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Joseph Reveals His Identity

45 Joseph could stand it no longer. There were many people in the room, and he said to his attendants, “Out, all of you!” So he was alone with his brothers when he told them who he was. Then he broke down and wept. He wept so loudly the Egyptians could hear him, and word of it quickly carried to Pharaoh’s palace.

“I am Joseph!” he said to his brothers. “Is my father still alive?” But his brothers were speechless! They were stunned to realize that Joseph was standing there in front of them. “Please, come closer,” he said to them. So they came closer. And he said again, “I am Joseph, your brother, whom you sold into slavery in Egypt. But don’t be upset, and don’t be angry with yourselves for selling me to this place. It was God who sent me here ahead of you to preserve your lives. This famine that has ravaged the land for two years will last five more years, and there will be neither plowing nor harvesting. God has sent me ahead of you to keep you and your families alive and to preserve many survivors.[a] So it was God who sent me here, not you! And he is the one who made me an adviser[b] to Pharaoh—the manager of his entire palace and the governor of all Egypt.

“Now hurry back to my father and tell him, ‘This is what your son Joseph says: God has made me master over all the land of Egypt. So come down to me immediately! 10 You can live in the region of Goshen, where you can be near me with all your children and grandchildren, your flocks and herds, and everything you own. 11 I will take care of you there, for there are still five years of famine ahead of us. Otherwise you, your household, and all your animals will starve.’”

12 Then Joseph added, “Look! You can see for yourselves, and so can my brother Benjamin, that I really am Joseph! 13 Go tell my father of my honored position here in Egypt. Describe for him everything you have seen, and then bring my father here quickly.” 14 Weeping with joy, he embraced Benjamin, and Benjamin did the same. 15 Then Joseph kissed each of his brothers and wept over them, and after that they began talking freely with him.

Pharaoh Invites Jacob to Egypt

16 The news soon reached Pharaoh’s palace: “Joseph’s brothers have arrived!” Pharaoh and his officials were all delighted to hear this.

17 Pharaoh said to Joseph, “Tell your brothers, ‘This is what you must do: Load your pack animals, and hurry back to the land of Canaan. 18 Then get your father and all of your families, and return here to me. I will give you the very best land in Egypt, and you will eat from the best that the land produces.’”

19 Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, “Tell your brothers, ‘Take wagons from the land of Egypt to carry your little children and your wives, and bring your father here. 20 Don’t worry about your personal belongings, for the best of all the land of Egypt is yours.’”

21 So the sons of Jacob[c] did as they were told. Joseph provided them with wagons, as Pharaoh had commanded, and he gave them supplies for the journey. 22 And he gave each of them new clothes—but to Benjamin he gave five changes of clothes and 300 pieces[d] of silver. 23 He also sent his father ten male donkeys loaded with the finest products of Egypt, and ten female donkeys loaded with grain and bread and other supplies he would need on his journey.

24 So Joseph sent his brothers off, and as they left, he called after them, “Don’t quarrel about all this along the way!” 25 And they left Egypt and returned to their father, Jacob, in the land of Canaan.

26 “Joseph is still alive!” they told him. “And he is governor of all the land of Egypt!” Jacob was stunned at the news—he couldn’t believe it. 27 But when they repeated to Jacob everything Joseph had told them, and when he saw the wagons Joseph had sent to carry him, their father’s spirits revived.

28 Then Jacob exclaimed, “It must be true! My son Joseph is alive! I must go and see him before I die.”

Jacob’s Journey to Egypt

46 So Jacob[e] set out for Egypt with all his possessions. And when he came to Beersheba, he offered sacrifices to the God of his father, Isaac. During the night God spoke to him in a vision. “Jacob! Jacob!” he called.

“Here I am,” Jacob replied.

“I am God,[f] the God of your father,” the voice said. “Do not be afraid to go down to Egypt, for there I will make your family into a great nation. I will go with you down to Egypt, and I will bring you back again. You will die in Egypt, but Joseph will be with you to close your eyes.”

So Jacob left Beersheba, and his sons took him to Egypt. They carried him and their little ones and their wives in the wagons Pharaoh had provided for them. They also took all their livestock and all the personal belongings they had acquired in the land of Canaan. So Jacob and his entire family went to Egypt— sons and grandsons, daughters and granddaughters—all his descendants.

These are the names of the descendants of Israel—the sons of Jacob—who went to Egypt:

Reuben was Jacob’s oldest son. The sons of Reuben were Hanoch, Pallu, Hezron, and Carmi.

10 The sons of Simeon were Jemuel, Jamin, Ohad, Jakin, Zohar, and Shaul. (Shaul’s mother was a Canaanite woman.)

11 The sons of Levi were Gershon, Kohath, and Merari.

12 The sons of Judah were Er, Onan, Shelah, Perez, and Zerah (though Er and Onan had died in the land of Canaan). The sons of Perez were Hezron and Hamul.

13 The sons of Issachar were Tola, Puah,[g] Jashub,[h] and Shimron.

14 The sons of Zebulun were Sered, Elon, and Jahleel.

15 These were the sons of Leah and Jacob who were born in Paddan-aram, in addition to their daughter, Dinah. The number of Jacob’s descendants (male and female) through Leah was thirty-three.

16 The sons of Gad were Zephon,[i] Haggi, Shuni, Ezbon, Eri, Arodi, and Areli.

17 The sons of Asher were Imnah, Ishvah, Ishvi, and Beriah. Their sister was Serah. Beriah’s sons were Heber and Malkiel.

18 These were the sons of Zilpah, the servant given to Leah by her father, Laban. The number of Jacob’s descendants through Zilpah was sixteen.

19 The sons of Jacob’s wife Rachel were Joseph and Benjamin.

20 Joseph’s sons, born in the land of Egypt, were Manasseh and Ephraim. Their mother was Asenath, daughter of Potiphera, the priest of On.[j]

21 Benjamin’s sons were Bela, Beker, Ashbel, Gera, Naaman, Ehi, Rosh, Muppim, Huppim, and Ard.

22 These were the sons of Rachel and Jacob. The number of Jacob’s descendants through Rachel was fourteen.

23 The son of Dan was Hushim.

24 The sons of Naphtali were Jahzeel, Guni, Jezer, and Shillem.

25 These were the sons of Bilhah, the servant given to Rachel by her father, Laban. The number of Jacob’s descendants through Bilhah was seven.

26 The total number of Jacob’s direct descendants who went with him to Egypt, not counting his sons’ wives, was sixty-six. 27 In addition, Joseph had two sons[k] who were born in Egypt. So altogether, there were seventy[l] members of Jacob’s family in the land of Egypt.

Jacob’s Family Arrives in Goshen

28 As they neared their destination, Jacob sent Judah ahead to meet Joseph and get directions to the region of Goshen. And when they finally arrived there, 29 Joseph prepared his chariot and traveled to Goshen to meet his father, Jacob. When Joseph arrived, he embraced his father and wept, holding him for a long time. 30 Finally, Jacob said to Joseph, “Now I am ready to die, since I have seen your face again and know you are still alive.”

31 And Joseph said to his brothers and to his father’s entire family, “I will go to Pharaoh and tell him, ‘My brothers and my father’s entire family have come to me from the land of Canaan. 32 These men are shepherds, and they raise livestock. They have brought with them their flocks and herds and everything they own.’”

33 Then he said, “When Pharaoh calls for you and asks you about your occupation, 34 you must tell him, ‘We, your servants, have raised livestock all our lives, as our ancestors have always done.’ When you tell him this, he will let you live here in the region of Goshen, for the Egyptians despise shepherds.”

Footnotes

  1. 45:7 Or and to save you with an extraordinary rescue. The meaning of the Hebrew is uncertain.
  2. 45:8 Hebrew a father.
  3. 45:21 Hebrew Israel; also in 45:28. See note on 35:21.
  4. 45:22 Hebrew 300 [shekels], about 7.5 pounds or 3.4 kilograms in weight.
  5. 46:1 Hebrew Israel; also in 46:29, 30. See note on 35:21.
  6. 46:3 Hebrew I am El.
  7. 46:13a As in Syriac version and Samaritan Pentateuch (see also 1 Chr 7:1); Hebrew reads Puvah.
  8. 46:13b As in some Greek manuscripts and Samaritan Pentateuch (see also Num 26:24; 1 Chr 7:1); Hebrew reads Iob.
  9. 46:16 As in Greek version and Samaritan Pentateuch (see also Num 26:15); Hebrew reads Ziphion.
  10. 46:20 Greek version reads of Heliopolis.
  11. 46:27a Greek version reads nine sons, probably including Joseph’s grandsons through Ephraim and Manasseh (see 1 Chr 7:14-20).
  12. 46:27b Greek version reads seventy-five; see note on Exod 1:5.