Previous Chapter | Next Chapter
37:1 And Jacob dwelt in the land wherein his father was a stranger, in the land of Canaan.
37:2 These are the generations of Jacob. Joseph, being seventeen years old, was feeding the flock with his brethren; and the lad was with the sons of Bilhah, and with the sons of Zilpah, his father's wives: and Joseph brought unto his father their evil report.
37:3 Now Israel 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.
37:4 And when his brethren saw that their father loved him more than all his brethren, they hated him, and could not speak peaceably unto him.
37:5 And Joseph dreamed a dream, and he told it his brethren: and they hated him yet the more.
37:6 And he said unto them, Hear, I pray you, this dream which I have dreamed: 37:7 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.
37:8 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.
37:9 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.
37:10 And he told it to his father, and to his brethren: and his father rebuked him, and said unto him, What is this dream that thou hast dreamed? Shall I and thy mother and thy brethren indeed come to bow down ourselves to thee to the earth? 37:11 And his brethren envied him; but his father observed the saying.
37:12 And his brethren went to feed their father's flock in Shechem.
37:13 And Israel said unto Joseph, Do not thy brethren feed the flock in Shechem? come, and I will send thee unto them. And he said to him, Here am I.
37:14 And he said to him, Go, I pray thee, see whether it be well with thy brethren, and well with the flocks; and bring me word again. So he sent him out of the vale of Hebron, and he came to Shechem.
37:15 And a certain man found him, and, behold, he was wandering in the field: and the man asked him, saying, What seekest thou? 37:16 And he said, I seek my brethren: tell me, I pray thee, where they feed their flocks.
37:17 And the man said, They are departed hence; for I heard them say, Let us go to Dothan. And Joseph went after his brethren, and found them in Dothan.
37:18 And when they saw him afar off, even before he came near unto them, they conspired against him to slay him.
37:19 And they said one to another, Behold, this dreamer cometh.
37:20 Come now therefore, and let us slay him, and cast him into some pit, and we will say, Some evil beast hath devoured him: and we shall see what will become of his dreams.
37:21 And Reuben heard it, and he delivered him out of their hands; and said, Let us not kill him.
37:22 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.
37:23 And it came to pass, when Joseph was come unto his brethren, that they stript Joseph out of his coat, his coat of many colours that was on him; 37:24 And they took him, and cast him into a pit: and the pit was empty, there was no water in it.
37:25 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.
37:26 And Judah said unto his brethren, What profit is it if we slay our brother, and conceal his blood? 37:27 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.
37:28 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.
37:29 And Reuben returned unto the pit; and, behold, Joseph was not in the pit; and he rent his clothes.
37:30 And he returned unto his brethren, and said, The child is not; and I, whither shall I go? 37:31 And they took Joseph's coat, and killed a kid of the goats, and dipped the coat in the blood; 37:32 And they sent the coat of many colours, and they brought it to their father; and said, This have we found: know now whether it be thy son's coat or no.
37:33 And he knew it, and said, It is my son's coat; an evil beast hath devoured him; Joseph is without doubt rent in pieces.
37:34 And Jacob rent his clothes, and put sackcloth upon his loins, and mourned for his son many days.
37:35 And all his sons and all his daughters rose up to comfort him; but he refused to be comforted; and he said, For I will go down into the grave unto my son mourning. Thus his father wept for him.
37:36 And the Midianites sold him into Egypt unto Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh's, and captain of the guard.

Next Chapter

King James Bible:Genesis
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Whole Bible
back to: Genesis
Book: Genesis
Chapter: 37

Joseph is loved of Jacob, but hated By his brethren. (1-4)
Joseph's dreams. (5-11) Jacob sends Joseph to visit his
brethren, They conspire his Death. (12-22) Joseph's brethren
sell him. (23-10) Jacob deceived, Joseph sold to Potiphar.

1-4 In Joseph's history we see something of Christ, who was
first humbled and then exalted. It also shows the Lot of
Christians, who must through many tribulations enter into the
kingdom. It is a history that has none like it, for displaying
the various workings of the human mind, both good and bad, and
the singular Providence of God in making use of them for
fulfilling his purposes. Though Joseph was his Father's Darling,
yet he was not bred up in idleness. Those do not truly Love
their children, who do not use them to business, and labour, and
hardships. The fondling of children is with good reason called
the spoiling of them. Those who are trained up to do nothing,
are likely to be good for nothing. But Jacob made known his
Love, By dressing Joseph Finer than the Rest of his children. It
is wrong for parents to make a difference between one Child and
another, unless there is great cause for it, By the children's
dutifulness, or undutifulness. When parents make a difference,
children soon notice it, and it leads to quarrels in families.
Jacob's sons did that, when they were from under his Eye, which
they durst not have done at home with him; but Joseph gave his
Father an account of their ill conduct, that he might restrain
them. Not as a Tale-bearer, to sow discord, but as a Faithful

5-11 God gave Joseph betimes the prospect of his advancement,
to support and comfort him under his long and grievous troubles.
Observe, Joseph dreamed of his preferment, but he did not Dream
of his imprisonment. Thus many young people, when setting out in
the world, think of nothing but prosperity and pleasure, and
never Dream of trouble. His brethren rightly interpreted the
Dream, though they abhorred the interpretation of it. While they
committed crimes in order to defeat it, they were themselves the
instruments of accomplishing it. Thus the Jews understood what
Christ said of his kingdom. Determined that he should not reign
over them, they consulted to Put him to Death; and By his
Crucifixion, made way for the exaltation they designed to

12-22 How readily does Joseph wait his Father's orders! Those
children who are best beloved By their parents, should be the
most ready to obey them. See how deliberate Joseph's brethren
were against him. They thought to slay him from malice
aforethought, and in cold Blood. Whosoever hateth his Brother is
a murderer, 1Jo 3:15. The sons of Jacob hated their Brother
because their Father loved him. New occasions, as his dreams and
the like, drew them On further; but this laid rankling in their
hearts, till they resolved On his Death. God has all hearts in
his hands. Reuben had most reason to be jealous of Joseph, for
he was the First-born; yet he proves his best friend. God
overruled all to serve his own purpose, of making Joseph an
instrument to save much people alive. Joseph was a Type of
Christ; for though he was the beloved Son of his Father, and
hated By a wicked world, yet the Father sent him out of his
Bosom to visit us in great Humility and Love. He came from
Heaven to Earth to seek and save us; yet then malicious plots
were laid against him. His own not only received him not, but
crucified him. This he submitted to, as a part of his design to
redeem and save us.

23-30 They threw Joseph into a Pit, to perish there with hunger
and cold; So cruel were their tender mercies. They slighted him
when he was in distress, and were not grieved for the affliction
of Joseph, see Am 6:6; for when he was pining in the Pit, they
sat down to eat Bread. They felt No remorse of Conscience for
the Sin. But the wrath of Man shall praise God, and the
remainder of wrath he will restrain, Ps 76:10. Joseph's
brethren were wonderfully restrained from murdering him, and
their selling him as wonderfully turned to God's praise.

31-36 When Satan has taught men to commit one Sin, he teaches
them to try to conceal it with another; to hide Theft and
Murder, with lying and false oaths: but he that covers his Sin
shall not prosper long. Joseph's brethren kept their own and one
another's counsel for some time; but their villany came to Light
at last, and it is here published to the world. To grieve their
Father, they sent him Joseph's Coat of colours; and he hastily
thought, On seeing the bloody Coat, that Joseph was Rent in
Pieces. Let those that know the Heart of a parent, suppose the
Agony of Poor Jacob. His sons basely pretended to comfort him,
but miserable, hypocritical comforters were they all. Had they
really desired to comfort him, they might at once have done it,
By telling the Truth. The Heart is strangely hardened By the
deceitfulness of Sin. Jacob refused to be comforted. Great
Affection to any Creature prepares for So much the greater
affliction, when it is taken from us, or made Bitter to us:
undue Love commonly ends in undue grief. It is the Wisdom of
parents not to bring up children delicately, they know not to
what hardships they may be brought before they die. From the
whole of this Chapter we see with wonder the ways of Providence.
The malignant brothers seem to have gotten their ends; the
merchants, who care not what they Deal in So that they gain,
have also obtained theirs; and Potiphar, having got a fine young
Slave, has obtained his! But God's designs are, By these means,
in train for execution. This event shall End in Israel's going
down to Egypt; that ends in their deliverance By Moses; that in
setting up the true religion in the world; and that in the
spread of it among all nations By the Gospel. Thus the wrath of
Man shall praise the Lord, and the remainder thereof will he

Log in or register to write something here or to contact authors.