Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Genesis 34

Genesis 34: Dinah’s rape, and her brothers’ revenge

Synopsis

In this chapter, Dinah goes out to visit “the women of the land” (verse 1), and while she is out, she is spotted by Shechem. He rapes, her and then tells his father that he wants to marry her; actually, he tells his father to “[g]et me this girl as my wife” (verse 4).

Jacob and his sons hear about what happened, and are “filled with great wrath and fury” (verse 7). Shechem’s father, Hamor, came to them, as his son had asked, and asks Jacob for permission for his son to marry Dinah. He envisions a joining together of the two families; “your sons can marry my daughters, and my daughters will marry your sons” kind of thing.

Jacob’s sons, however, are not into this. But they decide to answer Hamor deceitfully. They tell them that they couldn’t possibly inter-marry with people who aren’t circumcized. And Shechem and Hamor are fine with that, so they immediately run off to talk all of the men in their city into getting circumcized. They agree, and every many in the city gets circumcized.

Then, two days later, “while all of them were still in pain” (verse 25), Simeon and Levi went through the city and killed all of the men. They looted the city, and took the women and children.

Jacob didn’t like this; he was worried that his family wasn’t big enough to handle a war. If the rest of the people from the region wanted to get revenge, he and his family would be destroyed. But Simeon and Levi stand by their actions.

Thoughts

I’d like to point out that nowhere, in this chapter, is it mentioned what Dinah thought about the whole thing.
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