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Bible Dictionaries

Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary

Laban

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the son of Bethuel, grandson of Nahor, brother to Rebekah, and father of Rachel and Leah, Genesis 28:2 , &c. Of this man, the first thing we hear is his entertainment of Abraham's servant when he came on his errand to Rebekah. Hospitality was the virtue of his age and country. In his case, however, it seems to have been no little stimulated by the sight of "the ear ring and the bracelets on his sister's hands," which the servant had already given her, Genesis 24:30 ; so he speedily made room for the camels. He next is presented to us as beguiling that sister's son, who had sought a shelter in his house, and whose circumstances placed him at his mercy, of fourteen years' service, when he had covenanted with him for seven only; endeavouring to retain his labour when he would not pay him his labour's worth, himself devouring the portion which he should have given to his daughters, counting them but as strangers, Genesis 31:15 . Compelled, at length, to pay Jacob wages, he changes them ten times, and, in the spirit of a crafty, griping worldling, makes him account for whatever of the flock was torn of beasts or stolen, whether by day or night. When Jacob flies from this iniquitous service with his family and cattle, Laban still pursues and persecutes him, intending, if his intentions had not been overruled by a mightier hand, to send him away empty, even after he had been making, for so long a period, so usurious a profit of him.

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Watson, Richard. Entry for 'Laban'. Richard Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/wtd/l/laban.html. 1831-2.

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