Joseph the Dreamer
37 Jacob ·lived [settled] in the land of Canaan, where his father had ·lived [sojourned; lived as an alien]. 2 ·This is the family history [L These are the generations; 2:4] of Jacob:
Joseph was a young man, seventeen years old. He and his brothers, the sons of Bilhah and Zilpah, his father’s wives, ·cared for [shepherded] the flocks. Joseph was a ·helper [assistant; L youth] to his brothers. Joseph gave his father bad reports about his brothers. 3 Since Joseph was born when his father Israel [C Jacob’s other name] was old, Israel loved him more than his other sons. He made Joseph a special robe with long sleeves [C traditionally a multicolored robe]. 4 When Joseph’s brothers saw that their father loved him more than he loved them, they hated their brother and could not speak to him ·politely [C civilly; L peacefully].
5 One time Joseph had a dream, and when he told his brothers about it, they hated him even more. 6 Joseph said, “Listen to the dream I ·had [L dreamed]. 7 We were in the field tying ·bundles [sheaves] of wheat together. My ·bundle [sheaf] rose and stood upright, and your ·bundles [sheaves] of wheat gathered around it and bowed down to it.”
8 His brothers said, “Do you really think you will be king over us? Do you truly think you will ·rule over [dominate] us?” His brothers hated him even more because of his dreams and what he had said.
9 Then Joseph had another dream, and he told his brothers about it also. He said, “Listen, I had another dream. I saw the sun, moon, and eleven stars bowing down to me.”
10 Joseph also told his father about this dream, but his father ·scolded [rebuked] him, saying, “What kind of dream is this? Do you really believe that your mother, your brothers, and I will bow down to you?” 11 Joseph’s brothers were jealous of him, but his father ·thought about what all these things could mean [L guarded/kept the report].
12 One day Joseph’s brothers went to Shechem [12:6] to ·graze [shepherd] their father’s flocks. 13 Israel said to Joseph, “·Go to Shechem where your brothers are grazing the flocks [L Are not your brothers shepherding in Shechem? Go and I will send you to them].”
Joseph answered, “I will go.”
14 His father said, “Go and see ·if your brothers and the flocks are all right [after the welfare of your brothers and the flocks]. Then come back and ·tell me [give me a report].” So Joseph’s father sent him from the Valley of Hebron [13:18].
When Joseph came to Shechem, 15 a man found him wandering in the field and asked him, “What are you looking for?”
16 Joseph answered, “I am looking for my brothers. Can you tell me where they are ·grazing [shepherding] the flocks?”
17 The man said, “They have already gone. I heard them say they were going to Dothan [C a small town thirteen miles north of Shechem].” So Joseph went to look for his brothers and found them in Dothan.
Joseph Sold into Slavery
18 Joseph’s brothers saw him coming from far away. Before he reached them, they ·made a plan [conspired] to kill him. 19 They said to each other, “Here comes that dreamer. 20 Let’s ·kill [murder] him and throw his body into one of the ·wells [pits; cisterns]. We can tell our father that a wild animal ·killed [L ate] him. Then we will see what will become of his dreams.”
21 But Reuben [C the oldest among the brothers] heard ·their plan [L it] and ·saved Joseph [L rescued him from their hands], saying, “Let’s not ·kill him [take his life]. 22 Don’t spill any blood. Throw him into this ·well [pit; cistern] here in the ·desert [wilderness], but don’t ·hurt him [L send your hand against him]!” Reuben planned to ·save Joseph later [L rescue him from their hand] and ·send him back [return him] to his father. 23 So when Joseph came to his brothers, they ·pulled [stripped] off his robe with long sleeves [37:3] 24 and threw him into the ·well [pit; cistern]. It was empty, and there was no water in it.
25 ·While Joseph was in the well, the brothers [L They] sat down to eat. When they ·looked up [L lifted their eyes], they saw a ·group [caravan] of Ishmaelites traveling from Gilead to Egypt. Their camels were carrying spices, balm, and myrrh.
26 Then Judah said to his brothers, “What ·will we gain [profit is there] if we ·kill [murder] our brother and ·hide his death [L cover up his blood]? 27 Let’s sell him to these Ishmaelites. Then we will not ·be guilty of killing our own brother [L lay our hands on him]. After all, he is our brother, our own flesh and blood.” And the other brothers ·agreed [listened; obeyed]. 28 So when the Midianite traders [C Midian is part of the Ishmaelite nation; Judg. 8:22, 24] came by, ·the brothers took Joseph out [L they drew him and lifted him up out] of the ·well [pit; cistern] and sold him to the Ishmaelites for ·eight ounces [L twenty pieces] of silver [C the price of a slave at the time]. And the Ishmaelites took him to Egypt.
29 When Reuben came back to the ·well [pit; cistern] and Joseph was not there, he tore his clothes [C to show he was upset]. 30 Then he went back to his brothers and said, “The boy is not there! ·What shall I do [L And as for me, where should I go]?” 31 ·The brothers killed [L They took the robe and slaughtered] a goat and dipped Joseph’s robe in its blood. 32 Then they brought the long-sleeved robe [37:3] to their father and said, “We found this robe. Look it over carefully and see if it is your son’s robe.”
33 ·Jacob looked it over [L He recognized it] and said, “It is my son’s robe! Some ·savage [evil] animal has eaten him. My son Joseph has been torn to pieces!” 34 Then Jacob tore his clothes and put ·on rough cloth [burlap/sackcloth on his loins; C to show he was upset], and he continued ·to be sad about [mourn for] his son for ·a long time [L many days]. 35 All of his sons and daughters tried to ·comfort [console] him, but he could not be ·comforted [consoled]. He said, “I will ·be sad about my son until the day I die [I will go down to Sheol/the grave mourning my son].” So ·Jacob [L his father] cried for his son Joseph.
36 Meanwhile the Midianites who had bought Joseph had taken him to Egypt. There they sold him to Potiphar, an officer to ·the king of Egypt [L Pharaoh] and captain of the palace guard and chief ·butcher [or executioner; C a high Egyptian official].