Genesis 44: Brothers return and face Joseph again; Translations!

Joseph commanded that the brother’s sacks be filled with food, and once again the money be put back into the sacks. This time, however, he tells them to put a silver cup into Benjamin’s sack and the brothers are sent off.

After they had traveled a bit, Joseph tells his stewards to catch up with them, and accuse them of theft.

Genesis 44:5 – Is not this it in which my lord drinketh, and whereby indeed he divineth? ye have done evil in so doing.

Joseph is trying to give the impression to the brothers that he was able to divine the theft of the cup “which he drinketh”. The brothers vow no evil was done, and that there was no reason to steal from Joseph considering the money they intended to pay for the food was put back into their sacks. They also agree that whoever did steal the silver cup, would become a servant, and the others blameless.

Of course, the cup was found in Benjamin’s sack, so the brothers return to Joseph in Egypt to explain the situation. They explain to Joseph that there really is no explanation or way to clear themselves. They offer themselves up as servants, including the one with the cup in his sack.

44:17 – And he (Joseph) said, God forbid that I should do so…

Reason I point this verse out is because in the interlinear Hebrew translation, the “God” in this verse is not found, instead it is translated as “far be it from that I should do so”. Why throw God in there when in the original language there is no mention of God? Is this an example of man’s interference in Old Testament translation? Notice that none of the previously mentioned god names are found in the Hebrew text:

god forbid

Note the various translations among the different Bible versions:

god forbid versions

 

The only version that translates it as “God forbid” is the KJV. All others leave it out. Why is the KJV translator putting the word “God” into a verse it doesn’t belong? Also, are all these translations saying the same exact thing? I don’t think so:

  • “the man who was found to have the cup” is NOT the same as “the man who stole the cup”
  • “Far be it from me to do such a thing” is NOT the same as “I swear that I will not do this”

Now take such a distinction in meaning and translation and apply it to the entire Bible and every single verse and suddenly it becomes clear why people just can’t agree on what the Bible says (though they are 100% sure that their translation is the correct one.)

Back to the story, Judah asks for permission to speak to Joseph, and goes over the story of the first visit, the conditions they were given if they ever came back, the distress it all caused their father Jacob, and the distress that their current predicament would put on their father, “sorrow to the grave”. Judah begs for Joseph to let Benjamin go and return to his father, and Judah will take his place as servant. The more I look into this the more I realize that it’s not that Judah is concerned about his father’s distress, but that it all falls upon Judah himself.

44:34 – For how shall I go up to my father, and the lad be not with me? lest peradventure I see the evil that shall come on my father.

Interesting insight into the reasoning for Judah to offer himself up in Benjamin’s place.

 

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Genesis 32… one more try

Back to grinding away at the Bible verse by verse. It’s good to be back. For reference, from this point on I will be covering the King James Version.

Jacob and Esau plan to meet. Jacob, knowing his treatment of his own brother was wicked, fears the worst. He prepares riches to give to his twin, and out of fear, splits his army into two groups, so that if Esau has intentions of war, at least one group of his will survive.

Jacob then prays to Jehovah, admitting he is not deserving of mercy and reminding Jehovah of the promise he made to him, in the hopes that Esau will not destroy his people:

Genesis 32:10 – I am not worthy of the least of all the mercies, and of all the truth, which thou hast shewed unto thy servant. (his words to Jehovah)

Jacob splits his two groups, sends one on their way with gifts of cattle and livestock, hoping to appease his brother.

In an odd scenario, Jacob finds himself alone after crossing the Jabbok ford, wrestling a man until sunrise:

32:24 – And Jacob was left alone; and there wrestled a man with him until the breaking of the day. And when he saw that he prevailed not against him, he touched the hollow of his thigh; and the hollow of Jacob’s thigh was out of joint, as he wrestled with him.

Jacob wrestling
In this portrayal the “man” wrestling Jacob is a winged angel. So who or what did Jacob wrestle? KJV does not say angel, but a quick online search shows many translations saying he wrestled God or an Angel, not just a regular man. Biblehub.com Intralineal shows the correct translation as “man”. Mystery remains.

This man has dislocated Jacob’s leg/hip, but neither prevails over the other. In another instance of a name change (signifying a change in the narrative of the people), the man tells Jacob he will no longer be called Jacob, but Israel.

Jacob in return asks the man for his name, the man replying, in other words, “who are you to ask me of my name?”

32:31 – And as he passed over Penuel the sun rose upon him, and he halted upon his thigh. Therefore the children of Israel eat not of the sinew which shrank, which is upon the hollow of the thigh, unto this day: because he touched the hollow of Jacob’s thigh in the sinew that shrank.

Questions gathered from this Chapter:

  • Who was the man Jacob wrestled? An angel? Jehovah? A regular man?
  • What is the significance of “wrestling” in this culture?
  • Some have assumed this was “God” Jehovah testing Jacob… if so, why the need to test? If God is all knowing and all powerful, wouldn’t he know without having to test Jacob? The “test” theory, while fits the scene, doesn’t fit the God scenario.
  • What is the “sinew which shrank”? In this case it is referring to Jacob’s thigh, and we are told that the children of Israel do not eat of it because of this incident. Do not eat of it where? In animals? In humans?

A lot of unanswered questions in this Chapter, the author writes this seemingly knowing that whoever is reading it is contemporary, i.e. “…to this day” so people of that era would definitely know the context. More research needed, however, we do have more examples of the anthropological concept of explaining place names (Penuel/Peniel) and cultural customs (Israelites not eating the sinew that shrank).

 

Genesis 12 Part 2 – Pharaoh & Abram

Right before Abram enters Egypt, he begins to fear for his life because of Sarai, his wife. He believes because of her beauty, they will take her and kill him. So they conspire to tell the Egyptians that they are brother/sister so that Abram will not be killed.

Why does Abram not call upon Jehovah for protection? After all, Jehovah said he would bless Abram and his seed. Those who bless Abram will be blessed, and those who curse Abram will be cursed. Where’s the faith? Let’s see what happens:

The Egyptians via the princes of the Pharaoh bring her to the Pharaoh’s house.

Genesis 12:16 – And he (Pharaoh) dealt WELL with Abram for her sake: and he had sheep, and oxen, and he-asses, and men-servants, and maid-servants, and she-asses, and camels.

Sounds like good treatment to me, possibly a blessing to Abram? So what happens next:

12:17 And Jehovah plagued Pharaoh and his house with great plagues because of Sarai, Abram’s wife.

Abram and Sarai lie to the Egyptians, the Pharaoh treats them very well, and Jehovah plagues not just the Pharaoh but his house. Ok, that’s not meshing with what we were told Jehovah would do to those who treated Abram well.

Pharaoh summons Abram, somehow figuring out the plague of his house was due to Abram and Sarai’s lie and ask him why he lied to him. And in an episode that could really have gotten out of hand, Pharaoh simply asks Abram to take his wife and leave, even putting men in charge of assisting Abram with all of his belongings. I’ve got to say, Pharaoh isn’t the bad guy in this situation.

Abram Pharaoh
Thrown out for lying and bringing plague to a Pharaoh who treated them well both before and after their transgression.

So now we see that lying and deception are accepted, even defended by Jehovah. One could say the reason Pharaoh treated them so well was to not incur further wrath, but the fact that he was treating them well BEFORE he was plagued shows that Pharaoh had good intentions.

Growing up I was told that lying was the work of the Devil, was the Devil behind Abram’s lie? So far, as of Genesis 13, there is no mention of the Devil as being behind the acts of man.

Genesis 6 – The Nephilim & The Rabbit Hole!

The writer of Genesis 6 describes how, as the population of Man has grown, so did the population of women, aka “…the daughters of man…”

Now we are introduced to a new being of existence: “… the sons of ha*Elohim…” Could his “sons” be the ones he mentioned in Genesis Book 1 when he says “… let us make (man) in our image…”? Are they less powerful than him, thus creating a hierarchy in the heavens? Are they his equal? Are they angels? If so, why not just say “angels”? Could Angels and the Sons of ha*Elohim be different beings? Do they have a mother? Could God mentioned here be the same type/image of the male/female being described in the creation story? Most people I would know would say “NO” but don’t all sons have both a mother and a father?

It is at this point in the Bible when people will say oh, these beings are the fallen Angels. The Bible does not specifically say that however.

Whoever they are, they could not only look upon the beautiful daughters of man, but also chose wives of them and procreate. In an awkward response to this occurring, Jehovah limits the age of man to 120 years, as opposed to the nearly 1,000 years the previous men had lived*. So mix the “sons of God” with the “daughters of Man” and we have another being of existence. But before we start talking about them, let’s look at how different Bible versions treat Genesis 6:4:

ASV: The Nephilim were in the earth those days, and also after that, when the Sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them: the same were the mighty men that were of old, the men of renown.

Now the King James version… does this change the meaning of this verse to you?

KJV: There were giants in the earth in those days, and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown

It’s theorized that the Nephilim (often translated as the “fallen ones”) are the Fallen Angels, but in these verses the Nephilim would be the CHILDREN of the fallen ones. So which version makes more sense? Shouldn’t it be the Nephilim and human women bore children Giants?

One thing for sure, these weren’t just regular people according to the Bible.

nephilim
Proven fake/Photoshop’d. Regardless, if these giants roamed the earth, where are their bones? Did they even have bones? What does Science say?

*Another observation: it is at this point that “man” goes from living nearly 1,000 years to 120 years (which is more in line with modern life spans). Possible that it is at this point something cataclysmic occurs in the environment that begins to age man at a different rate? Has anything like this occurred in the animal kingdom, where lifespans drastically change?

This verse 6:4 can be the Rabbit Hole for many, where we take the detour to the investigation of the Fallen Angels, the Nephilim, and Giants, not only in the Middle East, but around the world. There are Bible era texts that go into more detail for those that are interested. One things for certain, this is not the first time the Bible will mention these beings.

If you do follow this rabbit hole, you will also discover an explanation for the existence of ghosts, demons, and supernatural possessions of humans by these beings. For now, the journey inside the Bible continues. Without going into more detail, I can only think of one of my most favorite movies when I think about where this rabbit hole has taken me.

MBDEXOR EC046
Courtesy of the movie, The Exorcist. With a little bit of research you will see how this portrayed ritual ritual connects to Genesis 6:4