GENESIS CHAPTER FIFTY


1 Now Joseph threw himself upon his father,

               Wept over him and kissed him. 2 Joseph then

               Told the physicians to embalm his father

Israel, and so the physicians did

               Embalm him, 3 taking a full forty days,

               For that was the time needed for embalming.

And seventy days Egyptians mourned him.

               4 When mourning days were over, Joseph said

               To Pharaoh’s court, “If in your eyes I have

Found favor, speak to Pharaoh for me. Tell

               Him this: 5 ‘My father made me swear an oath

               And said, “I am about to die; go bury

Me in the tomb in Canaan’s land that I  

               Dug for myself.” Now let me go up and

               Bury my father; then I will return,’”

6 And Pharaoh said, “Go up and bury your

               Own father, as he made you swear to do.”

               7 So Joseph went to bury his own father.

All Pharaoh’s staff went with him— eminent

               Men from his court and all the dignitaries

               Of Egypt– 8 in addition to all members

Of Joseph’s household and his brothers and

              Those who belonged to his own father’s household.

               Only their children and their flocks and herds

Were left in Goshen. 9 Chariots and horsemen

               Also went up with him. It was a quite

               Large company, 10 and when they neared the Jordan

At Atad’s threshing floor, they loudly and

               Bitterly mourned; and Joseph at that place

               Observed a week-long period to mourn

His father. 11 When the Canaanites who lived

               There saw the mourning at the threshing floor

               Of Atad, they said, “The Egyptians are

Holding a solemn mourning ceremony.”

               That’s why that place beside the Jordan is

               Called Abel Mizraim, 12 so Jacob’s sons

Did as he had commanded them: 13 They carried

               Him to the land of Canaan and they buried

               Him in the cave in the Machpelah field,

Near Mamre, one which Abraham had bought

               To be a place of burial from Ephron

               The Hittite, with the field. 14 Now after he

Had buried his own father, Joseph did

               Return to Egypt with his brothers and

               All others who had gone with him to bury

His father, 15 but then Joseph’s brothers, when

They saw their father was deceased, said, “What

If Joseph holds a grudge against us and

He pays us back for all the wrongs we did

To him?” 16 So they sent word to Joseph, saying,

“Before he died, your father left us these

Instructions: 17 ‘Say to Joseph this: I ask

That you forgive your brothers for the sins

And wrongs they did in treating you so badly.’

Now please forgive the sins of servants of

Your father’s God,” and when their message reached

Him, Joseph wept. 18 His brothers came and threw

Themselves down in front of him. “We’re your slaves,”

They said, 19 but Joseph said to them, “Don’t be

Afraid: Am I in God’s place? 20 You intended

To harm me, but God meant it to be good

To carry out what is now being done,

Saving of many lives, 21 so don’t be scared,

For I’ll provide for you and all your children.”

He soothed them and spoke kindly to them. 22 With

The family of his father, Joseph stayed

In Egypt, and he lived a hundred and

Ten years 23 and saw the children of Ephraim

To the third generation, and at birth

The children of Manasseh’s son named Makir

               Were placed at birth on Joseph’s knees, 24 then Joseph

Said to his brothers, “I’m about to die.

But God will help you and take you from this

               Land to the land by oath he promised to

               Abraham, Isaac and to Jacob.” 25 Joseph

Had sons of Israel swear him an oath

And said, “God will help you; then you must take

My bones from here,” 26 so Joseph died, aged one

Hundred ten. They embalmed him and then he

               Was placed inside a coffin within Egypt.

***

Blank Verse Bible rendered in blank verse by Day Williams.

Day Williams