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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1Joseph threw himself on his father and wept over him and kissed him. 2Then Joseph directed the physicians in his service to embalm his father Israel. So the physicians embalmed him, 3taking a full forty days, for that was the time required for embalming. And the Egyptians mourned for him seventy days.
4When the days of mourning had passed, Joseph said to Pharaoh’s court, “If I have found favor in your eyes, speak to Pharaoh for me. Tell him, 5‘My father made me swear an oath and said, “I am about to die; bury me in the tomb I dug for myself in the land of Canaan.” Now let me go up and bury my father; then I will return.’ ”
6Pharaoh said, “Go up and bury your father, as he made you swear to do.”
7So Joseph went up to bury his father. All Pharaoh’s officials accompanied him—the dignitaries of his court and all the dignitaries of Egypt— 8besides all the members of Joseph’s household and his brothers and those belonging to his father’s household. Only their children and their flocks and herds were left in Goshen. 9Chariots and horsemen#50:9 Or charioteers also went up with him. It was a very large company.
10When they reached the threshing floor of Atad, near the Jordan, they lamented loudly and bitterly; and there Joseph observed a seven-day period of mourning for his father. 11When the Canaanites who lived there saw the mourning at the threshing floor of Atad, they said, “The Egyptians are holding a solemn ceremony of mourning.” That is why that place near the Jordan is called Abel Mizraim.#50:11 Abel Mizraim means mourning of the Egyptians.
12So Jacob’s sons did as he had commanded them: 13They carried him to the land of Canaan and buried him in the cave in the field of Machpelah, near Mamre, which Abraham had bought along with the field as a burial place from Ephron the Hittite. 14After burying his father, Joseph returned to Egypt, together with his brothers and all the others who had gone with him to bury his father.
Joseph Reassures His Brothers
15When Joseph’s brothers saw that their father was dead, they said, “What if Joseph holds a grudge against us and pays us back for all the wrongs we did to him?” 16So they sent word to Joseph, saying, “Your father left these instructions before he died: 17‘This is what you are to say to Joseph: I ask you to forgive your brothers the sins and the wrongs they committed in treating you so badly.’ Now please forgive the sins of the servants of the God of your father.” When their message came to him, Joseph wept.
18His brothers then came and threw themselves down before him. “We are your slaves,” they said.
19But Joseph said to them, “Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? 20You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. 21So then, don’t be afraid. I will provide for you and your children.” And he reassured them and spoke kindly to them.
The Death of Joseph
22Joseph stayed in Egypt, along with all his father’s family. He lived a hundred and ten years 23and saw the third generation of Ephraim’s children. Also the children of Makir son of Manasseh were placed at birth on Joseph’s knees.#50:23 That is, were counted as his
24Then Joseph said to his brothers, “I am about to die. But God will surely come to your aid and take you up out of this land to the land he promised on oath to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.” 25And Joseph made the Israelites swear an oath and said, “God will surely come to your aid, and then you must carry my bones up from this place.”
26So Joseph died at the age of a hundred and ten. And after they embalmed him, he was placed in a coffin in Egypt.
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