1-2Joseph took five of his brothers to the king and told him, “My father and my brothers have come from Canaan. They have brought their sheep, goats, cattle, and everything else they own to the region of Goshen.”
Then he introduced his brothers to the king, 3who asked them, “What do you do for a living?”
“Sir, we are shepherds,” was their answer. “Our families have always raised sheep. 4But in our country all the pastures are dried up, and our sheep have no grass to eat. So we, your servants, have come here. Please let us live in the region of Goshen.”
5The king said to Joseph, “It's good that your father and brothers have arrived. 6I will let them live anywhere they choose in the land of Egypt, but I suggest that they settle in Goshen, the best part of our land. I would also like for your finest shepherds to watch after my own sheep and goats.”
7Then Joseph brought his father Jacob and introduced him to the king. Jacob gave the king his blessing, 8and the king asked him, “How old are you?”
9Jacob answered, “I have lived only 130 years, and I have had to move from place to place. My parents and my grandparents also had to move from place to place. But they lived much longer, and their life was not as hard as mine.” 10Then Jacob gave the king his blessing once again and left. 11Joseph obeyed the king's orders and gave his father and brothers some of the best land in Egypt near the city of Rameses. 12Joseph also provided food for their families.
A Famine in Egypt
13The famine was bad everywhere in Egypt and Canaan, and the people were suffering terribly. 14So Joseph sold them the grain that had been stored up, and he put the money#47.14 money: See the note at 42.25. in the king's treasury. 15But when everyone had run out of money, the Egyptians came to Joseph and demanded, “Give us more grain! If you don't, we'll soon be dead, because our money's all gone.”
16“If you don't have any money,” Joseph answered, “give me your animals, and I'll let you have some grain.” 17From then on, they brought him their horses and donkeys and their sheep and goats in exchange for grain.
Within a year Joseph had collected every animal in Egypt. 18Then the people came to him and said:
Sir, there's no way we can hide the truth from you. We are broke, and we don't have any more animals. We have nothing left except ourselves and our land. 19Don't let us starve and our land be ruined. If you'll give us grain to eat and seed to plant, we'll sell ourselves and our land to the king.#47.19 the king: See the note at 12.15. We'll become his slaves.
20The famine became so severe that Joseph finally bought every piece of land in Egypt for the king 21and made everyone the king's slaves,#47.21 made … slaves: One ancient translation and the Samaritan Hebrew Text; the Standard Hebrew Text “made everyone move to the cities.” 22except the priests. The king gave the priests a regular food allowance, so they did not have to sell their land. 23Then Joseph said to the people, “You and your land now belong to the king. I'm giving you seed to plant, 24but one fifth of your crops must go to the king. You can keep the rest as seed or as food for your families.”
25“Sir, you have saved our lives!” they answered. “We are glad to be slaves of the king.” 26Then Joseph made a law that one fifth of the harvest would always belong to the king. Only the priests did not lose their land.
Jacob Becomes an Old Man
27The people of Israel made their home in the land of Goshen, where they became prosperous and had large families. 28Jacob himself lived there for 17 years, before dying at the age of 147. 29#Gn 49.29-32; 50.6. When Jacob knew he did not have long to live, he called in Joseph and said, “If you really love me, you must make a solemn promise not to bury me in Egypt. 30Instead, bury me in the place where my ancestors are buried.”
“I will do what you have asked,” Joseph answered.
31“Will you give me your word?” Jacob asked.
“Yes, I will,” Joseph promised. After this, Jacob bowed down and prayed at the head of his bed.
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Jacob Settles in Goshen
1Joseph went in to the king and said, “My father and my brothers have arrived from Canaan with their flocks and herds and everything they own. They are now in the land of Goshen.” 2Joseph chose five of his brothers to introduce to the king.
3The king said to the brothers, “What work do you do?”
And they said to him, “We, your servants, are shepherds, just as our ancestors were.” 4They said to the king, “We have come to live in this land, because there is no grass in the land of Canaan for our animals to eat, and the hunger is terrible there. So please allow us to live in the land of Goshen.”
5Then the king said to Joseph, “Your father and your brothers have come to you, 6and you may choose any place in Egypt for them to live. Give your father and your brothers the best land; let them live in the land of Goshen. And if any of them are skilled shepherds, put them in charge of my sheep and cattle.”
7Then Joseph brought in his father Jacob and introduced him to the king, and Jacob blessed the king.
8Then the king said to Jacob, “How old are you?”
9Jacob said to him, “My life has been spent wandering from place to place. It has been short and filled with trouble—only one hundred thirty years. My ancestors lived much longer than I.” 10Then Jacob blessed the king and left.
11Joseph obeyed the king and gave his father and brothers the best land in Egypt, near the city of Rameses. 12And Joseph gave his father, his brothers, and everyone who lived with them the food they needed.
Joseph Buys Land for the King
13The hunger became worse, and since there was no food anywhere in the land, Egypt and Canaan became very poor. 14Joseph collected all the money that was to be found in Egypt and Canaan. People paid for the grain they were buying, and he brought that money to the king’s palace. 15After some time, when the people in Egypt and Canaan had no money left, they went to Joseph and said, “Please give us food. Our money is gone, and if we don’t eat, we will die here in front of you.”
16Joseph answered, “Since you have no money, give me your farm animals, and I will give you food in return.” 17So people brought their farm animals to Joseph, and he gave them food in exchange for their horses, sheep, goats, cattle, and donkeys. And he kept them alive by trading food for their farm animals that year.
18The next year the people came to Joseph and said, “You know we have no money left, and all our animals belong to you. We have nothing left except our bodies and our land. 19Surely both we and our land will die here in front of you. Buy us and our land in exchange for food, and we will be slaves to the king, together with our land. Give us seed to plant so that we will live and not die, and the land will not become a desert.”
20So Joseph bought all the land in Egypt for the king. Every Egyptian sold Joseph his field, because the hunger was very great. So the land became the king’s, 21and Joseph made the people slaves from one end of Egypt to the other. 22The only land he did not buy was the land the priests owned. They did not need to sell their land because the king paid them for their work. So they had money to buy food.
23Joseph said to the people, “Now I have bought you and your land for the king, so I will give you seed and you can plant your fields. 24At harvest time you must give one-fifth to the king. You may keep four-fifths for yourselves to use as seed for the field and as food for yourselves, your families, and your children.”
25The people said, “You have saved our lives. If you like, we will become slaves of the king.”
26So Joseph made a law in Egypt, which continues today: One-fifth of everything from the land belongs to the king. The only land the king did not get was the priests’ land.
“Don’t Bury Me in Egypt”
27The Israelites continued to live in the land of Goshen in Egypt. There they got possessions and had many children and grew in number.
28Jacob lived in Egypt seventeen years, so he lived to be one hundred forty-seven years old. 29When Israel knew he soon would die, he called his son Joseph to him and said to him, “If you love me, put your hand under my leg. Promise me you will not bury me in Egypt. 30When I die, carry me out of Egypt, and bury me where my ancestors are buried.”
Joseph answered, “I will do as you say.”
31Then Jacob said, “Promise me.” And Joseph promised him that he would do this. Then Israel worshiped as he leaned on the top of his walking stick.
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