Miketz - Readings - Seventh Reading — Genesis 43:30–44:17

Seventh Reading — Genesis 43:30–44:17

In the seventh reading (עליה, aliyah), Joseph left hastily for his chamber and wept, washed his face, returned, and called for the servants to serve the meal. Joseph sat by himself, the brothers sat by themselves, and the Egyptians sat by themselves, because it was an abomination to the Egyptians to eat with the Hebrews. The brothers marveled that the servants had seated them according to their age. And Benjamin's portion was five times so much as any of his brothers’. Joseph directed the steward to fill the men's sacks with as much food as they could carry, put every man's money in his sack, and put Joseph’s silver goblet in the youngest one’s sack. At dawn, the brothers were sent away, but when they had not yet gone far from the city, Joseph directed his steward to overtake them and ask them why they had rewarded evil for good and taken the goblet with which Joseph drank and divined. They asked the steward why he accused them, as they had brought back the money that they had found in their sacks, and they volunteered that the one with whom the goblet was found would die, and the brothers would become bondmen. The steward agreed, with the amendment that the one with whom it was found would be a bondman and the others would go free. Hastily, every man opened his sack, starting with the eldest, and they found the goblet in Benjamin's sack. They rent their clothes, loaded their donkeys, and returned to the city.

In the maftir (מפטיר) reading that concludes the parashah, Judah and his brothers came to Joseph's house and fell before him on the ground. Joseph asked them what they had done, did they not know that a man such as he would divine? Judah asked how they could clear themselves when God had found out their iniquity; they were all Joseph’s bondmen. But Joseph insisted that only the man in whose hand the goblet was found would be his bondman, and the others could go in peace to their father. The seventh reading (עליה, aliyah), the single closed portion (סתומה, setumah), and the parashah end here.

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