Joseph Brings His Family to Egypt
46 So Israel took his journey with all that he had and came to Beersheba, and offered sacrifices to the God of his father Isaac. And God spoke to Israel in visions of the night and said, “Jacob, Jacob.” And he said, “Here I am.” Then he said, “I am God, the God of your father. Do not be afraid to go down to Egypt, for there I will make you into a great nation. I myself will go down with you to Egypt, and I will also bring you up again, and Joseph’s hand shall close your eyes.”
Then Jacob set out from Beersheba. The sons of Israel carried Jacob their father, their little ones, and their wives, in the wagons that Pharaoh had sent to carry him. They also took their livestock and their goods, which they had gained in the land of Canaan, and came into Egypt, Jacob and all his offspring with him, his sons, and his sons’ sons with him, his daughters, and his sons’ daughters. All his offspring he brought with him into Egypt.
Now these are the names of the descendants of Israel, who came into Egypt, Jacob and his sons. Reuben, Jacob’s firstborn, and the sons of Reuben: Hanoch, Pallu, Hezron, and Carmi. The sons of Simeon: Jemuel, Jamin, Ohad, Jachin, Zohar, and Shaul, the son of a Canaanite woman. The sons of Levi: Gershon, Kohath, and Merari. The sons of Judah: Er, Onan, Shelah, Perez, and Zerah (but Er and Onan died in the land of Canaan); and the sons of Perez were Hezron and Hamul. The sons of Issachar: Tola, Puvah, Yob, and Shimron. The sons of Zebulun: Sered, Elon, and Jahleel. These are the sons of Leah, whom she bore to Jacob in Paddan-aram, together with his daughter Dinah; altogether his sons and his daughters numbered thirty-three.
The sons of Gad: Ziphion, Haggi, Shuni, Ezbon, Eri, Arodi, and Areli. The sons of Asher: Imnah, Ishvah, Ishvi, Beriah, with Serah their sister. And the sons of Beriah: Heber and Malchiel. These are the sons of Zilpah, whom Laban gave to Leah his daughter; and these she bore to Jacob—sixteen persons.
The sons of Rachel, Jacob’s wife: Joseph and Benjamin. And to Joseph in the land of Egypt were born Manasseh and Ephraim, whom Asenath, the daughter of Potiphera the priest of On, bore to him. And the sons of Benjamin: Bela, Becher, Ashbel, Gera, Naaman, Ehi, Rosh, Muppim, Huppim, and Ard. These are the sons of Rachel, who were born to Jacob—fourteen persons in all.
The son of Dan: Hushim. The sons of Naphtali: Jahzeel, Guni, Jezer, and Shillem. These are the sons of Bilhah, whom Laban gave to Rachel his daughter, and these she bore to Jacob—seven persons in all.
All the persons belonging to Jacob who came into Egypt, who were his own descendants, not including Jacob’s sons’ wives, were sixty-six persons in all. And the sons of Joseph, who were born to him in Egypt, were two. All the persons of the house of Jacob who came into Egypt were seventy.
Jacob and Joseph Reunited
He had sent Judah ahead of him to Joseph to show the way before him in Goshen, and they came into the land of Goshen. Then Joseph prepared his chariot and went up to meet Israel his father in Goshen. He presented himself to him and fell on his neck and wept on his neck a good while. Israel said to Joseph, “Now let me die, since I have seen your face and know that you are still alive.” Joseph said to his brothers and to his father’s household, “I will go up and tell Pharaoh and will say to him, ‘My brothers and my father’s household, who were in the land of Canaan, have come to me. And the men are shepherds, for they have been keepers of livestock, and they have brought their flocks and their herds and all that they have.’ When Pharaoh calls you and says, ‘What is your occupation?’ you shall say, ‘Your servants have been keepers of livestock from our youth even until now, both we and our fathers,’ in order that you may dwell in the land of Goshen, for every shepherd is an abomination to the Egyptians.”
Genesis 46 Commentary
by Hank Workman
Although there were fears of going to Egypt, God reassured Jacob/Israel He was in this move. Through a dream, God put all his doubts to rest and strengthened him for the journey and in hopes of seeing his long lost son, Joseph. He had no idea of what the future held for him but this dream and words of God assured him his future was in His hands. And so he packed up his entire clan and they headed south.
By the numbers, it’s an interesting thing to consider. Jacob and all the males of his clan were 70. Like so many works of God in our lives, Jacob experienced and lived the slow beginning of the very promise having gone to his grandfather Abraham initially. From the time God called Abraham, it took at least 25 years for the promised son Isaac to be born. It took Isaac 60 years to add another son, Jacob. It took over 50 – 60 for Jacob to have 12 sons. Within the time they spent in Egypt, they would grow to 2 million before they finally returned to what was known as the Promised Land.
I contemplate these numbers and the movement of God. Although His promises were slow to come to pass, God was faithful. He took these men’s obedience and multiplied their children; indeed fulfilling His initial promise to the Father of the nation, Abraham. There are so many times we pray for something, or we indeed hear from God in regards to something specific, but the timing is His. Sometimes we take matters into our own hands, as each individual we have read of so far did. God still had His way and His timing. Maybe you’re wrestling with some of the same things at the moment of the timing of God. Maybe you’re struggling with not seeing anything come to fruition. I get it. Believe me, I get it completely. But the reminder today is God is faithful to His promises and helps us through His timing if we allow His presence to help us. He keeps His word. He keeps His promises. Hold firm to this fact.
Genesis 46 Commentary
by Brad Boyles
Genesis 46 contains an ancient treasure documented only four times in all of Genesis. It is a simple but powerful phrase God would use to draw His people into total obedience.
Do. Not. Fear.
Then he said, “I am God, the God of your father. Do not be afraid to go down to Egypt, for there I will make you into a great nation.Genesis 46:3 ESV
I am God. Do not fear. Simple, yet, powerful. Why are we so quick to forget this truth?
But there is more. God doesn’t just acknowledge His deity over the situation and our stumbling block of fear. He also addresses the catalyst of the fear (going to Egypt) and the promise that will follow (making Israel a great nation). There are, in reality, four different parts found in this one verse.
I pause to consider the personal nature of God. He is not as some would think. He knows exactly what keeps us from obedience. He reminds us of who He is in relationship to us. He calls out the irrational fear that we have by name, and finally, He promises to uphold us and deliver us with His promises. He knows exactly when we need to hear it, and exactly what it will take to get us there. He gives those who seek Him everything they need.
This is a simple reminder for us today that the fears we entertain which hold us back from God will not go unnoticed. He is there in your struggle wooing you with His identity, His power, and His promises. When we hide His Word in our hearts, we can face the challenges of this life knowing that there is nothing that can overcome Him.