Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Re-Up (Famine relief by The Book…)

Genesis 37

1 And Jacob dwelt in the land wherein his father was a stranger, in the land of Canaan.
Actually that's not true. The Israelites were just local Canaanites. 1

3 Now Israel (aka Jacob) loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age: and he made him a coat of many colours.
This is similar to Sauron, the evil nemesis of Lord of the Rings ditching his robe of pure white for one of many colors to symbolize his rejection of good.

5 And Joseph dreamed a dream, and he told it his brethren: and they hated him yet the more.
6 And he said unto them, Hear, I pray you, this dream which I have dreamed:
7 For, behold, we were binding sheaves in the field, and, lo, my sheaf arose, and also stood upright; and, behold, your sheaves stood round about, and made obeisance to my sheaf.
8 And his brethren said to him, Shalt thou indeed reign over us? or shalt thou indeed have dominion over us? And they hated him yet the more for his dreams, and for his words.
9 And he dreamed yet another dream, and told it his brethren, and said, Behold, I have dreamed a dream more; and, behold, the sun and the moon and the eleven stars made obeisance to me.
Needless to say humility was not a family trait...

22 And Reuben said unto them, Shed no blood, but cast him into this pit that is in the wilderness, and lay no hand upon him; that he might rid him out of their hands, to deliver him to his father again.
25 And they sat down to eat bread: and they lifted up their eyes and looked, and, behold, a company of Ishmeelites came from Gilead with their camels bearing spicery and balm and myrrh, going to carry it down to Egypt.
27 Come, and let us sell him to the Ishmeelites, and let not our hand be upon him; for he is our brother and our flesh. And his brethren were content.
28 Then there passed by Midianites merchantmen; and they drew and lifted up Joseph out of the pit, and sold Joseph to the Ishmeelites for twenty pieces of silver: and they brought Joseph into Egypt.
These guys are about as proficient as the Polish Mafia
Genesis 39
1 And Joseph was brought down to Egypt; and Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh, captain of the guard, an Egyptian, bought him of the hands of the Ishmeelites, which had brought him down thither.
2 And the LORD was with Joseph, and he was a prosperous man; and he was in the house of his master the Egyptian.
Wow! So if your brothers throw you into a pit, take you out of the pit, sell you to foreigners where you end up being bought as a slave, God is really just doing you a favor? hmmm..
4 And Joseph found grace in his sight, and he served him: and he made him overseer over his house, and all that he had he put into his hand.
And it came to pass from the time that he had made him overseer in his house, and over all that he had.

Naturally. We didn't expect our hero would get stuck cleaning toilets the rest of the story now did we.
7 And it came to pass after these things, that his master's wife cast her eyes upon Joseph; and she said, Lie with me.

Naturally. We didn't expect our hero to be unattractive now did we.

8 But he refused...
10 And it came to pass, as she spake to Joseph day by day, that he hearkened not unto her, to lie by her, or to be with her.
11 And it came to pass about this time, that Joseph went into the house to do his business;
12 And she caught him by his garment, saying, Lie with me: and he left his garment in her hand, and fled, and got him out.

Yeesh. Guy couldn't even go to the crapper without getting mauled by this woman!..

13 And it came to pass, when she saw that he had left his garment in her hand, and was fled forth,
14 That she called unto the men of her house, and spake unto them, saying, See, he hath brought in an Hebrew unto us to mock us; he came in unto me to lie with me, and I cried with a loud voice:
Exact same thing happened on Dynasty once....

20 And Joseph's master took him, and put him into the prison, a place where the king's prisoners were bound: and he was there in the prison.
But the LORD was with Joseph.

Of course.

Genesis 41

1 And it came to pass at the end of two full years, that Pharaoh dreamed:

Wow! I dream just about every night..

14 Then Pharaoh sent and called Joseph

Joseph had been saving that one phone call for just such an occasion.

25 And Joseph said unto Pharaoh, The dream of Pharaoh is one

So Joseph interpreted the Pharaoh's dream. Tough crowd..

33 Now therefore (said Joseph) let Pharaoh look out a man discreet and wise, and set him over the land of Egypt.

hint, hint, *cough* hint, hint.....

39 And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, Forasmuch as God hath shewed thee all this, there is none so discreet and wise as thou art:
Thou shalt be over my house, and according unto thy word shall all my people be ruled: only in the throne will I be greater than thou.

Surprise, surprise, surprise!...

44 And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, I am Pharaoh, and without thee shall no man lift up his hand or foot in all the land of Egypt.
And Pharaoh called Joseph's name Zaphnathpaaneah; and he gave him to wife Asenath the daughter of Potipherah priest of On. And Joseph went out over all the land of Egypt.

So, to sum up the story to this point; Joseph was a pretentious brat who promised to make his entire family his slaves when he grew up. He was dropped in a hole, but then pulled back out and sold into slavery. He was sexually irresistible to Egyptian housewives and ended up being the belle of the ball in prison. He then interprets a dream and BAM, is made dictator of Egypt at the age of 30.
Yes I'm sure it was very common for Kings in ancient times to hand over their kingdoms to foreign fortunetellers dragged up out of a prison...

48 And he gathered up all the food of the seven years, which were in the land of Egypt, and laid up the food in the cities: the food of the field, which was round about every city, laid he up in the same.

The use of force is implied here, though not openly stated. I'm sure some farmers were hesitant to hand over the grain they had worked so hard for to the new kid in town...

56 And the famine was over all the face of the earth: and Joseph opened all the storehouses, and sold unto the Egyptians; and the famine waxed sore in the land of Egypt.
And all countries came into Egypt to Joseph for to buy corn; because that the famine was so sore in all lands.

Well isn't that nice of him. He sells them back the grain he took from them by force. And to add insult to injury, he sells it to every Tom, Dick and Harry who happens by...

Genesis 47

1 Then Joseph came and told Pharaoh, and said, My father and my brethren, and their flocks, and their herds, and all that they have, are come out of the land of Canaan; and, behold, they are in the land of Goshen.
5 And Pharaoh spake unto Joseph, saying, Thy father and thy brethren are come unto thee:
6 The land of Egypt is before thee; in the best of the land make thy father and brethren to dwell; in the land of Goshen let them dwell: and if thou knowest any men of activity among them, then make them rulers over my cattle.

This is just really nice huh. Of course, where in the world will Joseph find "the best of the land" for his fellow Hebrews to dwell?

12 And Joseph nourished his father, and his brethren, and all his father's household, with bread, according to their families.
And there was no bread in all the land; for the famine was very sore, so that the land of Egypt and all the land of Canaan fainted by reason of the famine.
And Joseph gathered up all the money that was found in the land of Egypt, and in the land of Canaan, for the corn which they bought: and Joseph brought the money into Pharaoh's house.

So while Joseph's family is getting fat on the bread that the Egyptians worked so hard for, Joseph continues to sell the Egyptians a portion of their own grain for a profit.
But it's more than that. What verse 14 tells us is that Joseph took the money out of circulation. And without it the Egyptians had nothing with which to buy the next portion of their own grain....or did they?

15 And when money failed in the land of Egypt, and in the land of Canaan, all the Egyptians came unto Joseph, and said, Give us bread: for why should we die in thy presence? for the money faileth.
And Joseph said, Give your cattle; and I will give you for your cattle, if money fail.
And they brought their cattle unto Joseph: and Joseph gave them bread in exchange for horses, and for the flocks, and for the cattle of the herds, and for the asses: and he fed them with bread for all their cattle for that year.

Sweet guy.

19 Wherefore shall we die before thine eyes, both we and our land? buy us and our land for bread, and we and our land will be servants unto Pharaoh: and give us seed, that we may live, and not die, that the land be not desolate.
20 And Joseph bought all the land of Egypt for Pharaoh; for the Egyptians sold every man his field, because the famine prevailed over them: so the land became Pharaoh's.

So. Good old Joseph now has their money, their grain, their livestock, their homes, their lands and even they themselves. He has reduced the entire population of Egypt to slavery. Surly he will stop at that...

21 And as for the people, he removed them to cities from one end of the borders of Egypt even to the other end thereof.

translation: Joseph sent out the Pharaoh's army to round up the helpless and impoverished (because of Joseph) Egyptians and herd them into pre-planned ghettos......Sound Familiar?

23 Then Joseph said unto the people, Behold, I have bought you this day and your land for Pharaoh

What an asshole!

And what of the Hebrews? Remember that Joseph (by way of Pharaoh) promised them the best of the land to dwell in. Well, now you know how they got it.

27 And Israel dwelt in the land of Egypt, in the country of Goshen; and they had possessions therein, and grew, and multiplied exceedingly.

No wonder!

Of course by the beginning of the next book, Exodus, the Hebrews are portrayed as being the victims of the Egyptians, lol.


1. An Invention Called 'The Jewish People' Ha'aretz.com 2-29-8