Genesis 46

 

 

1 “And Israel took his journey with all that he had, and came to Beersheba, and

offered sacrifices unto the God of his father Isaac.”  And Israel (as the head of the

theocratic family) took his journey - literally, broke up, his encampment (compare 

ch.12:9) - with all that he had, and came - from Hebron (ch. 37:14) - to Beersheba,

where Abraham (ch. 21:33) and Isaac (ch. 26:25) had both sojourned for considerable

periods, and erected altars to Jehovah - and offered sacrifices unto the God

(the Elohim) of his father Isaac. Probably giving thanks to God for the tidings

concerning Joseph (Ainsworth); consulting God' about his journey to Egypt

(Rosenmüller); it may be, pouring out before God his fear as well as gratitude

and joy, more especially if he thought about the stern prophecy (ch. 15:13)

which had been given to Abraham (Kalisch); perhaps commending himself

and family to the care of his covenant God (Keil), and certainly praying that

God would confirm to him and his the covenant which had been made with

his fathers (Calvin).

 

2 “And God spake unto Israel in the visions of the night, and said, Jacob, Jacob.

And he said, Here am I.”  And God (Elohim) spake unto Israel in the visions of

the night, and said, Jacob, Jacob - the name Jacob being employed probably to

remind Jacob of what he had been (Lawson, Bush, Wordsworth), and repeated

ut magis attentus reddatur (Calvin). And he said, Here am I - literally, behold me

(compare ch. 22:1).

 

3 “And He said, I am God, the God of thy father: fear not to go down into

Egypt; for I will there make of thee a great nation:  And He said, I am God,

the God of thy father - literally, I am the El (the Mighty One), the Elohim of

thy father. Though in consequence of this phrase the section (vs. 1-7), indeed

the entire chapter, is usually assigned to the Elohist (Tuch, Bleek, Vaihinger),

yet the contents of this theophany are felt to be so substantially Jehovistic in

their import (Hengstenberg), that certain critics have been constrained to give

vs. 1-5 to the Jehovist (Colenso), or, omitting the last clause of v. 5, to the

redactor (Davidson). In ch. 28:13 the designation used is "I am Jehovah,

the God of Abraham thy father." As on that former occasion when setting

out for Padanaram, so now, when departing for Egypt, he receives a

comforting assurance. Fear not to go down into Egypt. Them was reason

for Jacob's apprehensions, since Abraham had been in peril in the land of the

Pharaohs (ch. 12:14-20), Isaac had been forbidden to go thither (ch. 26:2),

and Egypt had been foreshadowed as a place of servitude for his descendants

(ch. 15:13). מֵרְדָה is an irregular infinitive רֵדָה for רֶדֶת (compare דֵּעַה for דַּעַת,

Exodus 2:4), with מִן. prefixed after a verb of fearing (see Ewald's 'Hebrews

Synt.,' § 336). For I will there make of thee a great nation - literally, for to

a great nation will I put thee there (compare ch. 21:13). Jacob had previously

received the injunction, accompanied by the Divine benediction, to be fruitful

and multiply (ch. 28:3). Twice over had it previously been predicted that he

should develop into a multitudinous people (ch. 28:14; 35:11). The present

promise was an indication that the fulfillment of the prophecy was at hand.

 

4  I will go down with thee into Egypt; and I will also surely bring thee up

again: and Joseph shall put his hand upon thine eyes.”  I will go down with thee

into Egypt; - not a proof that the Hebrews believed in a local deity following them

when they changed their abodes, and confined to the district in which they happened

for the time being to reside (Tuch, Bohlen), but simply a metaphorical expression

for the efficiency and completeness of the Divine protection (Kalisch) - and I will

also surely bring thee up again (literally, and I will bring thee up also, bringing

thee up; a double emphasis lying in the use of the infinitive absolute, with גַּם

preceding, as in ch. 31:15, meaning that God would assuredly recover his body

for interment in Canaan should he die in Egypt, and his descendants for settlement

in the land of their inheritance): and Joseph shall put his hand upon thine eyes

i.e. will perform for thee the last offices of affection by closing thine eyes in death,

a service upon which the human heart in all ages and countries has set the highest

value (vide Homer, ' I1 .' 11. 453; 'Odys.,' 24:294; Virg., 'AEn.,' 9:487; Ovid, ' Epist.,'

1:162). "A father at the point of death is always very desirous that his wife, children,

and grandchildren should be with him. Should there be one at a distance, he will

be immediately sent for, and until he arrive the father will mourn and complain,

'My son, will you not come? I cannot die without you.' When he arrives, he will

take the hands of his son, and kiss them, and place them on his eyes, his face,

and mouth, and say, ' Now I die.'" (Roberts' 'Oriental Illustrations,' p. 52).

 

 

Guidance (vs. 3-4)

 

Convinced that Joseph really lived, Jacob’s first impulse was to hasten to

him. But at Beersheba, ere he left the land of Canaan, he sought guidance

of God. The promise made him reminds of that at Bethel. Each on the

occasion of leaving the land; each revealing God’s protecting care. His

presence is the only pledge of safety (compare Exodus 33:14-15). It was not

a word for Jacob only. Had it been so it would have failed, for Jacob never

returned to Canaan. It was like the promise to Abraham (ch. 17:8; compare

Hebrews 11:9-10). It was the assurance that God’s word would not

fail. Though he seemed to be leaving his inheritance, he was being led in

the way appointed for its more complete possession. God was with him in

all. This fully made known to us in Immanuel, without whom we can do

nothing, but who by the Holy Spirit abides in His people (John 15:4; 16:14).

 

  • JACOB’S EXAMPLE. Before taking a step of importance he solemnly

drew near to God (compare Nehemiah 2:4; II Corinthians 12:8). Not even

to see Joseph would he go without inquiring of the Lord. Christ by his

Holy Spirit is to His people wisdom (I Corinthians 1:30). The habit of

prayer for guidance, or for wisdom to discern the right way, RESTS ON

SURE PROMISES! (Isaiah 30:21; Luke 11:13), and is a thoroughly

practical resource. We look not for visions or direct manifestations.

But guidance is given through channels infinitely varied, though our

way may seem strange; and it may be long ere we find that our prayer

has been all along answered in the course of events. Why so much neglect

of this? so much uncertainty? Because often men do not really seek to

be guided by God. Their real wish is to be led AS THEY THEMSELVES

WISH!

 

  • THEY WHO WOULD BE SURE OF GOD’S PROMISES MUST LEAN

ON HIS GUIDANCE. They may seem to be led far from what they hoped for.

They would fain have great spiritual elevation, and are kept low. They would

like to do great work, and are led through homely duties; to have great

powers for God’s service, and are made weak. The cross must be borne

(Revelation 3:19), and it is sure to take a form they do not like. Otherwise

it would not be really a cross. Many would willingly endure pain or poverty

if they might thereby gain fame.

 

  • GOD’S CARE FOR INDIVIDUALS. “I will go down with thee.”

The universe in its laws shows power, wisdom, and love. But what inspires

trust is the confidence that each one is remembered and cared for by God,

a confidence called forth by the human sympathy of Christ (Matthew 9:36;

Luke 7:13; John 11:35).


5 And Jacob rose up from Beersheba: and the sons of Israel carried Jacob

their father, and their little ones, and their wives, in the wagons which

Pharaoh had sent to carry him.  6 And they took their cattle, and their

goods, which they had gotten in the land of Canaan, and came into Egypt,

Jacob, and all his seed with him:  7 His sons, and his sons' sons with him,

his daughters, and his sons' daughters, and all his seed brought he with

him into Egypt.” 

 

And Jacob rose up - having received new vigor from the vision (Calvin) - from

Beersheba (it is not probable that his stay there was of more than a day or two's,

perhaps only a night's, duration): and the sons of Israel carried Jacob their

father, and their little ones, and their wives, - "Unlike the heathen tribes

around them, and Oriental nations generally, the family of Jacob gave honor

to the wife as to the weaker vessel" (Lawson) - in the wagons which Pharaoh

had sent to carry him (see ch. 45:19, 21). And they took their cattle, and their

goods (including probably their servants), which they had gotten in the land

of Canaan, - Pharaoh had desired Jacob not to regard his stuff, because the good

of all the land of Egypt was before him; but he wished not to take advantage

of Pharaoh's goodness, or to owe greater obligations to him than he found

necessary" (Lawson) - and came into Egypt, - a scene depicted on the

tomb of Chumhotep, the near relative and successor of Osirtasen I.,

at Benihassan, represents a company of immigrants, apparently Shemitic in

their origin, entering Egypt with their goods, as well as women and children,

borne upon asses. Without affirming that this was the Egyptian version of the

descent of Israel into Egypt, it may serve as a striking illustration of that event

(see Wilkinson, 'Ancient Egyptians,' vol. 1. p. 480, ed. 1878; Brugsch, 'Histoire

d'Egypte,' p. 63; Hengstenberg's 'Egypt and the Books of Moses,' p. 37) -

Jacob, and all his seed (i.e. his descendants) with him: his sons, and his sons'

sons with him, his daughters (this need not imply that Jacob had more daughters

than Dinah, but may include his sons wives, who are not otherwise mentioned

in this enumeration), and his sons' daughters, and all his seed brought he

with him into Egypt. The date of this event was in the 130th year of Jacob's

life (ch. 47:9), and 215 years after the call of Abraham (ch. 12:4), i.e. B.C. 1728

(Usher), 1885 (Hales); or A.M. 2276 (Usher), 3526 (Hales).

 

 

 

God Speaking in the Visions of the Night (vs. 1-7)

 

While there were providential intimations which were clear enough, still the

direct revelation of God was necessary for Jacob’s assurance. At

Beersheba, the consecrated spot, Jacob offers sacrifices in the covenant

spirit, and receives in return the message of the covenant God: “I will make

of thee a great nation.” “I will also surely bring thee up again,” i.e. in thy

descendants. The vision is not a mere personal matter for Jacob’s

consolation, it is another in the series of Divine revelations which are

connected with the development of the covenant.

 

8 “And these are the names of the children of Israel, which came into Egypt,

Jacob and his sons: Reuben, Jacob's firstborn.”  And these are the names of the

children of Israel, which came into Egypt. The phrase "which came into Egypt"

must obviously be construed with some considerable latitude, since in the appended

list of seventy persons, "souls of the house of Jacob which came into Egypt," are

reckoned Joseph, who undoubtedly came into Egypt, but not with Jacob, Hezron

and Hamul, the sons of Pharez, as well as the descendants of Benjamin, who

probably, and Ephraim and Manasseh, the children of Joseph, who certainly,

were born in Egypt. Jacob and his sons: Reuben, Jacob's firstborn.

 

9 “And the sons of Reuben; Hanoch, and Phallu, and Hezron, and Carmi.

And the sons of Reuben; Hanoch, - "Initiated or Dedicated;" the name also of

Cain's firstborn (ch. 4:17), and of the son of Jared (ch. 5:19) - and Phallu, -

"Distingushed" (Gesenius) - and Hezron, - "Enclosed" (Gesenius), "Of the Court

or Village" (Murphy), "Blooming One" (Furst) - and Carmi, - "Vine-dresser"

(Gesenius, Murphy), "Noble One" (Furst).

 

10 “And the sons of Simeon; Jemuel, and Jamin, and Ohad, and Jachin, and

Zohar, and Shaul the son of a Canaanitish woman.”  And the sons of Simeon;

Jemuel, - "Day of El" (Gesenius, Murphy); in I Chronicles 4:24, Nemuel - and Jamin,

- "Right Hand" (Gesenius, Murphy) - and Ohad, - "Joined together" (Gesenius, Murphy)

- and Jachin, - "Whom God strengthens" (Gesenius), "He shall establish" (Murphy), or

Jarib (I Chronicles 4:24) - and Zohar, - "Whiteness" (Gesenius, Murphy); named

Zerah (ibid.) - and Shaul, - "Asked for" (Gesenius) - the son of a Canaanitish

woman. The wives of the other sons, except Judah, were probably from

Mesopotamia.

                         

11 “And the sons of Levi; Gershon, Kohath, and Merari.”  And the sons of Levi;

Gershon, - or Gershom, - "Expulsion" (Gesenins), - Kohath, or Kehath, - "Assembly"

(Gesenius) - and Merari, - "Bitter," "Unhappy" (Gesenius), Flowing" (Murphy),

Harsh One" (Lange).

 

12 “And the sons of Judah; Er, and Onan, and Shelah, and Pharez, and Zerah:

but Er and Onan died in the land of Canaan. And the sons of Pharez were Hezron

and Hamul.”  And the sons of Judah; Er, and Onan, and Shelah (see ch. 38:3),

and Pharez, and Zerah (ibid. v. 29; I Chronicles 2:4): but Er and Onan died in the

land of Canaan (ibid. vs. 7, 10). And the sons of Pharez were Hezron (see on v. 9)

and Hamul, - "One who has experienced mercy" (Gesenius).

 

13 “And the sons of Issachar; Tola, and Phuvah, and Job, and Shimron.”

And the sons of Issachar; Tola, - "Worm, Scarlet" (Gesenius) - and Phuvah, -

"Mouth"? (Gesenius) - and Job, - perhaps an incorrect reading for Jashub

("Turning Oneself"), as in Numbers 26:24; I Chronicles 7:1 (Gesenius), which

the Septuagint adopts - and Shimron, - "Watch" (Gesenius).

 

14 “And the sons of Zebulun; Sered, and Elon, and Jahleel.”

And the sons of Zebulun; Sered, - "Fear" (Gesenius) - and Elon, "Oak" –

and Jahleel, - "Whom God has made sick" (Gesenius).

 

15 “These be the sons of Leah, which she bare unto Jacob in Padanaram,

with his daughter Dinah: all the souls of his sons and his daughters were

thirty and three.”  These be the sons of Leah, which she bare unto Jacob in

Padanaram (i.e. the descendants of Leah's sons which were born in Padan-aram),

with his daughter Dinah (who probably had continued unmarried after her

misfortune in Shechem, and is here mentioned as an independent member of

Jacob's family [what going “......out to see the daughters of the land” can do

for a young girl – in this case ruin her for life – ch. 34:1] – CY – 2019):

all the souls of his sons and his daughters (reckoning himself, and excluding

Er and Onan) were thirty and three.

 

16 “And the sons of Gad; Ziphion, and Haggi, Shuni, and Ezbon, Eri, and Arodi,

and Areli.”  And the sons of Gad; Ziphion, - "Expectation" (Gesenius); Zephon

(Numbers 26:15) - and Haggi, - " Festive" (Gesenius) - Shuni, - "Quiet" (Gesenius) –

and Ezbon, - "Toiling" (Murphy); named Ozni (Numbers 26:16) - Eri, - "Guarding"

(Gesenius) - and Arodi, - "Wild Ass" (Gesenius), "Rover" (Murphy), "Descendants"

(Lange); styled Arod (Numbers 26:17) - and Areli - "Lion of El" (Murphy), "Son of

a Hero" (Gesenius), "Heroic" (Lange).

 

17 “And the sons of Asher; Jimnah, and Ishuah, and Isui, and Beriah, and

Serah their sister: and the sons of Beriah; Heber, and Malchiel.”

And the sons of Asher; Jimnah, - "Prosperity" (Gesenius) - and Ishuah, -

"Even, Level" (Gesenius) - and Isui, - "Even," "Level" (Gesenius): they may

have been twins - and Beriah, - "Gift" (Gesenius), "In Evil" (Murphy) - and Serah

"Abundance" (Gesenius), "Over- flow" (Murphy) - their sister: and the sons of

Beriah; Heber, - "Fellowship" (Gesenius) - and Malchiel - "King of El" (Gesenius,

Murphy), "My king is El" (Lange). 18 “These are the sons of Zilpah, whom Laban

gave to Leah his daughter, and  these she bare unto Jacob, even sixteen souls.”

 

19 “The sons of Rachel Jacob's wife; Joseph, and Benjamin.  20 And unto Joseph

in the land of Egypt were born Manasseh and Ephraim, which Asenath the

daughter of Potipherah priest of On bare unto him.”  (see ch. 41:50). The

Septuagint, having probably transferred them from I Chronicles 7:14, append

the words, Ἐγένοντο δε υἱοὶ Μανασσῆ οὕς ἔτεκεν αὐτῶπαλλακὴΣυρα τὸν

Μαχίρ Μαχὶρ δὲ ἐγὲννησε τὸν Γαλαάδ. Υἱοὶ δὲ Ἐφραι'μ ἀδελφοῦ Μανασσῆ

Σουταλαἀμ και Ταάμ Υἱοὶ δε Σουταλαὰμ ἘδώμEgenonto de hioi Manassae hous

eteken auto hae pallakae hae Sura ton Machir Machir de egennaese ton Galaad

Hioi de Ephraim adelphou Manassae Soutalaam kai Taam Hioi de Soutalaam Edom

-  (proper nouns mentioned in above Greek text are Mannaseh, Syria, Machir, Gilead,

Ephraim, , Since they are not to be found in the Samaritan text, Rosenmüller thinks

they may have been originally written on the margin, and thence by some subsequent

copyist transferred to the text.

 

21 “And the sons of Benjamin were Belah, and Becher, and Ashbel, Gera, and

Naaman, Ehi, and Rosh, Muppim, and Huppim, and Ard.”  And the sons of

Benjamin were Belah, - "Devouring (Gesenius); the ancient name of Zoar, one

of the cities in the Jordan circle (ch. 14:2) - and Becher, - "a Young Camel"

(Gesenius) - and Ashbol, - "Opinion of God" (Gesenius), "Sprout" (Lange),

"Short?" (Murphy) - Gera, "a Grain" (Gesenius), "Fighter"? (Lange) - and Naaman, -

"Pleasantness" (Gesenius) - Ehi, - "Brotherly" (Lange, Murphy); = Ehud, "Joining

together" (Gesenius), I Chronicles 8:6; styled Ahiram (Numbers 26:38) - and Rosh, -

"Head" (Gesenius) - Muppim, - "Adorned One" (Lange); = Shupham (Numbers 26:38)

and Shephupham (1 Chronicles 8:5), "Serpent"? (Gesenius) - and Huppim, -

"Coverings" (Gesenius), or Hupham (Numbers 26:39) - and Ard - "Fugitive," "Rover"

(Murphy), "Ruler"? (Lange). In Numbers 26:40 Naaman and Ard are given as the

sons of Bela, and the grandsons of Benjamin; a plausible explanation of which

is that Benjamin's sons died early, and were replaced in the list of heads of

families by two of Bela's sons who had been named after them (Keil, Murphy,

Inglis, et alii). In the same table of mishpachoth the names of Becher, Gem, and

Rosh have been omitted, and that probably for a similar reason - that they died

either without issue, or without a number of descendants large enough to form

independent families.

 

22 “These are the sons of Rachel, which were born to Jacob: all the souls were

fourteen.”

 

23 “And the sons of Dan; Hushim.”  "Those who make haste" (Gesenius);

designated Shuham in Numbers 26:42.

 

24 “And the sons of Naphtali; Jahzeel, and Guni, and Jezer, and Shillem.”

And the sons of Naphtali; Jahzeel, - "Allotted by God" (Gesenius) - and Guni, -

"Painted" (Gesenius), "Dyed" (Murphy), "Protected" (Lange) - and Jezer, - "Image,"

"Form" (Gesenius, Lange, Murphy) - and Shillem - "Retribution" (Gesenius), "

Avenger" (Lange).

 

25 “These are the sons of Bilhah, which Laban gave unto Rachel his daughter,

and she bare these unto Jacob: all the souls were seven.”

 

26 “All the souls that came with Jacob into Egypt, which came out of his loins,

besides Jacob's sons' wives, all the souls were threescore and six;  27 And the

sons of Joseph, which were born him in Egypt, were two souls: all the souls

of the house of Jacob, which came into Egypt, were threescore and ten.”

According to the Septuagint the number of Joseph's sons was nine; and the

number of those who came with Jacob into Egypt seventy five, a number adopted

by Stephen (Acts 7:14). The apparent confusion in these different numbers, sixty-six,

seventy, seventy- five, will disappear if it be observed that the first takes no account

of Jacob, Joseph, Manasseh, and Ephraim, while they are as palpably included in the

second computation, and that Stephen simply adds to the seventy of v. 27 the five

grandsons of Joseph who are mentioned in the Septuagint version, from which he

quoted, or to the sixty-six of v. 26 the nine mentioned above, consisting of Jacob,

Joseph, Manasseh, Ephraim, and Joseph's five grandsons, thus making seventy-five

in all. There is thus no irreconcilable contradiction between the Hebrew historian

and the Christian orator.

 

 

 

                        The Beginning of the Nation (vs. 8-27)

 

“The souls of the house of Jacob which came into Egypt were threescore

and ten.” The number seventy became afterwards a symbolic number

among the Israelites- as in the seventy elders of Moses, the seventy of the

Sanhedrim, the seventy of the Alexandrian version of the Scriptures, the

seventy disciples of the Lord, the seventy heathen nations of the world

according to the Jews. There may be something in the combination of

numbers. Seventy is 7 × 10. Ten is the symbol of the complete

development of humanity. Seven of perfection. Therefore seventy may

symbolize the elect people of God as the hope of humanity — Israel in

Egypt. In the twelve patriarchs and seventy souls we certainly see the

foreshadowing of the Savior’s appointments in the beginning of the

Christian Church. The small number of Israel in the midst of the great

multitude of Egypt is a great encouragement to faith. “Who hath despised

the day of small things?”   (Zechariah 4:10)

 

28 “And he sent Judah before him unto Joseph, to direct his face unto Goshen;

and they came into the land of Goshen.”  And he sent Judah before him unto

Joseph (the noble qualities displayed by Judah had manifestly secured, as they

had certainly merited, the affectionate admiration and hearty confidence of the

aged patriarch), to direct his face unto Goshen; - i.e. that Joseph might supply

him with the necessary instructions for conducting the pilgrims to their appointed

settlement (Dathius, Rosenmüller, Keil, Lange, Ainsworth, Murphy, 'Speaker's

Commentary'), rather than that Joseph might meet him in Goshen (Septuagint,

Vulgate, Samaritan, Kalisch) - and (having received the necessary directions)

they came into the land of Goshen. The Septuagint read εἴς γῆν Ῥαμεσσῆ -

eis gaen Ramessae - in the land of Ramases -  as in Genesis 47:11.

 

29 “And Joseph made ready his chariot, and went up to meet Israel his father,

to Goshen, and presented himself unto him; and he fell on his neck, and wept

on his neck a good while.”  And Joseph made ready his chariot, and went up

to meet Israel his father, to Goshen, and presented himself; - literally,

he (i.e. Joseph) appeared (the niph. form of the verb, which is commonly used

of the appearance of God or his angels, being here employed to indicate the

glory in which Joseph came to meet his father: Keil) unto him, viz., Jacob -

and he fell on his neck, - i.e. Joseph fell upon Jacob s neck (Septuagint, Vulgate,

Calvin, Dathe, Keil, and commentators generally), though Maimonides regards

Jacob as the subject of the verb fell - “....and wept on his neck a good while -

in undoubted transports of joy,  feeling his soul by those delicious moments

abundantly recompensed for all the  tears he had shed since he parted from

his father in Hebron, upwards of twenty years before.

 

Learning of Jacob’s arrival, Joseph “made ready his chariot and went up to meet

Israel his father to Goshen.” It was not ostentation, but the impatience of love

that caused Joseph to drive to Goshen in the royal chariot. Presenting himself

before his aged parent, he falls upon his neck and weeps, unable for a good

while to control his tears; while the old man is so overcome at having his

long-lost Joseph once more in his embrace, that he is quite willing to depart:

“Now let me die, since I have seen thy face, because thou art yet alive.”

 

30 “And Israel said unto Joseph, Now let me die, since I have seen thy face,

because thou art yet alive.”  The meaning of the patriarch being that, since

with his own eyes he was now assured of Joseph's happiness, he had nothing

more to live for, the last earthly longing of his heart having been completely

satisfied, and was perfectly prepared for the last scene of all - ready,

whenever God willed, to be gathered to his fathers.

 

 

 

                The Descent of Jacob and His Family into Egypt

(vs. 1-34)

 

  • THE DEPARTURE FROM CANAAN (vs. 1-7).

 

Ø      The journey to Beersheba. Distant from Hebron somewhere over twenty

miles, Beersheba lay directly in the way to Egypt. Yet doubtless the chief

motive for halting at “the well of the oath” consisted in the fact that it had

been, so to speak, consecrated by the previous encampments of Abraham

and Isaac, by the altars they had there erected, and the revelations they had

there enjoyed. It is both pleasurable and profitable to visit scenes and

places that have been hallowed by the saints of former days; and though

now under the Christian dispensation it is true that every place is holy

ground, yet few there are who do not feel their religious emotions

quickened when they stand upon some sacred spot where holy men have

walked and prayed, or saintly martyrs bled and died.

 

Ø      The stoppage at Beersheba.

 

o        The solemn act of worship“Jacob offered sacrifices unto the God

of his father Isaac.” This he did in obedience to Divine prescription,

which had appointed the presentation of offerings as the only acceptable

mode of worship, in imitation of the piety of his ancestors, in presence

of his assembled household, in supplication of Divine direction with

regard to his contemplated journey:

 

o        The midnight revelation. “I said not unto the seed of Jacob, Seek ye

me m vain,” was Jehovah’s word to Israel in a later day (Isaiah 45:19);

and certainly He never said so either to Jacob’s ancestors or to Jacob

himself.  As formerly He had appeared to Abraham and to Isaac on

this very spot, so now He appeared to their descendant:

 

§         solemnly, in the visions of the night;

§         audibly, speaking to him in a voice articulate and clear;

§         earnestly, saying, Jacob, Jacob, to which Jacob answered,

 Here am I; and

§         graciously, discovering himself as the covenant God of his

father Isaac.

 

o        The encouraging exhortation — “Fear not to go down to Egypt.”

Abraham had been formerly reproved for going into Egypt, and Isaac

prevented from following his example; but here Jacob is both permitted

and advised to go. No saint can safely guide himself by following the

example of another. What is God’s will concerning one man may be

the opposite concerning another. It is best to imitate the patriarch,

and after asking God’s counsel follow where He, His Spirit, word,

or providence, may lead.

 

o        The fourfold promise:

 

§         “I will there make of thee a great nation”

§         “I will surely go down with thee”

§         “I will also surely bring thee up again” and,

§         “Joseph shall put his hand upon thine eyes;”

 

a promise of enlargement:

 

§         protection,

§         restoration,

§         consolation;

 

a promise, like all God’s promises in the gospel, suited to the

needs of His servant.”

 

Ø      The advance from Beersheba. This took place with alacrity, for Jacob

rose up;” with unanimity, for they all went, carrying with them their wives

and little ones; and with comfort, since they rode in Pharaoh’s wagons; and

with safety, for it is added that they “came into Egypt.”

 

 

·         THE COMPANY OF THE TRAVELERS (vs. 8-27).

 

Ø      Their character.

 

o        Descendants of Jacob. They came out of Jacob’s loins. In the

entire catalogue there is no name that cannot be traced down in a

direct line from Jacob.

 

o        Immigrants into Egypt. The expression of course is used with a

certain amount of latitude, since Joseph’s sons were born in Egypt,

and probably all the family of Benjamin. But the accuracy of the

language may be defended on the principle that the historian

represents the entire family as having done what was done by

its head.

 

o        Ancestors of Israel. Jacob’s sons were the heads of the tribes,

and Jacob’s grandsons of the families, that subsequently

formed the nation.

 

Ø      Their number.

 

o       “All the souls were threescore and six;”

o       “all the souls of the house of Jacob were threescore and ten;”

o        according to Stephen the total of Jacob’s kindred was

       threescore and fifteen souls.” (Acts 7:14) For the

        reconciliation of these different accounts, see

        the Exposition.

 

·         THE ARRIVAL AT EGYPT (vs. 28-34).

 

Ø      The mission of Judah. “And he sent Judah before him unto Joseph,”

       that he (Joseph) “might direct his face unto Goshen.”

 

Ø      The coming of Joseph.

 

o        Joseph and his father. Learning of Jacob’s arrival, Joseph “made

ready his chariot and went up to meet Israel his father to Goshen.”

It was not ostentation, but the impatience of love that caused Joseph

to drive to Goshen in the royal chariot. Presenting himself before

his aged parent, he falls upon his neck and weeps, unable for a

good while to control his tears; while the old man is so overcome

at having his long-lost Joseph once more in his embrace, that he

is quite willing to depart: “Now let me die, since I have seen thy

face, because thou art yet alive.”

 

o        Joseph and his brethren. Informing them of his intention to

report their arrival to Pharaoh, he explains to them that Pharaoh

will inquire about their occupation, and directs them how to

answer so as to secure their residence in Goshen; a mark of

duplicity in Joseph according to some, but rather a proof of the

kindly and fraternal interest he took in his brothers’ welfare.

 

 

 

 

                    The Meeting of the Aged Jacob and His Lost Son Joseph

(vs. 28-34)

 

  • FULFILMENT OF DIVINE PROMISES. Both father and son are examples

of grace. Reminding us of Simeon, Now lettest thou thy servant depart in

peace,”  Luke 2:29 (Judah is sent forward to Joseph — again a distinction

is placed upon the royal tribe).’ The meeting of father and son takes place in

Goshen. For the people of God, although in Egypt must not be of it.

(John 17:15-17)

 

  • SEPARATION AND DISTINCTION from the heathen world enforced

from the beginning. The policy of Joseph again is a mingling

together of:

 

  • SIMPLICITY AND WISDOM. He does not attempt to conceal from

Pharaoh the low caste of the shepherds, but he trusts in God that what was

an abomination unto the Egyptians will be made by His grace acceptable. It

was a preservation at the same time from intermarriage with Egyptians, and

a security to the Israelites of the pastoral country of Goshen. It was better

to suffer reproach with the people of God than to be received among the

highest in the heathen land, AT THE COST OF  the sacredness of the

chosen people, a lesson this on the importance of preserving ourselves

unspotted from the world.”   (James 1:27)

 

 

 

 

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According to the book of Judges, chapter 18, Dan was the first tribe to wholly

embrace Baal worship (pagan idolatry). Being one of the 10 northern tribes, Dan

was influential in polluting the Northern Kingdom with false religion. Since Dan

was the first tribe to be unfaithful to God’s Word, God will not use any of the

Danites to form the 144,000. The Levites, as you noted, will take Dan’s place in

that special ministry. Remember, being the (special) priestly tribe, Levi was

normally not mentioned when the 12 tribes were named in the Old Testament.

Joseph’s two sons—Manasseh and Ephraim—formed two tribes instead of one.

This division allowed Levi to be removed and yet Israel would still have 12 tribes

for her army. Because the Danites are not part of the 144,000, thus causing the

total to be 12,000 short, there are the 12,000 Levites to make up for the missing

tribe of Dan.

 

WHY THE NAME “EPHRAIM” IS NOT FOUND IN REVELATION

CHAPTER 7?  - You did not seem to notice, so let me point out to you that the

name “Ephraim” is also absent from Revelation chapter 7. However, Ephraim

is implied. “Joseph” and “Manasseh” are mentioned by name (verses 6 and 8),

and that terminology forces “Joseph” to be Ephraim. (Joseph can only be divided

into his two sons of Manasseh and Ephraim, and Manasseh was already named in

the passage.) Evidently, God eliminated the name “Ephraim” here since Ephraim

was another idolatrous tribe. With Dan, Ephraim was the other major tribe of the

Northern Kingdom that eventually embraced idolatry and refused to abandon that

paganism (Hosea 4:17). Nevertheless, there are still 12 tribes in Revelation

chapter 7, with a different way of dividing Jacob’s descendants.