The Agora
Bible Commentary

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Genesis 43

Gen 43:2

GO BACK AND BUY US A LITTLE MORE FOOD: Only after long urging (v 10)...

Gen 43:9

I WILL BEAR THE BLAME: Ct Gen 42:37,38. Reuben offers his sons, but Judah offers his own life -- the principle of a true priest.

Gen 43:11

Balm, honey, spices, and nuts were all products of trees, which could live through a famine.

TAKE... A LITTLE HONEY: "That was the advice Jacob gave to his sons when they were going down into Egypt to buy food. They took many gifts: balm, spices, myrrh, nuts and money. But wise old Jacob added, 'Take a little honey.' People may take with them on the journey of their lives ability, training, initiative, ambition and so many good things. Yet they fail because they forget kindness. If they had been just a little sweeter in spirit what a difference it would have made. We can learn how to be able to disagree without being disagreeable. Simple, warm kindness will work wonders. Some say this is a hard, tough world and if we ever expect to get anywhere, we have to be hard-boiled. That kindness stuff, they say, might work at a Sunday School outing, but it has no place in business. But kindness works everywhere. On the journey of life don't forget to 'take a little honey' " (C Lamb, Xd 112:157).

Gen 43:12

The double principle of Exo 22:4,7,9.

Gen 43:14

Jacob is realizing now that he really has no options other than trust in God.

Gen 43:21

The Jews have "treasures" in their sacks, but they do not know where it came from!

Gen 43:23

YOUR GOD, THE GOD OF YOUR FATHER: How would the steward know such a thing? Joseph had been teaching him. While the Jews were estranged from their God and their firstborn brother, Joseph was teaching a Gentile about the God of Israel.

I RECEIVED YOUR SILVER: Joseph had been paying the redemption price for his brothers.

Gen 43:26

Jews make ready for the coming of the Messiah, but are surprised when at last they discover their expected Messiah is their brother whom they rejected previously.

THEY BOWED DOWN BEFORE HIM: The sun, moon, and 11 stars (Gen 37:7,9). Joseph sees his father in all 11, and his mother (moon) in his full brother Benjamin.

Gen 43:33

IN THE ORDER OF THEIR AGES: How could an Egyptian have known such a thing? Also... Joseph had neither need nor desire to appropriate Reuben's birthright.

There could have been over 479 million different ways (calculated by multiplying all the numbers, one through twelve, together) in which the twelve brothers could have been seated!

Gen 43:34

Similar privilege in 1Sa 9:24 (Saul) and Joh 13:26,27 (Judas). Notice that the other brothers seem not to be resentful of a younger brother (Benjamin) being favored.

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