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24 But God came to Laban the Aramean in a dream at night and warned him,[a] “Be careful[b] that you neither bless nor curse Jacob.”[c]

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  1. Genesis 31:24 tn Heb “said to him.”
  2. Genesis 31:24 tn Heb “watch yourself,” which is a warning to be on guard against doing something that is inappropriate.
  3. Genesis 31:24 tn Heb “lest you speak with Jacob from good to evil.” The precise meaning of the expression, which occurs only here and in v. 29, is uncertain. Since Laban proceeded to speak to Jacob at length, it cannot mean to maintain silence. Nor does it seem to be a prohibition against criticism (see vv. 26-30). Most likely it refers to a formal pronouncement, whether it be a blessing or a curse. Laban was to avoid saying anything to Jacob that would be intended to enhance him or to harm him.

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