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In desperation, Jacob allows his youngest son to be taken to Egypt

This Week’s Story relives American history and the Bible through brief inspiring stories presented on mp3 audio recordings and text for reading.

Joseph: We must see him!
part seven

“Sons, why would you tell Pharaoh’s official that you had a younger brother? You know Egyptians despise us. Now they have a good way to manipulate you. I do not want to lose another son.”

“Father, we had no choice. The man was not asking about our family, in order to be courteous. He wanted to know if our father was living and if we had a younger brother. We did not understand why he asked, and so we answered him. How could we have guessed that he would demand, ‘Bring me your brother!’?

“This official is the great Zaphenath-paneah second-in-command in Egypt. He organizes all sales of Egyptian grain during the famine. Father, please, send Benjamin with me. If he is not with us, the official will sell us no food. Who knows what else he may do to us? Now he has Simeon imprisoned. He probably is responsible for our money being returned. I suspect he wants something from us, but what?

“What I do know and see every day is that my wife and little children are all hungry. Each day we have less food available. I refuse

to let my little children die. Do you understand, Father Jacob, that you, my brothers, and their families will die unless we get food?

I pledge to you that I will take responsibility for Benjamin if you let me take him to the official in Egypt. If I do not bring him back to you, I will take the blame forever.

“It is urgent that we leave home and go to Egypt. During the weeks we have been waiting for your permission, we could have made the trip twice.”

Jacob sadly answered, “Judah, if there is no other way, then go and take gifts with you. Choose the best products we have in our land-- ointments, honey, spices, pistachio nuts, and almonds. Be sure to include myrrh. Egyptians value it highly for making perfumes, medicines, and incense. Also, return to the official twice the amount of money that you found in your sacks. Someone must have made a mistake in putting the money you paid for your grain into your grain sacks. What other explanation could there be?

“Benjamin may go with you. I pray that God will have mercy on you and cause Simeon to be released from prison, and Benjamin returned to me. But if I lose them, I will accept my pain. I have no other choice.

The brothers hurried to Egypt with Benjamin, gifts, and money. The shortest route usually took about a month. Not this time. The men and donkeys hurried. In Egypt, they went directly to Joseph and instantly he saw that Benjamin was with them. He told the manager of his palace, “Masaharta, take these men into my home. They will eat with me at noon. Prepare a feast for them.

The brothers were frightened when they were taken to Zaphenath-paneah’s elegant home. It was not normal procedure for such an important man to invite foreigners, disliked by Egyptians and accused of being spies, to his home for a feast.

“We are being taken to his home because of the money we found in our sacks. We will be accused of stealing it and forced to become slaves.

“Sir,” they asked Masaharta, “On our first trip to Egypt we bought grain. We later found the money we used to pay for the grain in the sacks. We have brought it back. We do not know how it got into our sacks. We are not thieves.”

This is Barbara Steiner anticipating how the brothers discovered the answer to the sack mystery. Please listen to our next chapter, and also enjoy

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