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Berĕshith (Genesis) 42

42
1And when Ya‛aqoḇ saw that there was grain in Mitsrayim, Ya‛aqoḇ said to his sons, “Why do you look at each other?”
2And he said, “See, I have heard that there is grain in Mitsrayim. Go down to that place and buy for us there, and let us live and not die.”
3And Yosĕph’s ten brothers went down to buy grain in Mitsrayim.
4But Ya‛aqoḇ did not send Yosĕph’s brother Binyamin with his brothers, for he said, “Lest some harm come to him.”
5And the sons of Yisra’ĕl went to buy grain among those who journeyed, for the scarcity of food was in the land of Kena‛an.
6And Yosĕph was the governor over the land, he was the one who sold to all the people of the land. And Yosĕph’s brothers came and bowed down before him with their faces to the earth.
7And Yosĕph saw his brothers and recognised them, but he acted as a stranger to them and spoke to them harshly, and said to them, “Where do you come from?” And they said, “From the land of Kena‛an to buy food.”
8So Yosĕph recognised his brothers, but they did not recognise him.
9And Yosĕph remembered the dreams which he had dreamed about them, and said to them, “You are spies! You have come to see the nakedness of the land!”
10And they said to him, “No, my master, but your servants have come to buy food.
11We are all one man’s sons, we are trustworthy, your servants are not spies.
12But he said to them, “No, but you have come to see the nakedness of the land.”
13And they said, “Your servants are twelve brothers, the sons of one man in the land of Kena‛an. And see, the youngest is with our father today, and one is no more.”
14And Yosĕph said to them, “It is as I spoke to you, saying, ‘You are spies!’
15“By this you shall be proven: By the life of Pharaoh, you do not leave this place unless your youngest brother comes here.
16“Send one of you, and let him bring your brother, while you are kept in prison. So let your words be proven to see whether there is any truth in you, or else, by the life of Pharaoh, you are spies!”
17And he put them all together in prison for three days.
18Now Yosĕph said to them the third day, “Do this and live, for I fear Elohim:
19“If you are trustworthy, let one of your brothers be confined to your prison house, and you, go, bring grain for the scarcity of food of your houses.
20“And bring your youngest brother to me, and let your words be confirmed, and you do not die.” And so they did.
21And they said to each other, “Truly, we are guilty concerning our brother, for we saw the distress of his life when he pleaded with us, yet we did not listen, that is why this distress has come upon us.”
22And Re’uḇĕn answered them, saying, “Did I not speak to you, saying, ‘Do not sin against the boy,’ and you would not listen? And see, his blood is now required of us.”
23And they did not know that Yosĕph understood them, for he spoke to them through an interpreter.
24And he turned himself away from them and wept, but came back to them and spoke to them. And he took Shim‛on from them and bound him before their eyes.
25And Yosĕph commanded and they filled their sacks with grain, also to put back every man’s silver to his sack, and to give them food for the journey. And thus it was done for them.
26So they loaded their donkeys with the grain and went from there.
27And as one of them opened his sack to give his donkey fodder at the lodging place, he saw his silver, for there it was in the mouth of his sack!
28And he said to his brothers, “My silver has been returned, and there it is, in my sack!” And their hearts sank and they were afraid, saying to each other, “What is this that Elohim has done to us?”
29So they came to Ya‛aqoḇ their father in the land of Kena‛an and reported to him all that befell them, saying,
30“The man, the master of the land, spoke to us harshly, and took us for spies of the land.
31But we said to him, ‘We are trustworthy, we are not spies.
32We are twelve brothers, sons of our father. One is no more, and the youngest is today with our father in the land of Kena‛an.’
33“And the man, the master of the land, said to us, ‘By this I know that you are trustworthy: Leave one of your brothers here with me, and take food for the scarcity of food of your households, and go.
34And bring your youngest brother to me, then I know that you are not spies, but that you are trustworthy – I give your brother to you, and you move about in the land.’ ”
35And it came to be as they emptied their sacks, that look, the bundle of each man’s silver was in his sack! And when they and their father saw the bundles of silver, they were afraid.
36And Ya‛aqoḇ their father said to them, “You have bereaved me – Yosĕph is no more, and Shim‛on is no more, and you would take Binyamin! All this is against me.”
37So Re’uḇĕn spoke to his father, saying, “Take the lives of my two sons if I do not bring him back to you. Put him in my hands, and I myself bring him back to you.”
38But he said, “My son is not going down with you, for his brother is dead, and he is left alone. If any harm should come to him along the way in which you go, then you would bring down my grey hair with sorrow to She’ol.”
42
Joseph’s Brothers Go to Egypt
1When Jacob heard that grain was available in Egypt, he said to his sons, “Why are you standing around looking at one another? 2I have heard there is grain in Egypt. Go down there, and buy enough grain to keep us alive. Otherwise we’ll die.”
3So Joseph’s ten older brothers went down to Egypt to buy grain. 4But Jacob wouldn’t let Joseph’s younger brother, Benjamin, go with them, for fear some harm might come to him. 5So Jacob’s#42:5 Hebrew Israel’s. See note on 35:21. sons arrived in Egypt along with others to buy food, for the famine was in Canaan as well.
6Since Joseph was governor of all Egypt and in charge of selling grain to all the people, it was to him that his brothers came. When they arrived, they bowed before him with their faces to the ground. 7Joseph recognized his brothers instantly, but he pretended to be a stranger and spoke harshly to them. “Where are you from?” he demanded.
“From the land of Canaan,” they replied. “We have come to buy food.”
8Although Joseph recognized his brothers, they didn’t recognize him. 9And he remembered the dreams he’d had about them many years before. He said to them, “You are spies! You have come to see how vulnerable our land has become.”
10“No, my lord!” they exclaimed. “Your servants have simply come to buy food. 11We are all brothers—members of the same family. We are honest men, sir! We are not spies!”
12“Yes, you are!” Joseph insisted. “You have come to see how vulnerable our land has become.”
13“Sir,” they said, “there are actually twelve of us. We, your servants, are all brothers, sons of a man living in the land of Canaan. Our youngest brother is back there with our father right now, and one of our brothers is no longer with us.”
14But Joseph insisted, “As I said, you are spies! 15This is how I will test your story. I swear by the life of Pharaoh that you will never leave Egypt unless your youngest brother comes here! 16One of you must go and get your brother. I’ll keep the rest of you here in prison. Then we’ll find out whether or not your story is true. By the life of Pharaoh, if it turns out that you don’t have a younger brother, then I’ll know you are spies.”
17So Joseph put them all in prison for three days. 18On the third day Joseph said to them, “I am a God-fearing man. If you do as I say, you will live. 19If you really are honest men, choose one of your brothers to remain in prison. The rest of you may go home with grain for your starving families. 20But you must bring your youngest brother back to me. This will prove that you are telling the truth, and you will not die.” To this they agreed.
21Speaking among themselves, they said, “Clearly we are being punished because of what we did to Joseph long ago. We saw his anguish when he pleaded for his life, but we wouldn’t listen. That’s why we’re in this trouble.”
22“Didn’t I tell you not to sin against the boy?” Reuben asked. “But you wouldn’t listen. And now we have to answer for his blood!”
23Of course, they didn’t know that Joseph understood them, for he had been speaking to them through an interpreter. 24Now he turned away from them and began to weep. When he regained his composure, he spoke to them again. Then he chose Simeon from among them and had him tied up right before their eyes.
25Joseph then ordered his servants to fill the men’s sacks with grain, but he also gave secret instructions to return each brother’s payment at the top of his sack. He also gave them supplies for their journey home. 26So the brothers loaded their donkeys with the grain and headed for home.
27But when they stopped for the night and one of them opened his sack to get grain for his donkey, he found his money in the top of his sack. 28“Look!” he exclaimed to his brothers. “My money has been returned; it’s here in my sack!” Then their hearts sank. Trembling, they said to each other, “What has God done to us?”
29When the brothers came to their father, Jacob, in the land of Canaan, they told him everything that had happened to them. 30“The man who is governor of the land spoke very harshly to us,” they told him. “He accused us of being spies scouting the land. 31But we said, ‘We are honest men, not spies. 32We are twelve brothers, sons of one father. One brother is no longer with us, and the youngest is at home with our father in the land of Canaan.’
33“Then the man who is governor of the land told us, ‘This is how I will find out if you are honest men. Leave one of your brothers here with me, and take grain for your starving families and go on home. 34But you must bring your youngest brother back to me. Then I will know you are honest men and not spies. Then I will give you back your brother, and you may trade freely in the land.’”
35As they emptied out their sacks, there in each man’s sack was the bag of money he had paid for the grain! The brothers and their father were terrified when they saw the bags of money. 36Jacob exclaimed, “You are robbing me of my children! Joseph is gone! Simeon is gone! And now you want to take Benjamin, too. Everything is going against me!”
37Then Reuben said to his father, “You may kill my two sons if I don’t bring Benjamin back to you. I’ll be responsible for him, and I promise to bring him back.”
38But Jacob replied, “My son will not go down with you. His brother Joseph is dead, and he is all I have left. If anything should happen to him on your journey, you would send this grieving, white-haired man to his grave.#42:38 Hebrew to Sheol.