Pharaoh dreamt that he was by the River Nile, where seven healthy cows emerge. Seven lean cows followed them out of the river and consumed them. Pharaoh then dreamt about seven good ears of grain on a stalk, which were swallowed up by seven thin ears growing after them. Pharaoh’s magicians cannot interpret the dreams satisfactorily. The cupbearer, who had been imprisoned with Yosef, told Pharaoh that Yosef interprets dreams. Pharaoh summoned him from prison.

Pharaoh related both dreams to Yosef, who explained that there will be seven years of plentiful food, followed by seven years of famine. He advised Pharaoh to appoint someone to oversee grain storage during the years of plenty.

Pharaoh appointed Yosef as viceroy of Egypt to implement his economic plan. Pharaoh gave Yosef his ring, regal clothes, changed his name and gave him a lady called Asenat to marry. They had two sons, Menashe and Ephraim. Yosef organised mass grain storage during the seven years of plenty.

The famine began and the Egyptians were starving. Yosef sold them spare provisions. There was also a famine in Cana’an. Yaakov told his sons, apart from Binyamin, to go to buy food in Egypt. The sons arrived in Egypt. Yosef recognised them but they do not recognise him. Yosef accused them of spying and imprisoned them; they would only be released after one of them goes to fetch Binyamin.

Three days later, Yosef changed the conditions. One of the brothers must stay in prison; the others must go to Cana’an to bring Binyamin. Yosef imprisoned Shimon and sent back the brothers with grain in their bags. Yosef also planted money in the bags. During their journey, Levi discovered the money in his bag and fears that Yosef would accuse them of theft. The brothers arrived home and told Yaakov their story. They discovered that each one of them has money ‘planted’ in his bag. Yaakov refused to let Binyamin go. Yehuda persisted, guaranteeing Binyamin’s safety. Yaakov finally agreed, telling them to take a tribute for Yosef, in addition to the original ‘planted money’ and payment for the new grain.

The brothers arrived in Egypt. Yosef instructed his chamberlain to invite his brothers to come and eat a meal. Shimon was released. Yosef asked them if Yaakov is still alive. He identified and blessed Binyamin. Overcome with emotion, Yosef rushed to his room, cried, composed himself, then returned and gave them all food. Yosef ordered them to be sent home, but had his own silver goblet ‘planted’ in Binyamin’s sack. Yosef’s chamberlain chased after them, accusing them of stealing the goblet. After denying the charge, they found the cup in Binyamin’s sack. They returned to the palace. Yosef demanded that Binyamin remain as his slave, allowing the others to leave.

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