“Are you quite finished?” Laban asked after quite the tongue-lashing from his rogue hand. “Your wives are my daughters. Their maids are my property. Your children are my children. Everything in this camp belongs to me.”
Then Laban’s face softened. “But,” he said, giving Jacob’s shoulder a friendly tap, “what can I do? I’ve met my match. Let’s make a promise between us.”
“Gather stones,” Jacob said to his children as he removed a boulder from the side of the hill and rolled it into the middle of the camp. Reuben and his brothers brought stones and made a pile near where Jacob set the boulder.
Laban and Jacob called the place The Witness Pile, each in his own tongue. Laban called it “Jegarsahadutha” in Aramaic, and Jacob called it “Galeed” in Hebrew. They called the boulder “Mizpah,” Watchpost.
Laban said, “God’s watching you and me when we’re apart. If you hurt my daughters or take other wives, God sees what you’ve done. This pile of stones and this boulder are a boundary. Neither you nor I will cross them to do the other harm. As these stones are a witness, may God be the judge.”
Jacob swore by his father’s faith and offered a sacrifice on top of the hill, and everyone from both camps threw an all-night party.
In the morning, Laban got up and loaded his camels, kissed his daughters and grandchildren goodbye, and blessed them. He and his entourage left for Haran.
When Jacob and his family left to continue their journey south to Canaan, he met a company of angels on the way. He named that area “Mahanaim,” Two Camps.
Inspiration: Genesis 31, 32