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Genesis 34:7-8

Context
34:7 Now Jacob’s sons had come in from the field when they heard the news. 1  They 2  were offended 3  and very angry because Shechem 4  had disgraced Israel 5  by sexually assaulting 6  Jacob’s daughter, a crime that should not be committed. 7 

34:8 But Hamor made this appeal to them: “My son Shechem is in love with your daughter. 8  Please give her to him as his wife.

Genesis 34:25-26

Context
34:25 In three days, when they were still in pain, two of Jacob’s sons, Simeon and Levi, Dinah’s brothers, each took his sword 9  and went to the unsuspecting city 10  and slaughtered every male. 34:26 They killed Hamor and his son Shechem with the sword, took Dinah from Shechem’s house, and left.

Genesis 34:30-31

Context

34:30 Then Jacob said to Simeon and Levi, “You have brought ruin 11  on me by making me a foul odor 12  among the inhabitants of the land – among the Canaanites and the Perizzites. I 13  am few in number; they will join forces against me and attack me, and both I and my family will be destroyed!” 34:31 But Simeon and Levi replied, 14  “Should he treat our sister like a common prostitute?”

1 tn Heb “when they heard.” The words “the news” are supplied in the translation for stylistic reasons.

2 tn Heb “the men.” This sounds as if a new group has been introduced into the narrative, so it has been translated as “they” to indicate that it refers to Jacob’s sons, mentioned in the first part of the verse.

3 tn The Hebrew verb עָצַב (’atsav) can carry one of three semantic nuances depending on the context: (1) “to be injured” (Ps 56:5; Eccl 10:9; 1 Chr 4:10); (2) “to experience emotional pain; to be depressed emotionally; to be worried” (2 Sam 19:2; Isa 54:6; Neh 8:10-11); (3) “to be embarrassed; to be insulted; to be offended” (to the point of anger at another or oneself; Gen 6:6; 45:5; 1 Sam 20:3, 34; 1 Kgs 1:6; Isa 63:10; Ps 78:40). This third category develops from the second by metonymy. In certain contexts emotional pain leads to embarrassment and/or anger. In this last use the subject sometimes directs his anger against the source of grief (see especially Gen 6:6). The third category fits best in Gen 34:7 because Jacob’s sons were not merely wounded emotionally. On the contrary, Shechem’s action prompted them to strike out in judgment against the source of their distress.

4 tn Heb “he”; the referent (Shechem) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

5 tn Heb “a disgraceful thing he did against Israel.”

6 tn Heb “by lying with the daughter of Jacob.” The infinitive here explains the preceding verb, indicating exactly how he had disgraced Jacob. The expression “to lie with” is a euphemism for sexual relations, or in this case, sexual assault.

7 tn Heb “and so it should not be done.” The negated imperfect has an obligatory nuance here, but there is also a generalizing tone. The narrator emphasizes that this particular type of crime (sexual assault) is especially reprehensible.

8 tn Heb “Shechem my son, his soul is attached to your daughter.” The verb means “to love” in the sense of being emotionally attached to or drawn to someone. This is a slightly different way of saying what was reported earlier (v. 3). However, there is no mention here of the offense. Even though Hamor is speaking to Dinah’s brothers, he refers to her as their daughter (see v. 17).

9 tn Heb “a man his sword.”

10 tn Heb “and they came upon the city, [which was] secure.” In this case “secure” means the city was caught unprepared and at peace, not expecting an attack.

11 tn The traditional translation is “troubled me” (KJV, ASV), but the verb refers to personal or national disaster and suggests complete ruin (see Josh 7:25, Judg 11:35, Prov 11:17). The remainder of the verse describes the “trouble” Simeon and Levi had caused.

12 tn In the causative stem the Hebrew verb בָּאַשׁ (baash) means “to cause to stink, to have a foul smell.” In the contexts in which it is used it describes foul smells, stenches, or things that are odious. Jacob senses that the people in the land will find this act terribly repulsive. See P. R. Ackroyd, “The Hebrew Root באשׁ,” JTS 2 (1951): 31-36.

13 tn Jacob speaks in the first person as the head and representative of the entire family.

14 tn Heb “but they said.” The referent of “they” (Simeon and Levi) have been specified in the translation for clarity.



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