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Genesis 42

42
Joseph’s brothers arrive in Egypt
1When Jacob learned that there was grain in Egypt, he said to his sons, “Why are you staring blankly at each other? 2I’ve just heard that there’s grain in Egypt. Go down there and buy some for us so that we can survive and not starve to death.” 3So Joseph’s ten brothers went down to buy grain in Egypt. 4However, Jacob didn’t send Joseph’s brother Benjamin along with his brothers because he thought something bad might happen to him. 5Israel’s sons came to buy grain with others who also came since the famine had spread to the land of Canaan.
6As for Joseph, he was the land’s governor, and he was the one selling grain to all the land’s people. When Joseph’s brothers arrived, they bowed down to him, their faces to the ground. 7When Joseph saw his brothers, he recognized them, but he acted like he didn’t know them. He spoke to them with a harsh tone and said, “Where have you come from?”
And they said, “From the land of Canaan to buy food.”
8Joseph recognized his brothers, but they didn’t recognize him. 9Joseph remembered the dreams he had dreamed about them, and said to them, “You are spies. You’ve come to look for the country’s weaknesses.”
10They said to him, “No, Master. Your servants have just come to buy food. 11We are all sons of one man. We are honest men. Your servants aren’t spies.”
12He said to them, “No. You’ve come to look for the country’s weaknesses.”
13They said, “We, your servants, are twelve brothers, sons of one man in the land of Canaan. The youngest is now with our father, but one is gone.”
14Joseph said to them, “It’s just as I’ve said to you. You are spies! 15But here is how to prove yourselves: As Pharaoh lives, you won’t leave here until your youngest brother arrives. 16Send one of you to get your brother, but the rest of you will stay in prison. We will find out if your words are true. If not, as Pharaoh lives, you are certainly spies.”
Joseph’s brothers return to Canaan
17He put them all in prison for three days. 18On the third day, Joseph said to them, “Do this and you will live, for I’m a God-fearing man. 19If you are honest men, let one of your brothers stay in prison, and the rest of you, go, take grain back to those in your households who are hungry. 20But bring your youngest brother back to me so that your words will prove true and you won’t die.”
So they prepared to do this. 21The brothers said to each other, “We are clearly guilty for what we did to our brother when we saw his life in danger and when he begged us for mercy, but we didn’t listen. That’s why we’re in this danger now.”
22Reuben responded to them, “Didn’t I tell you, ‘Don’t do anything wrong to the boy’? But you wouldn’t listen. So now this is payback for his death.” 23They didn’t know that Joseph was listening to them because they were using an interpreter. 24He stepped away from them and wept. When he returned, he spoke with them again. Then he took Simeon from them and tied him up in front of them.
25Then Joseph gave orders to fill their bags with grain, to put back each man’s silver into his own sack, and to give them provisions for their trip, and it was done. 26They loaded their grain onto their donkeys, and they set out. 27When they stopped to spend the night, one of them opened his sack to feed his donkey, and he saw his silver at the top of his sack. 28He said to his brothers, “My silver’s been returned. It’s right here in my sack.” Their hearts stopped. Terrified, they said to each other, “What has God done to us?”
29When they got back to their father Jacob in the land of Canaan, they described to him everything that had happened to them: 30“The man, the country’s governor, spoke to us with a harsh tone and accused us of being spies in the country. 31We told him, ‘We’re honest men, not spies. 32We are twelve brothers, all our father’s sons. One of us is gone, but the youngest is right now with our father in the land of Canaan.’ 33The man, the country’s governor, told us, ‘This is how I will know you are honest men: Leave one of your brothers with me, take grain for those in your households who are hungry, and go. 34But bring back your youngest brother to me. Then I will know that you are not spies but honest men. I will give your brother back to you, and you may travel throughout the country.’”
35When they opened their sacks, each man found a pouch of his silver in his sack. When they and their father saw their pouches of silver, they were afraid. 36Their father Jacob said to them, “You’ve taken my children from me. Joseph’s gone. Simeon’s gone. And you are taking Benjamin. All this can’t really be happening to me!”
37Reuben said to his father, “You may put both of my sons to death if I don’t bring him back to you. Make him my responsibility, and I will make sure he returns to you.”
38But Jacob said to him, “My son won’t go down with you because his brother’s dead and he’s been left all alone. If anything were to happen to him on the trip you are taking, you would send me—old as I am—to my grave in grief.”
42
Joseph’s Brothers Go to Egypt
1#Ac 7:12Now when Jacob saw that there was grain in Egypt, Jacob said to his sons, “Why do you look at one another?” 2#Ge 43:8And he said, “I have heard that there is grain in Egypt. Go down there and buy some for us, so that we may live and not die.”
3Joseph’s ten brothers went down to buy grain in Egypt. 4#Ge 42:38But Jacob did not send Benjamin, Joseph’s brother, with his brothers for he said, “Perhaps some harm might happen to him.” 5#Ge 12:10; 41:57Thus the sons of Israel came to buy grain among those who came, for the famine was in the land of Canaan.
6Now Joseph was the governor over the land, and it was he who sold to all the people of the land. So Joseph’s brothers came and bowed themselves down before him with their faces to the ground. 7#Ge 42:30Joseph saw his brothers, and he recognized them, but he pretended to be a stranger to them and spoke harshly to them. He said to them, “From where do you come?”
And they said, “From the land of Canaan to buy food.”
8Joseph knew his brothers, but they did not know him. 9#Ge 37:5–9Joseph also remembered the dreams that he had dreamed of them. He said to them, “You are spies! You came to see the nakedness of the land!”
10#Ge 37:8They said to him, “No, my lord, your servants have come only to buy food. 11#Ge 42:19We are all one man’s sons. We are honest men. Your servants are not spies.”
12But he said to them, “No, you have come to see the nakedness of the land!”
13#Ge 37:30; 42:32They said, “Your servants are twelve brothers, the sons of one man in the land of Canaan. The youngest is with our father today, and one is no longer living.”
14Joseph said to them, “It is as I said to you, ‘You are spies!’ 15#1Sa 17:55Here is how you will be tested. By the life of Pharaoh, you will not leave here unless your youngest brother comes here. 16Send one of you, and let him get your brother, and you will be kept in prison, so that your words may be tested, whether there be any truth in you. Or else, by the life of Pharaoh, you are surely spies.” 17#Ge 40:4; 40:7He put them all together in custody for three days.
18#Lev 25:43; Ne 5:15Joseph said to them the third day, “Do this and live, for I fear God. 19If you are honest men, let one of your brothers be confined in your prison house. The rest of you go and carry grain for the famine of your households. 20#Ge 42:34; 43:5Nevertheless, bring your youngest brother to me so that your words may be verified and you shall not die.” And they did so.
21#Hos 5:15; Ge 37:23–28Then they said one to another, “We are guilty concerning our brother, because we saw the anguish of his soul when he pleaded with us, but we would not listen. Therefore, this distress has come upon us.”
22#1Ki 2:32; 2Ch 24:22Reuben answered them, saying, “Did I not speak to you, saying, ‘Do not sin against the boy’; and you would not listen? Therefore, his blood is now required of us.” 23They did not know that Joseph understood them, for he spoke to them through an interpreter.
24#Ge 43:30He turned himself away from them and wept, but then turned back to them again and spoke with them. Then he took Simeon from them and bound him before their eyes.
25#1Pe 3:9Joseph then gave the command to fill their sacks with grain and to restore every man’s money to his sack and to give them provisions for the way. And it was done for them.
Joseph’s Brothers Return Home
26They loaded their donkeys with the grain and departed from there.
27#Ex 4:24As one of them opened his sack to give his donkey feed in the lodging place, he saw his money. It was in the mouth of his sack. 28And he said to his brothers, “My money has been returned. Here it is in my sack!”
Then their hearts sank, and they were afraid, saying to one another, “What is this that God has done to us?”
29They came to Jacob their father in the land of Canaan and told him all that had happened to them, saying, 30#Ge 42:7“The man, the lord of the land, spoke harshly to us and took us for spies of the country. 31And we said to him, ‘We are honest men. We are not spies. 32We are twelve brothers, all sons of our father. One is no longer living, and the youngest is with our father today in the land of Canaan.’
33#Ge 42:19–20; 42:15“The man, the lord of the country, said to us, ‘Here is how I may know that you are honest men. Leave one of your brothers here with me, take food for the famine of your households, and be gone. 34#Ge 34:10; 34:21But bring your youngest brother back to me. Then I will know that you are not spies, but that you are honest men. Then I will deliver your brother to you, and you may trade in the land.’ ”
35#Ge 43:21As they emptied their sacks, every man’s bundle of money was in his sack. When both they and their father saw the bundles of money, they were afraid. 36#Ge 43:14Then Jacob their father said to them, “You have bereaved me of my children! Joseph is no more, Simeon is no more, and you will take Benjamin away. All these things are against me.”
37#Ge 46:9Reuben spoke to his father, saying, “Kill my two sons if I fail to bring him to you. Put him in my hands, and I will bring him back to you.”
38#Ge 37:35; 37:33; 42:4But Jacob said, “My son must not go down with you, for his brother is dead, and he alone is left. If harm should happen to him on the journey you are to make, then you will bring down my gray hairs with sorrow to the grave.”