The Bible in Its Traditions

Genesis 43:1–14

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And the famine was sore in the land.

But the famine prevailed in the land.

Meanwhile, the famine pressed heavily on all the land.

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And it came to pass, when they had eaten up the corn which they had brought out of Egypt, that their father said unto them: 'Go again, buy us a little food.'

And having consumed the provisions that they had brought out of Egypt, Jacob said to his sons, “Return and buy us a little food.”

And when they had finished eating the wheat which they had brought from Egypt, their father Jacob said to them, Go down to Egypt, and buy us a little grain.

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And Judah spoke unto him, saying: 'The man did earnestly forewarn us, saying: Ye shall not see my face, except your brother be with you.

Judah answered: “The man himself declared to us, under the attestation of an oath, saying: ‘You will not see my face, unless you bring your youngest brother with you.’

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If thou wilt send our brother with us, we will go down and buy thee food;

If therefore you are willing to send him with us, we will travel together, and we will buy necessities for you.

If you will send our brother with us, we will go down and buy grain for ourselves;

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but if thou wilt not send him, we will not go down, for the man said unto us: Ye shall not see my face, except your brother be with you.'

but if thou send not our brother with us, we will not go: for the man spoke to us, saying, Ye shall not see my face, unless your younger brother be with you.

But if you are not willing, we will not go. For the man, as we have often said, declared to us, saying: ‘You will not see my face without your youngest brother.’ ”

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And Israel said: 'Wherefore dealt ye so ill with me, as to tell the man whether ye had yet a brother?'

Israel said to them, “You have done this for my misery, in that you revealed to him that you also had another brother.”

Then their father Israel said to them, Why did you cause me this displeasure, as to tell the man whether you had another brother?

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And they said: 'The man asked straitly concerning ourselves, and concerning our kindred, saying: Is your father yet alive? have ye another brother? and we told him according to the tenor of these words; could we in any wise know that he would say: Bring your brother down?'

But they responded: “The man questioned us in order, concerning our family: whether our father lived, if we had a brother. And we answered him respectively, according to what he demanded. How could we know that he would say, ‘Bring your brother with you?’ ”

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And Judah said unto Israel his father: 'Send the lad with me, and we will arise and go, that we may live, and not die, both we, and thou, and also our little ones.

Likewise, Judah said to his father: “Send the boy with me, so that we may set out and be able to live, lest we and our little ones should die.

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I will be surety for him; of my hand shalt thou require him; if I bring him not unto thee, and set him before thee, then let me bear the blame for ever.

I accept the boy; require him at my hand. Unless I lead him back and restore him to you, I will be guilty of a sin against you for all time.

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10  For except we had lingered, surely we had now returned a second time.'

10  For if we had not tarried, we should now have returned twice.

10  If a delay had not intervened, by now we would have returned here a second time.”

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11  And their father Israel said unto them: 'If it be so now, do this: take of the choice fruits of the land in your vessels, and carry down the man a present, a little balm, and a little honey, spicery and ladanum, nuts, and almonds;

11  And Israel, their father, said to them, If it be so, do this; take of the fruits of the earth in your vessels, and carry down to the man presents of gum and honey, and frankincense, and stacte, and turpentine, and walnuts.

11  Therefore, their father Israel said to them: “If it is necessary to do so, then do what you will. Take, in your vessels, from the best fruits of the land, and carry down gifts to the man: a little resin, and honey, and storax ointment, oil of myrrh, turpentine, and almonds.

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12  and take double money in your hand; and the money that was returned in the mouth of your sacks carry back in your hand; peradventure it was an oversight;

12  Also, take with you double the money, and carry back what you found in your sacks, lest perhaps it was done in error.

13  take also your brother, and arise, go again unto the man;

13  But also take your brother, and go to the man.

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14  and God Almighty give you mercy before the man, that he may release unto you your other brother and Benjamin. And as for me, if I be bereaved of my children, I am bereaved.'

14  Then may my Almighty God cause him to be pleased by you. And send your brother, whom he holds, back with you, along with this one, Benjamin. But as for me, without my children, I will be like one who is bereaved.”