World English Bible
42 Now Jacob saw that there was grain in Egypt, and Jacob said to his sons, “Why do you look at one another?” 2 He said, “Behold, I have heard that there is grain in Egypt. Go down there, and buy for us from there, so that we may live, and not die.” 3 Joseph’s ten brothers went down to buy grain from Egypt. 4 But Jacob didn’t send Benjamin, Joseph’s brother, with his brothers; for he said, “Lest perhaps harm happen to him.” 5 The sons of Israel came to buy among those who came, for the famine was in the land of Canaan. 6 Joseph was the governor over the land. It was he who sold to all the people of the land. Joseph’s brothers came, and bowed themselves down to him with their faces to the earth. 7 Joseph saw his brothers, and he recognized them, but acted like a stranger to them, and spoke roughly with them. He said to them, “Where did you come from?”
They said, “From the land of Canaan, to buy food.”
8 Joseph recognized his brothers, but they didn’t recognize him. 9 Joseph remembered the dreams which he dreamed about them, and said to them, “You are spies! You have come to see the nakedness of the land.”
10 They said to him, “No, my lord, but your servants have come to buy food. 11 We are all one man’s sons; we are honest men. Your servants are not spies.”
12 He said to them, “No, but you have come to see the nakedness of the land!”
13 They said, “We, your servants, are twelve brothers, the sons of one man in the land of Canaan; and behold, the youngest is today with our father, and one is no more.”
14 Joseph said to them, “It is like I told you, saying, ‘You are spies!’ 15 By this you shall be tested. By the life of Pharaoh, you shall not go out from here, unless your youngest brother comes here. 16 Send one of you, and let him get your brother, and you shall be bound, that your words may be tested, whether there is truth in you, or else by the life of Pharaoh surely you are spies.” 17 He put them all together into custody for three days.
18 Joseph said to them the third day, “Do this, and live, for I fear God. 19 If you are honest men, then let one of your brothers be bound in your prison; but you go, carry grain for the famine of your houses. 20 Bring your youngest brother to me; so will your words be verified, and you won’t die.”
They did so. 21 They said to one another, “We are certainly guilty concerning our brother, in that we saw the distress of his soul, when he begged us, and we wouldn’t listen. Therefore this distress has come upon us.” 22 Reuben answered them, saying, “Didn’t I tell you, saying, ‘Don’t sin against the child,’ and you wouldn’t listen? Therefore also, behold, his blood is required.” 23 They didn’t know that Joseph understood them; for there was an interpreter between them. 24 He turned himself away from them, and wept. Then he returned to them, and spoke to them, and took Simeon from among them, and bound him before their eyes. 25 Then Joseph gave a command to fill their bags with grain, and to restore each man’s money into his sack, and to give them food for the way. So it was done to them.
26 They loaded their donkeys with their grain, and departed from there. 27 As one of them opened his sack to give his donkey food in the lodging place, he saw his money. Behold, it was in the mouth of his sack. 28 He said to his brothers, “My money is restored! Behold, it is in my sack!” Their hearts failed them, and they turned trembling to one another, saying, “What is this that God has done to us?” 29 They came to Jacob their father, to the land of Canaan, and told him all that had happened to them, saying, 30 “The man, the lord of the land, spoke roughly with us, and took us for spies of the country. 31 We said to him, ‘We are honest men. We are no spies. 32 We are twelve brothers, sons of our father; one is no more, and the youngest is today with our father in the land of Canaan.’ 33 The man, the lord of the land, said to us, ‘By this I will know that you are honest men: leave one of your brothers with me, and take grain for the famine of your houses, and go your way. 34 Bring your youngest brother to me. Then I will know that you are not spies, but that you are honest men. So I will deliver your brother to you, and you shall trade in the land.’”
35 As they emptied their sacks, behold, each man’s bundle of money was in his sack. When they and their father saw their bundles of money, they were afraid. 36 Jacob, their father, said to them, “You have bereaved me of my children! Joseph is no more, Simeon is no more, and you want to take Benjamin away. All these things are against me.”
37 Reuben spoke to his father, saying, “Kill my two sons, if I don’t bring him to you. Entrust him to my care, and I will bring him to you again.”
38 He said, “My son shall not go down with you; for his brother is dead, and he only is left. If harm happens to him along the way in which you go, then you will bring down my gray hairs with sorrow to Sheol.”[a]
- 42:38 Sheol is the place of the dead.
New International Version
Joseph’s Brothers Go to Egypt
42 When Jacob learned that there was grain in Egypt,(A) he said to his sons, “Why do you just keep looking at each other?” 2 He continued, “I have heard that there is grain in Egypt. Go down there and buy some for us,(B) so that we may live and not die.”(C)
3 Then ten of Joseph’s brothers went down to buy grain(D) from Egypt. 4 But Jacob did not send Benjamin,(E) Joseph’s brother, with the others, because he was afraid that harm might come to him.(F) 5 So Israel’s sons were among those who went to buy grain,(G) for there was famine in the land of Canaan(H) also.(I)
6 Now Joseph was the governor of the land,(J) the person who sold grain to all its people.(K) So when Joseph’s brothers arrived, they bowed down to him with their faces to the ground.(L) 7 As soon as Joseph saw his brothers, he recognized them, but he pretended to be a stranger and spoke harshly to them.(M) “Where do you come from?”(N) he asked.
“From the land of Canaan,” they replied, “to buy food.”
8 Although Joseph recognized his brothers, they did not recognize him.(O) 9 Then he remembered his dreams(P) about them and said to them, “You are spies!(Q) You have come to see where our land is unprotected.”(R)
12 “No!” he said to them. “You have come to see where our land is unprotected.”(X)
14 Joseph said to them, “It is just as I told you: You are spies!(AB) 15 And this is how you will be tested: As surely as Pharaoh lives,(AC) you will not leave this place unless your youngest brother comes here.(AD) 16 Send one of your number to get your brother;(AE) the rest of you will be kept in prison,(AF) so that your words may be tested to see if you are telling the truth.(AG) If you are not, then as surely as Pharaoh lives, you are spies!(AH)” 17 And he put them all in custody(AI) for three days.
18 On the third day, Joseph said to them, “Do this and you will live, for I fear God:(AJ) 19 If you are honest men,(AK) let one of your brothers stay here in prison,(AL) while the rest of you go and take grain back for your starving households.(AM) 20 But you must bring your youngest brother to me,(AN) so that your words may be verified and that you may not die.” This they proceeded to do.
21 They said to one another, “Surely we are being punished because of our brother.(AO) We saw how distressed he was when he pleaded with us for his life, but we would not listen; that’s why this distress(AP) has come on us.”
22 Reuben replied, “Didn’t I tell you not to sin against the boy?(AQ) But you wouldn’t listen! Now we must give an accounting(AR) for his blood.”(AS) 23 They did not realize(AT) that Joseph could understand them,(AU) since he was using an interpreter.
25 Joseph gave orders to fill their bags with grain,(AX) to put each man’s silver back in his sack,(AY) and to give them provisions(AZ) for their journey.(BA) After this was done for them, 26 they loaded their grain on their donkeys(BB) and left.
27 At the place where they stopped for the night one of them opened his sack to get feed for his donkey,(BC) and he saw his silver in the mouth of his sack.(BD) 28 “My silver has been returned,” he said to his brothers. “Here it is in my sack.”
29 When they came to their father Jacob in the land of Canaan,(BH) they told him all that had happened to them.(BI) They said, 30 “The man who is lord over the land spoke harshly to us(BJ) and treated us as though we were spying on the land.(BK) 31 But we said to him, ‘We are honest men; we are not spies.(BL) 32 We were twelve brothers, sons of one father. One is no more, and the youngest is now with our father in Canaan.’(BM)
33 “Then the man who is lord over the land said to us, ‘This is how I will know whether you are honest men: Leave one of your brothers here with me, and take food for your starving households and go.(BN) 34 But bring your youngest brother to me so I will know that you are not spies but honest men.(BO) Then I will give your brother back to you,(BP) and you can trade[a] in the land.(BQ)’”
35 As they were emptying their sacks, there in each man’s sack was his pouch of silver!(BR) When they and their father saw the money pouches, they were frightened.(BS) 36 Their father Jacob said to them, “You have deprived me of my children. Joseph is no more and Simeon is no more,(BT) and now you want to take Benjamin.(BU) Everything is against me!(BV)”
38 But Jacob said, “My son will not go down there with you; his brother is dead(BY) and he is the only one left. If harm comes to him(BZ) on the journey you are taking, you will bring my gray head down to the grave(CA) in sorrow.(CB)”
- Genesis 42:34 Or move about freely