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Joseph, Prime Minister Of Egypt

It had been a long and very difficult rise to power, but Joseph, the son of Jacob / Israel, became the Prime Minister of Egypt (i.e. second only to the King / Pharaoh himself) - a nation of which Joseph, up to that time, wasn't even a citizen, but was merely a foreign slave and dungeon prisoner (see Joseph Into Goshen and Pharaoh's Butler and Baker).

"41:41 And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, See, I have set thee over all the land of Egypt. 41:42 And Pharaoh took off his ring from his hand, and put it upon Joseph's hand, and arrayed him in vestures of fine linen, and put a gold chain about his neck; 41:43 And he made him to ride in the second chariot which he had; and they cried before him, Bow the knee: and he made him ruler over all the land of Egypt." (Genesis 41:41-43 KJV)

"And all countries came into Egypt to Joseph for to buy corn"

Egypt was located at the heart of the known world at that time, the vastness of Africa to the southwest, Asia to the northeast, Europe to the northwest. Egypt was the "superpower" of the world - and a Hebrew had become the man in charge of running the nation. Joseph became known as "Zaphnathpaaneah" (in Egyptian pronounced tsof-nath-pah-nay-akh) and married an Egyptian woman, "Asenath the daughter of Potipherah priest of On."


"41:44 And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, I am Pharaoh, and without thee shall no man lift up his hand or foot in all the land of Egypt.

41:45 And Pharaoh called Joseph's name Zaphnathpaaneah; and he gave him to wife Asenath the daughter of Potipherah priest of On. And Joseph went out over all the land of Egypt." (Genesis 41:44-45 KJV)

Joseph then took responsibility to prepare for the coming hard times that the LORD revealed to him.

"41:46 And Joseph was thirty years old when he stood before Pharaoh king of Egypt.

And Joseph went out from the presence of Pharaoh, and went throughout all the land of Egypt. 41:47 And in the seven plenteous years the earth brought forth by handfuls. 41:48 And he gathered up all the food of the seven years, which were in the land of Egypt, and laid up the food in the cities: the food of the field, which was round about every city, laid he up in the same. 41:49 And Joseph gathered corn as the sand of the sea, very much, until he left numbering; for it was without number." (Genesis 41:46-49 KJV)

During that time, two sons were born to Joseph and Asenath. Firstborn Manasseh and then Ephraim. In later years, after Joseph's father Jacob / Israel came to live in Egypt, Jacob adopted his grandsons Manasseh and Ephraim as sons (see Why Did Jacob Adopt Ephraim And Manasseh?).

"41:50 And unto Joseph were born two sons before the years of famine came, which Asenath the daughter of Potipherah priest of On bare unto him.

41:51 And Joseph called the name of the firstborn Manasseh: For God, said he, hath made me forget all my toil, and all my father's house. 41:52 And the name of the second called he Ephraim: For God hath caused me to be fruitful in the land of my affliction." (Genesis 41:50-52 KJV)

Exactly as the LORD had warned, the severe famine thereafter began. Only Egypt was spared stark hardship from it - and only then because Joseph had followed the LORD's instructions.

"41:53 And the seven years of plenteousness, that was in the land of Egypt, were ended.

41:54 And the seven years of dearth began to come, according as Joseph had said: and the dearth was in all lands; but in all the land of Egypt there was bread. 41:55 And when all the land of Egypt was famished, the people cried to Pharaoh for bread: and Pharaoh said unto all the Egyptians, Go unto Joseph; what he saith to you, do. 41:56 And the famine was over all the face of the earth: And Joseph opened all the storehouses, and sold unto the Egyptians; and the famine waxed sore in the land of Egypt.

41:57 And all countries came into Egypt to Joseph for to buy corn; because that the famine was so sore in all lands." (Genesis 41:53-57 KJV)

Fact Finder: The King James Version use "corn" e.g. "41:57 And all countries came into Egypt to Joseph for to buy corn" (Genesis 41:47 KJV). What did "corn" mean to the King James translators in 1611?
See Corn

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