1Joseph threw himself on his father, crying and kissing his face. 2Then Joseph gave orders to embalm his father's body. 3It took forty days, the normal time for embalming. The Egyptians mourned for him seventy days.
4When the time of mourning was over, Joseph said to the king's officials, “Please take this message to the king: 5#Gen 47.29–31‘When my father was about to die, he made me promise him that I would bury him in the tomb which he had prepared in the land of Canaan. So please let me go and bury my father, and then I will come back.’ ”
6The king answered, “Go and bury your father, as you promised you would.”
7So Joseph went to bury his father. All the king's officials, the senior men of his court, and all the leading men of Egypt went with Joseph. 8His family, his brothers, and the rest of his father's family all went with him. Only their small children and their sheep, goats, and cattle stayed in the region of Goshen. 9Men in chariots and men on horseback also went with him; it was a huge group.
10When they came to the threshing place at Atad east of the Jordan, they mourned loudly for a long time, and Joseph performed mourning ceremonies for seven days. 11When the citizens of Canaan saw those people mourning at Atad, they said, “What a solemn ceremony of mourning the Egyptians are holding!” That is why the place was named Abel Mizraim.#50.11 Abel Mizraim: This name sounds like the Hebrew for “mourning of the Egyptians”.
12So Jacob's sons did as he had commanded them; 13#Acts 7.16they carried his body to Canaan and buried it in the cave at Machpelah, east of Mamre, in the field which Abraham had bought from Ephron the Hittite for a burial ground. 14After Joseph had buried his father, he returned to Egypt with his brothers and all who had gone with him for the funeral.
Joseph Reassures his Brothers
15After the death of their father, Joseph's brothers said, “What if Joseph still hates us and plans to pay us back for all the harm we did to him?” 16So they sent a message to Joseph: “Before our father died, 17he told us to ask you, ‘Please forgive the crime your brothers committed when they wronged you.’ Now please forgive us the wrong that we, the servants of your father's God, have done.” Joseph cried when he received this message.
18Then his brothers themselves came and bowed down before him. “Here we are before you as your slaves,” they said.
19But Joseph said to them, “Don't be afraid; I can't put myself in the place of God. 20You plotted evil against me, but God turned it into good, in order to preserve the lives of many people who are alive today because of what happened. 21You have nothing to fear. I will take care of you and your children.” So he reassured them with kind words that touched their hearts.
The Death of Joseph
22Joseph continued to live in Egypt with his father's family; he was 110 years old when he died. 23He lived to see Ephraim's children and grandchildren. He also lived to receive the children of Machir son of Manasseh into the family. 24He said to his brothers, “I am about to die, but God will certainly take care of you and lead you out of this land to the land he solemnly promised to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.” 25#Ex 13.19; Josh 24.32; Heb 11.22Then Joseph asked his people to make a vow. “Promise me,” he said, “that when God leads you to that land, you will take my body with you.” 26So Joseph died in Egypt at the age of 110. They embalmed his body and put it in a coffin.
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Jacob’s Funeral. 1Joseph flung himself upon his father and wept over him as he kissed him. 2Then Joseph ordered the physicians in his service to embalm his father. When the physicians embalmed Israel, 3they spent forty days at it, for that is the full period of embalming; and the Egyptians mourned him for seventy days. 4When the period of mourning was over, Joseph spoke to Pharaoh’s household. “If you please, appeal to Pharaoh, saying: 5My father made me swear: ‘I am dying. Bury me in my grave that I have prepared for myself in the land of Canaan.’ So now let me go up to bury my father. Then I will come back.”#Gn 47:30. 6Pharaoh replied, “Go and bury your father, as he made you promise on oath.”
7So Joseph went up to bury his father; and with him went all of Pharaoh’s officials who were senior members of his household and all the other elders of the land of Egypt, 8as well as Joseph’s whole household, his brothers, and his father’s household; only their children and their flocks and herds were left in the region of Goshen. 9Chariots, too, and horsemen went up with him; it was a very imposing retinue.
10When they arrived at Goren-ha-atad,#Goren-ha-atad: “Threshing Floor of the Brambles.” Abel-mizraim: although the name really means “watercourse of the Egyptians,” it is understood here, by a play on the first part of the term, to mean “mourning of the Egyptians.” The site has not been identified through either reading of the name. But it is difficult to see why the mourning rites should have been held in the land beyond the Jordan when the burial was at Hebron. Perhaps an earlier form of the story placed the mourning rites beyond the Wadi of Egypt, the traditional boundary between Canaan and Egypt (Nm 34:5; Jos 15:4, 47). which is beyond the Jordan, they held there a very great and solemn memorial service; and Joseph observed seven days of mourning for his father. 11When the Canaanites who inhabited the land saw the mourning at Goren-ha-atad, they said, “This is a solemn funeral on the part of the Egyptians!” That is why the place was named Abel-mizraim. It is beyond the Jordan.
12Thus Jacob’s sons did for him as he had instructed them. 13They carried him to the land of Canaan and buried him in the cave in the field of Machpelah, facing on Mamre, the field that Abraham had bought for a burial ground from Ephron the Hittite.#Gn 23:16; Jos 24:32; Acts 7:16.
14After Joseph had buried his father he returned to Egypt, together with his brothers and all who had gone up with him for the burial of his father.
Plea for Forgiveness. 15#The final reconciliation of the brothers. Fearful of what may happen after the death of their father, the brothers engage in a final deception, inventing the dying wish of Jacob. Again, Joseph weeps, and, again, his brothers fall down before him, offering to be his slaves (44:16, 33). Joseph’s assurance is also a summation of the story: “Even though you meant harm to me, God meant it for good, to achieve this present end, the survival of many people” (v. 20). Joseph’s adoption of the children of Manasseh’s son Machir recalls Jacob’s adoption of his grandchildren (48:5, 13–20); the adoptions reflect tribal history (cf. Jgs 5:14). Now that their father was dead, Joseph’s brothers became fearful and thought, “Suppose Joseph has been nursing a grudge against us and now most certainly will pay us back in full for all the wrong we did him!” 16So they sent to Joseph and said: “Before your father died, he gave us these instructions: 17‘Thus you shall say to Joseph: Please forgive the criminal wrongdoing of your brothers, who treated you harmfully.’ So now please forgive the crime that we, the servants of the God of your father, committed.” When they said this to him, Joseph broke into tears. 18Then his brothers also proceeded to fling themselves down before him and said, “We are your slaves!” 19But Joseph replied to them: “Do not fear. Can I take the place of God? 20Even though you meant harm to me, God meant it for good, to achieve this present end, the survival of many people.#Gn 45:5. 21So now, do not fear. I will provide for you and for your children.” By thus speaking kindly to them, he reassured them.#Gn 47:12.
22Joseph remained in Egypt, together with his father’s household. He lived a hundred and ten years. 23He saw Ephraim’s children to the third generation, and the children of Manasseh’s son Machir were also born on Joseph’s knees.#Nm 32:39; Jos 17:1.
Death of Joseph. 24Joseph said to his brothers: “I am about to die. God will surely take care of you and lead you up from this land to the land that he promised on oath to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.”#Ex 3:8; Heb 11:22. 25Then, putting the sons of Israel under oath, he continued, “When God thus takes care of you, you must bring my bones up from this place.”#Ex 13:19; Heb 11:22. 26Joseph died at the age of a hundred and ten. He was embalmed and laid to rest in a coffin in Egypt.#Sir 49:15.
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