1And Jacob seeth that there is corn in Egypt, and Jacob saith to his sons, ‘Why do you look at each other?’
2he saith also, ‘Lo, I have heard that there is corn in Egypt, go down thither, and buy for us from thence, and we live and do not die;’
3and the ten brethren of Joseph go down to buy corn in Egypt,
4and Benjamin, Joseph's brother, Jacob hath not sent with his brethren, for he said, ‘Lest mischief meet him.’
5And the sons of Israel come to buy in the midst of those coming, for the famine hath been in the land of Canaan,
6and Joseph is the ruler over the land, he who is selling to all the people of the land, and Joseph's brethren come and bow themselves to him — face to the earth.
7And Joseph seeth his brethren, and discerneth them, and maketh himself strange unto them, and speaketh with them sharp things, and saith unto them, ‘From whence have ye come?’ and they say, ‘From the land of Canaan — to buy food.’
8And Joseph discerneth his brethren, but they have not discerned him,
9and Joseph remembereth the dreams which he dreamed of them, and saith unto them, ‘Ye [are] spies; to see the nakedness of the land ye have come.’
10And they say unto him, ‘No, my lord, but thy servants have come to buy food;
11we [are] all of us sons of one man, we [are] right men; thy servants have not been spies;’
12and he saith unto them, ‘No, but the nakedness of the land ye have come to see;’
13and they say, ‘Thy servants [are] twelve brethren; we [are] sons of one man in the land of Canaan, and lo, the young one [is] with our father to-day, and the one is not.’
14And Joseph saith unto them, ‘This [is] that which I have spoken unto you, saying, Ye [are] spies,
15by this ye are proved: Pharaoh liveth! if ye go out from this — except by your young brother coming hither;
16send one of you, and let him bring your brother, and ye, remain ye bound, and let your words be proved, whether truth be with you: and if not — Pharaoh liveth! surely ye [are] spies;’
17and he removeth them unto charge three days.
18And Joseph saith unto them on the third day, ‘This do and live; God I fear!
19if ye [are] right men, let one of your brethren be bound in the house of your ward, and ye, go, carry in corn [for] the famine of your houses,
20and your young brother ye bring unto me, and your words are established, and ye die not;’ and they do so.
21And they say one unto another, ‘Verily we [are] guilty concerning our brother, because we saw the distress of his soul, in his making supplication unto us, and we did not hearken: therefore hath this distress come upon us.’
22And Reuben answereth them, saying, ‘Spake I not unto you, saying, Sin not against the lad? and ye hearkened not; and his blood also, lo, it is required.’
23And they have not known that Joseph understandeth, for the interpreter [is] between them;
24and he turneth round from them, and weepeth, and turneth back unto them, and speaketh unto them, and taketh from them Simeon, and bindeth him before their eyes.
25And Joseph commandeth, and they fill their vessels [with] corn, also to put back the money of each unto his sack, and to give to them provision for the way; and one doth to them so.
26And they lift up their corn upon their asses, and go from thence,
27and the one openeth his sack to give provender to his ass at a lodging-place, and he seeth his money, and lo, it [is] in the mouth of his bag,
28and he saith unto his brethren, ‘My money hath been put back, and also, lo, in my bag:’ and their heart goeth out, and they tremble, one to another saying, ‘What [is] this God hath done to us!’
29And they come in unto Jacob their father, to the land of Canaan, and they declare to him all the things meeting them, saying,
30‘The man, the lord of the land, hath spoken with us sharp things, and maketh us as spies of the land;
31and we say unto him, We [are] right men, we have not been spies,
32we [are] twelve brethren, sons of our father, the one is not, and the young one [is] to-day with our father in the land of Canaan.
33‘And the man, the lord of the land, saith unto us, By this I know that ye [are] right men — one of your brethren leave with me, and [for] the famine of your houses take ye and go,
34and bring your young brother unto me, and I know that ye [are] not spies, but ye [are] right men; your brother I give to you, and ye trade with the land.’
35And it cometh to pass, they are emptying their sacks, and lo, the bundle of each man's silver [is] in his sack, and they see their bundles of silver, they and their father, and are afraid;
36and Jacob their father saith unto them, ‘Me ye have bereaved; Joseph is not, and Simeon is not, and Benjamin ye take — against me have been all these.’
37And Reuben speaketh unto his father, saying, ‘My two sons thou dost put to death, if I bring him not in unto thee; give him into my hand, and I — I bring him back unto thee;’
38and he saith, ‘My son doth not go down with you, for his brother [is] dead, and he by himself is left; when mischief hath met him in the way in which ye go, then ye have brought down my grey hairs in sorrow to sheol.’
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1When Jacob found out grain was available in Egypt, he asked his sons, “Why do you keep on looking at each other to do something? 2I've heard there's grain in Egypt. Go there and buy some for us so we can stay alive—if not, we're going to die!”
3So ten of Joseph's brothers went to Egypt to buy grain. 4But Jacob did not send Joseph's brother Benjamin with his other brothers, for he said, “I'm afraid something bad might happen to him.” 5So Israel's sons went to buy grain along with everyone else, because there was famine in Canaan too.
6Joseph was the governor of the country and he sold grain to all the people there. So Joseph's brothers went to him, and bowed low before him with their faces to the ground. 7Joseph recognized them as soon as he saw them, but he acted like a stranger towards them and spoke to them in a severe way, saying, “Where are you from?”
“From the country of Canaan,” they replied. “We've come to buy food.”
8Even though Joseph recognized his brothers, they didn't recognize him. 9Joseph thought back to the dreams he'd had about them, and told them, “No! You're spies! You've come to discover our country's weaknesses!”
10“That's not true, my lord!” they responded. “We, your servants, have just come to buy food. 11We're all the sons of one man and we're honest. We're not spies!”
12“No! You've come to find our country's weaknesses!” he insisted.
13“Your servants are twelve brothers, the sons of one man living in the country of Canaan,” they explained. “The youngest is right now with our father, and one has passed away.”
14“As I said before, you're spies!” Joseph declared. 15“This is how your story will be checked. I swear on Pharaoh's life that you'll never leave this country unless your younger brother comes here. 16One of you go back and bring your other brother here. The others of you will be kept here in prison until it's clear that you're telling the truth. If not, then I swear on Pharaoh's life it proves you're spies!”
17So Joseph put all of them in prison for three days. 18On the third day he told them, “Since I'm someone who respects God, do as I tell you and you'll live. 19If you're truly honest, choose one of your brothers to stay here in prison. The rest of you can go back home with grain for your hungry families. 20But you must bring your youngest brother here to me to prove what you're saying is true. If not, you will all die.” They agreed to do this.
21“Clearly we're being punished for what we did to our brother,” they said to each other. “We watched him in agony pleading with us for mercy, but we refused to listen to him. That's why we're in all this trouble.”
22Reuben said to them, “Didn't I tell you, ‘Don't harm the boy!’ But you didn't listen to me. Now we're paying the price for what we did to him.”#42:22. Literally, “Now his blood is required.” The concept is that the blood of the victim cries out for vengeance. 23They didn't realize that Joseph understood what they were saying because they were talking to him through an interpreter. 24Joseph stepped away from them because he started crying. He came back when he was able to speak to them again. He chose Simeon and had him tied up as they watched.
25Joseph gave the order to fill up their sacks with grain, and also to return the money they had paid by placing it in the sacks as well. He also ordered that they should be provided with food for their journey home. All this was done. 26The brothers loaded the grain onto their donkeys and then set off.
27On their way they stopped for the night, and one of them opened up his sack to give his donkey something to eat and saw his money there at the top of the sack. 28He told his brothers, “My money's been returned to me. It's right here at the top of my sack!” They were horrified! Trembling with fear they asked each other, “What is this that God's done to us?”
29When they arrived home in Canaan, they told their father Jacob everything that had happened. 30“The man who is the country's governor spoke to us in a severe way, and accused us of spying on the land,” they explained. 31“We told him, ‘We are honest men. We're not spies! 32We are twelve brothers, the sons of one father. One has passed away and the youngest is right now with our father in the country of Canaan.’ 33Then the man who is the country's governor said to us, ‘This is how I'll find out if you're telling the truth: you are to leave one of your brothers here with me while the rest take grain home for your hungry families. 34Then bring your youngest brother to me. That way I'll know you're not spies but you're telling the truth. I'll release your brother to you, and you can stay in the country and trade.’”
35As they emptied their sacks, each one's money bag was there in his sack! When they and their father saw the money bags, they were horrified. 36Jacob their father accused them, “You have taken Joseph from me—he's gone! Simeon is gone too! Now you want to take Benjamin away! I'm the one who's suffering from all of this!”#42:36. The sentence is literally, “on me are all these things.” The Hebrew construction focuses “on me” making it clear that Jacob is holding them responsible for his suffering.
37“You can kill my two sons if I don't bring him back to you,” Reuben assured him. “Trust me with him, and I will bring him home to you myself.”
38“My son won't go there with you!” Jacob declared. “His brother is dead, and he's the only one I have left. If anything bad happens to him on the journey you're planning, you'll send this old man to his grave in grief.”
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Dr. Jonathan Gallagher. Released under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 Unported License. Version 4.3. For corrections send email to email@example.com