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Jacobâ€™s Journey to Egypt
46Â So JacobÂ set out for Egypt with all his possessions. And when he came to Beersheba, he offered sacrifices to the God of his father, Isaac.Â 2Â During the night God spoke to him in a vision. â€œJacob! Jacob!â€ he called.
â€œHere I am,â€ Jacob replied.
3Â â€œI am God,Â the God of your father,â€ the voice said. â€œDo not be afraid to go down to Egypt, for there I will make your family into a great nation.Â 4Â I will go with you down to Egypt, and I will bring you back again. You will die in Egypt, but Joseph will be with you to close your eyes.â€
5Â So Jacob left Beersheba, and his sons took him to Egypt. They carried him and their little ones and their wives in the wagons Pharaoh had provided for them.Â 6Â They also took all their livestock and all the personal belongings they had acquired in the land of Canaan. So Jacob and his entire family went to Egyptâ€”Â 7Â sons and grandsons, daughters and granddaughtersâ€”all his descendants.
8Â These are the names of the descendants of Israelâ€”the sons of Jacobâ€”who went to Egypt:
Reuben was Jacobâ€™s oldest son.Â 9Â The sons of Reuben were Hanoch, Pallu, Hezron, and Carmi.
10Â The sons of Simeon were Jemuel, Jamin, Ohad, Jakin, Zohar, and Shaul. (Shaulâ€™s mother was a Canaanite woman.)
11Â The sons of Levi were Gershon, Kohath, and Merari.
12Â The sons of Judah were Er, Onan, Shelah, Perez, and Zerah (though Er and Onan had died in the land of Canaan). The sons of Perez were Hezron and Hamul.
13Â The sons of Issachar were Tola, Puah,Â Jashub,Â and Shimron.
14Â The sons of Zebulun were Sered, Elon, and Jahleel.
15Â These were the sons of Leah and Jacob who were born in Paddan-aram, in addition to their daughter, Dinah. The number of Jacobâ€™s descendants (male and female) through Leah was thirty-three.
16Â The sons of Gad were Zephon,Â Haggi, Shuni, Ezbon, Eri, Arodi, and Areli.
17Â The sons of Asher were Imnah, Ishvah, Ishvi, and Beriah. Their sister was Serah. Beriahâ€™s sons were Heber and Malkiel.
18Â These were the sons of Zilpah, the servant given to Leah by her father, Laban. The number of Jacobâ€™s descendants through Zilpah was sixteen.
19Â The sons of Jacobâ€™s wife Rachel were Joseph and Benjamin.
20Â Josephâ€™s sons, born in the land of Egypt, were Manasseh and Ephraim. Their mother was Asenath, daughter of Potiphera, the priest of On.
21Â Benjaminâ€™s sons were Bela, Beker, Ashbel, Gera, Naaman, Ehi, Rosh, Muppim, Huppim, and Ard.
22Â These were the sons of Rachel and Jacob. The number of Jacobâ€™s descendants through Rachel was fourteen.
23Â The son of Dan was Hushim.
24Â The sons of Naphtali were Jahzeel, Guni, Jezer, and Shillem.
25Â These were the sons of Bilhah, the servant given to Rachel by her father, Laban. The number of Jacobâ€™s descendants through Bilhah was seven.
26Â The total number of Jacobâ€™s direct descendants who went with him to Egypt, not counting his sonsâ€™ wives, was sixty-six.27Â In addition, Joseph had two sonsÂ who were born in Egypt. So altogether, there were seventyÂ members of Jacobâ€™s family in the land of Egypt.
Jacobâ€™s Family Arrives in Goshen
28Â As they neared their destination, Jacob sent Judah ahead to meet Joseph and get directions to the region of Goshen. And when they finally arrived there,Â 29Â Joseph prepared his chariot and traveled to Goshen to meet his father, Jacob. When Joseph arrived, he embraced his father and wept, holding him for a long time.Â 30Â Finally, Jacob said to Joseph, â€œNow I am ready to die, since I have seen your face again and know you are still alive.â€
31Â And Joseph said to his brothers and to his fatherâ€™s entire family, â€œI will go to Pharaoh and tell him, â€˜My brothers and my fatherâ€™s entire family have come to me from the land of Canaan.Â 32Â These men are shepherds, and they raise livestock. They have brought with them their flocks and herds and everything they own.â€™â€
33Â Then he said, â€œWhen Pharaoh calls for you and asks you about your occupation,Â 34Â you must tell him, â€˜We, your servants, have raised livestock all our lives, as our ancestors have always done.â€™ When you tell him this, he will let you live here in the region of Goshen, for the Egyptians despise shepherds.â€
Jacob Blesses Pharaoh
47Â Then Joseph went to see Pharaoh and told him, â€œMy father and my brothers have arrived from the land of Canaan. They have come with all their flocks and herds and possessions, and they are now in the region of Goshen.â€
2Â Joseph took five of his brothers with him and presented them to Pharaoh.Â 3Â And Pharaoh asked the brothers, â€œWhat is your occupation?â€
They replied, â€œWe, your servants, are shepherds, just like our ancestors.Â 4Â We have come to live here in Egypt for a while, for there is no pasture for our flocks in Canaan. The famine is very severe there. So please, we request permission to live in the region of Goshen.â€
5Â Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, â€œNow that your father and brothers have joined you here,Â 6Â choose any place in the entire land of Egypt for them to live. Give them the best land of Egypt. Let them live in the region of Goshen. And if any of them have special skills, put them in charge of my livestock, too.â€
7Â Then Joseph brought in his father, Jacob, and presented him to Pharaoh. And Jacob blessed Pharaoh.
8Â â€œHow old are you?â€ Pharaoh asked him.
9Â Jacob replied, â€œI have traveled this earth for 130 hard years. But my life has been short compared to the lives of my ancestors.â€Â 10Â Then Jacob blessed Pharaoh again before leaving his court.
11Â So Joseph assigned the best land of Egyptâ€”the region of Ramesesâ€”to his father and his brothers, and he settled them there, just as Pharaoh had commanded.Â 12Â And Joseph provided food for his father and his brothers in amounts appropriate to the number of their dependents, including the smallest children.
Josephâ€™s Leadership in the Famine
13Â Meanwhile, the famine became so severe that all the food was used up, and people were starving throughout the lands of Egypt and Canaan.Â 14Â By selling grain to the people, Joseph eventually collected all the money in Egypt and Canaan, and he put the money in Pharaohâ€™s treasury.Â 15Â When the people of Egypt and Canaan ran out of money, all the Egyptians came to Joseph. â€œOur money is gone!â€ they cried. â€œBut please give us food, or we will die before your very eyes!â€
16Â Joseph replied, â€œSince your money is gone, bring me your livestock. I will give you food in exchange for your livestock.â€17Â So they brought their livestock to Joseph in exchange for food. In exchange for their horses, flocks of sheep and goats, herds of cattle, and donkeys, Joseph provided them with food for another year.
18Â But that year ended, and the next year they came again and said, â€œWe cannot hide the truth from you, my lord. Our money is gone, and all our livestock and cattle are yours. We have nothing left to give but our bodies and our land.Â 19Â Why should we die before your very eyes? Buy us and our land in exchange for food; we offer our land and ourselves as slaves for Pharaoh. Just give us grain so we may live and not die, and so the land does not become empty and desolate.â€
20Â So Joseph bought all the land of Egypt for Pharaoh. All the Egyptians sold him their fields because the famine was so severe, and soon all the land belonged to Pharaoh.Â 21Â As for the people, he made them all slaves,Â from one end of Egypt to the other.Â 22Â The only land he did not buy was the land belonging to the priests. They received an allotment of food directly from Pharaoh, so they didnâ€™t need to sell their land.
23Â Then Joseph said to the people, â€œLook, today I have bought you and your land for Pharaoh. I will provide you with seed so you can plant the fields.Â 24Â Then when you harvest it, one-fifth of your crop will belong to Pharaoh. You may keep the remaining four-fifths as seed for your fields and as food for you, your households, and your little ones.â€
25Â â€œYou have saved our lives!â€ they exclaimed. â€œMay it please you, my lord, to let us be Pharaohâ€™s servants.â€Â 26Â Joseph then issued a decree still in effect in the land of Egypt, that Pharaoh should receive one-fifth of all the crops grown on his land. Only the land belonging to the priests was not given to Pharaoh.
27Â Meanwhile, the people of Israel settled in the region of Goshen in Egypt. There they acquired property, and they were fruitful, and their population grew rapidly.Â 28Â Jacob lived for seventeen years after his arrival in Egypt, so he lived 147 years in all.
29Â As the time of his death drew near, JacobÂ called for his son Joseph and said to him, â€œPlease do me this favor. Put your hand under my thigh and swear that you will treat me with unfailing love by honoring this last request: Do not bury me in Egypt.Â 30Â When I die, please take my body out of Egypt and bury me with my ancestors.â€
So Joseph promised, â€œI will do as you ask.â€
31Â â€œSwear that you will do it,â€ Jacob insisted. So Joseph gave his oath, and Jacob bowed humbly at the head of his bed.
Jacob Blesses Manasseh and Ephraim
48Â One day not long after this, word came to Joseph, â€œYour father is failing rapidly.â€ So Joseph went to visit his father, and he took with him his two sons, Manasseh and Ephraim.
2Â When Joseph arrived, Jacob was told, â€œYour son Joseph has come to see you.â€ So JacobÂ gathered his strength and sat up in his bed.
3Â Jacob said to Joseph, â€œGod AlmightyÂ appeared to me at Luz in the land of Canaan and blessed me.Â 4Â He said to me, â€˜I will make you fruitful, and I will multiply your descendants. I will make you a multitude of nations. And I will give this land of Canaan to your descendantsÂ after you as an everlasting possession.â€™
5Â â€œNow I am claiming as my own sons these two boys of yours, Ephraim and Manasseh, who were born here in the land of Egypt before I arrived. They will be my sons, just as Reuben and Simeon are.Â 6Â But any children born to you in the future will be your own, and they will inherit land within the territories of their brothers Ephraim and Manasseh.
7Â â€œLong ago, as I was returning from Paddan-aram, Rachel died in the land of Canaan. We were still on the way, some distance from Ephrath (that is, Bethlehem). So with great sorrow I buried her there beside the road to Ephrath.â€
8Â Then Jacob looked over at the two boys. â€œAre these your sons?â€ he asked.
9Â â€œYes,â€ Joseph told him, â€œthese are the sons God has given me here in Egypt.â€
And Jacob said, â€œBring them closer to me, so I can bless them.â€
10Â Jacob was half blind because of his age and could hardly see. So Joseph brought the boys close to him, and Jacob kissed and embraced them.Â 11Â Then Jacob said to Joseph, â€œI never thought I would see your face again, but now God has let me see your children, too!â€
12Â Joseph moved the boys, who were at their grandfatherâ€™s knees, and he bowed with his face to the ground.Â 13Â Then he positioned the boys in front of Jacob. With his right hand he directed Ephraim toward Jacobâ€™s left hand, and with his left hand he put Manasseh at Jacobâ€™s right hand.Â 14Â But Jacob crossed his arms as he reached out to lay his hands on the boysâ€™ heads. He put his right hand on the head of Ephraim, though he was the younger boy, and his left hand on the head of Manasseh, though he was the firstborn.Â 15Â Then he blessed Joseph and said,
â€œMay the God before whom my grandfather Abraham
17Â But Joseph was upset when he saw that his father placed his right hand on Ephraimâ€™s head. So Joseph lifted it to move it from Ephraimâ€™s head to Manassehâ€™s head.Â 18Â â€œNo, my father,â€ he said. â€œThis one is the firstborn. Put your right hand on his head.â€
19Â But his father refused. â€œI know, my son; I know,â€ he replied. â€œManasseh will also become a great people, but his younger brother will become even greater. And his descendants will become a multitude of nations.â€
20Â So Jacob blessed the boys that day with this blessing: â€œThe people of Israel will use your names when they give a blessing. They will say, â€˜May God make you as prosperous as Ephraim and Manasseh.â€™â€ In this way, Jacob put Ephraim ahead of Manasseh.
21Â Then Jacob said to Joseph, â€œLook, I am about to die, but God will be with you and will take you back to Canaan, the land of your ancestors.Â 22Â And beyond what I have given your brothers, I am giving you an extra portion of the landÂ that I took from the Amorites with my sword and bow.â€
Jesus and the Prince of Demons
22Â Then a demon-possessed man, who was blind and couldnâ€™t speak, was brought to Jesus. He healed the man so that he could both speak and see.Â 23Â The crowd was amazed and asked, â€œCould it be that Jesus is the Son of David, the Messiah?â€
24Â But when the Pharisees heard about the miracle, they said, â€œNo wonder he can cast out demons. He gets his power from Satan,Â the prince of demons.â€
25Â Jesus knew their thoughts and replied,Â â€œAny kingdom divided by civil war is doomed. A town or family splintered by feuding will fall apart.Â 26Â And if Satan is casting out Satan, he is divided and fighting against himself. His own kingdom will not survive.27Â And if I am empowered by Satan, what about your own exorcists? They cast out demons, too, so they will condemn you for what you have said.Â 28Â But if I am casting out demons by the Spirit of God, then the Kingdom of God has arrived among you.Â 29Â For who is powerful enough to enter the house of a strong man like Satan and plunder his goods? Only someone even strongerâ€”someone who could tie him up and then plunder his house.
30Â â€œAnyone who isnâ€™t with me opposes me, and anyone who isnâ€™t working with me is actually working against me.
31Â â€œSo I tell you, every sin and blasphemy can be forgivenâ€”except blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, which will never be forgiven.Â 32Â Anyone who speaks against the Son of Man can be forgiven, but anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven, either in this world or in the world to come.
33Â â€œA tree is identified by its fruit. If a tree is good, its fruit will be good. If a tree is bad, its fruit will be bad.Â 34Â You brood of snakes! How could evil men like you speak what is good and right? For whatever is in your heart determines what you say.35Â A good person produces good things from the treasury of a good heart, and an evil person produces evil things from the treasury of an evil heart.Â 36Â And I tell you this, you must give an account on judgment day for every idle word you speak.37Â The words you say will either acquit you or condemn you.â€
The Sign of Jonah
38Â One day some teachers of religious law and Pharisees came to Jesus and said, â€œTeacher, we want you to show us a miraculous sign to prove your authority.â€
39Â But Jesus replied,Â â€œOnly an evil, adulterous generation would demand a miraculous sign; but the only sign I will give them is the sign of the prophet Jonah.Â 40Â For as Jonah was in the belly of the great fish for three days and three nights, so will the Son of Man be in the heart of the earth for three days and three nights.
41Â â€œThe people of Nineveh will stand up against this generation on judgment day and condemn it, for they repented of their sins at the preaching of Jonah. Now someone greater than Jonah is hereâ€”but you refuse to repent.Â 42Â The queen of Shebawill also stand up against this generation on judgment day and condemn it, for she came from a distant land to hear the wisdom of Solomon. Now someone greater than Solomon is hereâ€”but you refuse to listen.
43Â â€œWhen an evilÂ spirit leaves a person, it goes into the desert, seeking rest but finding none.Â 44Â Then it says, â€˜I will return to the person I came from.â€™ So it returns and finds its former home empty, swept, and in order.Â 45Â Then the spirit finds seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they all enter the person and live there. And so that person is worse off than before. That will be the experience of this evil generation.â€
The True Family of Jesus
46Â As Jesus was speaking to the crowd, his mother and brothers stood outside, asking to speak to him.Â 47Â Someone told Jesus, â€œYour mother and your brothers are outside, and they want to speak to you.â€
48Â Jesus asked,Â â€œWho is my mother? Who are my brothers?â€Â 49Â Then he pointed to his disciples and said,Â â€œLook, these are my mother and brothers.Â 50Â Anyone who does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother!â€