Genesis 37:18

18 They saw him from afar, and before he came near to them 1they conspired against him to kill him.

Genesis 37:18 Meaning and Commentary

Genesis 37:18

And when they saw him afar off
They knew him as soon as they saw him, by his stature, his gesture or manner of walking, and especially by his coat of various colours he now had on, ( Genesis 37:23 ) ;

even before he came near unto them;
the distance he was from them when they first spied him is particularly remarked and repeated, not to show the quickness of their sight, but for the sake of what follows; to observe how soon their passions were raised, how intense and prepense their malice, and which put them upon devising ways and means to destroy him, for it follows:

they conspired against him, to slay him;
they entered into a consultation, and devised the most crafty methods they could think of to take away his life, and yet conceal the murder.

Genesis 37:18 In-Context

16 "I am seeking my brothers," he said. "Tell me, please, where they are pasturing the flock."
17 And the man said, "They have gone away, for I heard them say, 'Let us go to Dothan.'" So Joseph went after his brothers and found them at Dothan.
18 They saw him from afar, and before he came near to them they conspired against him to kill him.
19 They said to one another, "Here comes this dreamer.
20 Come now, let us kill him and throw him into one of the pits. Then we will say that a fierce animal has devoured him, and we will see what will become of his dreams."

Cross References 1

  • 1. [Psalms 37:12, 32]
The English Standard Version is published with the permission of Good News Publishers.