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Genesis 37:1–50:26

The Dreams of Joseph

37 And Jacob settled in the land of the sojourning of his father, in the land of Canaan. These are the generationsa of Jacob. Joseph, when seventeen years old,b was shepherding the flock with his brothers. Now he was a helper with the sons of Bilhah and the sons of Zilpah, the wives of his father. And Joseph brought a bad report of them to their father. Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his sons, for he was a son of his old age. And he made a robe with long sleevesc for him. When his brothers saw that their father loved him more than all his brothers, they hated him and were not able to speak peaceably to him.

And Joseph dreamed a dream, and he told it to his brothers. And they hated him even more.d And he said to them, “Listen now to this dream that I dreamed. Now behold, we were binding sheaves in the midst of the field and, behold, my sheaf stood up and it remained standing. Then behold, your sheaves gathered around and bowed down to my sheaf.” Then his brothers said to him, “Will you really reign over us? Or will you truly rule over us?” And they hated him even moree on account of his dream and because of his words. Then he dreamed yet another dream and told it to his brothers. And he said, “Behold, I dreamed a dream again, and behold, the sun and the moon and eleven stars were bowing down to me.” 10 And he told it to his father and to his brothers. And his father rebuked him and said to him, “What is this dream that you have dreamed? Will I and your mother and your brothers indeed come to bow down to the ground to you?” 11 And his brothers were jealous of him, but his father kept the matter in mind.

Joseph Sold Into Slavery by his Brothers

12 Now his brothers went to pasture the flock of their father in Shechem. 13 And Israel said to Joseph, “Are not your brothers pasturing in Shechem? Come, let me send you to them.” And he said to him, “Here I am.” 14 Then he said to him, “Go now, see if it goes well for your brothers and for the flock,f then return word to me.” And he sent him from the valley of Hebron, and he arrived at Shechem. 15 And a man found him, and behold, heg was wandering about in a field. And the man asked him, “What do you seek?” 16 And he said, “I am seeking my brothers. Tell me, please, where they are pasturing.” 17 And the man said, “They have moved on from here, for I heard them saying, ‘Let us go to Dothan.’ ” Then Joseph went after his brothers and found them in Dothan. 18 And they saw him from a distance. And before he drew near to them, they conspired against him to kill him. 19 And each said to his brothers, “Look, this master of dreams is coming. 20 Now then, come, let us kill him and throw him in one of the pits. Then we will say a wild animal devoured him. Then we will see what his dreams become.” 21 And Reuben heard it and delivered him from their hand and said, “We must not take his life.” 22 And Reuben said to them, “You must not shed blood. Throw him into this pit that is in the desert, but do not lay a hand on him”—so that he might rescue him from their hand to return him to his father. 23 And it happened that as Joseph came to his brothers they stripped Joseph of his robe, the robe with long sleeves,h that was upon him. 24 And they took him and threw him into the pit (the pit was empty; there was no water in it). 25 Then they sat down to eat some food. And they lifted up their eyes and looked, and behold, a caravan of Ishmaelites was coming from Gilead. And their camels were carrying aromatic gum and balm and spices on the wayi to Egypt. 26 Then Judah said to his brothers, “What profit is there if we kill our brother and conceal his blood? 27 Come, let us sell him to the Ishmaelites, but our hand shall not be against him, for he is our brother, our own flesh.” And his brothers agreed. 28 Then Midianite traders passed by. And theyj drew Joseph up and brought him up from the pit, and they sold Joseph to the Ishmaelites for twenty pieces of silver. And they brought Joseph to Egypt. 29 Then Reuben returned to the pit and, behold, Joseph was not in the pit. And he tore his clothes. 30 And he returned to his brothers and said, “The boy is gone!k Now I, what can I do?”l 31 Then they took the robe of Joseph and slaughtered a goat, and dipped the robe in the blood. 32 Then they sent the robe with long sleevesm and they brought it to their father and said, “We found this; please examine it. Is it the robe of your son or not?” 33 And he recognized it and said, “The robe of my son! A wild animal has devoured him! Joseph is surely torn to pieces!” 34 And Jacob tore his clothes and put sackcloth on his loins and mourned for his son many days. 35 And all his sons and all his daughters tried to console him, but he refused to be consoled. And he said, “No, I shall go down to my son, to Sheol, mourning.” And his father wept for him. 36 And the Midianites sold him in Egypt to Potiphar, a court official of Pharaoh, a commander of the guard.

Judah and Tamar

38 And it happened that at that time Judah went down from his brothers and pitched his tent near a certain Adullamite, whose name was Hirah. And Judah saw the daughter of a certain Canaanite there whose name was Shua. And he took her and went in to her. And she conceived and bore a son, and he called his name Er. And she conceived again and bore a son, and he called his name Onan. And once again she bore a son, and she called his name Shelah. And hea was in Chezib when she bore him. And Judah took a wife for Er his firstborn, and her name was Tamar. And Er, the firstborn of Judah, was evil in the eyes of Yahweh, and Yahweh killed him. Then Judah said to Onan, “Go in to the wife of your brother and perform the duty of a brother-in-law to her, and raise up offspring for your brother.” But Onan knew that the offspring would not be for him, so whenever he went in to the wife of his brother he would waste it on the groundb so as not to give offspring to his brother. 10 And what he did was evil in the sight of Yahweh, so he killed him also. 11 Then Judah said to Tamar, his daughter-in-law, “Stay a widow in your father’s house until Shelah my son grows up,” for he feared he would also diec like his brother. So Tamar went and stayed in the house of her father. 12 And in the course of timed the daughter of Shua, the wife of Judah, died. When Judah was consoled he went up to his sheepshearers, he and his friend Hirah the Adullamite, to Timnah. 13 And it was told to Tamar, saying, “Look, your father-in-law is going up to Timnah to shear his sheep.” 14 So she removed the clothes of her widowhood and covered herself with the veil and disguised herself. And she sat at the entrance to Eynayim, which is on the way to Timnah, for she saw that Shelah was grown but she had not been given to him as a wife. 15 And Judah saw her and reckoned her to be a prostitute, for she had covered her face. 16 And he turned aside to her at the roadside and said, “Please come, let me come in to you,” for he did not know that she was his daughter-in-law. And she said, “What will you give to me that you may come in to me?” 17 And he said, “I will send a kid from the goats of the flock.” And she said, “Only if you give a pledge until you send it.” 18 And he said, “What is the pledge that I must give to you?” And she said, “your seal, your cord, and your staff that is in your hand.” And he gave them to her and went in to her. And she conceived by him. 19 And she arose and left, and she removed her veil from herself and put on the garments of her widowhood. 20 And Judah sent the kid from the goats by the hand of his friend the Adullamite to take back the pledge from the hand of the woman, but he could not find her. 21 So he asked the men of her place, saying, “Where is that cult prostitute that was at Eynayim by the roadside?” And they said, “There is no cult prostitute here.” 22 Then he returned to Judah and said, “I could not find her. Morever, the men of the place said, ‘There is no cult prostitute here.’ ” 23 And Judah said, “Let her take them for herself, lest we be laughed at.e Behold, I sent this kid, but you could not find her.” 24 And about three months laterf it was told to Judah, “Tamar your daughter-in-law has played the whore, and now, behold, she has conceived by prostitution.” And Judah said, “Bring her out and let her be burned.” 25 She was brought out, but she sent to her father-in-law saying, “By the man to whom these belong I have conceived.” And she said, “Now discerng to whom these belong: the seal and cord and the staff.” 26 Then Judah recognized them and said, “She is more righteous than I, since I did not give her to my son Shelah.” And he did not knowh her again. 27 And it happened that at the time she gave birth that, behold, twins were in her womb. 28 And it happened that at her labor one child put out a hand. And the midwife took it and tied a crimson thread on his hand saying, “This one came out first.” 29 Then his hand drew back and, behold, his brother came out, and she said, “What a breach you have made for yourself!” And she called his name Perez. 30 And afterward his brother who had the crimson thread on his hand came out. And his name was called Zerah.

Joseph in Potiphar’s House

39 Now Joseph had been brought down to Egypt, and Potiphar, a court official of Pharaoh, commander of the guard, an Egyptian, bought him from the hand of the Ishmaelites who had brought him down there. And Yahweh was with Joseph, and he became a successful man. And he was in the house of his master, the Egyptian. And his master observed that Yahweh was with him, and everything that was in his hand to do Yahweh made successful. And Joseph found favor in his eyes and he served him. Then he appointed hima over his house and all that he owned he put into his hand. And it happened that from the time he appointed him over his house and over all that he had, Yahweh blessed the house of the …

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