Jacob (his name means "deceiver") had twice taken advantage of his older brother Esau to receive the inheritance reserved for the firstborn son. After the second deception (see Genesis 27), Esau was so angry that he plotted to kill his brother. Jacob fled to Haran, and spent twenty years there working and raising a family. When God commanded him to return home (31:3), he knew he had to make good with his brother. Learning from his poor relationship with Laban, Jacob crafted a plan to win back his brother's favor. But it was God who protected his family and him through his travels and return home.