3Now Israel loved Joseph more than any other of his children, because he was the son of his old age; and he had made him a long robe with sleeves. 4But when his brothers saw that their father loved him more than all his brothers, they hated him, and could not speak peaceably to him.
5Once Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brothers, they hated him even more. 6He said to them, Listen to this dream that I dreamed. 7There we were, binding sheaves in the field. Suddenly my sheaf rose and stood upright; then your sheaves gathered around it, and bowed down to my sheaf. 8His brothers said to him, Are you indeed to reign over us? Are you indeed to have dominion over us? So they hated him even more because of his dreams and his words. 26Then Judah said to his brothers, What profit is it if we kill our brother and conceal his blood? 27Come, let us sell him to the Ishmaelites, and not lay our hands on him, for he is our brother, our own flesh. And his brothers agreed. 28When some Midianite traders passed by, they drew Joseph up, lifting him out of the pit, and sold him to the Ishmaelites for twenty pieces of silver. And they took Joseph to Egypt. 29When Reuben returned to the pit and saw that Joseph was not in the pit, he tore his clothes. 30He returned to his brothers, and said, The boy is gone; and I, where can I turn?
31Then they took Josephs robe, slaughtered a goat, and dipped the robe in the blood. 32They had the long robe with sleeves taken to their father, and they said, This we have found; see now whether it is your sons robe or not. 33He recognized it, and said, It is my sons robe! A wild animal has devoured him; Joseph is without doubt torn to pieces. 34Then Jacob tore his garments, and put sackcloth on his loins, and mourned for his son many days.
15Realizing that their father was dead, Josephs brothers said, What if Joseph still bears a grudge against us and pays us back in full for all the wrong that we did to him? 16So they approached Joseph, saying, Your father gave this instruction before he died, 17Say to Joseph: I beg you, forgive the crime of your brothers and the wrong they did in harming you. Now therefore please forgive the crime of the servants of the God of your father. Joseph wept when they spoke to him. 18Then his brothers also wept, fell down before him, and said, We are here as your slaves. 19But Joseph said to them, Do not be afraid! Am I in the place of God? 20Even though you intended to do harm to me, God intended it for good, in order to preserve a numerous people, as he is doing today. 21So have no fear; I myself will provide for you and your little ones. In this way he reassured them, speaking kindly to them.
The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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10 February 2011