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Genesis 37

37
1Jacob lived in the land of his father’s travels, in the land of Canaan. 2This is the history of the generations of Jacob. Joseph, being seventeen years old, was feeding the flock with his brothers. He was a boy with the sons of Bilhah and Zilpah, his father’s wives. Joseph brought an evil report of them to their father. 3Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age, and he made him a tunic of many colours. 4His brothers saw that their father loved him more than all his brothers, and they hated him, and couldn’t speak peaceably to him.
5Joseph dreamt a dream, and he told it to his brothers, and they hated him all the more. 6He said to them, “Please hear this dream which I have dreamt: 7for behold, we were binding sheaves in the field, and behold, my sheaf arose and also stood upright; and behold, your sheaves came around, and bowed down to my sheaf.”
8His brothers asked him, “Will you indeed reign over us? Will you indeed have dominion over us?” They hated him all the more for his dreams and for his words. 9He dreamt yet another dream, and told it to his brothers, and said, “Behold, I have dreamt yet another dream: and behold, the sun and the moon and eleven stars bowed down to me.” 10He told it to his father and to his brothers. His father rebuked him, and said to him, “What is this dream that you have dreamt? Will I and your mother and your brothers indeed come to bow ourselves down to the earth before you?” 11His brothers envied him, but his father kept this saying in mind.
12His brothers went to feed their father’s flock in Shechem. 13Israel said to Joseph, “Aren’t your brothers feeding the flock in Shechem? Come, and I will send you to them.” He said to him, “Here I am.”
14He said to him, “Go now, see whether it is well with your brothers, and well with the flock; and bring me word again.” So he sent him out of the valley of Hebron, and he came to Shechem. 15A certain man found him, and behold, he was wandering in the field. The man asked him, “What are you looking for?”
16He said, “I am looking for my brothers. Tell me, please, where they are feeding the flock.”
17The man said, “They have left here, for I heard them say, ‘Let’s go to Dothan.’”
Joseph went after his brothers, and found them in Dothan. 18They saw him afar off, and before he came near to them, they conspired against him to kill him. 19They said to one another, “Behold, this dreamer comes. 20Come now therefore, and let’s kill him, and cast him into one of the pits, and we will say, ‘An evil animal has devoured him.’ We will see what will become of his dreams.”
21Reuben heard it, and delivered him out of their hand, and said, “Let’s not take his life.” 22Reuben said to them, “Shed no blood. Throw him into this pit that is in the wilderness, but lay no hand on him”—that he might deliver him out of their hand, to restore him to his father. 23When Joseph came to his brothers, they stripped Joseph of his tunic, the tunic of many colours that was on him; 24and they took him, and threw him into the pit. The pit was empty. There was no water in it.
25They sat down to eat bread, and they lifted up their eyes and looked, and saw a caravan of Ishmaelites was coming from Gilead, with their camels bearing spices and balm and myrrh, going to carry it down to Egypt. 26Judah said to his brothers, “What profit is it if we kill our brother and conceal his blood? 27Come, and let’s sell him to the Ishmaelites, and not let our hand be on him; for he is our brother, our flesh.” His brothers listened to him. 28Midianites who were merchants passed by, and they drew and lifted up Joseph out of the pit, and sold Joseph to the Ishmaelites for twenty pieces of silver. The merchants brought Joseph into Egypt.
29Reuben returned to the pit, and saw that Joseph wasn’t in the pit; and he tore his clothes. 30He returned to his brothers, and said, “The child is no more; and I, where will I go?” 31They took Joseph’s tunic, and killed a male goat, and dipped the tunic in the blood. 32They took the tunic of many colours, and they brought it to their father, and said, “We have found this. Examine it, now, and see if it is your son’s tunic or not.”
33He recognised it, and said, “It is my son’s tunic. An evil animal has devoured him. Joseph is without doubt torn in pieces.” 34Jacob tore his clothes, and put sackcloth on his waist, and mourned for his son many days. 35All his sons and all his daughters rose up to comfort him, but he refused to be comforted. He said, “For I will go down to Sheol#37:35 Sheol is the place of the dead. to my son, mourning.” His father wept for him. 36The Midianites sold him into Egypt to Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh’s, the captain of the guard.
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Parashah 9: Vayeshev (He continued living) 37:1–40:23
1Ya‘akov continued living in the land where his father had lived as a foreigner, the land of Kena‘an.
2Here is the history of Ya‘akov. When Yosef was seventeen years old he used to pasture the flock with his brothers, even though he was still a boy. Once when he was with the sons of Bilhah and the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives, he brought a bad report about them to their father. 3Now Isra’el loved Yosef the most of all his children, because he was the son of his old age; and he made him a long-sleeved robe. 4When his brothers saw that their father loved him more than all his brothers, they began to hate him and reached the point where they couldn’t even talk with him in a civil manner.
5Yosef had a dream which he told his brothers, and that made them hate him all the more. 6He said to them, “Listen while I tell you about this dream of mine. 7We were tying up bundles of wheat in the field when suddenly my bundle got up by itself and stood upright; then your bundles came, gathered around mine and prostrated themselves before it.” 8His brothers retorted, “Yes, you will certainly be our king. You’ll do a great job of bossing us around!” And they hated him still more for his dreams and for what he said.
9He had another dream which he told his brothers: “Here, I had another dream, and there were the sun, the moon and eleven stars prostrating themselves before me.” 10He told his father too, as well as his brothers, but his father rebuked him: “What is this dream you have had? Do you really expect me, your mother and your brothers to come and prostrate ourselves before you on the ground?” 11His brothers were jealous of him, but his father kept the matter in mind.
(ii) 12After this, when his brothers had gone to pasture their father’s sheep in Sh’khem, 13Isra’el asked Yosef, “Aren’t your brothers pasturing the sheep in Sh’khem? Come, I will send you to them.” He answered, “Here I am.” 14He said to him, “Go now, see whether things are going well with your brothers and with the sheep, and bring word back to me.” So he sent him away from the Hevron Valley, and he went to Sh’khem, 15where a man found him wandering around in the countryside. The man asked him, “What are you looking for?” 16“I’m looking for my brothers,” he answered. “Tell me, please, where are they pasturing the sheep?” 17The man said, “They’ve left here; because I heard them say, ‘Let’s go to Dotan.’” Yosef went after his brothers and found them in Dotan.
18They spotted him in the distance, and before he had arrived where they were, they had already plotted to kill him. 19They said to each other, “Look, this dreamer is coming! 20So come now, let’s kill him and throw him into one of these water cisterns here. Then we’ll say some wild animal devoured him. We’ll see then what becomes of his dreams!” 21But when Re’uven heard this, he saved him from being destroyed by them. He said, “We shouldn’t take his life. 22Don’t shed blood,” Re’uven added. “Throw him into this cistern here in the wilds, but don’t lay hands on him yourselves.” He intended to rescue him from them later and restore him to his father.
(iii) 23So it was that when Yosef arrived to be with his brothers, they stripped off his robe, the long-sleeved robe he was wearing, 24and took him and threw him into the cistern (the cistern was empty; without any water in it). 25Then they sat down to eat their meal; but as they looked up, they saw in front of them a caravan of Yishma‘elim coming from Gil‘ad, their camels loaded with aromatic gum, healing resin and opium, on their way down to Egypt. 26Y’hudah said to his brothers, “What advantage is it to us if we kill our brother and cover up his blood? 27Come, let’s sell him to the Yishma‘elim, instead of putting him to death with our own hands. After all, he is our brother, our own flesh.” His brothers paid attention to him. 28So when the Midyanim, merchants, passed by, they drew and lifted Yosef up out of the cistern and sold him for half a pound of silver shekels to the Yishma‘elim, who took Yosef on to Egypt.
29Re’uven returned to the cistern, and, upon seeing that Yosef wasn’t in it, tore his clothes in mourning. 30He returned to his brothers and said, “The boy isn’t there! Where can I go now?”
31They took Yosef’s robe, killed a male goat and dipped the robe in the blood. 32Then they sent the long-sleeved robe and brought it to their father, saying, “We found this. Do you know if it’s your son’s robe or not?” 33He recognized it and cried, “It’s my son’s robe! Some wild animal has torn Yosef in pieces and eaten him!” 34Ya‘akov tore his clothes and, putting sackcloth around his waist, mourned his son for many days. 35Though all his sons and daughters tried to comfort him, he refused all consolation, saying, “No, I will go down to the grave, to my son, mourning.” And his father wept for him.
36In Egypt the Midyanim sold Yosef to Potifar, one of Pharaoh’s officials, a captain of the guard.