Genesis Chapter 46
1 Israel travelled with all that he had, and came to Beersheba, and offered sacrifices to the God of his father, Isaac.
2 God spoke to Israel in the visions of the night, and said, "Jacob, Jacob!" He said, "Here I am."
3 He said, "I am God, the God of your father. Don't be afraid to go down into Egypt, for there I will make of you a great nation.
4 I will go down with you into Egypt. I will also surely bring you up again. Joseph's hand will close your eyes."
5 Jacob rose up from Beersheba, and the sons of Israel carried Jacob, their father, their little ones, and their wives, in the wagons which Pharaoh had sent to carry him.
6 They took their livestock, and their goods, which they had gotten in the land of Canaan, and came into Egypt-Jacob, and all his offspring with him,
7 his sons, and his sons' sons with him, his daughters, and his sons' daughters, and he brought all his offspring with him into Egypt.
8 These are the names of the children of Israel, who came into Egypt, Jacob and his sons: Reuben, Jacob's firstborn.
9 The sons of Reuben: Hanoch, Pallu, Hezron, and Carmi.
10 The sons of Simeon: Jemuel, Jamin, Ohad, Jachin, Zohar, and Shaul the son of a Canaanite woman.
11 The sons of Levi: Gershon, Kohath, and Merari.
12 The sons of Judah: Er, Onan, Shelah, Perez, and Zerah; but Er and Onan died in the land of Canaan. The sons of Perez were Hezron and Hamul.
13 The sons of Issachar: Tola, Puvah, Iob, and Shimron.
14 The sons of Zebulun: Sered, Elon, and Jahleel.
15 These are the sons of Leah, whom she bore to Jacob in Paddan Aram, with his daughter Dinah. All the souls of his sons and his daughters were thirty-three.
16 The sons of Gad: Ziphion, Haggi, Shuni, Ezbon, Eri, Arodi, and Areli.
17 The sons of Asher: Imnah, Ishvah, Ishvi, Beriah, and Serah their sister. The sons of Beriah: Heber and Malchiel.
18 These are the sons of Zilpah, whom Laban gave to Leah, his daughter, and these she bore to Jacob, even sixteen souls.
19 The sons of Rachel, Jacob's wife: Joseph and Benjamin.
20 To Joseph in the land of Egypt were born Manasseh and Ephraim, whom Asenath, the daughter of Potiphera, priest of On, bore to him.
21 The sons of Benjamin: Bela, Becher, Ashbel, Gera, Naaman, Ehi, Rosh, Muppim, Huppim, and Ard.
22 These are the sons of Rachel, who were born to Jacob: all the souls were fourteen.
23 The son of Dan: Hushim.
24 The sons of Naphtali: Jahzeel, Guni, Jezer, and Shillem.
25 These are the sons of Bilhah, whom Laban gave to Rachel, his daughter, and these she bore to Jacob: all the souls were seven.
26 All the souls who came with Jacob into Egypt, who were his direct offspring, in addition to Jacob's sons' wives, all the souls were sixty-six.
27 The sons of Joseph, who were born to him in Egypt, were two souls. All the souls of the house of Jacob, who came into Egypt, were seventy.
28 Jacob sent Judah before him to Joseph, to show the way before him to Goshen, and they came into the land of Goshen.
29 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.
30 Israel said to Joseph, "Now let me die, since I have seen your face, that you are still alive."
31 Joseph said to his brothers, and to his father's house, "I will go up, and speak with Pharaoh, and will tell him, 'My brothers, and my father's house, who were in the land of Canaan, have come to me.
32 These men are shepherds, for they have been keepers of livestock, and they have brought their flocks, and their herds, and all that they have.'
33 It will happen, when Pharaoh summons you, and will say, 'What is your occupation?'
34 that you shall say, 'Your servants have been keepers of livestock from our youth even until now, both we, and our fathers:' that you may dwell in the land of Goshen; for every shepherd is an abomination to the Egyptians."
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Genesis Chapter 46 Guide
This chapter should be read in the light of the whole divine movement we are attempting to keep in mind. The migration of Jacob and his sons to Egypt is here distinctly shown to be a part of God's program. At this juncture God appeared and charged him not to be afraid, making him a threefold promise. First, that He would make a great nation of him there, that is, in Egypt. How much lay concealed in that word Jacob perhaps did not understand. In all probability he understood the promise to mean great in numbers. That it had such intention there can be no doubt, but subsequent history shows that it meant far more, for through discipline and suffering the nation was to be made great in other ways than population increase. God reveals to men at any given time only so much as they are able to bear. And yet in case any fear should come to the heart of His servant, He promised him, second, "I will go down with thee"; and, finally, "I will ... bring thee up." It is interesting to note that God still spoke to him by the old name "Jacob" recognizing that he had not experimentally entered into all that grace had provided for him, and indicating that notwithstanding his failure, God still continued to guide.
Joseph carefully arranged for the segregation of his people which was also undoubtedly part of the divine purpose. He charged them to declare themselves to Pharaoh as shepherds. That ensured the maintenance of the separation of the Egyptians from the Hebrews because "every shepherd is an abomination unto the Egyptians."
From "An Exposition of the Whole Bible" by G. Campbell Morgan.
Genesis Chapter 46 Commentary
- God's promises to Jacob. -- (1-4)
- Jacob and his family go to Egypt. -- (5-27)
- Joseph meets his father and his brethren. -- (28-34)
Even as to those events and undertakings which appear most joyful, we should seek counsel, assistance, and a blessing from the Lord. Attending on his ordinances, and receiving the pledges of his covenant love, we expect his presence, and that peace which it confers. In all removals we should be reminded of our removal out of this world. Nothing can encourage us to fear no evil when passing through the valley of the shadow of death, but the presence of Christ.
We have here a particular account of Jacob's family. Though the fulfilling of promises is always sure, yet it is often slow. It was now 215 years since God had promised Abraham to make of him a great nation, ch. 12:2; yet that branch of his seed, to which the promise was made sure, had only increased to seventy, of whom this particular account is kept, to show the power of God in making these seventy become a vast multitude.
It was justice to Pharaoh to let him know that such a family was come to settle in his dominions. If others put confidence in us, we must not be so base as to abuse it by imposing upon them. But how shall Joseph dispose of his brethren? Time was, when they were contriving to be rid of him; now he is contriving to settle them to their advantage; this is rendering good for evil. He would have them live by themselves, in the land of Goshen, which lay nearest to Canaan. Shepherds were an abomination to the Egyptians. Yet Joseph would have them not ashamed to own this as their occupation before Pharaoh. He might have procured places for them at court or in the army. But such preferments would have exposed them to the envy of the Egyptians, and might have tempted them to forget Canaan and the promise made unto their fathers. An honest calling is no disgrace, nor ought we to account it so, but rather reckon it a shame to be idle, or to have nothing to do. It is generally best for people to abide in the callings they have been bred to and used to. Whatever employment and condition God in his providence has allotted for us, let us suit ourselves to it, satisfy ourselves with it, and not mind high things. It is better to be the credit of a mean post, than the shame of a high one. If we wish to destroy our souls, or the souls of our children, then let us seek for ourselves, and for them, great things; but if not, it becomes us, having food and raiment, therewith to be content.
From the "Concise Commentary on the Bible" by Matthew Henry.