Goshen is where the Israel and his sons stayed in Egypt. Apparently Joseph did not want them to be in the palace or in the heart of idolatrous Egypt when they settled. All those in the house of Egypt left to bury Israel in Canaan. Only the little ones were left behind.
The term “days to come” is also translated “the last days” and is an interesting one. It refers to a time in the future when Elohim’s announced purposes for a particular group, a particular nation, or the world, were about to be consummated. The writer of Hebrews says that the last days were also the time of the arrival of the Messiah Yeshua (Heb. 1:1-2). Most often, it refers to Israel’s final rebellion against Elohim (Deut. 31:29) accompanied by a time of great trouble (Deut. 4:30, Ezek. 38:16), followed by the return of Yeshua (Hosea 3:5).
This is the first reference to illness in Scripture. We are not told how much time passed, but it was years. The individual blessings of Israel on his children and the two children of Joseph have significance for the historical development and have prophetic implications also.
They want to dwell in the land of Goshen. Joseph does not want them to stay in the palace of Pharaoh or even in the heart of Egypt. This appears to be an intentional act of Joseph. He knows that his father and brothers have a much bigger part of the bigger plan. They are not to become too “acquainted” with the idea of staying in Egypt.
Elohim came to Israel in a vision and told him to go down to Egypt. It is there that He will make a great nation of him. Elohim states that He will be with him. It is there that Jacob will die and Joseph will be by his side when he dies and will close his eyes.
Judah had just finished his impassioned speech concerning his father and his younger brother Benjamin. He offered to take the place of his brother and to be Joseph’s servant forever. Joseph was overcome with emotion.
Then mention of silver or money occurs twenty times in this account of Joseph and his brothers. Joseph was sold by his brothers for twenty pieces of silver. Now Joseph tests his brothers with silver. Joseph is very generous with them. He gives them more than their monies worth and secretly gives them their money back. This makes their supposed “ingratitude” they are accused of seem even worse.
Judah is protesting his father’s desire to send them back. Judah is now the spokesman for group and Reuben is not heard from again. They were told that they had to bring their little brother or else they could not get Simeon back nor could they get any food. They had to prove that they are a family as they first claimed, and not a sovereign nation spying on Egypt in order to later attack.
Ten of Joseph’s brothers went to Egypt to buy grain. Jacob did not want Benjamin to go because he is the only other son of Rachel and he has taken Joseph’s place in his father’s affection. This is similar to what later happens to the tribes of Israel. Ten (the Northern Kingdom of Israel) are sent out into the world while two (the Southern Kingdom of Judah) stay in the land. Later all the sons of Israel were sent into the world for an extended period of time, just as all the tribes are dispersed in the world by Assyria and then Babylon for many centuries.
Keep in mind that these dreams that helped shape the events in Joseph’s life always occurred in twos. The dreams established matters and according to Torah, that must be done with two or more witnesses. The misfortunes of Joseph began and ended with these dreams.
The cupbearer and the baker are two servants that must be very trustworthy. If a scandal is among them, it could be hazardous to the kings health. The cupbearer would personally serve wine to the king. His loyalty had to be beyond reproach. He also held a position of great influence as a close and trusted adviser. Egyptian documents testify to the wealth and power of officials in this type of position.
Elohim was with Joseph. He prospered because Elohim blessed everything with which he was involved. Potiphar picked up on this and made him the overseer of his household. It was not uncommon for Asian slaves to be brought into the household and enjoy a superior status to the Egyptian slaves who worked in the fields. This was brought to light by an Egyptian papyrus called “Brooklyn 35.1446” from about 1833 – 1742 BC. Because of this, Joseph was given the opportunity to display his administrative talents to Potiphar. Unfortunately, he was also working very closely with Potiphar’s wife.