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Berĕshith (Genesis) 43

43
1But the scarcity of food was severe in the land.
2And it came to be, when they had eaten up the grain which they had brought from Mitsrayim, that their father said to them, “Go back, buy us a little food.”
3But Yehuḏah spoke to him, saying, “The man vehemently warned us, saying, ‘You do not see my face unless your brother is with you.’ ”
4“If you let our brother go with us, we go down and buy you food.
5“But if you do not let him go, we do not go down, because the man said to us, ‘You do not see my face unless your brother is with you.’ ”
6And Yisra’ĕl said, “Why did you do evil to me to inform the man that you still had another brother?”
7And they said, “The man kept asking about us and our relatives, saying, ‘Is your father still alive? Have you another brother?’ And we informed him according to these words. How could we know that he would say, ‘Bring your brother down’?”
8And Yehuḏah said to Yisra’ĕl his father, “Send the boy with me, and let us arise and go, and live and not die, both we and you and also our little ones.
9“I myself shall stand guaranty for him – from my hand you are to require him. If I do not bring him back to you and set him before you, then let me bear the blame forever.
10“For if we had not delayed, truly by now we could have returned this second time.”
11And their father Yisra’ĕl said to them, “If so, then do this: Take some of the best fruit of the land in your vessels and bring a present down for the man, a little balm and a little honey, spices and myrrh, nuts and almonds.
12“And take double silver in your hand, and take back in your hand the silver that was returned in the mouth of your sacks. It could have been a mistake.
13“And take your brother, and arise, go back to the man.
14And Ěl Shaddai give to you compassion before the man, so that he shall release your other brother and Binyamin. And I, if I am bereaved, I am bereaved!
15And the men took that present and Binyamin, and they took double the amount of silver in their hand, and arose and went down to Mitsrayim, and stood before Yosĕph.
16And Yosĕph saw Binyamin with them, and said to the one over his house, “Bring the men home, and make a great slaughter, and prepare, for these men are to eat with me at noon.”
17And the man did as Yosĕph said, and the man brought the men into Yosĕph’s house.
18And the men were afraid because they were brought into Yosĕph’s house. And they said, “It is because of the silver, which was put back into our sacks the first time, that we are brought in, to throw himself upon us and fall upon us, to take us as slaves, our donkeys too.”
19So they came near to the man over the house of Yosĕph, and spoke to him at the door of the house,
20and said, “O my master, we indeed came down the first time to buy food,
21but it came to be, when we came to the lodging place, that we opened our sacks and saw each man’s silver in the mouth of his sack, our silver in its weight. And we have brought it back in our hand.
22And we have brought down other silver in our hands to buy food. We do not know who put our silver in our sacks.
23But he said, “Peace be with you, do not be afraid. Your Elohim and the Elohim of your father has given you treasure in your sacks – your silver had come to me!” And he brought Shim‛on out to them.
24And the man brought the men into Yosĕph’s house and gave them water, and they washed their feet. And he gave their donkeys fodder.
25And they made the present ready for Yosĕph’s coming at noon, for they heard that they were to eat there.
26And when Yosĕph came home, they brought him the present which was in their hand, into the house, and bowed down before him to the earth.
27And he asked them about their welfare, and said, “Is your father well, the old man of whom you spoke? Is he still alive?”
28And they said, “Your servant our father is in good health, he is still alive.” And they bowed their heads down and did obeisance.
29And he lifted his eyes and saw his brother Binyamin, his mother’s son, and said, “Is this your younger brother of whom you spoke to me?” And he said, “Elohim show favour to you, my son.”
30And Yosĕph hurried, for his emotions were deeply moved towards his brother, and he looked for a place to weep, and went into his room and wept there.
31Then he washed his face and came out, and controlled himself, and said, “Serve the food.”
32And they set him a place by himself, and them by themselves, and the Mitsrites who ate with him by themselves, for the Mitsrites could not eat food with the Hebrews, for that is an abomination to the Mitsrites.
33And they sat before him, the first-born according to his birthright and the youngest according to his youth, and the men looked at each other in astonishment.
34And he took portions to them from before him, but Binyamin’s portion was five times as much as any of theirs. And they feasted and they drank with him.
43
Decision to Return to Egypt
1Now the famine in the land was severe.#Gn 12:10; 41:56–57; 47:20 2When they had used up the grain they had brought back from Egypt, their father said to them, “Go back and buy us a little food.”
3But Judah said to him, “The man specifically warned us, ‘You will not see me again unless your brother is with you.’ 4If you will send our brother with us, we will go down and buy food for you. 5But if you will not send him, we will not go, for the man said to us, ‘You will not see me again unless your brother is with you.’”#Gn 42:18–20; 44:23
6“Why have you caused me so much trouble?” Israel asked. “Why did you tell the man that you had another brother?”
7They answered, “The man kept asking about us and our family: ‘Is your father still alive? Do you have another brother?’ And we answered him accordingly. How could we know that he would say, ‘Bring your brother here’?”
8Then Judah said to his father Israel, “Send the boy with me. We will be on our way so that we may live and not die — neither we, nor you, nor our dependents. 9I will be responsible for him. You can hold me personally accountable!#43:9 Lit can seek him from my hand If I do not bring him back to you and set him before you, I will be guilty before you forever.#Gn 42:37; 44:32 10If we had not delayed, we could have come back twice by now.”
11Then their father Israel said to them, “If it must be so, then do this: Put some of the best products of the land in your packs and take them down to the man as a gift — a little balsam and a little honey, aromatic gum and resin, pistachios and almonds.#Gn 37:25; Jr 8:22; Ezk 27:17 12Take twice as much silver with you. Return the silver that was returned to you in the top of your bags. Perhaps it was a mistake. 13Take your brother also, and go back at once to the man. 14May God Almighty cause the man to be merciful to you so that he will release your other brother and Benjamin to you. As for me, if I am deprived of my sons, then I am deprived.”#Gn 42:36
The Return to Egypt
15The men took this gift, double the amount of silver, and Benjamin. They immediately went down to Egypt and stood before Joseph.
16When Joseph saw Benjamin with them, he said to his steward, “Take the men to my house. Slaughter an animal and prepare it, for they will eat with me at noon.” 17The man did as Joseph had said and brought them to Joseph’s house.
18But the men were afraid because they were taken to Joseph’s house. They said, “We have been brought here because of the silver that was returned in our bags the first time. They intend to overpower us, seize us, make us slaves, and take our donkeys.” 19So they approached Joseph’s steward#43:19 Lit approached the one who was over the house and spoke to him at the doorway of the house.
20They said, “My lord, we really did come down here the first time only to buy food. 21When we came to the place where we lodged for the night and opened our bags of grain, each one’s silver was at the top of his bag!#Gn 42:27,35 It was the full amount of our silver, and we have brought it back with us. 22We have brought additional silver with us to buy food. We don’t know who put our silver in the bags.”
23Then the steward said, “May you be well. Don’t be afraid. Your God and the God of your father must have put treasure in your bags. I received your silver.” Then he brought Simeon out to them. 24The steward brought the men into Joseph’s house, gave them water to wash their feet,#Gn 18:4; 19:2; 24:32 and got feed for their donkeys. 25Since the men had heard that they were going to eat a meal there, they prepared their gift for Joseph’s arrival at noon. 26When Joseph came home, they brought him the gift they had carried into the house, and they bowed to the ground before him.
27He asked if they were well, and he said, “How is your elderly father that you told me about? Is he still alive?”
28They answered, “Your servant our father is well. He is still alive.” And they knelt low and paid homage to him.
29When he looked up and saw his brother Benjamin, his mother’s son, he asked, “Is this your youngest brother that you told me about?” Then he said, “May God be gracious to you, my son.” 30Joseph hurried out because he was overcome with emotion for his brother, and he was about to weep. He went into an inner room and wept there. 31Then he washed his face and came out. Regaining his composure,#Gn 45:1 he said, “Serve the meal.”
32They served him by himself, his brothers by themselves, and the Egyptians who were eating with him by themselves, because Egyptians could not eat with Hebrews, since that is detestable to them.#Gn 46:34; Ex 8:26 33They were seated before him in order by age, from the firstborn to the youngest. The men looked at each other in astonishment. 34Portions were served to them from Joseph’s table, and Benjamin’s portion was five times larger than any of theirs.#Gn 35:24; 45:22 They drank and became drunk with Joseph.