Genesis 43; Genesis 44; Genesis 45

1 The famine was severe in the land, 2 and when they had eaten all the grain that they brought from Egypt, their father said to them, "Go back and buy us a little food." 3 Judah said to him, "The man was absolutely serious when he said, ‘You may not see me again without your brother with you.' 4 If you agree to send our brother with us, then we will go down and buy you food. 5 But if you don't agree to send him, then we can't go down because the man said to us, ‘You may not see me again without your brother with you.'" 6 Israel said, "Why have you caused me such pain by telling the man you had another brother?" 7 They said, "The man asked us pointedly about our family: ‘Is your father still alive? Do you have a brother?' So we told him just what we've said. How were we to know he'd say, ‘Bring your brother down here'?" 8 Judah said to his father Israel, "Send the young man with me. Let's get ready to leave so that we can stay alive and not die—we, you, and our children. 9 I will guarantee his safety; you can hold me responsible. If I don't bring him back to you and place him here in front of you, it will be my fault forever. 10 If we hadn't waited so long, we would've returned twice by now." 11 Their father Israel said to them, "If it has to be, then do this. Take in your bags some of the land's choice produce, and bring it down to the man as a gift: a little medicinal resin, a little honey, gum, resin, pistachios, and almonds. 12 Take twice as much silver with you, and take back the silver returned in the top of your sacks. It might have been a mistake. 13 And take your brother, get ready, and go back to the man. 14 May God Almighty make the man compassionate toward you so that he may send back our other brother and Benjamin with you. But me, if I'm left childless, then I'm left childless." 15 So the men took this gift. They took twice as much silver with them, together with Benjamin. They left, traveled down to Egypt, and received an audience with Joseph. 16 When Joseph saw Benjamin with them, he said to the manager of his household, "Bring the men to the house and slaughter an animal and prepare it because the men will have dinner with me at noon." 17 The man did as Joseph told him and brought the men to Joseph's house. 18 When they were brought to Joseph's house, the men were frightened and said, "We've been brought here because of the silver put back in our sacks on our first trip so he can overpower us, capture us, make slaves of us, and take our donkeys." 19 They approached the man who was Joseph's household manager and spoke to him at the house's entrance: 20 "Please, Master, we came down the first time just to buy food, 21 but when we stopped to spend the night and opened our sacks, there was the exact amount of each man's silver at the top of his sack. We've brought it back with us, 22 and we've brought down with us additional silver to buy food. We don't know who put our silver in our sacks." 23 He said, "You are fine. Don't be afraid. Your God and your father's God must have hidden a treasure in your sacks. I received your money." Then he brought Simeon out to them. 24 The manager brought the men into Joseph's house and gave them water to wash their feet and feed for their donkeys. 25 They prepared the gift, anticipating Joseph's arrival at noon, since they had heard that they would have a meal there. 26 When Joseph came into the house, they presented him the gift they had brought with them into the house, and they bowed low in front of him. 27 He asked them how they were and said, "How is your elderly father, about whom you spoke? Is he still alive?" 28 They said, "Your servant our father is fine. He's still alive." And they bowed down again with deep respect. 29 Joseph looked up and saw his brother Benjamin, his own mother's son, and he said, "Is this your youngest brother whom you told me about? God be gracious to you, my son." 30 Joseph's feelings for his brother were so strong he was about to weep, so he rushed to another room and wept there. 31 He washed his face, came back, pulled himself together, and said, "Set out the dinner." 32 So they set out his food by himself, their food by themselves, and the Egyptians' who ate with him by themselves because Egyptians don't allow themselves to eat with Hebrews; the Egyptians think it beneath their dignity. 33 They were seated in front of him from the oldest to the youngest in their exact birth order, and the men looked at each other with amazement. 34 Portions of food from Joseph's table were brought to them, but Benjamin's portion was five times as large as theirs. So they drank together and were at ease.
1 Joseph gave commands to his household manager: "Fill the men's sacks with as much food as they'll hold, and put each man's silver at the top of his sack. 2 Put my cup, the silver cup, on top of the youngest brother's sack, together with the silver for his grain." So he did just as Joseph told him to do. 3 At dawn, the men and their donkeys were sent off. 4 They had left the city but hadn't gone far when Joseph said to his household manager, "Get ready, go after the men and catch up with them! Ask them, ‘Why have you repaid hospitality with ingratitude? 5 Isn't this the cup my master drinks from and uses to discover God's plans? What you've done is despicable.'" 6 When he caught up to them, he repeated these words. 7 They replied, "Why does my master talk to us like this? Your servants would never do such a thing. 8 The silver that we found at the top of our sacks, we've just brought back to you from the land of Canaan. We didn't steal silver or gold from your master's house. 9 Whoever of your servants is found with it will be put to death, and we'll be my master's slaves." 10 He said, "Fine. We'll do just as you've said. Whoever is found with it will be my slave, and the rest of you will go free." 11 Everyone quickly lowered their sacks down to the ground and each opened his sack. 12 He searched the oldest first and the youngest last, and the cup was found in Benjamin's sack. 13 At this, they tore their clothing. Then everyone loaded their donkeys, and they returned to the city. 14 When Judah and his brothers arrived at Joseph's house, he was still there, and they fell to the ground in front of him. 15 Joseph said to them, "What's this you've done? Didn't you know someone like me can discover God's plans?" 16 Judah replied, "What can we say to my master? What words can we use? How can we prove we are innocent? God has found your servants guilty. We are now your slaves, all of us, including the one found with the cup." 17 Joseph said, "I'd never do such a thing. Only the man found with the cup will be my slave. As for the rest of you, you are free to go back to your father." 18 Judah approached him and said, “Please, my master, allow your servant to say something to my master without getting angry with your servant since you are like Pharaoh himself. 19 My master asked his servants, ‘Do you have a father or brother?' 20 And we said to my master, ‘Yes, we have an elderly father and a young brother, born when he was old. His brother is dead and he's his mother's only child. But his father loves him.' 21 You told your servants, ‘Bring him down to me so I can see him.' 22 And we said to my master, ‘The young man can't leave his father. If he leaves, his father will die.' 23 You said to your servants, ‘If your youngest brother doesn't come down with you, you'll never see my face again.' 24 "When we went back to my father your servant, we told him what you said. 25 Our father told us, ‘Go back and buy for us a little food.' 26 But we said, ‘We can't go down. We will go down only if our youngest brother is with us. We won't be able to gain an audience with the man without our youngest brother with us.' 27 Your servant my father said to us, ‘You know that my wife gave birth to two sons for me. 28 One disappeared and I said, 'He must have been torn up by a wild animal,' and I haven't seen him since. 29 And if you take this one from me too, something terrible will happen to him, and you will send me—old as I am—to my grave in despair.' 30 When I now go back to your servant my father without the young man—whose life is so bound up with his— 31 and when he sees that the young man isn't with us, he will die, and your servants will have sent our father your servant—old as he is—to his grave in grief. 32 I, your servant, guaranteed the young man's safety to my father, telling him, ‘If I don't bring him back to you, it will be my fault forever.' 33 Now, please let your servant stay as your slave instead of the young man so that he can go back with his brothers. 34 How can I go back to my father without the young man? I couldn't bear to see how badly my father would be hurt."
1 Joseph could no longer control himself in front of all his attendants, so he declared, "Everyone, leave now!" So no one stayed with him when he revealed his identity to his brothers. 2 He wept so loudly that the Egyptians and Pharaoh's household heard him. 3 Joseph said to his brothers, "I'm Joseph! Is my father really still alive?" His brothers couldn't respond because they were terrified before him. 4 Joseph said to his brothers, "Come closer to me," and they moved closer. He said, “I'm your brother Joseph! The one you sold to Egypt. 5 Now, don't be upset and don't be angry with yourselves that you sold me here. Actually, God sent me before you to save lives. 6 We've already had two years of famine in the land, and there are five years left without planting or harvesting. 7 God sent me before you to make sure you'd survive and to rescue your lives in this amazing way. 8 You didn't send me here; it was God who made me a father to Pharaoh, master of his entire household, and ruler of the whole land of Egypt. 9 "Hurry! Go back to your father. Tell him this is what your son Joseph says: ‘God has made me master of all of Egypt. Come down to me. Don't delay. 10 You may live in the land of Goshen, so you will be near me, your children, your grandchildren, your flocks, your herds, and everyone with you. 11 I will support you there, so you, your household, and everyone with you won't starve, since the famine will still last five years.' 12 You and my brother Benjamin have seen with your own eyes that I'm speaking to you. 13 Tell my father about my power in Egypt and about everything you've seen. Hurry and bring my father down here." 14 He threw his arms around his brother Benjamin's neck and wept, and Benjamin wept on his shoulder. 15 He kissed all of his brothers and wept, embracing them. After that, his brothers were finally able to talk to him. 16 When Pharaoh's household heard the message "Joseph's brothers have arrived," both Pharaoh and his servants were pleased. 17 Pharaoh said to Joseph, "Give your brothers these instructions: Load your pack animals and go back to the land of Canaan. 18 Get your father and your households and come back to me. Let me provide you with good things from the land of Egypt so that you may eat the land's best food. 19 Give them these instructions too: Take wagons from the land of Egypt for your children and wives, and pick up your father and come back. 20 Don't worry about your possessions because you will have good things from the entire land of Egypt." 21 So Israel's sons did that. Joseph gave them wagons as Pharaoh instructed, and he gave them provisions for the road. 22 To all of them he gave a change of clothing, but to Benjamin he gave three hundred pieces of silver and five changes of clothing. 23 To his father he sent ten male donkeys carrying goods from Egypt, ten female donkeys carrying grain and bread, and rations for his father for the road. 24 He sent his brothers off; and as they were leaving, he told them, "Don't be worried about the trip." 25 So they left Egypt and returned to their father Jacob in the land of Canaan. 26 They announced to him, "Joseph's still alive! He's actually ruler of all the land of Egypt!" Jacob's heart nearly failed, and he didn't believe them. 27 When they told him everything Joseph had said to them, and when he saw the wagons Joseph had sent to carry him, Jacob recovered. 28 Then Israel said, "This is too much! My son Joseph is still alive! Let me go and see him before I die."
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