To Workers For Jesus Online Bible Study Table of Contents

About this Bible Study........The King James Version of the Bible is written in a beautiful form of the English language. It can be hard for modern English readers to understand.  In this study, you will find notes and summaries in brown just above the the verses from the Bible. We recommend that you read the notes and summaries first, and then read the verses in their KJV form. 

The book of Genesis was written by Moses. It is divided into three main parts.  1) God creates the universe and the first man and woman    2)God destroys the earth with a flood but saves Noah, his family, and the animals 3)God chooses Abraham and his descendants to be a great nation.

Bible Timeline
Here is a good timeline to see the book of Genesis in the history of the Bible



Genesis 47-50
Jacob meets Pharoah.
Egypt and Canaan have a serious famine.
Jacob dies.
Joseph dies.

Genesis 47

Jacob meets Pharoah

Joseph took part of his family to meet Pharoah.  Pharoah asked them what they did for a living.  They answered that they were shepherds.
[1] Then Joseph came and told Pharaoh, and said, My father and my brethren, and their flocks, and their herds, and all that they have, are come out of the land of Canaan; and, behold, they are in the land of Goshen.
[2] And he took some of his brethren, even five men, and presented them unto Pharaoh.
[3] And Pharaoh said unto his brethren, What is your occupation? And they said unto Pharaoh, Thy servants are shepherds, both we, and also our fathers.


Pharoah said that the family could live in Goshen.  Pharoah said that if any of the family members were good shepherds, they could watch over Pharoah's animals.
[4] They said moreover unto Pharaoh, For to sojourn in the land are we come; for thy servants have no pasture for their flocks; for the famine is sore in the land of Canaan: now therefore, we pray thee, let thy servants dwell in the land of Goshen.
[5] And Pharaoh spake unto Joseph, saying, Thy father and thy brethren are come unto thee:
[6] The land of Egypt is before thee; in the best of the land make thy father and brethren to dwell; in the land of Goshen let them dwell: and if thou knowest any men of activity among them, then make them rulers over my cattle.

Jacob met Pharoah.  Pharoah asked how old he was.   Jacob said that he was 130 years old.  Jacob blessed Pharoah.
[7] And Joseph brought in Jacob his father, and set him before Pharaoh: and Jacob blessed Pharaoh.
[8] And Pharaoh said unto Jacob, How old art thou?
[9] And Jacob said unto Pharaoh, The days of the years of my pilgrimage are an hundred and thirty years: few and evil have the days of the years of my life been, and have not attained unto the days of the years of the life of my fathers in the days of their pilgrimage.
[10] And Jacob blessed Pharaoh, and went out from before Pharaoh.

Jacob and his family lived in the best part of Egypt.
[11] And Joseph placed his father and his brethren, and gave them a possession in the land of Egypt, in the best of the land, in the land of Rameses, as Pharaoh had commanded.
[12] And Joseph nourished his father, and his brethren, and all his father's household, with bread, according to their families.

The famine continues

The famine continued in Egypt and Canaan.  People bought food from Pharoah.  After a while, no one had any more money.
[13] And there was no bread in all the land; for the famine was very sore, so that the land of Egypt and all the land of Canaan fainted by reason of the famine.
[14] And Joseph gathered up all the money that was found in the land of Egypt, and in the land of Canaan, for the corn which they bought: and Joseph brought the money into Pharaoh's house.
[15] And when money failed in the land of Egypt, and in the land of Canaan, all the Egyptians came unto Joseph, and said, Give us bread: for why should we die in thy presence? for the money faileth.

Joseph started to accept animals as payment for food.
[16] And Joseph said, Give your cattle; and I will give you for your cattle, if money fail.
[17] And they brought their cattle unto Joseph: and Joseph gave them bread in exchange for horses, and for the flocks, and for the cattle of the herds, and for the asses: and he fed them with bread for all their cattle for that year.

The famine continued into the next year.  The people had no animals left.  So, Joseph accepted their land as payment for food.  The only land he did not get was the land of the priests.

[18] When that year was ended, they came unto him the second year, and said unto him, We will not hide it from my lord, how that our money is spent; my lord also hath our herds of cattle; there is not ought left in the sight of my lord, but our bodies, and our lands:
[19] Wherefore shall we die before thine eyes, both we and our land? buy us and our land for bread, and we and our land will be servants unto Pharaoh: and give us seed, that we may live, and not die, that the land be not desolate.
[20] And Joseph bought all the land of Egypt for Pharaoh; for the Egyptians sold every man his field, because the famine prevailed over them: so the land became Pharaoh's.

Joseph moved many people from the country into the cities.
[21] And as for the people, he removed them to cities from one end of the borders of Egypt even to the other end thereof.
[22] Only the land of the priests bought he not; for the priests had a portion assigned them of Pharaoh, and did eat their portion which Pharaoh gave them: wherefore they sold not their lands.
[23] Then Joseph said unto the people, Behold, I have bought you this day and your land for Pharaoh: lo, here is seed for you, and ye shall sow the land.

Some of the people farmed Pharoah's land.  They were required to pay 1/5 of the crop (food that grew) to Pharoah.  This was the first time in the Bible that income tax was mentioned.

[24] And it shall come to pass in the increase, that ye shall give the fifth part unto Pharaoh, and four parts shall be your own, for seed of the field, and for your food, and for them of your households, and for food for your little ones.
[25] And they said, Thou hast saved our lives: let us find grace in the sight of my lord, and we will be Pharaoh's servants.
[26] And Joseph made it a law over the land of Egypt unto this day, that Pharaoh should have the fifth part; except the land of the priests only, which became not Pharaoh's.

Joseph makes a promise to Jacob

17 years passed.  Jacob was 147 years old.  He felt that it would soon be his time to die.  He asked Joseph to make a promise.  The promise was to bury Jacob in Canaan with Abraham and Isaac.  He did not want to be buried in Egypt.  At that time in history, when one person was making a promise to another person, he put his hand under his thigh.  Joseph put his hand under Jacob's thigh and said he promised to bury him in Canaan.

[27] And Israel dwelt in the land of Egypt, in the country of Goshen; and they had possessions therein, and grew, and multiplied exceedingly.
[28] And Jacob lived in the land of Egypt seventeen years: so the whole age of Jacob was an hundred forty and seven years.
[29] And the time drew nigh that Israel must die: and he called his son Joseph, and said unto him, If now I have found grace in thy sight, put, I pray thee, thy hand under my thigh, and deal kindly and truly with me; bury me not, I pray thee, in Egypt:
[30] But I will lie with my fathers, and thou shalt carry me out of Egypt, and bury me in their buryingplace. And he said, I will do as thou hast said.
[31] And he said, Swear unto me. And he sware unto him. And Israel bowed himself upon the bed's head.

Genesis 48

Jacob is very sick 

Jacob was very sick.  Joseph went to visit him.  He took his 2 sons with him.  Joseph's sons' names were Manasseh and Ephraim.
[1] And it came to pass after these things, that one told Joseph, Behold, thy father is sick: and he took with him his two sons, Manasseh and Ephraim.

When Jacob was told that Joseph was coming, he sat up in bed.
[2] And one told Jacob, and said, Behold, thy son Joseph cometh unto thee: and Israel strengthened himself, and sat upon the bed.

Jacob told Joseph about the time that God appeared to him at Luz.  God told Jacob that he would bless his descendants and give them the land of Canaan.

[3] And Jacob said unto Joseph, God Almighty appeared unto me at Luz in the land of Canaan, and blessed me,
[4] And said unto me, Behold, I will make thee fruitful, and multiply thee, and I will make of thee a multitude of people; and will give this land to thy seed after thee for an everlasting possession.

Jacob said that Joseph's sons were like his own sons.  That means they would be equal to Jacob's sons after Jacob died and his things given to his family.  They would be like Jacob's sons, not his grandsons.

[5] And now thy two sons, Ephraim and Manasseh, which were born unto thee in the land of Egypt before I came unto thee into Egypt, are mine; as Reuben and Simeon, they shall be mine.
[6] And thy issue, which thou begettest after them, shall be thine, and shall be called after the name of their brethren in their inheritance.
[7] And as for me, when I came from Padan, Rachel died by me in the land of Canaan in the way, when yet there was but a little way to come unto Ephrath: and I buried her there in the way of Ephrath; the same is Bethlehem.

Jacob wanted to bless Ephraim and Manasseh. He was almost blind and could not see them well.  Joseph brought them over to Jacob.  Joseph put Manasseh on the right and Ephraim on the left.
[8] And Israel beheld Joseph's sons, and said, Who are these?
[9] And Joseph said unto his father, They are my sons, whom God hath given me in this place. And he said, Bring them, I pray thee, unto me, and I will bless them.
[10] Now the eyes of Israel were dim for age, so that he could not see. And he brought them near unto him; and he kissed them, and embraced them.
[11] And Israel said unto Joseph, I had not thought to see thy face: and, lo, God hath shewed me also thy seed.
[12] And Joseph brought them out from between his knees, and he bowed himself with his face to the earth.
[13] And Joseph took them both, Ephraim in his right hand toward Israel's left hand, and Manasseh in his left hand toward Israel's right hand, and brought them near unto him.

When Jacob reached out to touch the boys, he crossed his arms so that his right hand was on Ephraim. Ephraim was the youngest.  Jacob first blessed Joseph.  He asked God to give Joseph, Manasseh, and Ephraim many descendants.
[14] And Israel stretched out his right hand, and laid it upon Ephraim's head, who was the younger, and his left hand upon Manasseh's head, guiding his hands wittingly; for Manasseh was the firstborn.
[15] And he blessed Joseph, and said, God, before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac did walk, the God which fed me all my life long unto this day,
[16] The Angel which redeemed me from all evil, bless the lads; and let my name be named on them, and the name of my fathers Abraham and Isaac; and let them grow into a multitude in the midst of the earth.

Joseph felt that Jacob's right hand should have been on Manasseh, the oldest. He tried to move Jacob's hands. But Jacob said no.  He intended to bless Ephraim, the youngest, with his right hand so that Ephraim would be greater than Manasseh.

[17] And when Joseph saw that his father laid his right hand upon the head of Ephraim, it displeased him: and he held up his father's hand, to remove it from Ephraim's head unto Manasseh's head.
[18] And Joseph said unto his father, Not so, my father: for this is the firstborn; put thy right hand upon his head.
[19] And his father refused, and said, I know it, my son, I know it: he also shall become a people, and he also shall be great: but truly his younger brother shall be greater than he, and his seed shall become a multitude of nations.
[20] And he blessed them that day, saying, In thee shall Israel bless, saying, God make thee as Ephraim and as Manasseh: and he set Ephraim before Manasseh.

Jacob told Joseph that God would be with him and would give him the land of Canaan.
[21] And Israel said unto Joseph, Behold, I die: but God shall be with you, and bring you again unto the land of your fathers.

Joseph would receive more things than his brothers after Jacob died.
[22] Moreover I have given to thee one portion above thy brethren, which I took out of the hand of the Amorite with my sword and with my bow.

Genesis 49

Jacob's last words

Jacob called all of his sons together to tell them about the future.
[1] And Jacob called unto his sons, and said, Gather yourselves together, that I may tell you that which shall befall you in the last days.
[2] Gather yourselves together, and hear, ye sons of Jacob; and hearken unto Israel your father.

The first son was Reuben.  Jacob remembered that Reuben had sexual relations with Bilhah (the maid, who was the father of some of Jacob's other sons).  He told Reuben that his family would not be superior.

[3] Reuben, thou art my firstborn, my might, and the beginning of my strength, the excellency of dignity, and the excellency of power:
[4] Unstable as water, thou shalt not excel; because thou wentest up to thy father's bed; then defiledst thou it: he went up to my couch.

Simeon and Levi sinned when they killed the men of Shechem.  Jacob said they would be scattered--they and their children would not live in one place.

[5] Simeon and Levi are brethren; instruments of cruelty are in their habitations.
[6] O my soul, come not thou into their secret; unto their assembly, mine honour, be not thou united: for in their anger they slew a man, and in their selfwill they digged down a wall.
[7] Cursed be their anger, for it was fierce; and their wrath, for it was cruel: I will divide them in Jacob, and scatter them in Israel.

Judah was compared to a lion.  Jacob said his family would be leaders.
[8] Judah, thou art he whom thy brethren shall praise: thy hand shall be in the neck of thine enemies; thy father's children shall bow down before thee.
[9] Judah is a lion's whelp: from the prey, my son, thou art gone up: he stooped down, he couched as a lion, and as an old lion; who shall rouse him up?
[10] The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be.
[11] Binding his foal unto the vine, and his ass's colt unto the choice vine; he washed his garments in wine, and his clothes in the blood of grapes:
[12] His eyes shall be red with wine, and his teeth white with milk.

Zebulon was next.  Jacob said his family would live near the sea.

[13] Zebulun shall dwell at the haven of the sea; and he shall be for an haven of ships; and his border shall be unto Zidon.

Issachar's family was compared to a donkey because his people worked very hard.

[14] Issachar is a strong ass couching down between two burdens:
[15] And he saw that rest was good, and the land that it was pleasant; and bowed his shoulder to bear, and became a servant unto tribute.

Dan's family would be judges.

[16] Dan shall judge his people, as one of the tribes of Israel.
[17] Dan shall be a serpent by the way, an adder in the path, that biteth the horse heels, so that his rider shall fall backward.
[18] I have waited for thy salvation, O LORD.

Gad's family would be brave soldiers. 

[19] Gad, a troop shall overcome him: but he shall overcome at the last.

Asher's family would be farmers and provide good food.

[20] Out of Asher his bread shall be fat, and he shall yield royal dainties.

Naphtali would be fast and good with speaking.
[21] Naphtali is a hind let loose: he giveth goodly words.

Joseph's family would have many people.  Jacob gave a short history of Joseph.  He had been treated bad, but he remained strong.  Joseph always followed and obeyed God.
[22] Joseph is a fruitful bough, even a fruitful bough by a well; whose branches run over the wall:
[23] The archers have sorely grieved him, and shot at him, and hated him:
[24] But his bow abode in strength, and the arms of his hands were made strong by the hands of the mighty God of Jacob; (from thence is the shepherd, the stone of Israel:)
[25] Even by the God of thy father, who shall help thee; and by the Almighty, who shall bless thee with blessings of heaven above, blessings of the deep that lieth under, blessings of the breasts, and of the womb:
[26] The blessings of thy father have prevailed above the blessings of my progenitors unto the utmost bound of the everlasting hills: they shall be on the head of Joseph, and on the crown of the head of him that was separate from his brethren.

Benjamin's family would be fighters.
[27] Benjamin shall ravin as a wolf: in the morning he shall devour the prey, and at night he shall divide the spoil.
[28] All these are the twelve tribes of Israel: and this is it that their father spake unto them, and blessed them; every one according to his blessing he blessed them.

This is the site of the cave where Abraham, Sarah,  Isaac, Rebekah, Jacob, and Leah are buried. 

From the web page, "An Introduction to the City of Hebron'
|Jewish virtual library

An aerial view from www.

Jacob's death

Jacob wanted to be buried with his family.  They were buried in the cave that Abraham bought.  Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, Rebekah, and Leah were buried there. Rachel was not buried there because she died near Bethlehem and was buried there.

[29] And he charged them, and said unto them, I am to be gathered unto my people: bury me with my fathers in the cave that is in the field of Ephron the Hittite,
[30] In the cave that is in the field of Machpelah, which is before Mamre, in the land of Canaan, which Abraham bought with the field of Ephron the Hittite for a possession of a buryingplace.
[31] There they buried Abraham and Sarah his wife; there they buried Isaac and Rebekah his wife; and there I buried Leah.
[32] The purchase of the field and of the cave that is therein was from the children of Heth.

After Jacob told his sons where to bury him, he died.
[33] And when Jacob had made an end of commanding his sons, he gathered up his feet into the bed, and yielded up the ghost, and was gathered unto his people.


Genesis 50

Joseph cried.  Then he called for the Egyptian doctor to embalm Jacob (get his body ready to be buried).  In Egypt at this time, it took 40 days for this to be finished.
[1] And Joseph fell upon his father's face, and wept upon him, and kissed him.
[2] And Joseph commanded his servants the physicians to embalm his father: and the physicians embalmed Israel.
[3] And forty days were fulfilled for him; for so are fulfilled the days of those which are embalmed: and the Egyptians mourned for him threescore and ten days.

Joseph asked Pharoah for permission to travel to Canaan to bury Jacob.  Pharoah said yes. 
[4] And when the days of his mourning were past, Joseph spake unto the house of Pharaoh, saying, If now I have found grace in your eyes, speak, I pray you, in the ears of Pharaoh, saying,
[5] My father made me swear, saying, Lo, I die: in my grave which I have digged for me in the land of Canaan, there shalt thou bury me. Now therefore let me go up, I pray thee, and bury my father, and I will come again.
[6] And Pharaoh said, Go up, and bury thy father, according as he made thee swear.

Many people traveled to Canaan to take Jacob's body back to be buried.  All of Jacob's sons went.  Also, many of Pharoah's servants went, too.
[7] And Joseph went up to bury his father: and with him went up all the servants of Pharaoh, the elders of his house, and all the elders of the land of Egypt,
[8] And all the house of Joseph, and his brethren, and his father's house: only their little ones, and their flocks, and their herds, they left in the land of Goshen.
[9] And there went up with him both chariots and horsemen: and it was a very great company.


They mourned (cried and grieved) for Jacob for 7 days. The brothers took Jacob's body and buried him in the cave that Abraham had bought.
[10] And they came to the threshingfloor of Atad, which is beyond Jordan, and there they mourned with a great and very sore lamentation: and he made a mourning for his father seven days.
[11] And when the inhabitants of the land, the Canaanites, saw the mourning in the floor of Atad, they said, This is a grievous mourning to the Egyptians: wherefore the name of it was called Abel-mizraim, which is beyond Jordan.
[12] And his sons did unto him according as he commanded them:
[13] For his sons carried him into the land of Canaan, and buried him in the cave of the field of Machpelah, which Abraham bought with the field for a possession of a buryingplace of Ephron the Hittite, before Mamre.

After they buried Jacob, Joseph and his brothers returned to Egypt.
[14] And Joseph returned into Egypt, he, and his brethren, and all that went up with him to bury his father, after he had buried his father.

After Jacob was gone, the brothers worried that Joseph might start to treat them badly.  They thought he might still be mad at them for selling him many years before.   They sent other people to Joseph to talk to him.  They told Joseph that Jacob wanted Joseph to forgive his brothers.

[15] And when Joseph's brethren saw that their father was dead, they said, Joseph will peradventure hate us, and will certainly requite us all the evil which we did unto him.
[16] And they sent a messenger unto Joseph, saying, Thy father did command before he died, saying,
[17] So shall ye say unto Joseph, Forgive, I pray thee now, the trespass of thy brethren, and their sin; for they did unto thee evil: and now, we pray thee, forgive the trespass of the servants of the God of thy father. And Joseph wept when they spake unto him.
[18] And his brethren also went and fell down before his face; and they said, Behold, we be thy servants.

Joseph told his brothers not to worry.  Joseph told them that they were evil to him, but God used it for good. If Joseph hadn't been sold and taken to Egypt many years before, the family would have all died in the famine.

[19] And Joseph said unto them, Fear not: for am I in the place of God?
[20] But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.
[21] Now therefore fear ye not: I will nourish you, and your little ones. And he comforted them, and spake kindly unto them.

The death of Joseph

Joseph lived to be 110 years old.  He knew he would soon die.  He told his children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren that in the future, God would take them back to Canaan.
[22] And Joseph dwelt in Egypt, he, and his father's house: and Joseph lived an hundred and ten years.
[23] And Joseph saw Ephraim's children of the third generation: the children also of Machir the son Manasseh were brought up upon Joseph's knees.
[24] And Joseph said unto his brethren, I die: and God will surely visit you, and bring you out of this land unto the land which he sware to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob.

Joseph asked his family to take his bones back to Canaan when God took the Israelite people (all of Jacob's descendants) back to Canaan. Then Joseph died.
[25] And Joseph took an oath of the children of Israel, saying, God will surely visit you, and ye shall carry up my bones from hence.
[26] So Joseph died, being an hundred and ten years old: and they embalmed him, and he was put in a coffin in Egypt.

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