Old Testament

The Pentateuch

What happened when the brothers went back to Canaan?

On the way home, one of the brothers opened his sack to get food for his donkey, only to discover that in addition to the food, the money was still there. Joseph had slipped the money back in while the brothers were not looking. Fearing they would be taken for thieves, “they lost heart and turned trembling to one another, saying, ‘What is this that God has done to us?’” (NRSV, Genesis 42:28) When the brothers told Jacob what happened, and that they were expected to take Benjamin back, Jacob cried, “I am the one you have bereaved of children: Joseph is no more, and Simeon is no more, and now you would take Benjamin. All this has happened to me!” (NRSV, Genesis 42:36) Reuben tried to console Jacob (but probably alarmed his own sons) when he said, “You may kill my two sons if I do not bring him back to you. Put him in my hands, and I will bring him back to you.” (NRSV, Genesis 42:37) Jacob refused.


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