Summary of Genesis 46:31-47:12:
Joseph advises his family to tell Pharaoh that they are shepherds so that they can be allowed the land of Goshen and will be detestable to the Egyptians who despise shepherds.
Joseph tells Pharaoh that his family has come from Canaan to live in Goshen and be shepherds. Joseph chose 5 of his brothers to tell Pharaoh the same thing. Pharaoh gives them the best land in Goshen and asks for help with his flocks if any of them have any special talents.
Jacob was presented before Pharaoh who asks him how old he is. Jacob answers 130 years. He blesses Pharaoh and then they get settled. Joseph provides them with food.
BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 27, Day 5: Genesis 46:31-47:12
12) Joseph tells his brothers what to say to Pharaoh
13) The years he was called by God to go to to the Promised Land. He also knows that his real home is with God in heaven.
14) He blesses Pharaoh. He’s humble about his lifetime.
Conclusions BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 27, Day 5: Genesis 46:31-47:12
Let’s not forget that Joseph is the whole reason Jacob and his family were saved. “Joseph settled his father.” “Joseph provided food.” Pharaoh accepted Jacob and the family only because of Joseph. If they had just been regular Hebrews looking for relief from the famine, they would have been turned away. But because of Joseph (and God) they were saved–as was God’s will.
The Egyptians considered sheep unclean; hence, everyone who worked with sheep were unclean.
Goshen was what is basically the Sinai Peninsula today. Today it is a desert land but in ancient times it was renown for it’s grazing of animals. Succinct history on Goshen HERE.
Let us also not forget that although Pharaoh is presented as a great, benevolent ruler in the Bible, he was all-powerful. He put Joseph in charge to save his people, not God’s. His people were also very poor and worked hard so he could live in luxury. We don’t see the poverty here of the vast majority of the people.
End Notes BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 27, Day 5: Genesis 46:31-47:12
Joseph makes sure his family is provided for. He is their advocate, as Jesus is ours. However, not long after Joseph’s death and presumably the current pharaoh, the Israelites are made slaves (Exodus 1:8-10).
Pharaoh knows how God has blessed Joseph and probably presumes God is with Jacob as well. He accepts the blessing despite the Pharaoh being considered a god himself. Pharaoh knows that he needs God’s help, too.
Joseph you could say is now the head of the family as he is the sole provider of their food and well-being. It is presumed that every time Jacob or his family had a need, they went to Joseph who made sure they were taken care of.