Genesis 42 – 44

Genesis 42

The next few chapters, are a narrative of the reconciliation of Joseph and his family and give an idea of how God will work out all things in the end   

Ultimately all humanity will be humbled learning what God intends to teach each of us, and most will be brought to sincere repentance before God.

Almost every person in due time will be reconciled to God the Father and to each other to go forward is true peace with God and humanity for eternity, represented by the Feast of the Eighth Day! 

May God speed the day that we will all sit together as brothers, united with God and with each other!

The Eighth Day! Oh Happy Day! Oh Day of Great Joy! Shout For Joy at the Excellence of our Mighty God!

The family of Jacob united through learning and sincere repentance!

Israel [Jacob] hears that there is food in Egypt and sends his sons to buy.  Yet Jacob holds back his only remaining son by Rachel, Benjamin; for fear that he might lose both of Rachel’s sons.  Jacob’s love at first sight of Rachel was a deep, abiding and passionate love; like our love for our espoused Husband Jesus Christ should be!

Genesis 42:1 Now when Jacob saw that there was corn [grain] in Egypt, Jacob said unto his sons, Why do ye look one upon another? 42:2 And he said, Behold, I have heard that there is corn in Egypt: get you down thither, and buy for us from thence; that we may live, and not die. 42:3 And Joseph’s ten brethren went down to buy corn in Egypt. 42:4 But Benjamin, Joseph’s brother, Jacob sent not with his brethren; for he said, Lest peradventure mischief befall him.

The first dream (Gen 37:5) of the young man Joseph was fulfilled when his brothers bowed down before him to seek his approval to buy grain and save themselves alive because of the famine.  When something is of God; we can be assured that God will fulfill his Word.

42:5 And the sons of Israel came to buy corn [grain] among those that came: for the famine was in the land of Canaan. 42:6 And Joseph was the governor over the land, and he it was that sold to all the people of the land: and Joseph’s brethren came, and bowed down themselves before him with their faces to the earth.

Joseph hid his identity from  his brothers, and discomfited them because of their early hatred of him; intending to make them understand the great evil that they had done.

42:7 And Joseph saw his brethren, and he knew them, but made himself strange unto them, and spake roughly unto them; and he said unto them, Whence come ye? And they said, From the land of Canaan to buy food. 42:8 And Joseph knew his brethren, but they knew not him. 42:9 And Joseph remembered the dreams which he dreamed of them, and said unto them, Ye are spies; to see the nakedness of the land ye are come.

They give their reason for coming to Egypt, identifying themselves to Joseph who they did not recognize.

42:10 And they said unto him, Nay, my lord, but to buy food are thy servants come. 42:11We are all one man’s sons; we are true men, thy servants are no spies. 42:12 And he said unto them, Nay, but to see the nakedness of the land ye are come. 42:13 And they said, Thy servants are twelve brethren, the sons of one man in the land of Canaan; and, behold, the youngest is this day with our father, and one is not.

Joseph then demands to see Benjamin for his heart yearns for his brother the son of Rachel his own mother, and he seeks to test his brothers to see if their hatred of him has abated and if they have changed in their evil thoughts towards him.

42:14 And Joseph said unto them, That is it that I spake unto you, saying, Ye are spies: 42:15 Hereby ye shall be proved: By the life of Pharaoh ye shall not go forth hence, except your youngest brother come hither. 42:16 Send one of you, and let him fetch your brother, and ye shall be kept in prison, that your words may be proved, whether there be any truth in you: or else by the life of Pharaoh surely ye are spies. 42:17 And he put them all together into ward three days.

After three days in prison he allows his brothers to return home with food and keeps Simeon as hostage until they could return with Benjamin.

42:18 And Joseph said unto them the third day, This do, and live; for I fear God: 42:19 If ye be true men, let one of your brethren be bound in the house of your prison: go ye, carry corn for the famine of your houses: 42:20 But bring your youngest brother unto me; so shall your words be verified, and ye shall not die. And they did so.

In their own distress the brothers remember the anguish that they had caused Joseph.

42:21 And they said one to another, We are verily guilty concerning our brother, in that we saw the anguish of his soul, when he besought us, and we would not hear; therefore is this distress come upon us. 42:22 And Reuben answered them, saying, Spake I not unto you, saying, Do not sin against the child; and ye would not hear? therefore, behold, also his blood is required. 42:23 And they knew not that Joseph understood them; for he spake unto them by an interpreter.

Joseph wept at the anguish of his brothers, and also wept for joy that they acknowledged their guilt and were repenting.  Simeon was taken hostage and Joseph commanded that with the sacks of grain every man’s money be restored to him.

42:24 And he turned himself about from them, and wept; and returned to them again, and communed with them, and took from them Simeon, and bound him before their eyes. 42:25 Then Joseph commanded to fill their sacks with corn, and to restore every man’s money into his sack, and to give them provision for the way: and thus did he unto them.

The money was placed at the top of the grain in the sacks and the brothers quickly discovered what had been done.

42:26 And they laded their asses with the corn, and departed thence. 42:27 And as one of them opened his sack to give his ass provender in the inn, he espied his money; for, behold, it was in his sack’s mouth.

Then they were terrified thinking that this was done to create an incident and an excuse to arrest them also, but it was done because Joseph loved his father and his brothers.

42:28 And he said unto his brethren, My money is restored; and, lo, it is even in my sack: and their heart failed them, and they were afraid, saying one to another, What is this that God hath done unto us?

Then they returned home and reported these things to their father.

42:29 And they came unto Jacob their father unto the land of Canaan, and told him all that befell unto them; saying, 42:30 The man, who is the lord of the land, spake roughly to us, and took us for spies of the country. 42:31 And we said unto him, We are true men; we are no spies: 42:32 We be twelve brethren, sons of our father; one is not, and the youngest is this day with our father in the land of Canaan.

42:33 And the man, the lord of the country, said unto us, Hereby shall I know that ye are true men; leave one of your brethren here with me, and take food for the famine of your households, and be gone: 42:34 And bring your youngest brother unto me: then shall I know that ye are no spies, but that ye are true men: so will I deliver you your brother, and ye shall traffick in the land. 42:35 And it came to pass as they emptied their sacks, that, behold, every man’s bundle of money was in his sack: and when both they and their father saw the bundles of money, they were afraid.

Joseph had demanded that Benjamin come to Egypt to be seen by Joseph as his price for releasing Sineon.  Jacob grieved for his sons and the brothers beheld the anguish of their father, and were deeply convicted of their sins.

42:36 And Jacob their father said unto them, Me have ye bereaved of my children: Joseph is not, and Simeon is not, and ye will take Benjamin away: all these things are against me.

Reuben guarantees Benjamin’s life with the lives of his own two sons.

42:37 And Reuben spake unto his father, saying, Slay my two sons, if I bring him not to thee: deliver him into my hand, and I will bring him to thee again.

Jacob says no, but finally runs out of food and is forced by the severity of the famine to send to Egypt for more grain.

42:38 And he said, My son [Benjamin] shall not go down with you; for his brother is dead, and he is left alone: if mischief befall him by the way in the which ye go, then shall ye bring down my gray hairs with sorrow to the grave.


Genesis 43

Then after they had eaten up all the grain from Egypt Jacob sent them back for more.

Genesis 43:1 And the famine was sore in the land. 43:2 And it came to pass, when they had eaten up the corn which they had brought out of Egypt, their father said unto them, Go again, buy us a little food.

All this time Simeon remained in prison, and now Judah reminds Jacob that they are required to take Benjamin back with them.

43:3 And Judah spake unto him, saying, The man did solemnly protest unto us, saying, Ye shall not see my face, except your brother be with you. 43:4 If thou wilt send our brother with us, we will go down and buy thee food: 43:5 But if thou wilt not send him, we will not go down: for the man said unto us, Ye shall not see my face, except your brother be with you.

Jacob complains

43:6 And Israel said, Wherefore dealt ye so ill with me, as to tell the man whether ye had yet a brother? 43:7 And they said, The man asked us straitly of our state, and of our kindred, saying, Is your father yet alive? have ye another brother? and we told him according to the tenor of these words: could we certainly know that he would say, Bring your brother down?

Judah gives himself a surety for Benjamin like Reuben had done.  Now, they were guaranteeing the security of Benjamin, when before they had sold his brother Joseph.  Over these years they had matured, seeing the anguish of their father day by day and year by year. They realized the enormity of what they had done, and were humbled to deep repentance.

43:8 And Judah said unto Israel his father, Send the lad with me, and we will arise and go; that we may live, and not die, both we, and thou, and also our little ones. 43:9 I will be surety for him; of my hand shalt thou require him: if I bring him not unto thee, and set him before thee, then let me bear the blame for ever: 43:10 For except we had lingered, surely now we had returned this second time.

Jacob finally says to go down and take Benjamin with them and what presents that they might have.

43:11 And their father Israel said unto them, If it must be so now, do this; take of the best fruits in the land in your vessels, and carry down the man a present, a little balm, and a little honey, spices, and myrrh, nuts, and almonds: 43:12 And take double money in your hand; and the money that was brought again in the mouth of your sacks, carry it again in your hand; peradventure it was an oversight: 43:13 Take also your brother, and arise, go again unto the man: 43:14 And God Almighty give you mercy before the man, that he may send away your other brother, and Benjamin. If I be bereaved of my children, I am bereaved.

When Joseph saw Benjamin his heart burned for his brother the son of his mother, and he called them all to a feast.

43:15 And the men took that present, and they took double money in their hand and Benjamin; and rose up, and went down to Egypt, and stood before Joseph. 43:16 And when Joseph saw Benjamin with them, he said to the ruler [he commanded his butler] of his house, Bring these men home, and slay, and make ready; for these men shall dine with me at noon. 43:17 And the man did as Joseph bade; and the man brought the men into Joseph’s house.

The brothers remembered what they had done in selling Joseph and feared that some evil would now come upon them.

43:18 And the men were afraid, because they were brought into Joseph’s house; and they said, Because of the money that was returned in our sacks at the first time are we brought in; that he may seek occasion against us, and fall upon us, and take us for bondmen, and our asses.

Then they spoke to the house steward and he reassured them.

43:19 And they came near to the steward of Joseph’s house, and they communed with him at the door of the house, 43:20 And said, O sir, we came indeed down at the first time to buy food: 43:21 And it came to pass, when we came to the inn, that we opened our sacks, and, behold, every man’s money was in the mouth of his sack, our money in full weight: and we have brought it again in our hand. 43:22 And other money have we brought down in our hands to buy food: we cannot tell who put our money in our sacks. 43:23 And he said, Peace be to you, fear not: your God, and the God of your father, hath given you treasure in your sacks: I had your money [and gave it back to you at my Master’s command]. And he brought Simeon out unto them.

They washed and prepared themselves for the royal table.

43:24 And the man brought the men into Joseph’s house, and gave them water, and they washed their feet; and he gave their asses provender. 43:25 And they made ready the present against [for] Joseph came at noon: for they heard that they should eat bread there.

They bowed before Joseph this time also [fulfilling Joseph’s dream of Genesis 37:5] and gave him a present.

43:26 And when Joseph came home, they brought him the present which was in their hand into the house, and bowed themselves to him to the earth.

Joseph asks about their [his] father

43:27 And he asked them of their welfare, and said, Is your father well, the old man of whom ye spake? Is he yet alive? 43:28 And they answered, Thy servant our father is in good health, he is yet alive. And they bowed down their heads, and made obeisance.

Joseph saw Benjamin his mother’s son and blessed him; Then losing his composure he went to a side chamber to weep.

43:29 And he lifted up his eyes, and saw his brother Benjamin, his mother’s son, and said, Is this your younger brother, of whom ye spake unto me? And he said, God be gracious unto thee, my son. 43:30 And Joseph made haste; for his bowels did yearn upon his brother: and he sought where to weep; and he entered into his chamber, and wept there.

After washing, Joseph came out and commanded the luncheon feast prepared for his brothers to be served.

43:31 And he washed his face, and went out, and refrained himself, and said, Set on bread.

Three tables were set: one for Joseph; one for his brothers; and one for the Egyptians.

43:32 And they set on for him by himself, and for them by themselves, and for the Egyptians, which did eat with him, by themselves: because the Egyptians might not eat bread with the Hebrews; for that is an abomination unto the Egyptians.

Joseph had his brothers sit down in order of birth and they were amazed that he would know that.

43:33 And they sat before him, the firstborn according to his birthright, and the youngest according to his youth: and the men marvelled one at another.

Joseph had plates of food sent to each brother and five times as much to Benjamin his brother the beloved son of his beloved mother, Rachael.

43:34 And he took and sent messes unto them from before him: but Benjamin’s mess was five times so much as any of their’s. And they drank, and were merry with him.


Genesis 44

When we are born we know nothing and must learn and grow; the same thing is true spiritually.  When we are first converted we know very little and we must learn and grow over a lifetime.

The fact is, physical or spiritual maturity is not the province of children. We must learn and grow for many years before we become physically or spiritually mature.

The story of Joseph and his brothers is a story of the learning and maturing of Joseph and his brothers from basic carnality to a level of spiritual maturity, and is an instructional lesson that each one of us needs to also grow in spiritual maturity over our lifetimes.

Joseph’s story has very much to do with the need of every person to continually examine ourselves and to root out all error; replacing all error and sin with the truth, the Word of God and internalizing the very nature of God within ourselves, which nature is truth and love.

Joseph then arranges events so that his brothers would have to bring his father to Egypt the next time they came.

Genesis 44:1 And he commanded the steward of his house, saying, Fill the men’s sacks with food, as much as they can carry, and put every man’s money in his sack’s mouth. 44:2 And put my cup, the silver cup, in the sack’s mouth of the youngest, and his corn money. And he did according to the word that Joseph had spoken. 44:3 As soon as the morning was light, the men were sent away, they and their asses.

Joseph sends his servants to chase after his brothers and arrest them.

44:4 And when they were gone out of the city, and not yet far off, Joseph said unto his steward, Up, follow after the men; and when thou dost overtake them, say unto them, Wherefore have ye rewarded evil for good? 44:5 Is not this it in which my lord drinketh, and whereby indeed he divineth? ye have done evil in so doing. 44:6 And he overtook them, and he spake unto them these same words.

The brothers are convinced of their own innocence and make a rash promise.

44:7 And they said unto him, Wherefore saith my lord these words? God forbid that thy servants should do according to this thing: 44:8 Behold, the money, which we found in our sacks’ mouths, we brought again unto thee out of the land of Canaan: how then should we steal out of thy lord’s house silver or gold? 44:9 With whomsoever of thy servants it be found, both let him die, and we also will be my lord’s bondmen.

Joseph agreed to their words that the guilty should become his servant, but allowed that the innocent were blameless.

44:10 And he said, Now also let it be according unto your words: he with whom it is found shall be my servant; and ye shall be blameless. 44:11 Then they speedily took down every man his sack to the ground, and opened every man his sack.

The cup was found with Benjamin

44:12 And he searched, and began at the eldest, and left at the youngest: and the cup was found in Benjamin’s sack.

The brothers were devastated for they had guaranteed the safety of Benjamin to their father who they had bereaved of Joseph.

They now began to really understand and to sincerely repent of the sins of their youth. Imagine the deep anguish of sorrow they must have had over what they had done to Joseph and their father.

44:13 Then they rent their clothes, and laded every man his ass, and returned to the city.

Judah and his brothers presented themselves to Joseph.

44:14 And Judah and his brethren came to Joseph’s house; for he was yet there: and they fell before him on the ground. 44:15 And Joseph said unto them, What deed is this that ye have done? wot ye not that such a man as I can certainly divine [know secret things]?

Judah then alluded to their own guilt in selling Joseph to be a slave, and owned that they should justly become servants also.

44:16 And Judah said, What shall we say unto my lord? what shall we speak? or how shall we clear ourselves? God hath found out the iniquity of thy servants: behold, we are my lord’s servants, both we, and he also with whom the cup is found.

Joseph ruled that only the guilty, as was supposed; should be punished.

44:17 And he said, God forbid that I should do so: but the man in whose hand the cup is found, he shall be my servant; and as for you, get you up in peace unto your father.\

Judah then pleads for Benjamin and his father Jacob, fulfilling his promise as guarantor of Benjamin.

44:18 Then Judah came near unto him, and said, Oh my lord, let thy servant, I pray thee, speak a word in my lord’s ears, and let not thine anger burn against thy servant: for thou art even as Pharaoh. 44:19 My lord asked his servants, saying, Have ye a father, or a brother? 44:20 And we said unto my lord, We have a father, an old man, and a child of his old age, a little one; and his brother is dead, and he alone is left of his mother, and his father loveth him. 44:21 And thou saidst unto thy servants, Bring him down unto me, that I may set mine eyes upon him. 44:22 And we said unto my lord, The lad cannot leave his father: for if he should leave his father, his father would die. 44:23 And thou saidst unto thy servants, Except your youngest brother come down with you, ye shall see my face no more.

44:24 And it came to pass when we came up unto thy servant my father, we told him the words of my lord. 44:25 And our father said, Go again, and buy us a little food. 44:26 And we said, We cannot go down: if our youngest brother be with us, then will we go down: for we may not see the man’s face, except our youngest brother be with us. 44:27 And thy servant my father said unto us, Ye know that my wife bare me two sons: 44:28 And the one went out from me, and I said, Surely he is torn in pieces; and I saw him not since: 44:29 And if ye take this also from me, and mischief befall him, ye shall bring down my gray hairs with sorrow to the grave.

44:30 Now therefore when I come to thy servant my father, and the lad be not with us; seeing that his life is bound up in the lad’s life; 44:31 It shall come to pass, when he seeth that the lad is not with us, that he will die: and thy servants shall bring down the gray hairs of thy servant our father with sorrow to the grave. 44:32 For thy servant [Judah] became surety for the lad unto my father, saying, If I bring him not unto thee, then I shall bear the blame to my father for ever.

Judah offers himself for Benjamin: an act of love towards Benjamin and towards Jacob his father.  This was a complete turnabout from the anger and hatred that they had had for Joseph at the first.  The nature of Joseph had been completely changed by his experiences, and so had the nature of his brothers.

And so our own natures and the natures of all humanity will be completely changed by the end of God’s plan for humanity.

44:33 Now therefore, I pray thee, let thy servant abide instead of the lad a bondman to my lord; and let the lad go up with his brethren. 44:34 For how shall I go up to my father, and the lad be not with me? lest peradventure I see the evil that shall come on my father.

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