47 Then Joseph came and told Pharaoh, My father and my brothers, with their flocks and their herds and all that they own, have come from the land of Canaan, and they are in the land of Goshen.
2 And from among his brothers he took five men and presented them to Pharaoh.
3 And Pharaoh said to his brothers, What is your occupation? And they said to Pharaoh, Your servants are shepherds, both we and our fathers before us.
4 Moreover, they said to Pharaoh, We have come to sojourn in the land, for your servants have no pasture for our flocks, for the famine is very severe in Canaan. So now, we pray you, let your servants dwell in the land of Goshen.
5 And Pharaoh spoke to Joseph, saying, Your father and your brothers have come to you.
6 The land of Egypt is before you; make your father and your brothers dwell in the best of the land. Let them live in the land of Goshen. And if you know of any men of ability among them, put them in charge of my cattle.
7 Then Joseph brought in Jacob his father and presented him before Pharaoh; and Jacob blessed Pharaoh.
8 And Pharaoh asked Jacob, How old are you?
9 Jacob said to Pharaoh, The days of the years of my pilgrimage are 130 years; few and evil have the days of the years of my life been, and they have [a]not attained to those of the life of my fathers in their pilgrimage.
10 And Jacob blessed Pharaoh and went out from his presence.
11 Joseph settled his father and brethren and gave them a possession in Egypt in the best of the land, in the land of Rameses (Goshen), as Pharaoh commanded.
12 And Joseph supplied his father and his brethren and all his father’s household with food, according to [the needs of] their families.
13 [In the course of time] there was no food in all the land, for the famine was distressingly severe, so that the land of Egypt and all the land of Canaan hung in doubt and wavered by reason of the hunger (destitution, starvation) of the famine.
14 And Joseph gathered up all the money that was found in the land of Egypt and in the land of Canaan [in payment] for the grain which they bought, and Joseph brought the money into Pharaoh’s house.
15 And when the money was exhausted in the land of Egypt and in the land of Canaan, all the Egyptians came to Joseph and said, Give us food! Why should we die before your very eyes? For we have no money left.
16 Joseph said, Give up your livestock, and I will give you food in exchange for [them] if your money is gone.
17 So they brought their livestock to Joseph, and [he] gave them food in exchange for the horses, flocks, cattle of the herds, and the donkeys; and he supplied them with food in exchange for all their livestock that year.
18 When that year was ended, they came to [Joseph] the second year and said to him, We will not hide from my lord [the fact] that our money is spent; my lord also has our herds of livestock; there is nothing left in the sight of my lord but our bodies and our lands.
19 Why should we perish before your eyes, both we and our land? Buy us and our land in exchange for food, and we and our land will be servants to Pharaoh. And give us seed [to plant], that we may live and not die, and that the land may not be desolate.
20 And Joseph bought all the land of Egypt for Pharaoh; for the Egyptians sold every man his field because of the overwhelming severity of the famine upon them. The land became Pharaoh’s,
21 And as for the people, he removed them to cities and practically made slaves of them [at their own request], from one end of the borders of Egypt to the other.
22 Only the priests’ land he did not buy, for the priests had a fixed pension from Pharaoh and lived on the amount Pharaoh gave them. So they did not sell their land.
23 Then Joseph said to the people, Behold, I have today bought you and your land for Pharaoh. Now here is seed for you, and you shall sow the land.
24 At [harvest time when you reap] the increase, you shall give one-fifth of it to Pharaoh, and four-fifths shall be your own to use for seed for the field and as food for you and those of your households and for your little ones.
25 And they said, You have saved our lives! Let us find favor in the sight of my lord; and we will be Pharaoh’s servants.
26 And Joseph made it a law over the land of Egypt—to this day—that Pharaoh should have the fifth part [of the crops]; it was the priests’ land only which did not become Pharaoh’s.
27 And Israel dwelt in the land of Egypt, in the country of Goshen; and they gained possessions there and grew and multiplied exceedingly.
28 And Jacob lived in the land of Egypt seventeen years; so Jacob reached the age of 147 years.
29 When the time drew near that Israel must die, he called his son Joseph and said to him, If now I have found favor in your sight, [b]put your hand under my thigh and [promise to] deal loyally and faithfully with me. Do not bury me, I beg of you, in Egypt,
30 But let me lie with my fathers; you shall carry me out of Egypt and bury me in their burying place. And [Joseph] said, I will do as you have directed.
31 Then Jacob said, Swear to me [that you will do it]. And he swore to him. And Israel bowed himself upon the head of the bed.
- Genesis 47:9 Abraham, Jacob’s grandfather, had lived to be 175 years old; Isaac, his father, lived to be 180. Jacob lived seventeen years after making this statement to Pharaoh, in which time he had an opportunity to get a much more optimistic view of God’s treatment of him. He died at 147, having said, “The redeeming Angel... has redeemed me continually from every evil” (Gen. 48:16).
- Genesis 47:29 This was a customary manner of taking a solemn oath. The gesture was a reference to the mark of circumcision, the sign of God’s covenant, which is equivalent to our laying our hand upon the Bible. (Adam Clarke, The Holy Bible with A Commentary).