to follow it.

5. True saints, when called to swear, must do it in the true fear of the true God.

6. It is just for saints to glorify God by swearing in just cases and making Him Judge (ver. 53).

(G. Hughes, B. D.)

1. It is suitable unto a day of peacemaking for God's servants to make a feast.

2. The spirits of good men are free and ingenious even to such as have been adversaries to them.

3. Friendly invitations and communion are the best issue of hot debates.

4. The power of God so overrules as to make persecutors sleep under the shelter of such whom they have oppressed (ver. 54).

(G. Hughes, B. D.)

1. The purposes of wicked men are not in their own hands to effect them. Laban goeth changed home.

2. Furious pursuits of the innocent God turneth to early departures of their enemies.

3. Overruling Providence can make unnatural men show natural affection.

4. Wicked men are convinced there cometh good to men only from the blessing of God.

5. Ungodly ones may use forms of blessing when yet they can procure none from God.

6. God turns oppressors to their own with rebukes who thirsted after the possessions of the innocent (ver. 55). So God delivereth His out of temptations.

(G. Hughes, B. D.)

I. The ordinary use of this word is not quite the same as its original use. It is generally used as a kind of bond or link between parted friends; whereas it was first used as a SAFEGUARD AND WARNING between two men who were in some sort enemies, or, at least, but doubtful friends, and one of them very suspicious of the other.

1. When two men part, as Laban and Jacob parted, and their circumstances are such that, while absent from one another, one of them, or perhaps each of them, will have it in his power to injure the other in any way, in such a case let this word act as a wholesome warning: "Mizpah," a beacon or watch-tower. The Lord Himself is such. He overlooks all.

2. A servant must often be free from the ken of master or mistress. But there is an eye on that servant always — the all-seeing eye of God. He stands as a watch-tower between servant and master or mistress, marking and judging how each fulfils his part. Is the master or mistress kind, just, considerate? Is the servant faithful and true, honest, upright, diligent?

3. Men have many dealings with one another in business. The Lord stands and overlooks each bargain.

II. But though the original application of the word was such, yet it may very well be applied also in that other way in which it is so often used. When those who love one another are called to part — when friends, for instance, go from each other, when brothers and sisters separate, when children leave home, when even a husband is called to a distance, perhaps to a foreign land, and that for a long time — it is A GREAT COMFORT to remember that the Lord is as a watch-tower between those thus parted. The closest and dearest of all bonds is that of having one Father, one Saviour, one Spirit, one hope now, one eternal home hereafter. Those thus united are hardly absent, even when parted in the body.

(F. Bourdillon, M. A.)

Tokens and memorials are not without use. The "Mizpah" on seal or ring, on locket or in book, may well bring to mind those absent, and even serve to draw the thoughts to God. The daughter, whose home is among strangers, will think of the fond mother who made that parting gift, and whose wish and prayer seems to be contained in that little word. The son, far off in a foreign land, carries with him a memorial of the same kind; and when he reads that word his thoughts go back to the home of his childhood, a father and mother's loving words and earnest prayers come back to his mind, his heart is softened, and he remembers Him who is above all, whose eye is in every place, and now watches over both him and those at home.

(F. Bourdillon, M. A.).

Aram, Isaac, Jacob, Laban, Leah, Nahor, Rachel
Canaan, Euphrates River, Galeed, Gilead, Jegar-sahadutha, Mizpah, Paddan-aram
Blessed, Blesseth, Blessing, Daughters, Departed, Early, Grandchildren, Home, Kissed, Kisseth, Kissing, Laban, Morning, Returned, Riseth, Rose, Sons, Turneth
1. Jacob, displeased with the envy of Laban and his sons, departs secretly.
19. Rachel steals her father's household gods.
22. Laban pursues after him, and complains of the wrong.
34. Rachel's plan to hide the images.
36. Jacob's complaint of Laban.
43. The covenant of Laban and Jacob at Galeed.

Dictionary of Bible Themes
Genesis 31:55

     4954   morning
     5696   grandchildren
     5898   kissing

Genesis 31:44-55

     5095   Jacob, life

Gen. xxxi. 11
Of no less importance and significance is the passage Gen. xxxi. 11 seq. According to ver. 11, the Angel of God, [Hebrew: mlaK halhiM] appears toJacob in a dream. In ver. 13, the same person calls himself the God of Bethel, with reference to the event recorded in chap. xxviii. 11-22. It cannot be supposed that in chap xxviii. the mediation of a common angel took place, who, however, had not been expressly mentioned; for Jehovah is there contrasted with the angels. In ver. 12, we read: "And behold
Ernst Wilhelm Hengstenberg—Christology of the Old Testament

Appendix xvi. On the Jewish views About Demons' and the Demonised,' Together with Some Notes on the Intercourse Between Jews and Jewish Christians in the First Centuries.
IT is not, of course, our purpose here to attempt an exhaustive account of the Jewish views on demons' and the demonised.' A few preliminary strictures were, however, necessary on a work upon which writers on this subject have too implictly relied. I refer to Gfrörer's Jahrhundert des Heils (especially vol. i. pp. 378-424). Gfrörer sets out by quoting a passage in the Book of Enoch on which he lays great stress, but which critical inquiries of Dillmann and other scholars have shown to be
Alfred Edersheim—The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah

How the Rude in Sacred Learning, and those who are Learned but not Humble, are to be Admonished.
(Admonition 25.) Differently to be admonished are those who do not understand aright the words of the sacred Law, and those who understand them indeed aright, but speak them not humbly. For those who understand not aright the words of sacred Law are to be admonished to consider that they turn for themselves a most wholesome drought of wine into a cup of poison, and with a medicinal knife inflict on themselves a mortal wound, when they destroy in themselves what was sound by that whereby they ought,
Leo the Great—Writings of Leo the Great

Epistle Xlix. To Anastasius, Bishop of Antioch .
To Anastasius, Bishop of Antioch [35] . Gregory to Anastasius, &c. I received the letters of thy Fraternity, rightly holding fast the profession of the faith; and I returned great thanks to Almighty God, who, when the shepherds of His flock are changed, still, even after such change, guards the faith which He once delivered to the holy Fathers. Now the excellent preacher says, Other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Christ Jesus (1 Cor. iii. 2). Whosoever, then, with love of
Saint Gregory the Great—the Epistles of Saint Gregory the Great

The Great Shepherd
He shall feed his flock like a shepherd; He shall gather the lambs with His arm, and carry them in His bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young. I t is not easy for those, whose habits of life are insensibly formed by the customs of modern times, to conceive any adequate idea of the pastoral life, as obtained in the eastern countries, before that simplicity of manners, which characterized the early ages, was corrupted, by the artificial and false refinements of luxury. Wealth, in those
John Newton—Messiah Vol. 1

And He had Also this Favour Granted Him. ...
66. And he had also this favour granted him. For as he was sitting alone on the mountain, if ever he was in perplexity in his meditations, this was revealed to him by Providence in prayer. And the happy man, as it is written, was taught of God [1112] . After this, when he once had a discussion with certain men who had come to him concerning the state of the soul and of what nature its place will be after this life, the following night one from above called him, saying, Antony, rise, go out and look.'
Athanasius—Select Works and Letters or Athanasius

A Treatise of the Fear of God;
SHOWING WHAT IT IS, AND HOW DISTINGUISHED FROM THAT WHICH IS NOT SO. ALSO, WHENCE IT COMES; WHO HAS IT; WHAT ARE THE EFFECTS; AND WHAT THE PRIVILEGES OF THOSE THAT HAVE IT IN THEIR HEARTS. London: Printed for N. Ponder, at the Peacock in the Poultry, over against the Stocks market: 1679. ADVERTISEMENT BY THE EDITOR. "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom," and "a fountain of life"--the foundation on which all wisdom rests, as well as the source from whence it emanates. Upon a principle
John Bunyan—The Works of John Bunyan Volumes 1-3

Meditations for the Morning.
1. Almighty God can, in the resurrection, as easily raise up thy body out of the grave, from the sleep of death, as he hath this morning wakened thee in thy bed, out of the sleep of nature. At the dawning of which resurrection day, Christ shall come to be glorified in his saints; and every one of the bodies of the thousands of his saints, being fashioned like unto his glorious body, shall shine as bright as the sun (2 Thess. i. 10; Jude, ver. 14; Phil. iii. 21; Luke ix. 31;) all the angels shining
Lewis Bayly—The Practice of Piety

The Old Testament opens very impressively. In measured and dignified language it introduces the story of Israel's origin and settlement upon the land of Canaan (Gen.--Josh.) by the story of creation, i.-ii. 4a, and thus suggests, at the very beginning, the far-reaching purpose and the world-wide significance of the people and religion of Israel. The narrative has not travelled far till it becomes apparent that its dominant interests are to be religious and moral; for, after a pictorial sketch of
John Edgar McFadyen—Introduction to the Old Testament

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