Genesis 37:25
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New International Version
As they sat down to eat their meal, they looked up and saw a caravan of Ishmaelites coming from Gilead. Their camels were loaded with spices, balm and myrrh, and they were on their way to take them down to Egypt.

New Living Translation
Then, just as they were sitting down to eat, they looked up and saw a caravan of camels in the distance coming toward them. It was a group of Ishmaelite traders taking a load of gum, balm, and aromatic resin from Gilead down to Egypt.

English Standard Version
Then they sat down to eat. And looking up they saw a caravan of Ishmaelites coming from Gilead, with their camels bearing gum, balm, and myrrh, on their way to carry it down to Egypt.

New American Standard Bible
Then they sat down to eat a meal. And as they raised their eyes and looked, behold, a caravan of Ishmaelites was coming from Gilead, with their camels bearing aromatic gum and balm and myrrh, on their way to bring them down to Egypt.

King James Bible
And they sat down to eat bread: and they lifted up their eyes and looked, and, behold, a company of Ishmeelites came from Gilead with their camels bearing spicery and balm and myrrh, going to carry it down to Egypt.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Then they sat down to eat a meal. They looked up, and there was a caravan of Ishmaelites coming from Gilead. Their camels were carrying aromatic gum, balsam, and resin, going down to Egypt.

International Standard Version
After this, while they were seated, eating their food, they looked around and saw a caravan of Ishmaelites coming from Gilead with camels carrying spices, balm, and myrrh for sale down in Egypt.

NET Bible
When they sat down to eat their food, they looked up and saw a caravan of Ishmaelites coming from Gilead. Their camels were carrying spices, balm, and myrrh down to Egypt.

New Heart English Bible
They sat down to eat bread, and they lifted up their eyes and looked, and saw a caravan of Ishmaelites was coming from Gilead, with their camels bearing spices and balm and myrrh, going to carry it down to Egypt.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
As they sat down to eat, they saw a caravan of Ishmaelites coming from Gilead. Their camels were carrying the materials for cosmetics, medicine, and embalming. They were on their way to take them to Egypt.

JPS Tanakh 1917
And they sat down to eat bread; and they lifted up their eyes and looked, and, behold, a caravan of Ishmaelites came from Gilead, with their camels bearing spicery and balm and ladanum, going to carry it down to Egypt.

New American Standard 1977
Then they sat down to eat a meal. And as they raised their eyes and looked, behold, a caravan of Ishmaelites was coming from Gilead, with their camels bearing aromatic gum and balm and myrrh, on their way to bring them down to Egypt.

Jubilee Bible 2000
And they sat down to eat bread; and they lifted up their eyes and looked, and, behold, a company of Ishmeelites came from Gilead with their camels bearing aromas and balm and myrrh, going to carry it down to Egypt.

King James 2000 Bible
And they sat down to eat bread: and they lifted up their eyes and looked, and, behold, a company of Ishmaelites came from Gilead with their camels bearing spices and balm and myrrh, going to carry it down to Egypt.

American King James Version
And they sat down to eat bread: and they lifted up their eyes and looked, and, behold, a company of Ishmeelites came from Gilead with their camels bearing spices and balm and myrrh, going to carry it down to Egypt.

American Standard Version
And they sat down to eat bread: and they lifted up their eyes and looked, and, behold, a caravan of Ishmaelites was coming from Gilead, with their camels bearing spicery and balm and myrrh, going to carry it down to Egypt.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And sitting down to eat bread, they saw some Ismaelites on their way coming from Calaad, with their camels, carrying spices, and balm, and myrrh to Egypt.

Darby Bible Translation
And they sat down to eat bread; and they lifted up their eyes and looked, and behold, a caravan of Ishmaelites came from Gilead; and their camels bore tragacanth, and balsam, and ladanum -- going to carry [it] down to Egypt.

English Revised Version
And they sat down to eat bread: and they lifted up their eyes and looked, and, behold, a travelling company of Ishmaelites came from Gilead, with their camels bearing spicery and balm and myrrh, going to carry it down to Egypt.

Webster's Bible Translation
And they sat down to eat bread: and they lifted up their eyes and looked, and behold, a company of Ishmaelites came from Gilead, with their camels bearing spicery, and balm, and myrrh, going to carry them down to Egypt.

World English Bible
They sat down to eat bread, and they lifted up their eyes and looked, and saw a caravan of Ishmaelites was coming from Gilead, with their camels bearing spices and balm and myrrh, going to carry it down to Egypt.

Young's Literal Translation
And they sit down to eat bread, and they lift up their eyes, and look, and lo, a company of Ishmaelites coming from Gilead, and their camels bearing spices, and balm, and myrrh, going to take them down to Egypt.
Study Bible
Joseph Sold by his Brothers
24and they took him and threw him into the pit. Now the pit was empty, without any water in it. 25Then they sat down to eat a meal. And as they raised their eyes and looked, behold, a caravan of Ishmaelites was coming from Gilead, with their camels bearing aromatic gum and balm and myrrh, on their way to bring them down to Egypt. 26Judah said to his brothers, "What profit is it for us to kill our brother and cover up his blood?…
Cross References
Genesis 16:11
The angel of the LORD said to her further, "Behold, you are with child, And you will bear a son; And you shall call his name Ishmael, Because the LORD has given heed to your affliction.

Genesis 16:12
"He will be a wild donkey of a man, His hand will be against everyone, And everyone's hand will be against him; And he will live to the east of all his brothers."

Genesis 31:21
So he fled with all that he had; and he arose and crossed the Euphrates River, and set his face toward the hill country of Gilead.

Genesis 37:24
and they took him and threw him into the pit. Now the pit was empty, without any water in it.

Genesis 37:28
Then some Midianite traders passed by, so they pulled him up and lifted Joseph out of the pit, and sold him to the Ishmaelites for twenty shekels of silver. Thus they brought Joseph into Egypt.

Genesis 39:1
Now Joseph had been taken down to Egypt; and Potiphar, an Egyptian officer of Pharaoh, the captain of the bodyguard, bought him from the Ishmaelites, who had taken him down there.

Genesis 43:11
Then their father Israel said to them, "If it must be so, then do this: take some of the best products of the land in your bags, and carry down to the man as a present, a little balm and a little honey, aromatic gum and myrrh, pistachio nuts and almonds.

Joshua 13:11
and Gilead, and the territory of the Geshurites and Maacathites, and all Mount Hermon, and all Bashan as far as Salecah;

Jeremiah 8:22
Is there no balm in Gilead? Is there no physician there? Why then has not the health of the daughter of my people been restored?

Jeremiah 22:6
For thus says the LORD concerning the house of the king of Judah: "You are like Gilead to Me, Like the summit of Lebanon; Yet most assuredly I will make you like a wilderness, Like cities which are not inhabited.
Treasury of Scripture

And they sat down to eat bread: and they lifted up their eyes and looked, and, behold, a company of Ishmeelites came from Gilead with their camels bearing spices and balm and myrrh, going to carry it down to Egypt.

they sat.

Esther 3:15 The posts went out, being hastened by the king's commandment, and …

Psalm 14:4 Have all the workers of iniquity no knowledge? who eat up my people …

Proverbs 30:20 Such is the way of an adulterous woman; she eats, and wipes her mouth, …

Amos 6:6 That drink wine in bowls, and anoint themselves with the chief ointments: …

Ishmeelites.

Genesis 37:28,36 Then there passed by Midianites merchants; and they drew and lifted …

Genesis 16:11,12 And the angel of the LORD said to her, Behold, you are with child …

Genesis 25:1-4,16-18 Then again Abraham took a wife, and her name was Keturah…

Genesis 31:23 And he took his brothers with him, and pursued after him seven days' …

Psalm 83:6 The tabernacles of Edom, and the Ishmaelites; of Moab, and the Hagarenes;

Gilead.

Genesis 31:21 So he fled with all that he had; and he rose up, and passed over …

Genesis 43:11 And their father Israel said to them, If it must be so now, do this; …

Jeremiah 8:22 Is there no balm in Gilead; is there no physician there? why then …

spicery. Nechoth, is rendered by the LXX. incense; Syriac, resin Samaritan, basalm; Acquila, storax; which is followed by Bochart. This drug is abundant in Syria, and here Moses joins with it resin, honey, and myrrh; which agrees with the nature of the storax, which is the resin of a tree of the same name, of a reddish colour, and peculiarly pleasant fragrance.

balm Tzeri, which in Arabic, as a verb, is to flow, seems to be a common name, as balm or balsam with us, for many of those oily, resinous substances, which flow spontaneously, or by incision, from various trees or plants; accordingly the ancients have generally interpreted it resin.

myrrh. Lot, is probably, as Junius, De Dieu, Celsius, and Ursinus contend, the same as the Arabic {ladan}, Greek [ladanon,] and Latin {ladanum}.

(25) A company of Ishmeelites.--Dothan was situated on the great caravan line by which the products of India and Western Asia were brought to Egypt. As the eastern side of Canaan is covered by the great Arabian desert, the caravans had to travel in a north-westernly direction until, having forded the Euphrates, they could strike across from Tadmor to Gilead. The route thence led them over the Jordan at Beisan, and so southward to Egypt. For "Ishmeelites," we have "Midianites," Heb., Medyanim, in Genesis 37:28, and Medanites, Heb., Medanim, in Genesis 37:36; but the Targum and the Syriac, instead of Ishmeelites, read Arabs. Midian was a son of Abraham by Keturah, and Ishmael was his son by Hagar. But probably these merchants were descended from neither by blood, but belonged to some branch of the Canaanites, who were the great traders of ancient times, and which Ishmael and Midian had compelled to submit to their sway. (But see Note on Genesis 25:2.) The Jewish interpreters are reduced to great straits in reconciling these names, and even assert that Joseph was sold three times. Really Ishmeelites, Midianites, and Medanites are all one and the same, if we regard them as bearing the names only politically.

It is remarkable that the Egyptians never took part in the carrying trade. Even the navigation of the Red Sea they left to the Phnicians, Israelites, and Syrians, though Psammetichus, Pharaoh-Necho, and Apries tried to induce the Egyptians to take to maritime pursuits. Their products were corn, stuffs of byssus and other materials, and carpets; but the exportation of these goods they left to foreign traders.

Spicery, and balm, and myrrh.--The first was probably gum tragacanth, though some think that it was storax, the gum of the styrax tree (see Genesis 30:37). "Balm," thatis, balsam, was probably the resin of the balsamodendron Gileadense, a tree which grows abundantly in Gilead, and of which the gum was greatly in use for healing wounds. "Myrrh" was certainly ladanum, the gum of the cistus rose (cistus creticus). As all these were products of Palestine valued in Egypt, Jacob included them in his present to the governor there (Genesis 43:11).

And they sat down to eat bread,.... Not at all concerned at what they had done, nor in the least grieved for the affliction of Joseph, and without any pity and compassion for him in his distress, but joyful and glad they had got him into their hands, and like to get rid of him for ever:

and they lifted up their eyes, and looked, after they had eaten their food, or while they were eating it:

and, behold, a company of Ishmaelites came from Gilead; a place of merchandise for spices and balm, and such like things after mentioned. The Targums of Onkelos and Jonathan call them Arabians; and the Targum of Jerusalem, Saracens; these were the posterity of Ishmael, who came out of Arabia to Gilead, where they took up their merchandise, at least part of it, and were travelling to Egypt with it, and their way thither lay by Dothan; these travelled in companies, now called "caravans", partly on the account of robbers, and partly by reason of wild beasts, with both which they were sometimes beset in the deserts through which they travelled:

with their camels bearing spicery, and balm, and myrrh; the first word is general according to our version, and others, and signifies various spices, a collection of them; and so Jarchi takes it; but Aquila translates it "storax"; and Bochart (w), by various arguments, seems to have proved, that this is particularly intended; though the Targum of Jonathan renders it "wax" (x); and so other versions: and "balm" is by some taken to be "rosin", since there was no balm or balsam in Gilead, on the other side Jordan, nor indeed any in Judea, until it was brought thither from Arabia Felix, in the times of Solomon; and what we render "myrrh", is in the Hebrew called "lot", and is by some thought to be the same with "laudanum": this their merchandise was carried on camels, very fit for their purpose every way, as they were strong creatures made to carry burdens, and could travel many days without water, which they were sometimes obliged to do in the deserts:

going to carry it down to Egypt; where these things grew not, and were much in use, at least some of them, both in medicines, and in embalming dead bodies, much practised in Egypt; an Arabic writer (y) makes this merchandise to consist of, nuts, turpentine, and oil.

(w) Hierozoic. par. 2. l. 4. c. 12. col. 532. (x) So in Bereshit Rabba & Targum Jerusalem in R. Sol. Urbin. Ohel Moed, fol. 20. 2.((y) Patricides, p. 21. apud Hottinger. Smegma Orient. p. 367, 368. 25. they sat down to eat bread—What a view does this exhibit of those hardened profligates! Their common share in this conspiracy is not the only dismal feature in the story. The rapidity, the almost instantaneous manner in which the proposal was followed by their joint resolution, and the cool indifference, or rather the fiendish satisfaction, with which they sat down to regale themselves, is astonishing. It is impossible that mere envy at his dreams, his gaudy dress, or the doting partiality of their common father, could have goaded them on to such a pitch of frenzied resentment or confirmed them in such consummate wickedness. Their hatred to Joseph must have had a far deeper seat. It must have been produced by dislike to his piety and other excellencies, which made his character and conduct a constant censure upon theirs, and on account of which they found that they could never be at ease till they had rid themselves of his hated presence. This was the true solution of the mystery, just as it was in the case of Cain (1Jo 3:12).

they lifted up their eyes, … and, behold, a company of Ishmaelites—They are called Midianites (Ge 37:28), and Medanites, in Hebrew (Ge 37:36), being a travelling caravan composed of a mixed association of Arabians. Those tribes of Northern Arabia had already addicted themselves to commerce, and long did they enjoy a monopoly, the carrying trade being entirely in their hands. Their approach could easily be seen; for, as their road, after crossing the ford from the trans-jordanic district, led along the south side of the mountains of Gilboa, a party seated on the plain of Dothan could trace them and their string of camels in the distance as they proceeded through the broad and gently sloping valley that intervenes. Trading in the produce of Arabia and India, they were in the regular course of traffic on their way to Egypt: and the chief articles of commerce in which this clan dealt were

spicery from India, that is, a species of resinous gum, called storax, balm—"balm of Gilead," the juice of the balsam tree, a native of Arabia-Felix, and myrrh—an Arabic gum of a strong, fragrant smell. For these articles there must have been an enormous demand in Egypt as they were constantly used in the process of embalming.37:23-30 They threw Joseph into a pit, to perish there with hunger and cold; so cruel were their tender mercies. They slighted him when he was in distress, and were not grieved for the affliction of Joseph, see Am 6:6; for when he was pining in the pit, they sat down to eat bread. They felt no remorse of conscience for the sin. But the wrath of man shall praise God, and the remainder of wrath he will restrain, Ps 76:10. Joseph's brethren were wonderfully restrained from murdering him, and their selling him as wonderfully turned to God's praise.
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