Prayer- Lord, open my heart and open my mind and help me learn. Go-Fight-Win. Amen
18-19 When that year was over, the next year rolled around and they were back, saying, "Master, it's no secret to you that we're broke: our money's gone and we've traded you all our livestock. We've nothing left to barter with but our bodies and our farms. What use are our bodies and our land if we stand here and starve to death right in front of you? Trade us food for our bodies and our land. We'll be slaves to Pharaoh and give up our land—all we ask is seed for survival, just enough to live on and keep the farms alive."
20-21 So Joseph bought up all the farms in Egypt for Pharaoh. Every Egyptian sold his land—the famine was that bad. That's how Pharaoh ended up owning all the land and the people ended up slaves; Joseph reduced the people to slavery from one end of Egypt to the other.
22 Joseph made an exception for the priests. He didn't buy their land because they received a fixed salary from Pharaoh and were able to live off of that salary. So they didn't need to sell their land.
23-24 Joseph then announced to the people: "Here's how things stand: I've bought you and your land for Pharaoh. In exchange I'm giving you seed so you can plant the ground. When the crops are harvested, you must give a fifth to Pharaoh and keep four-fifths for yourselves, for seed for yourselves and your families—you're going to be able to feed your children!"
25 They said, "You've saved our lives! Master, we're grateful and glad to be slaves to Pharaoh."
26 Joseph decreed a land law in Egypt that is still in effect, A Fifth Goes to Pharaoh. Only the priests' lands were not owned by Pharaoh.
27-28 And so Israel settled down in Egypt in the region of Goshen. They acquired property and flourished. They became a large company of people. Jacob lived in Egypt for seventeen years. In all, he lived 147 years.
29-30 When the time came for Israel to die, he called his son Joseph and said, "Do me this favor. Put your hand under my thigh, a sign that you're loyal and true to me to the end. Don't bury me in Egypt. When I lie down with my fathers, carry me out of Egypt and bury me alongside them."
"I will," he said. "I'll do what you've asked."
31 Israel said, "Promise me." Joseph promised.
Israel bowed his head in submission and gratitude from his bed.
"This re-distribution of wealth is trickier than I thought." Or so says the Monty Python character Dennis Moore. Why would Joseph buy up all the land and livestock from all the people of Egypt? This made them slaves to Pharoah. This made EVERYBODY slaves. This is one of those passages that is difficult to understand. To top it off-Pharoah is to recieve one fifth of everything,(early share-cropping.) God only requires a tythe of one tenth, and I guess that would be a good deal to the Egyptians.
Jacob dies in Egypt, but makes Joseph swear,(with his hand under Jacobs thigh,) that he will carry Jacob out of Egypt to be buried back home. Joseph agreed.
Prayer- Lord, help me remember that all I do is because of you. Help me also to remember to return to you the amount you require. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.