Genesis 45

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1 Joseph could no longer refrain himself before many that stood by: whereupon he commanded that all should go out, and no stranger be present at their knowing one another.

2 And he lifted up his voice with weeping, which the Egyptians and all the house of Pharao heard.

3 And he said to his brethren: I am Joseph: is my father yet living? His brethren could no answer him, being struck with exceeding great fear.

4 And he said mildly to them: Come nearer to me. And when they were come near him, he said: I am Joseph, your brother, whom you sold into Egypt.

5 Be not afraid, and let it not seem to you a hard case that you sold me into these countries: for God sent me before you into Egypt for your preservation.

6 For it is two years since the famine began to be upon the land, and five years more remain, wherein there can be neither ploughing nor reaping.

7 And God sent me before, that you may be preserved upon the earth, and may have food to live.

8 Not by your counsel was I sent hither, but by the will of God: who hath made me as it were a father to Pharao, and lord of his whold house, and governor in all the land of Egypt.

9 Make haste, and go ye up to my father, and say to him: Thus saith thy son Joseph: God hath made me lord of the whole land of Egypt: come down to me, linger not.

10 And thou shalt dwell in the land of Gessen: and thou shalt be near me, thou and thy sons, and thy son's sons, thy sheep, and thy gerds, and all things that thou hast.

11 And there I will feed thee, (for there are yet five years of famine remaining,) lest both thou perish, and thy house, and all things that thou hast.

12 Behold, your eyes, and the eyes of my brother Benjamin see that it is my mouth that speaketh to you.

13 You shall tell my father of all my glory, and all things that you have seen in Egypt: make haste and bring him to me.

14 And falling upon the neck of his brother Benjamin, he embraced him and wept: and Benjamin in like manner wept also on his neck.

15 And Joseph kissed all his brethren, and wept upon every one of them: after which they were emboldened to ,peak to him.

16 And it was heard, and the fame was abroad in the king's court: The brethren of Joseph are come: and Pharao with all his family was glad.

17 And he spoke to Joseph that he should give orders to his brethren, saying : Load your beasts, and go into the land of Chanaan.

18 And bring away from thence your father and kindred, and come to me: and I will give you all the good things of Egypt, that you may eat the marrow of the land.

19 Give orders also that they take wagons out of the land of Egypt, for/ the carriage of their children and their wives: and say: Take up your father, and make haste to come with all speed:

20 And leave nothing of your house- hold stuff: for all the riches of Egypt shall be yours.

21 And the sons of Israel did as they were bid. And Joseph gave them wagons according to Pharao's commandment: and provisions for the way.

22 He ordered also to be brought out for every one of them two robes: but to Benjamin he gave three hundred pieces of silver with Ave robes of the best:

23 Sending to his father as much money and raiment, adding besides ten he asses to carry off all the riches of Egypt, and as many she asses, carrying wheat and bread for the journey.

24 So he sent away his brethren, and at their departing said to them: Be not angry in the way.

25 And they went up out of Egypt, and came into the land of Chanaan to their father Jacob.

26 And they told him, saying: Joseph thy son is living: and he is ruler in all the land of Egypt. Which when Jacob heard, he awaked as it were out of a deep sleep, yet did not believe them.

27 They, on the other side, told the whole order of the thing. And when he saw the wagons and all that he had sent his spirit revived,

28 And he said: It is enough for me, if Joseph my son be yet living: Iwill go and see him before I die.

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Doctrine of the Lord 47

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Word/Phrase Explanations

before
In most cases, the meaning of "before" is pretty straightforward, both as a way of assessing relative time, and in its use meaning "in someone's...

Go out
To go out to meet, as in Genesis 14:17, signifies to submit themselves. To go out, as in Genesis 28:10, signifies to live more remotely....

go
In the physical world, the places we inhabit and the distances between them are physical realities, and we have to get our physical bodies through...

stranger
'A sojourner' or 'stranger,' as in Matthew 25:32, signifies someone who is willing to be instructed.

Present
It was customary in the representative Ancient Church, and later in the Jewish Church, when people went to the judges, and at a later time,...

knowing
Like so many common verbs, the meaning of "know" in the Bible is varied and dependent on context. And in some cases – when it...

one
A company might have executives setting policy and strategy, engineers designing products, line workers building them, managers handling personnel and others handling various functions. They...

voice
In Genesis 27:22, 'voice' relates to truth, and 'hand,' to good.

Weeping
'Weeping' represents both sorrow and love.

Egyptians
Egyptians represent those who are in natural science, thus the natural, but the Hebrews, those who are of the church, thus respectively the spiritual. The...

house
A "house" is essentially a container - for a person, for a family, for several families or even for a large group with shared interests...

heard
Thanks to modern science, we now understand that hearing actually happens in the brain, not the ears. The ears collect vibrations in the air and...

said
As with many common verbs, the meaning of “to say” in the Bible is highly dependent on context. Who is speaking? Who is hearing? What...

Brethren
Brethren (Gen. 27:29) signify the affections of good.

father
Father in the Word means what is most interior, and in those things that are following the Lord's order, it means what is good. In...

answer
To "answer" generally indicates a state of spiritual receptivity. Ultimately this means being receptive to the Lord, who is constantly trying to pour true ideas...

Fear
Fear has various significations according to the thing which causes it. Fear signifies love. Fear, as in Gen 28:17, signifies a holy change.

come
As with common verbs in general, the meaning of “come” in the Bible is highly dependent on context – its meaning is determined largely by...

Near
'Near,' in the Word, signifies presence and conjunction. 'To be near' signifies being on internal levels. Near,' as in Genesis 19:20, signifies truth bordering upon...

Brother
There are two ways "brother" is used in the Bible, ways that are still reflected in modern language. One denotes an actual blood relationship; the...

sold
'To sell,' as in Genesis 41:56, means transferring to another as their own, because what is sold becomes the property of the one who buys...

Egypt
In the Bible, Egypt means knowledge and the love of knowledge. In a good sense that means knowledge of truth from the Lord through the...

God
The Lord is love itself, expressed in the form of wisdom itself. Love, then, is His essence, His inmost. Wisdom - the loving understanding of...

Sent
'Being sent' everywhere signifies, in an internal sense, going forth, as in John 17:8. In similar manner, it is said of the holy of the...

two
The number "two" has two different meanings in the Bible. In most cases "two" indicates a joining together or unification. This is easy to see...

famine
The three words, sword, famine and pestilence, appear in a group in 26 different Bible verses. That's not an accident. Sword, famine and pestilence describe...

upon
'Upon' or 'over' signifies being within.

Land
Land' in the Word, denotes the church, for the things which signify the church also signify the things relating to the church, for these constitute...

Five
Five also signifies all things of one part.

Ploughing
'Ploughing' denotes preparation for good to receive truths.

reaping
'A sickle,' as in Revelation 14, signifies the divine truth of the Word, because 'a harvest' signifies the state of the church regarding divine truth...

earth
"Earth" in the Bible can mean a person or a group of like-minded people as in a church. But it refers specifically to the external...

food
To give food, as in Genesis 41:48, signifies to store up.

governor
"Rulers" or "governors" in the Bible represent the most basic, most essential true ideas that guide us in life, ideas that spring directly from the...

land of
'The land of Rameses,' as in Genesis 47:11, signifies the inmost of the spiritual principle in the natural mind.

Make
'To make,' as in Hosea 8:11, refers to good. In the opposite sense it refers to evil. To make heaven, and earth, and the sea,...

haste
'To hasten' or 'hastiness' in the internal sense, does not denote what is quick, but what is certain, and also what is full, thus every...

Son
'A son,' as in Genesis 5:28, signifies the rise of a new church. 'Son,' as in Genesis 24:3, signifies the Lord’s rationality regarding good. 'A...

down
"Down" is used many different ways in natural language, and its spiritual meaning in the Bible is highly dependent on context. Phrases like "bowing down,"...

Linger
'To linger,' as in Genesis 19:16, signifies resistance from the nature of evil. Lingering' signifies a state of doubt. When a state of life passes...

dwell
Many people were nomadic in Biblical times, especially the times of the Old Testament, and lived in tents that could be struck, moved and re-raised...

Sons
'Sons of Canaan,' as in Genesis 10, are people who kept external worship separate from internal.

years of famine
(Gen. xli.) By years are signified states, by the years of abundance of provision states of the multiplication of truth in the natural principle, and...

remaining
In Leviticus 6:16, 'Aaron and his sons eating the remainder' signifies a person’s reciprocation and making something one's own. This represents conjunction by means of...

eyes
It’s common to say “I see” when we understand something. And indeed, “seeing” in the Bible represents grasping and understanding spiritual things. So it makes...

see
The symbolic meaning of "seeing" is "understanding," which is obvious enough that it has become part of common language (think about it; you might see...

mouth
In most cases, "mouth" in the Bible represents thought and logic, especially the kind of active, concrete thought that is connected with speech. The reason...

speaketh
Like "say," the word "speak" refers to thoughts and feelings moving from our more internal spiritual levels to our more external ones – and ultimately...

Tell
'To tell' signifies perceiving, because in the spiritual world, or in heaven, they do not need to tell what they think because they communicate every...

Glory
Glory, wisdom, and thanksgiving signify the Lord's divine spiritual principle. Honor, virtue and might signify his divine celestial principle, as in Revelation 7:12.

bring
As with common verbs in general, the meaning of “bring” is highly dependent on context, but in general it represents an introduction to a new...

falling
Like other common verbs, the meaning of "fall" is highly dependent on context in regular language, and is highly dependent on context in a spiritual...

Neck
'The neck' signifies influx and the communication of interior and exterior levels and the following conjunction. The inmost or third heaven has reference to the...

wept
'Weeping with a loud voice' signifies the ultimate of grief.

and Benjamin
'The tribe of Zebulon' signifies the conjunction of people in the third heaven with the Lord, 'the tribe of Joseph,' the conjunction of people in...

Every one
The phrase “Every one,” where it occurs in Genesis 20:7, signifies every thing or all things.

king
The human mind is composed of two parts, a will and an understanding, a seat of loves and affections, and a seat of wisdom and...

Court
The court of the tabernacle (Exodus 27:9), etc., signifies the external of heaven, or the first, which is also called the ultimate heaven.

Glad
To make glad signifies influx and reception from joy of heart.

beasts
"Beasts" represent the affection for doing good things, a true desire to do them from the heart. In the negative sense, "beasts" stand for the...

give
Like other common verbs, the meaning of "give" in the Bible is affected by context: who is giving what to whom? In general, though, giving...

good
It seems rather circular to say that “good” in the Bible represents good, but in a general sense it’s true! The case is this: The...

eat
When we eat, our bodies break down the food and get from it both energy and materials for building and repairing the body. The process...

Marrow
'Fat things full of marrow,' signify goods.

children
A child is a young boy or girl in the care of parents, older than a suckling or an infant, but not yet an adolescent....

wives
The Hebrew of the Old Testament has six different common words which are generally translated as "wife," which largely overlap but have different nuances. Swedenborg...

Hold
'A hold,' 'a den,' or 'dungeon,' as mentioned in Revelation 18:2, signifies hell, because people who are there are in confinement.

Sons of Israel
'The camp of the sons of Israel' represents the church.

Israel
'Israel,' in Jeremiah 23:8, signifies the spiritual natural church. The children of Israel dispersed all the literal sense of the Word by falsities. 'The children...

commandment
To command is to give an order that something must be done, and is directed to an individual, or a group. It is an imperative,...

way
In John 14:6, 'the way is doctrine,' 'the truth' is every thing pertaining to doctrine, and 'the life' is the essential good which is the...

Robes
'Robes,' as in Revelation 7, signify truths of defense. Before they were washed they signified falsities. People in falsities from ignorance in the spiritual world,...

Three hundred
'Three hundred' signifies fullness, because the number comes from three and a hundred multiplied. Both 'three' and 'a hundred' signifies fullness. The significance of products...

three
The Writings talk about many aspects of life using the philosophical terms "end," "cause" and "effect." The "end" is someone’s goal or purpose, the ultimate...

hundred
It's a landmark for a young child to count to 100; it sort of covers all the "ordinary" numbers. One hundred is obviously significant for...

pieces
The two sticks, in Ezekiel 37:16-22, signify the celestial and spiritual kingdom of the Lord.

silver
'Spoil of gold, and silver, and cattle' signifies falsified truths.

Money
'Money' relates to truth.

Raiment
Soft raiment,' as in Matthew 11:9, represents the internal sense of the Word.

ten
Most places in Swedenborg identify “ten” as representing “all,” or in some cases “many” or “much.” The Ten Commandments represent all the guidance we get...

wheat
In Revelation 18:13, 'wine, oil, flour, and wheat' signify celestial principles of worship.

bread
The word “bread” is used two ways in the Bible. In some cases it means actual bread; in others it stands for food in general....

Journey
'To journey' signifies the institutes and order of life.

sent away
To "send away" means creating a separation of spiritual states. This phrase is used a great deal in Exodus, when Moses repeatedly calls on Pharaoh...

Jacob
Jacob is told twice that his name will now be Israel. The first time is when he wrestles with an angel on his journey to...

Ruler
'A ruler' or 'governor' signifies goods of the church, and in the opposite sense, falsities.

believe
The meaning of "believe" in the Bible is pretty straightforward, but runs deeper than what appears on the surface. When in the Old Testament people...

Side
'Side' signifies good or spiritual love.

spirit
There are two aspects to the life of each person. We might call them "heart" and "mind," a part of us that wants and feels...

Enough
'Sufficiency' relates to the reception of good, because good is the spiritual nourishment of the soul, as natural food is the nourishment of the body.

die
'To perish,' or 'die,' relates to damnation, or the state in hell.

Resources for parents and teachers

The items listed here are provided courtesy of our friends at the General Church of the New Jerusalem. You can search/browse their whole library by following this link.


 Bring an Offering of Thanksgiving
Worship Talk | Ages 7 - 14

 Dramatize the Story of Joseph Receiving His Brothers
Retell the story or read selected portions from the Word as the children dramatize the story of the brothers going to Egypt and being reunited with Joseph. 
Activity | Ages 4 - 10

 Family Worship: The Joseph Story
Religion Lesson | All Ages

 Food for the Soul
Spiritual tasks offer a reflection on a Biblical story and suggest a task for spiritual growth.
Activity | Ages over 18

 Joseph Forgives His Brothers
If we love the Lord and try to obey His commandments, He will be with us to turn even our bad experiences into things that are good for us, that will prepare us for heaven.
Worship Talk | Ages 7 - 14

 Joseph Is Reunited with Brothers
This lesson discusses a story from the Word and suggests projects and activities for young children.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 4 - 6

 Joseph Reveals Himself - Level A
Complete lesson with activity choices: sing an action song about Joseph's family reunion (video demonstration), make a trifold picture that shows Joseph revealing himself to his brothers, scripted story discussion, coloring picture, and a memory verse.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 4 - 6

 Joseph Reveals Himself - Level B
Complete lesson with activity choices: try a water experiment to see how the Lord's forgiveness works (video demonstration), make a trifold picture that shows Joseph revealing himself to his brothers, do a "wrinkled heart" activity to show how hard it can be to heal hurt feelings, scripted story discussion, coloring picture, and a memory verse.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 7 - 10

 Joseph Reveals Himself - Level C
Complete lesson with activity choices: watch and discuss a video about what Benjamin represents and how we need that quality in our lives, read several scenarios written in the style of news headlines and consider whether various actions should be forgiven or whether another response is called for, read a door handle sign with the Prayer of Saint Francis reflect on how you can forgive others, and a scripted story discussion.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 11 - 14

 Joseph Reveals Himself - Level D
Complete lesson with activity choices: watch and discuss a video about what Benjamin represents and how we need that quality in our lives, consider how true ideas can connect us with the Lord and help us get to heaven, read a door handle sign with the Prayer of Saint Francis reflect on how you can forgive others, and a scripted story discussion.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 15 - 17

 Joseph Welcomes His Family
Lesson outline provides teaching ideas with questions for discussion, projects, and activities.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 7 - 10

 The Story of Joseph
Examining the life and character of Joseph teaches us about how the Lord leads each of our lives.
Worship Talk | Ages over 18


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