26 Feb. Genesis 50:1-26

26 Feb. Jacob dies and is buried at Hebron

“When Jacob died, Joseph hugged his father and cried over him and kissed him. He commanded the doctors who served him to prepare his father’s body, so the doctors prepared Jacob’s body to be buried. It took the doctors 40 days to prepare his body (the usual time it took). And the Egyptians had a time of sorrow for Jacob that lasted 70 days.”

“When this time of sorrow had ended, Joseph spoke to the king’s officers and said, ‘If you think well of me, please tell this to the king: “When my father was near death, I made a promise to him that I would bury him in a cave in the land of Canaan, in a burial place that he cut out for himself. So please let me go and bury my father, and then I will return.”’”

“The king answered, ‘Keep your promise. Go and bury your father.’ So Joseph went to bury his father. All the king’s officers, the elders and all the leading men of Egypt went with Joseph. Everyone who lived with Joseph and his brothers went with him, as well as everyone who lived with his father. They left only their children, their flocks and their herds in the land of Goshen…”

“When they came to the threshing floor of Atad, near the Jordan River, they cried loudly and bitterly for his father. Joseph’s time of sorrow continued for seven days. The people that lived in Canaan saw the sadness at the threshing floor of Atad and said, ‘Those Egyptians are showing great sorrow!’ So now that place is named Sorrow of the Egyptians.”

“So Jacob’s sons did as their father commanded. They carried his body to the land of Canaan and buried it in the cave in the field of Machpelah near Mamre. Abraham had bought this cave and field from Ephron the Hittite to use as a burial place.”

“After Joseph buried his father, he returned to Egypt, along with his brothers and everyone who had gone with him to bury his father.”

“Joseph continued to live in Egypt with all his father’s family… Joseph said to his brothers, ‘I am about to die, but God will take care of you. He will lead you out of this land to the land he promised to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.’”

“Then Joseph had the sons of Israel make a promise. He said, ‘Promise me that you will carry my bones with you out of Egypt.’”

“Joseph died when he was 110 years old. Doctors prepared his body for burial, and then they put him in a coffin in Egypt.”

          (Genesis 50:1-26)



Before he died, Jacob blessed his twelve sons and asked to be buried at the family tomb back in Canaan (see Genesis 49:1-33).

On his death, Jacob’s body was embalmed over 40 days in the manner of Egyptian royalty. Joseph was given permission to bury his father in Canaan and he mourned his father at the threshing-floor of Atad near the River Jordan. The place was called Abel Mizraim (meaning ‘Mourning of the Egyptians’) (Genesis 50:11).

Jacob was buried in the Cave of Machpelah at Mamre (Hebron) beside the mortal remains of Abraham and Sarah, Isaac and Rebecca, and Jacob’s first wife Leah (see Genesis 25:9-10, 35:29). Jacob’s family returned to Egypt with Joseph. The Tomb of the Patriarchs - Abraham, Isaac and Jacob - can still be visited in Hebron today.

Now that their father was dead, the brothers feared that Joseph might take revenge on them, but Joseph forgave them and explained that God had intended all of this to happen in order to save their lives (see Genesis 50:15-21).

Joseph lived on to become an old man. He asked that, when the family eventually returned to Canaan, they would take his remains back with them. Joseph died in c.1617BC and his body was embalmed and placed in a sarcophagus in Egypt.

The photo (by Antoine Taveneaux) shows the Tomb of the Patriarchs (built over the Cave of Machpelah) where Jacob was buried at Hebron.

You can read more about Joseph’s family in Egypt @ https://www.thebiblejourney.org/biblejourney2/24-the-journeys-of-isaac-jacob-joseph/jacobs-family-join-joseph-in-egypt/

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