1And Jacob saw that there was grain in Egypt, and Jacob said to his sons, Why do ye look one upon another? 2And he said, Behold, I have heard that there is grain in Egypt; go down thither and buy grain for us from thence, in order that we may live, and not die. 3And Joseph's ten brethren went down to buy grain out of Egypt. 4But Benjamin, Joseph's brother, Jacob sent not with his brethren; for he said, Lest mischief may befall him. 5So the sons of Israel came to buy grain among those that came; for the famine was in the land of Canaan. 6And Joseph, he was the governor over the land — he it was that sold the corn to all the people of the land. And Joseph's brethren came and bowed down to him, the face to the earth.
7And Joseph saw his brethren, and knew them; but he made himself strange to them, and spoke roughly to them, and said to them, Whence come ye? And they said, From the land of Canaan, to buy food. 8And Joseph knew his brethren, but they did not know him. 9And Joseph remembered the dreams that he had dreamt of them; and he said to them, Ye are spies: to see the exposed places of the land ye are come. 10And they said to him, No, my lord; but to buy food are thy servants come. 11We are all one man's sons; we are honest: thy servants are not spies. 12And he said to them, No; but to see the exposed places of the land are ye come. 13And they said, Thy servants were twelve brethren, sons of one man, in the land of Canaan; and behold, the youngest is this day with our father, and one is not. 14And Joseph said to them, That is it that I have spoken to you, saying, Ye are spies. 15By this ye shall be put to the proof: as Pharaoh lives, ye shall not go forth hence, unless your youngest brother come hither! 16Send one of you, that he may fetch your brother, but ye shall be imprisoned, and your words shall be put to the proof, whether the truth is in you; and if not, as Pharaoh lives, ye are spies. 17And he put them in custody three days. 18And Joseph said to them the third day, This do, that ye may live: I fear God#GodHebrew: Elohim 19If ye are honest, let one of your brethren remain bound in the house of your prison, but go ye, carry grain for the hunger of your households; 20and bring your youngest brother to me, in order that your words be verified, and that ye may not die. And they did so.
21Then they said one to another, We are indeed guilty concerning our brother, whose anguish of soul we saw when he besought us, and we did not hearken; therefore this distress is come upon us. 22And Reuben answered them, saying, Did I not speak to you, saying, Do not sin against the lad? But ye did not hearken; and now behold, his blood also is required. 23And they did not know that Joseph understood, for the interpreter was between them. 24And he turned away from them, and wept. And he returned to them, and spoke to them, and took Simeon from among them, and bound him before their eyes. 25And Joseph gave orders to fill their vessels with corn, and to restore every man's money into his sack, and to give them provision for the way. And thus did they to them. 26And they loaded their asses with their grain, and departed thence. 27And one of them opened his sack to give his ass food in the inn, and saw his money, and behold, it was in the mouth of his sack. 28And he said to his brethren, My money is returned to me, and behold, it is even in my sack. And their heart failed them, and they were afraid, saying one to another, What is this that God#GodHebrew: Elohim has done to us?
29And they came into the land of Canaan, to Jacob their father, and told him all that had befallen them, saying, 30The man, the lord of the land, spoke roughly to us, and treated us as spies of the land. 31And we said to him, We are honest; we are not spies: 32we are twelve brethren, sons of our father; one is not, and the youngest is this day with our father in the land of Canaan. 33And the man, the lord of the land, said to us, Hereby shall I know that ye are honest: leave one of your brethren with me, and take for the hunger of your households, and go, 34and bring your youngest brother to me, and I shall know that ye are not spies, but are honest. Your brother will I give up to you; and ye may trade in the land. 35And it came to pass as they emptied their sacks, that behold, every man had his bundle of money in his sack; and they saw their bundles of money, they and their father, and were afraid. 36And Jacob their father said to them, Ye have bereaved me of children: Joseph is not, and Simeon is not, and ye will take Benjamin! All these things are against me. 37And Reuben spoke to his father, saying, Slay my two sons if I bring him not back to thee: give him into my hand, and I will bring him to thee again. 38But he said, My son shall not go down with you, for his brother is dead, and he alone is left; and if mischief should befall him by the way in which ye go, then would ye bring down my grey hairs with sorrow to Sheol.
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First published in 1890. This edition is maintained by the British and Foreign Bible Society.
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.”
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