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Genesis Chapter 45
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Joseph Reveals Himself to his Brothers
45:1 Joseph could not hold in his emotions. Since all his attendants were present, he cried out, 'Have everyone leave my presence!' Thus, no one else was with him when Joseph revealed himself to his brothers.
45:2 He began to weep with such loud sobs that the Egyptians could hear it. The news [of these strange happenings] reached Pharaoh's palace.
45:3 Joseph said to his brothers, 'I am Joseph! Is my father still alive?' His brothers were so startled, they could not respond.
45:4 'Please, come close to me,' said Joseph to his brothers.

When they came closer, he said, 'I am Joseph your brother! You sold me to Egypt.

45:5 Now don't worry or feel guilty because you sold me. Look! God has sent me ahead of you to save lives!
45:6 There has been a famine in the area for two years, and for another five years there will be no plowing or harvest.
45:7 God has sent me ahead of you to insure that you survive in the land and to keep you alive through such extraordinary means.
45:8 'Now it is not you who sent me here, but God. He has made me Pharaoh's vizier, director of his entire government, and dictator of all Egypt.
45:9 'Hurry, go back to my father, and give him the message: Your son Joseph says, 'God has made me master of all Egypt. Come to me without delay.
45:10 You will be able to settle in the Goshen district and be close to me - you, your children, your grandchildren, your sheep, your cattle, and all that you own.
45:11 I will fully provide for you there, since there will still be another five years of famine. I do not want you to become destitute, along with your family and all that is yours.'
45:12 'You and my brother Benjamin can see with your own eyes that I myself am speaking to you.
45:13 Tell Father all about my high position in Egypt, and about all that you saw. You must hurry and bring Father here.'
45:14 [With that, Joseph] fell on the shoulders of his brother Benjamin, and he wept. Benjamin [also] wept on [Joseph's] shoulders.
45:15 [Joseph] then kissed all his brothers and wept on their [shoulders]. After that, his brothers conversed with him.
45:16 News spread to Pharaoh's palace that Joseph's brothers had shown up. Pharaoh and his advisors were pleased.
45:17 Pharaoh told Joseph to instruct his brothers, 'This is what you must do: Load your beasts and go directly to Canaan.
45:18 Bring your father and your families and come to me. I will give you the best land in Egypt. You will eat the fat of the land.
45:19 Now you are instructed to do the following: Take wagons from Egypt for your small children and wives, and also use them for your father. Come
45:20 and do not be concerned with your belongings, for the best of Egypt will be yours.'
45:21 Israel's sons agreed to do this. Joseph gave them wagons according to Pharaoh's instructions, and he also provided them with food for the journey.
45:22 He gave each of [his brothers] an outfit of clothes. To Benjamin, however, he gave 300 pieces of silver and five outfits.
45:23 [Joseph] sent the following to his father: Ten male donkeys, loaded with Egypt's finest products, as well as ten female donkeys, loaded with grain, bread, and food for his father's journey.
45:24 He sent his brothers on their way. As they were leaving, he said to them, 'Have a pleasant journey!'
45:25 [The brothers] headed north from Egypt, and they came to their father Jacob in Canaan.
45:26 They broke the news to him: 'Joseph is still alive. He is the ruler of all Egypt.'
45:27 [Jacob's] heart became numb, for he could not believe them.
45:28 'It's too much!' said Israel. 'My son Joseph is alive! I must go and see him before I die!'



Commentary:

Since all...
  (Radak). Or, 'He could not tolerate everyone standing over him (Rashi).

extraordinary means
  Literally, 'through great deliverance' (Septuagint). It can also be read, 'To keep alive for you a great survival,' which means, 'to insure that a great many of you survive' (Yov'loth 43:18).

Pharaoh's vizier
  Literally, 'a father to Pharaoh.' See note on Genesis 41:43. 'Pharaoh's father' was an ancient term for the royal vizier.

Goshen district
  This is an area in the eastern Nile delta, west of what is now the northern Suez Canal. It was close to the capital, and thus close to where Joseph was living. It was also the part of Egypt close to Canaan (Genesis 46:29). It is usually said to be the area between Tanis (Onomed) and Memphis (Judith 1:9,10). Josephus identifies it with the Heliopolis region (Antiquities 2:7:6, see Genesis 47:11). The Septuagint (on Genesis 46:28) renders Goshen as Hero-opolis, which is south of Pelusium and northeast of Cairo (Ptolemy, Geography 4:5). Elsewhere, the Septuagint speaks of it as 'the Arab land of Gesem' (on Genesis 46:34). The area to the east of the Nile was known as the Arabian territory (Herodotus 2:8).

shoulders
  (Sh'muel ben Chofni Gaon). See Genesis 33:4.

Have a pleasant journey
  Literally, 'Do not have agitation (or anger) on the way.' This can be interpreted as 'do not have any discomfort on the way (Ibn Janach; Radak; Hirsch), or 'have a pleasant journey.' Alternatively, the expression can be interpreted, 'Do not have any fear on the way' (Bekhor Shor); 'Do not worry while you're gone' (Rashbam); 'Do not quarrel on the way' (Rashi; Ibn Ezra; Septuagint); 'Don't get in trouble on the way' (Targum Yonathan); 'Don't get too involved on the way' (Taanith 10a; Rashi); or 'Don't rush too much on the way' (Bereshith Rabbah 94).

became numb
  (cf. Ibn Ezra; Hirsch). Or, 'He doubted it in his heart' (Rashi; Rashbam; cf. Targum).





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