In the name of Allah, the Beneficient,the Merciful
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Yaqub (Alayhis salaam) was the son of Ishaq
(Alayhis salaam) and the grandson of Ibrahim (Alayhis salaam).
He wasa also the daughter's son of Batweel, Ibrahim's nephew.
His mother was Rafqah. He was his mother's favourite. He was
also loved by Esau, his maternal uncle.
When Yaqub (Alaihis salaam) went to Faddan
(Padan-aram) at the indication of his mother, his maternal
uncle, Laban took a pledge from him that he will shepherd his
sheep for ten years. This period of ten years would be his
dowry in exchange of Laban's daughter. When Yaqub (Alaihis
salaam) completed the ten-year period, Laban wanted him to
marry his elder daughter, Laee'ah. However, Yaqub (Alaihis
salaam) expressed his inclination for the younger daughter,
Raaheel. Laban proffered the excuse that according to the
custom it was not legal to allow the marriage of the younger
daughter before the marriage of the elder one. He suggested
that Yaqub (Alaihis salaam) accept the proposal of the elder
one and live with him for another ten years in order to marry
Raheel, the younger daughter as well. In that era it was
permissible to marry two sisters simultaneously. Yaqub
(Alaihis salaam) completed the second ten-year period as well
and married Raaheel. He had two other wives viz. Zilpah,
Laee'ah's handmaid and Bilhah, Raheel's handmaid. Besides
Binyameen, all his other children were born at his uncle's
house and when he returned to Palestine, Binyameen was born.
After having kept Yaqub (Alaihis salaam) for twenty years,
Laban allowed him to leave and showered him with many gifts
and flocks of sheep. Yaqub (Alaihis salaam) went to live in
Palestine, the land of his grandfather.
When Yaqub (Alaihis salaam) went away to
Faddan, Esau, his maternal uncle was displeased and went to
live with his uncle (Yaqub's paternal uncle), Ismaeel (Alaihis
salaam). Esau married his daughter and began living nearby.
The altercation that existed between the two also dissipated
during this period. They began loving and sending gifts to
These are all the details derived from the
Torah. The Quran has not elaborated on any details. It only
mentions Yaqub (Alaihis salaam) as a great Nabi, one who was
patient and who was the father of Yusuf (Alaihis salaam).
Yusuf's other brothers are also mentioned at this juncture but
without any names.
In the Quran
Yaqub (Alaihis salaam) has been mentioned at
ten places in the Quran. The following table indicates these
Baqarah 33, 136, 140; Nisaa 163; An'aam 85;
Yusuf 6, 38; Maryam 6; Ambiya 72; Saad 45
Yaqub's name in Hebrew is Israeel. It is
composed of two words viz. Isr'a (servant) and Eel (Allah).
Thus it is translated as Abdullah in Arabic. His descendants
are therefore referred to as Banu Israeel (the descendants of
The Progeny of Yaqub (Alayhis
Yaqub (Alaihis salaam) had 12 sons. Binyameen
was born in Palestine while the others were born in
According to the Torah, they
the sons of Laee'ah: Reuben, Simeon, Levi,
Judah, Issachar and Zebulun
the sons of Rachel: Yusuf
(Joseph) and Binyameen (Benjamin)
the sons of Bilhah: Dan
the sons of Zilpah: Gad and Asher.
Yaqub (Alaihis salaam) was a great prophet of
Allah. He was sent to guide the Canaanites. He spent many
years fulfilling this mission.
Note: All Biblical text is taken from The
Holy Bible, King James Version without any changes in the
sentence construction or punctuation.
Stories of the Messengers - No.
Source: Jamiatul Ulama (Kwazulu-Natal)