Story Nineteen

 •  7 min. read  •  grade level: 4
SO Jṓ s̝eph's eleven brothers went home to their old father with the glad news that Jṓ s̝eph was alive and was ruler over the land. It was such a joyful surprise to Jā́ lcob that he fainted. But after a time he revived; and when they showed him the wagons that Jṓ s̝eph had sent to bring him and his family to Egypt, old Jacob said, "It is enough; Joseph my son is yet alive; I will go and see him before I die."
Then they went on their journey, with their wives, and children, and servants, and sheep and cattle, a great company. They stopped to rest at Bḗ er-shḗba, which had been the home of Ĭ́s̝aac and of Ā́ bră,-hăm, and made offerings to the Lord, and worshipped. And that night the Lord appeared to Jā́cob, and said to him: “Jā́ cob, I am the Lord, the God of your father, fear not to go down to Ḗ ġy̆pt; for I will go down with you; and there you shall see your son Jṓ s̞eph; and in Egypt I will make of your descendants, those that come from you, a great people; and I will surely bring them back again to this land.”
They came down to Ḗ ġy̆pt, sixty-six of Jā́ cob's children and grand-children. Jṓ s̝eph rode in his chariot to meet his father, and fell on his neck, and wept upon him. And Jacob said, "Now, I am ready to die, since I know that you are still alive; and I have seen your face." And Jṓs̝eph brought his father in to see King Phā́ raōh; and Jacob, as an old man, gave his blessing to the king.
The part of the land of Ḗ ġy̆pt where Jṓ s̝eph found for his brothers a home, was called Gṓ shen. It was on the east, between Ḗ ġy̆pt and the desert, and it was a very rich land, where the soil gave large harvests. But at that time, and for five years after, there were no crops, because of the famine that was in the land. During those years, the people of Ĭś̝ ra-el in the land of Gṓ shen were fed as were all the people of Ḗ ġy̆pt, with grain from the store-houses of Jṓ s̝eph.
Jā́ cob lived to be almost a hundred and fifty years old. Before he died he blessed Jṓ s̝eph and all his sons, and said to them:
"When I die, do not bury me in the land of Ḗ ġy̆pt, but take my body to the land of Cā́ năan, and bury me in the cave at Hḗbron, with Ā́ bră-hăm, and Isaac my father.”
And Jṓ s̝eph brought his two sons, Mā̇-năś seh and Ḗ phră-ĭm, to his father's bed, Jā́ cob's eyes were dim with age, as his father Ī́ s̞aac had been, and he could not see the two young men. And he said, "Who are these?”
And Jṓ s̝eph said, "They are my two sons, whom God has given me in this land.”
"Bring them to me," said Jā́ cob, "that I may bless them before I die.”
And Jā́ cob kissed them, and put his arms around them, and he said:
"I had not thought that I should ever see your face, my son; and God has let me see both you and your children also.”
And Jā́ cob placed his right hand on Ḗ phră-ĭm's head, the younger, and his left hand on Mā̇-năś seh the older. Jṓ s̝eph tried to change his father's hands, so that his right hand should be on the older son's head. But Jā́ cob would not allow him, and he said:
"I know what I am doing, God will bless the older son; but the greater blessing shall be with the younger, for his descendants, those who spring from him, shall be greater and stronger than the descendants of his brother.”
And so it came to pass many years after this; for the tribe of Ḗ phră-ĭm, the younger son, became greater and more powerful than the tribe of Mā̇-năś seh, the older son.
When Jā́ cob died a great funeral was held. They carried his body up out of Ḗ ġy̆pt to the land of Cā́ năan, and buried it,—as he had said to them,—in the cave of Măch-pḗ lah, where Ā́ bră˗hăm and Īs̝aac were buried already.
When the sons of Jacob came to Egypt after the burial of their father, they said one to another:
"It may be that Jó̄ s̝eph will punish us, now that his father is dead, for the wrong that we did to him many years ago.”
And they sent a message, asking Jṓ s̝eph to forgive them, few his father's sake. And again they came and bowed down before him, with their faces to the ground; they said, "We are your servants; be merciful to us.”
Jṓ s̝eph wept when his brothers spoke to him, and he said:
"Fear not. Am I in God's place to punish and to reward? It is true that you meant evil to me, but God turned it to good, so that all your families might be kept alive. Do not be afraid; I will care for you, and for your children.”
After this Jṓ seph lived to a good old age, until he was a hundred and ten years old. Before he died he said to his children, and to all the children of Ĭś̝ ra-el, who had now increased to very many people:
"I am going to die; but God will come to you, and will bring you up out of this land, into your own land, which he promised to your fathers, to Ā́ bră-hăm, and Īs̞aac, and Jā́ cob. When I die do not bury me in Ḗ ġy̆pt, but keep my body until you go out of this land, and take it with you.”
So when Jṓ s̝eph died they embalmed his body, as the Ḗ ġy̆ṕ tians embalmed the dead; so that the body would not decay, and they placed his body in a stone coffin, and kept it in the land of Gṓ shen among the people of Ĭś̝ ra-el. Thus Jṓ s̞eph not only showed his faith in God's promise, that he would bring his people back to the land of Cā́ năan; but he also encouraged the faith of those who came after him. For as often as the Ĭś̝ ra-el-ītes looked on the stone coffin that held the body of Jṓ s̝eph, they said to one another:
"There is the token, the sign, that this land is not our home. This coffin will not be buried until we bury it in our own land, the land of Cā́ năan, where God will lead us in his own time.”
Lesson 8. Joseph and his Brothers.
(Tell Stories 17, 18 and 19.)
1. What did Joseph do after he became ruler of Egypt, during the seven years of plenty? He saved up all the food.
2. What was done with the food that was saved up by Joseph? The people of Egypt were fed in the years of need.
3. Where were Jacob and his other sons, the brothers of Joseph, living at this time? In the land of Canaan.
4. What did Joseph’s brothers do to get food in the time of need? They went down to Egypt.
5. How did Joseph treat his brothers when they came to him? He gave them food but did not tell them who he was.
6. When they came the second time what did Joseph do? He told them who he was, and forgave them.
7. What else did Joseph do for his father and his brothers? He sent for them all to come down to Egypt.
8. How many were the Israelites or people of Israel, when they came down to Egypt? Seventy people.
9. In what part of Egypt did they live? In the land of Goshen.