Genesis 42: Joseph's Brothers Go to Egypt

Old Testament Seminary Student Study Guide, (2002), 37


Suppose someone betrayed you and caused you great financial problems where you lost nearly all your possessions. You later recovered and became quite wealthy. After becoming wealthy, you learned that the person who had earlier harmed you was now very poor and nearly starving. How would you feel? What would you do? Why?Joseph’s story in Genesis 42–45 is much like the situation just described. His story should cause us to think about how we deal with those who have wronged us. As we read, we might also look at the story from the point of view of those who did wrong. How were they given the opportunity to change, and how does the Lord give us similar opportunities? Look for these ideas as you read chapters 42–45.

Understanding the Scriptures

Genesis 42

Lest peradventure mischief befall him (v. 4)Because something bad might happen to him 
Made himself strange unto them (v. 7)Did not tell them who he was 
Nakedness of the land (vv. 9, 12)How little food is able to grow (implying that Joseph’s brothers came to see if the Egyptians were weak because of the lack of food) 
One is not (vv. 13, 32)One is dead 
Hereby (vv. 15, 33)In this way 
Hence (v. 15)Back home 
Hither (v. 15)Here 
Into ward (v. 17)Under arrest 
Bound (v. 19)Kept 
Verified (v. 20)Proved true 
Verily (v. 21)Truly 
Anguish (v. 21)Pain 
Besought (v. 21)Begged for mercy 
Distress (v. 21)Punishment 
His blood is required (v. 22)We will be held responsible for what we did to him 
Communed (v. 24)Talked 
Provision, provender (vv. 25–26)Food 
Laded (v. 26)Loaded 
Espied (v. 27)Saw 
Befell, befall (vv. 29, 38)Happened 
Traffick (v. 34)Buy and sell 
Bereaved (v. 36)Taken away 
Mischief (v. 38)Something bad 

Studying the Scriptures

Do activity A as you study Genesis 42.

Activity A iconWhat Was Happening to Joseph’s Brothers?

“Remorse and deep sorrow then are preliminary to repentance. …

“… Suffering is a very important part of repentance. One has not begun to repent until he has suffered intensely for his sins” (Spencer W. Kimball, The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, 87–88).

Considering President Spencer W. Kimball’s statement above on repentance, find and write about things in Genesis 42 that show how Joseph’s brothers were beginning the process of repentance for what they did to him. Continue to look for these as you read Genesis 43–44.