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Genesis 44

44
Joseph Tests His Brothers
1Then he commanded the one who was over his household, saying, “Fill the sacks of the men with food as much as they are able to carry, and put each one’s money in the mouth of his sack. 2And my cup—the cup of silver—you shall put into the mouth of the sack of the youngest, and the money for his grain. And he did according to the word of Joseph that he had commanded. 3When the morning light came the men were sent away, they and their donkeys. 4They went out of the city, and had not gone far when Joseph said to the one who was over his house, “Arise! Pursue after the men and overtake them. Then you shall say to them, ‘Why have you repaid evil for good? 5Is this not that from which my master drinks? Now he himself certainly practices divination with it. You have done evil in what you have done.’ ” 6When he overtook them he spoke these words to them. 7And they said to him, “Why has my lord spoken according to these words? Far be it from your servants to do such a thing! 8Behold, the money that we found in the mouth of our sacks we returned to you from the land of Canaan. Now why would we steal silver or gold from the house of my lord? 9Whoever is found with it from among your servants shall die. And moreover, we will become slaves to my lord.” 10Then he said, “Now also according to your words, thus will it be. He who is found with it shall be my slave, but you shall be innocent.” 11Then each man quickly brought down his sack to the ground, and each one opened his sack. 12And he searched, beginning with the oldest and finishing with the youngest. And the cup was found in the sack of Benjamin. 13Then they tore their clothes, and each one loaded his donkey and they returned to the city.
14And Judah and his brothers came to the house of Joseph—now he was still there—they fell before him to the ground. 15Then Joseph said to them, “What is this deed that you have done? Did you not know that a man who is like me surely practices divination?” 16And Judah said, “What can we say to my lord? What can we speak? Now how can we show ourselves innocent? God has found the guilt of your servants! Behold, we are slaves to my lord, both we and also he in whose hand the cup was found.” 17But he said, “Far be it from me to do this! The man in whose hand the cup was found, he will become my slave. But as for you, go up in peace to your father.” 18But Judah drew near to him and said, “Please my lord, let your servant speak a word in the ears of my lord, and let not your anger burn#Literally “let not your nose become hot” against your servant, for you are like Pharaoh himself.#Literally “like you like Pharaoh” 19My lord had asked his servants, saying, ‘Do you have a father or a brother?’ 20And we said to my lord, ‘We have an aged father, and a younger brother, the child of his old age, and his brother died, and he alone remains from his mother, and his father loves him.’ 21Then you said to your servants, ‘Bring him down to me that I may set my eyes upon him.’ 22Then we said to my lord, ‘The boy cannot leave his father; if he should leave his father, then he#That is, the father (Jacob/Israel) would die.’ 23Then you said to your servants, ‘Unless your youngest brother comes down with you, you shall not again see my face.’ 24And it happened that we went up to your servant, my father, and told him the words of my lord. 25And when our father said, ‘Buy a little food for us,’ 26then we said, ‘We cannot go down. If our youngest brother is with us, then we shall go down. For we will not be able to see the face of the man unless our youngest brother is with us.’ 27Then your servant, my father, said to us, ‘You yourselves know that my wife bore two sons to me. 28One went out from me, and I said, “Surely he must have been torn to pieces,” and I have never seen him since. 29And if you take this one also from me, and he encounters harm, you will bring down my gray head in sorrow to Sheol.’ 30So now, when I come to your servant, my father, and the boy is not with us—now his life is bound up with his life—31it shall happen that when he sees that the boy is gone, he will die. And your servants will bring down the gray head of your servant, our father, to Sheol with sorrow. 32For your servant is pledged as surety for the boy by my father, saying, If I do not bring him to you, then I shall be culpable to my father forever. 33So then, please let your servant remain in place of the boy as a slave to my lord, and let the boy go up with his brothers. 34For how can I go up to my father if the boy is not with me? I do not want to see#Literally “lest I see” the misery which will find my father.”
44
1Then he ordered the manager of his household, “Fill the men’s packs with food, as much as they can carry, and put each man’s money just inside his pack. 2And put my goblet, the silver one, just inside the pack of the youngest, along with his grain money.” He did what Yosef told him to do.
3At daybreak the men were sent off with their donkeys; 4but before they were far from the city Yosef said to his manager, “Up, go after the men; and when you overtake them, say to them, ‘Why have you repaid good with evil? 5Isn’t this the goblet my lord drinks from, indeed the one he uses for divination? What you have done is evil!’” 6So he caught up with them and said these words to them. 7They replied, “Why does my lord speak this way? Heaven forbid that we should do such a thing! 8Why, the money we found inside our packs we brought back to you from the land of Kena‘an! So how would we steal silver or gold from your lord’s house? 9Whichever one of us the goblet is found with, let him be put to death — and the rest of us will be my lord’s slaves!” 10He replied, “Fine; let it be as you have said: whichever one it is found with will be my slave. But the rest of you will be blameless.” 11Then each hurried to put his pack down on the ground, and each one opened his pack. 12He searched, starting with the oldest and ending with the youngest; and the goblet was found in the pack belonging to Binyamin. 13At this, they tore their clothes from grief. Then each man loaded up his donkey and returned to the city.
(A: Maftir) 14Y’hudah and his brothers arrived at Yosef’s house. He was still there, and they fell down before him on the ground. (S: Maftir) 15Yosef said to them, “How could you do such a thing? Don’t you know that a man such as myself can learn the truth by divination?” 16Y’hudah said, “There’s nothing we can say to my lord! How can we speak? There’s no way we can clear ourselves! God has revealed your servants’ guilt; so here we are, my lord’s slaves — both we and also the one in whose possession the cup was found.” 17But he replied, “Heaven forbid that I should act in such a way. The man in whose possession the goblet was found will be my slave; but as for you, go in peace to your father.”
Haftarah Mikketz: M’lakhim Alef (1 Kings) 3:15–4:1
B’rit Hadashah suggested reading for Parashah Mikketz: Acts 7:9–16 (specifically vv. 11–12)
Parashah 11: Vayigash (He approached) 44:18–47:27
18Then Y’hudah approached Yosef and said, “Please, my lord! Let your servant say something to you privately; and don’t be angry with your servant, for you are like Pharaoh himself. 19My lord asked his servants, ‘Do you have a father? or a brother?’ 20We answered my lord, ‘We have a father who is an old man, and a child of his old age, a little one whose brother is dead; so that of his mother’s children he alone is left; and his father loves him.’ 21But you said to your servants, ‘Bring him down to me, so that I can see him.’ 22We answered my lord, ‘The boy can’t leave his father; if he were to leave his father, his father would die.’ 23You said to your servants, ‘You will not see my face again unless your brother is with you.’ 24We went up to your servant my father and told him what my lord had said; 25but when our father said, ‘Go again, and buy us some food,’ 26we answered, ‘We can’t go down. Only if our youngest brother is with us will we go down, because we can’t see the man’s face unless our youngest brother is with us.’ 27Then your servant my father said to us, ‘You know that my wife bore me two sons: 28the one went out from me, and I said, “Surely he has been torn to pieces,” and I haven’t seen him since. 29Now if you take this one away from me too, and something happens to him, you will bring my gray hair down to Sh’ol with grief.’ 30So now if I go to your servant my father, and the boy isn’t with us — seeing how his heart is bound up with the boy’s heart — (ii) 31when he sees that the boy isn’t with us, he will die; and your servants will bring the gray hair of your servant our father down to Sh’ol with grief. 32For your servant himself guaranteed his safety; I said, ‘If I fail to bring him to you, then I will bear the blame before my father forever.’ 33Therefore, I beg you, let your servant stay as a slave to my lord instead of the boy, and let the boy go up with his brothers. 34For how can I go up to my father if the boy isn’t with me? I couldn’t bear to see my father so overwhelmed by anguish.”