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Genesis 45

1 Then Joseph could not control his feelings in front of all his retainers, and he exclaimed, ‘Let everyone leave me.’ No one therefore was present with him while Joseph made himself known to his brothers,

2 but he wept so loudly that all the Egyptians heard, and the news reached Pharaoh’s palace.

3 Joseph said to his brothers, ‘I am Joseph. Is my father really still alive?’ His brothers could not answer him, they were so dumbfounded at seeing him.

4 Then Joseph said to his brothers, ‘Come closer to me.’ When they had come closer to him he said, ‘I am your brother Joseph whom you sold into Egypt.

5 But now, do not grieve, do not reproach yourselves for having sold me here, since God sent me before you to preserve your lives.

6 For this is the second year there has been famine in the country, and there are still five years to come without ploughing or harvest.

7 God sent me before you to assure the survival of your race on earth and to save your lives by a great deliverance.

8 So it was not you who sent me here but God, and he has set me up as a father to Pharaoh, as lord of all his household and governor of the whole of Egypt.

9 ‘Return quickly to your father and tell him, “Your son Joseph says this: ‘God has made me lord of all Egypt. Come down to me without delay.

10 You will live in the region of Goshen where you will be near me, you, your children and your grandchildren, your flocks, your cattle and all your possessions.

11 There I shall provide for you — for there are five years of famine still to come — so that you, your household and all yours are not reduced to penury.’ “

12 You can see with your own eyes, and my brother Benjamin can see too, that I am who I say I am.

13 Give my father a full report of all the honour I enjoy in Egypt, and of all you have seen; and quickly bring my father down here.’

14 Then throwing his arms round the neck of his brother Benjamin he wept; and Benjamin wept on his shoulder.

15 He kissed all his brothers, weeping on each one. Only then were his brothers able to talk to him.

16 News reached Pharaoh’s palace that Joseph’s brothers had come, and Pharaoh was pleased to hear it, as were his servants.

17 Pharaoh told Joseph, ‘Say to your brothers, “Do this: load your beasts and hurry away to Canaan.

18 Fetch your father and your families, and come back to me. I will give you the best territory in Egypt, where you will live off the fat of the land.”

19 And you, for your part, give them this order: “Do this: take waggons from Egypt, for your little ones and your wives. Get your father and come.

20 Never mind about your property, for the best of all Egypt will be yours.” ‘

21 Israel’s sons did as they were told. Joseph gave them waggons as Pharaoh had ordered, and he gave them provisions for the journey.

22 To each and every one he gave new clothes, and to Benjamin three hundred shekels of silver and five changes of clothes.

23 And to his father he sent ten donkeys laden with the best that Egypt offered, and ten she-donkeys laden with grain, bread and food for his father’s journey.

24 And so he sent his brothers on their way. His final words to them were, ‘And let there be no upsets on the way!’

25 And so they left Egypt. When they reached their father Jacob in Canaan,

26 they gave him this report, ‘Joseph is still alive. He is at this moment governor of all Egypt!’ But he was as one stunned, for he did not believe them.

27 However, when they told him all Joseph had said to them, and when he saw the waggons that Joseph had sent to fetch him, the spiritof their father Jacob revived,

28 and Israel said, ‘That is enough! My son Joseph is still alive. I must go and see him before I die.’

Genesis 46

1 So Israel set out with all his possessions. Arriving at Beersheba, he offered sacrifices to the God of his father Isaac.

2 God spoke to Israel in a vision at night, ‘Jacob, Jacob,’ he said. ‘Here I am,’ he replied.

3 ‘I am El, God of your father,’ he said. ‘Do not be afraid of going down to Egypt, for I will make you into a great nation there.

4 I shall go down to Egypt with you and I myself shall bring you back again, and Joseph’s hand will close your eyes.’

5 So Jacob left Beersheba. Israel’s sons conveyed their father Jacob, their little children and their wives in the waggons Pharaoh had sent to fetch him.

6 Taking their livestock and all that they had acquired in Canaan, they arrived in Egypt — Jacob and all his offspring.

7 With him to Egypt, he brought his sons and grandsons, his daughters and granddaughters — all his offspring.

8 These were the names of the Israelites, Jacob and his descendants, who arrived in Egypt: Reuben, Jacob’s first-born,

9 and the sons of Reuben: Hanoch, Pallu, Hezron and Carmi.

10 The sons of Simeon: Jemuel, Jamin, Ohad, Jachin, Zohar, and Shaul the son of the Canaanite woman.

11 The sons of Levi: Gershon, Kohath and Merari.

12 The sons of Judah: Er, Onan, Shelah, Perez, and Zerah (Er and Onan had died in Canaan), and Hezron and Hamul sons of Perez.

13 The sons of Issachar: Tola, Puvah, Jashub and Shimron.

14 The sons of Zebulun: Sered, Elon and Jahleel.

15 These were the sons that Leah had borne to Jacob in Paddan-Aram, besides his daughter Dinah; in all, his sons and daughters numbered thirty-three.

16 The sons of Gad: Ziphion, Haggi, Shuni, Ezbon, Eri, Arodi and Areli.

17 The sons of Asher: Jimnah, Jishvah, Jishvi, Beriah, with their sister Serah; the sons of Beriah: Heber and Malchiel.

18 These were the sons of Zilpah whom Laban gave to his daughter Leah; she bore these to Jacob — sixteen persons.

19 The sons of Rachel wife of Jacob: Joseph and Benjamin.

20 Born to Joseph in Egypt were: Manasseh and Ephraim sons of Asenath, daughter of Potiphera priest of On.

21 The sons of Benjamin: Bela, Becher, Ashbel, Gera, Naaman, Ehi, Rosh, Muppim, Huppim and Ard.

22 These were the sons that Rachel bore to Jacob — fourteen persons in all.

23 The sons of Dan: Hushim.

24 The sons of Naphtali: Jahzeel, Guni, Jezer and Shillem.

25 These were the sons of Bilhah whom Laban gave to his daughter Rachel; she bore these to Jacob — seven persons in all.

26 Altogether, the members of Jacob’s family who arrived with him in Egypt — his own issue, not counting the wives of Jacob’s sons — numbered sixty-six all told.

27 With Joseph’s sons born to him in Egypt — two persons — the members of Jacob’s family who went to Egypt totalled seventy.

28 Israel sent Judah ahead to Joseph, so that Judah might present himself to Joseph in Goshen. When they arrived in Goshen,

29 Joseph had his chariot made ready and went up to Goshen to meet his father Israel. As soon as he appeared he threw his arms round his neck and for a long time wept on his shoulder.

30 Israel said to Joseph, ‘Now I can die, now that I have seen you in person and seen you still alive.’

31 Then Joseph said to his brothers and his father’s family, ‘I shall go back and break the news to Pharaoh. I shall tell him, “My brothers and my father’s family who were in Canaan have come to me.

32 The men are shepherds and look after livestock, and they have brought their flocks and cattle and all their possessions.”

33 Thus, when Pharaoh summons you and asks, “What is your occupation?”,

34 you are to say, “Ever since our boyhood your servants have looked after livestock, we and our fathers before us,” so that you can stay in the Goshen region — for the Egyptians have a horror of all shepherds.’

Job 37

1 At this, my very heart quakes and leaps out of its place.

2 Listen, oh listen, to the blast of his voice and the sound that issues from his mouth.

3 His lightning is hurled across the heaven, it strikes to the extremities of earth.

4 After it comes a roaring sound, God thunders with majestic voice. He does not check his thunderbolts until his voice resounds no more.

5 Yes, certainly God shows us marvels and does great deeds that we cannot understand.

6 When he says to the snow, ‘Fall on the earth!’ to the showers, ‘Now rain hard!’

7 he brings all human activity to a standstill, for everyone to acknowledge his work.

8 The animals go back to their dens and take shelter in their lairs.

9 The storm wind comes from the Mansion of the South, and the north winds usher in the cold.

10 At the breath of God, ice comes next, the surface of the waters hardens over.

11 He weighs the clouds down with moisture, and the storm clouds radiate his lightning.

12 He himself guides their wheeling motion presiding over their seasonal changes. They carry out his orders to the letter all over this earthly world.

13 Whether to punish earth’s peoples or as a work of faithful love, he despatches them.

14 Listen to this, Job, without flinching and reflect on the marvellous works of God.

15 Do you know how God controls them or how his clouds make the lightning flash?

16 Do you know how he balances the clouds — a miracle of consummate skill?

17 When your clothes are hot to your body and the earth lies still under the south wind,

18 can you, like him, stretch out the sky, tempered like a mirror of cast metal?

19 Teach me what we should say to him: but better discuss no further, since we are in the dark.

20 Does he take note when I speak? When human beings give orders, does he take it in?

21 There are times when the light vanishes, behind darkening clouds; then comes the wind, sweeping them away.

22 and brightness spreads from the north. God is clothed in fearful splendour:

23 he, Shaddai, is far beyond our reach. Supreme in power, in equity, excelling in saving justice, yet no oppressor-

24 no wonder then that people fear him: everyone thoughtful holds him in awe!

Job 38

1 Then from the heart of the tempest Yahweh gave Job his answer. He said:

2 Who is this, obscuring my intentions with his ignorant words?

3 Brace yourself like a fighter; I am going to ask the questions, and you are to inform me!

4 Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundations? Tell me, since you are so well-informed!

5 Who decided its dimensions, do you know? Or who stretched the measuring line across it?

6 What supports its pillars at their bases? Who laid its cornerstone

7 to the joyful concert of the morning stars and unanimous acclaim of the sons of God?

8 Who pent up the sea behind closed doors when it leapt tumultuous from the womb,

9 when I wrapped it in a robe of mist and made black clouds its swaddling bands;

10 when I cut out the place I had decreed for it and imposed gates and a bolt?

11 ‘Come so far,’ I said, ‘and no further; here your proud waves must break!’

12 Have you ever in your life given orders to the morning or sent the dawn to its post,

13 to grasp the earth by its edges and shake the wicked out of it?

14 She turns it as red as a clay seal, she tints it as though it were a dress,

15 stealing the light from evil-doers and breaking the arm raised to strike.

16 Have you been right down to the sources of the sea and walked about at the bottom of the Abyss?

17 Have you been shown the gates of Death, have you seen the janitors of the Shadow dark as death?

18 Have you an inkling of the extent of the earth? Tell me all about it if you have!

19 Which is the way to the home of the Light, and where does darkness live? –

20 You could then show them the way to their proper places, you could put them on the path home again!

21 If you do know, you must have been born when they were, you must be very old by now!

22 Have you visited the place where the snow is stored? Have you seen the stores of hail,

23 which I keep for times of distress, for days of battle and war?

24 From which direction does the lightning fork, where in the world does the east wind blow itself out?

25 Who bores a channel for the downpour or clears the way for the rolling thunder

26 so that rain may fall on lands where no one lives, and the deserts void of human dwelling,

27 to meet the needs of the lonely wastes and make grass sprout on the thirsty ground?

28 Has the rain a father? Who begets the dewdrops?

29 What womb brings forth the ice, who gives birth to the frost of heaven,

30 when the waters grow hard as stone and the surface of the deep congeals?

31 Can you fasten the harness of the Pleiades, or untie Orion’s bands?

32 Can you guide the Crown season by season and show the Bear and its cubs which way to go?

33 Have you grasped the celestial laws? Could you make their writ run on the earth?

34 Can your voice carry as far as the clouds and make the pent-up waters do your bidding?

35 Will lightning flashes come at your command and answer, ‘Here we are’?

36 Who endowed the ibis with wisdom and gave the cock his intelligence?

37 Whose skill details every cloud and tilts the water-skins of heaven

38 until the dust solidifies and the cracks in the ground close up?

39 Do you go hunting prey for the lioness; do you satisfy the hunger of young lions

40 where they crouch in their den, waiting eagerly in the bushes?

41 Who makes provision for the raven when his little ones cry out to God craning their necks in search of food?

Proverbs 4 [20-27]

20 My child, pay attention to what I am telling you, listen carefully to my words;

21 do not let them out of your sight, keep them deep in your heart.

22 For they are life to those who find them and health to all humanity.

23 More than all else, keep watch over your heart, since here are the wellsprings of life.

24 Turn your back on the mouth that misleads, keep your distance from lips that deceive.

25 Let your eyes be fixed ahead, your gaze be straight before you.

26 Let the path you tread be level and all your ways be firm.

27 Turn neither to right nor to left, keep your foot clear of evil.

Thoughts and Reflection

In today’s reading we hear about the reunification between Joseph and his brothers. Upon hearing the news, he weeps. We, too, weep during joyful moments because we know it could have gone terribly wrong. it also shows us our fragility. Joseph realizes that he could have gone the rest of his life without seeing his father and/or brothers again.

There is always room in our lives for joy, tears and joyful tears.

Is there any joy in your heart today?

Is there any sorrow breaking your heart today?

About This Project

For the year 2022, I decided that my New Year’s Resolution was to read the whole Bible following the Bible in the Year plan presented by Fr. Mike Schmitz. It is a big and bold undertaking. You can follow along by subscribing. Feel free to look at previous day’s post and comment. It’s something we can all learn from together!

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