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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
1The famine continued to be really bad in Canaan, 2so once they had finished the grain they'd brought from Egypt, their father told them, “You have to go back and buy some more grain for us.”
3But Judah responded, “The man was adamant when he warned us, ‘I won't even see you unless your brother is with you.’ 4If you send our brother Benjamin with us then we'll go and buy food for you. 5But if you won't send him, then we won't go, because the man was very clear, ‘I won't even see you unless your brother is with you.’”
6“Why have you made things so bad for me by telling the man you had another brother?” Israel asked.
7“The man kept on asking direct questions about us and our family like ‘Is your father still alive?’ and ‘Do you have another brother?’” they replied. “We just answered his questions. How were we to know he'd say, ‘Bring your brother here!’?”
8Judah said to his father Israel, “Send the boy in my care, and we'll leave immediately, so that we can stay alive and not die—and that includes you and us and our children! 9I promise to take care of him—I'll be personally responsible for bringing him back to you. If I don't, then I will always carry the blame! 10Now let's go, because if we hadn't hesitated, we could have gone there and come back twice by now.”
11“If it has to be, then this is what you'll do,” Israel replied. “Take with you the best our country produces. Pack your bags with gifts for the man—balm, a little honey, spices, myrrh, pistachios, and almonds. 12Take double the money that was returned to you in your sacks—maybe it was a mistake. 13Take your brother and go back to the man right away. 14May God Almighty make the man treat you kindly so when you come before him he'll release your other brother and send Benjamin back. As for me, if I am to lose all my children, then so be it.”
15So they packed the gifts, took double the money, and set off, accompanied by Benjamin. They arrived in Egypt and went to have an audience with Joseph. 16When Joseph saw Benjamin was with them, he told his household supervisor, “Take these men to my house. Slaughter an animal and make a meal, for they are going to eat with me at noon.”
17The man did as Joseph ordered and took them to Joseph's house. 18They were really worried that they were being taken to Joseph's house. “It's because of the money that was put in our sacks the first time we came,” they said to each other. “That's why we're being brought in—so he can accuse us and attack us! He'll make us his slaves and take our donkeys!”
19So they went and spoke to Joseph's household supervisor at the entrance to the house. 20“Please excuse us, my lord,” they said. “We came down the first time to buy food, 21and when we stopped for the night, we opened our sacks and each of us found our money—the exact amount—at the top of our sacks. So we've brought it back with us. 22We've also brought more money to buy food. We've no idea who put our money in our sacks!”
23“Everything's fine!” he told them. “Don't worry! Your God, the God of your father, must have given you the treasure#43:23. “Treasure”: the word refers of course to the money, and is one used to describe money that is hidden or buried. hidden in your sacks. I got your money.” Then he brought Simeon out to meet them. 24The steward took them inside Joseph's house, gave them water to wash their feet, and supplied food for their donkeys. 25They got their gifts ready for when Joseph would come at noon, because they had found out that they were going to eat there.
26When Joseph arrived at the house they gave him the gifts they had brought for him, and bowed low to the ground before him. 27He asked how they were, and then he asked, “How is your elderly father doing that you spoke of? Is he still alive?”
28“Yes, your servant our father is still alive, and is well,” they replied and bowed low in respect.
29Then Joseph looked over at his brother Benjamin, the son of his own mother. “Is this your youngest brother that you told me about?” he asked. “God be gracious to you, my son,” he said.
30Joseph had to run out quickly because he was becoming so emotional at seeing his brother.#43:30. He hadn't seen Benjamin for more than 20 years. He looked for a place to cry, and went to his room to weep there. 31Then he washed his face, got his emotions under control, and went back out. “Serve the food,” he ordered.
32Joseph was served at a table by himself, and his brothers were served at a separate table. The Egyptians were also served at another table, because Egyptians cannot eat with Hebrews because they find this repulsive.#43:32. It appears that since the Egyptians revered the cow goddess Isis they viewed anyone (including Hebrews) who ate such meat as unclean. 33The brothers had been seated in front of him in order by age, from the firstborn, the oldest, down to the youngest, and they looked at each other in complete surprise.#43:33. It would of course have been impossible for anyone without intimate family knowledge to do this. 34The food was served to them from Joseph's table, and Benjamin received five times as much as anyone else. So they ate and drank plenty with him.