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Genesis 43

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1Now great famine was in the land. 2And when they had eaten vp the vitaile, which they had brought from Egypt, their father sayd vnto them, Turne againe, and bye vs a little foode. 3And Iudah answered him, saying, The man charged vs by an othe, saying, Neuer see my face, except your brother be with you. 4If thou wilt sende our brother with vs, we will goe downe, and bye thee foode: 5But if thou wilt not send him, we wil not go downe: for the man said vnto vs, Looke me not in the face, except your brother be with you. 6And Israel sayd, Wherefore delt ye so euill with me, as to tell the man, whether ye had yet a brother or no? 7And they answered, The man asked straitly of our selues and of our kinred, saying, Is your father yet aliue? haue ye any brother? And wee tolde him according to these wordes: could we knowe certainely that he would say, Bring your brother downe? 8Then sayde Iudah to Israel his father, Send the boy with mee, that we may rise and goe, and that we may liue and not dye, both we, and thou, and our children. 9I wil be suertie for him: of mine hand shalt thou require him. If I bring him not to thee, and set him before thee, then let me beare the blame for euer. 10For except we had made this tarying, doutlesse by this we had returned the second time. 11Then their father Israel sayd vnto them, If it must needes be so now, do thus: take of the best fruites of the lande in your vessels, and bring the man a present, a little rosen, and a little hony, spices and myrrhe, nuttes, and almondes: 12And take double money in your hande, and the money, that was brought againe in your sackes mouthes: cary it againe in your hand, lest it were some ouersight. 13Take also your brother and arise, and go againe to the man. 14And God almightie giue you mercie in the sight of the man, that hee may deliuer you your other brother, and Beniamin: but I shall be robbed of my childe, as I haue bene. 15Thus the men tooke this present, and tooke twise so much money in their hande with Beniamin, and rose vp, and went downe to Egypt and stoode before Ioseph. 16And whe Ioseph saw Beniamin with them, he sayde to his stewarde, Bring these men home and kill meate, and make ready: for the men shall eate with me at noone. 17And the man did as Ioseph bad, and brought the men vnto Iosephs house. 18Nowe when the men were brought into Iosephs house, they were afrayd, and sayd, Because of the money, that came in our sackes mouthes at the first time, are we brought, that hee may picke a quarrell against vs, and lay some thing to our charge, and bring vs in bondage and our asses. 19Therefore came they to Iosephs stewarde, and communed with him at the doore of ye house. 20And said, Oh syr, we came in deede down hither at the first time to bye foode, 21And as wee came to an ynne and opened our sackes, behold, euery mans money was in his sackes mouth, euen our money in full weight, but we haue brought it againe in our handes. 22Also other money haue we brought in our handes to bye foode, but we cannot tell, who put our money in our sackes. 23And he said, Peace be vnto you, feare not: your God and the God of your father hath giuen you that treasure in your sackes, I had your money: and he brought forth Simeon to them. 24So the man led them into Iosephs house, and gaue them water to wash their feete, and gaue their asses prouender. 25And they made ready their present against Ioseph came at noone, (for they heard say, that they should eate bread there) 26When Ioseph came home, they brought the present into the house to him, which was in their handes, and bowed downe to the grounde before him. 27And he asked them of their prosperitie, and sayd, Is your father the olde man, of whome ye tolde me, in good health? is he yet aliue? 28Who answered, Thy seruant our father is in good health, he is yet aliue: and they bowed downe, and made obeysance. 29And he lifting vp his eyes, beheld his brother Beniamin his mothers sonne, and sayde, Is this your yonger brother, of whome ye tolde me? And he said, God be merciful vnto thee, my sone. 30And Ioseph made haste (for his affection was inflamed towarde his brother, and sought where to weepe) and entred into his chamber, and wept there. 31Afterward he washed his face, and came out, and refrained himselfe, and sayd, Set on meate. 32And they prepared for him by himselfe, and for them by themselues, and for the Egyptians, which did eate with him, by themselues, because the Egyptians might not eate bread with the Ebrewes: for that was an abomination vnto the Egyptians. 33So they sate before him: the eldest according vnto his age, and the yongest according vnto his youth. and the men marueiled among themselues. 34And they tooke meases from before him, and sent to them: but Beniamins mease was fiue times so much as any of theirs: and they drunke, and had of the best drinke with him.
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The Second Journey to Egypt.#The second journey to Egypt. Joseph the sage has carefully prepared the brothers for a possible reconciliation. In this chapter and the following one Judah steps forward as the hero, in contrast to chaps. 37 and 42 where Reuben was the hero. Here Judah serves as guarantee for Benjamin. 1Now the famine in the land grew severe. 2So when they had used up all the grain they had brought from Egypt, their father said to them, “Go back and buy us a little more food.” 3But Judah replied: “The man strictly warned us, ‘You shall not see me unless your brother is with you.’#Gn 44:23. 4If you are willing to let our brother go with us, we will go down to buy food for you. 5But if you are not willing, we will not go down, because the man told us, ‘You shall not see me unless your brother is with you.’”#Gn 42:20. 6Israel demanded, “Why did you bring this trouble on me by telling the man that you had another brother?” 7They answered: “The man kept asking about us and our family: ‘Is your father still living? Do you have another brother?’ We answered him accordingly. How could we know that he would say, ‘Bring your brother down here’?”
8Then Judah urged his father Israel: “Let the boy go with me, that we may be off and on our way if you and we and our children are to keep from starving to death.#Gn 42:37. 9I myself will serve as a guarantee for him. You can hold me responsible for him. If I fail to bring him back and set him before you, I will bear the blame before you forever.#Gn 44:32. 10Had we not delayed, we could have been there and back twice by now!”
11Israel their father then told them: “If it must be so, then do this: Put some of the land’s best products in your baggage and take them down to the man as gifts: some balm and honey, gum and resin, and pistachios and almonds.#Gn 45:23. 12Also take double the money along, for you must return the amount that was put back in the mouths of your bags; it may have been a mistake. 13Take your brother, too, and be off on your way back to the man. 14May God Almighty grant you mercy in the presence of the man, so that he may let your other brother go, as well as Benjamin. As for me, if I am to suffer bereavement, I shall suffer it.”
15So the men took those gifts and double the money and Benjamin. They made their way down to Egypt and presented themselves before Joseph. 16When Joseph saw them and Benjamin, he told his steward, “Take the men into the house, and have an animal slaughtered and prepared, for they are to dine with me at noon.” 17Doing as Joseph had ordered, the steward conducted the men to Joseph’s house. 18But they became apprehensive when they were led to his house. “It must be,” they thought, “on account of the money put back in our bags the first time, that we are taken inside—in order to attack us and take our donkeys and seize us as slaves.” 19So they went up to Joseph’s steward and talked to him at the entrance of the house. 20“If you please, sir,” they said, “we came down here once before to buy food.#Gn 42:3. 21But when we arrived at a night’s encampment and opened our bags, there was each man’s money in the mouth of his bag—our money in the full amount! We have now brought it back.#Gn 42:27–28. 22We have brought other money to buy food. We do not know who put our money in our bags.” 23He replied, “Calm down! Do not fear! Your God and the God of your father must have put treasure in your bags for you. As for your money, I received it.” With that, he led Simeon out to them.
24The steward then brought the men inside Joseph’s house. He gave them water to wash their feet, and gave fodder to their donkeys. 25Then they set out their gifts to await Joseph’s arrival at noon, for they had heard that they were to dine there. 26When Joseph came home, they presented him with the gifts they had brought inside, while they bowed down before him to the ground. 27After inquiring how they were, he asked them, “And how is your aged father, of whom you spoke? Is he still alive?”#Tb 7:4. 28“Your servant our father is still alive and doing well,” they said, as they knelt and bowed down. 29Then Joseph looked up and saw Benjamin, his brother, the son of his mother. He asked, “Is this your youngest brother, of whom you told me?” Then he said to him, “May God be gracious to you, my son!”#Gn 42:13. 30With that, Joseph hurried out, for he was so overcome with affection for his brother that he was on the verge of tears. So he went into a private room and wept there.
31After washing his face, he reappeared and, now having collected himself, gave the order, “Serve the meal.” 32It was served separately to him,#Separately to him: that Joseph did not eat with the other Egyptians was apparently a matter of rank. to the brothers, and to the Egyptians who partook of his board. Egyptians may not eat with Hebrews; that is abhorrent to them. 33When they were seated before him according to their age, from the oldest to the youngest, they looked at one another in amazement; 34and as portions were brought to them from Joseph’s table, Benjamin’s portion was five times as large as#Five times as large as: probably an idiomatic expression for “much larger than.” Cf. 45:22. anyone else’s. So they drank freely and made merry with him.