Genesis 43:14
And God Almighty give you mercy before the man, that he may send away your other brother, and Benjamin. If I be bereaved of my children, I am bereaved.
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(14) God Almighty.—Heb., El Shaddai, the name by which Abraham’s covenant (Genesis 17:1) was renewed to Jacob (Genesis 35:11).

If I be bereaved . . . —An expression of pious resignation, united with heartfelt anguish. The inserted words of my children lessen the pathos of the patriarch’s ejaculation, which literally is “and I, if I am bereaved, I am bereaved.”

Genesis 43:14. God Almighty give you mercy before the man! — Jacob had formerly turned an angry brother into a kind one with a present and a prayer, and here he betakes himself to the same tried method. Those that would find mercy with men must seek it of God. He concludes all with this, If I be bereaved of my children, I am bereaved — If I must part with them thus, one after another, I acquiesce, and say, The will of the Lord be done.

43:1-14 Jacob urges his sons to go and buy a little food; now, in time of dearth, a little must suffice. Judah urges that Benjamin should go with them. It is not against the honour and duty children owe their parents, humbly to advise them, and when needful, to reason with them. Jacob saw the necessity of the case, and yielded. His prudence and justice appeared in three things. 1. He sent back the money they had found in the sack. Honesty obliges us to restore not only that which comes to us by our own fault, but that which comes to us by the mistakes of others. Though we get it by oversight, if we keep it when the oversight is discovered, it is kept by deceit. 2. He sent as much again as they took the time before; the price of corn might be risen, or they might have to pay a ransom for Simeon. 3. He sent a present of such things as the land afforded, and as were scarce in Egypt, balm, and honey, &c. Providence dispenses not its gifts to all alike. But honey and spice will never make up the want of bread-corn. The famine was sore in Canaan, yet they had balm and myrrh, &c. We may live well enough upon plain food, without dainties; but we cannot live upon dainties without plain food. Let us thank God that what is most needful and useful, generally is most cheap and common. Though men value very highly their gold and silver, and the luxuries which are counted the best fruits of every land, yet in a time of famine they willingly barter them for bread. And how little will earthly good things stand us in stead in the day of wrath! How ready should we be to renounce them all, as loss, for the excellency of the knowledge of Jesus Christ! Our way to prevail with man is by first prevailing with the Lord in fervent prayer. But, Thy will be done, should close every petition for the mercies of this life, or against the afflictions of this life.Jacob at length reluctantly sends Benjamin with them. He employs all means, as is usual with him, of securing a favorable result. "The best of the land" - the sung or celebrated products of the land. "A little honey." Palestine abounded with bee honey. A sirup obtained by boiling down the juice of the grape was also called by the same name, and formed an article of commerce. "Nuts." These are supposed to be pistachio nuts, from the pistacia vera, a tree resembling the terebinth, a native of Anatolia, Syria, and Palestine. "Almonds." The almond tree buds or flowers earlier in the spring than other trees. It is a native of Palestine, Syria, and Persia. For the other products see Genesis 37:25. "Other silver;" not double silver, but a second sum for the new purchase. "God Almighty" - the Great Spirit, who can dispose the hearts of men as he pleases. Jacob looks up to heaven for a blessing, while he uses the means. "If I am bereaved, I am bereaved." This is the expression of acquiescence in whatever may be the will of Providence. "Double silver," - what was returned and what was to pay for a second supply of corn.14. God Almighty give you mercy before the man—Jacob is here committing them all to the care of God and, resigned to what appears a heavy trial, prays that it may be overruled for good. An expression whereby he submits himself and children to God’s will and providence, whatever the issue shall be. Compare Esther 4:16. Or thus, As I have been already

bereaved of some of my dearest children, so I shall be bereaved of the rest, and I shall be left solitary; and if this be my portion, God’s will be done.

And God Almighty give you mercy before the man,.... Who has the hearts of all men in his hands, kings, princes, governors, even those who are the most cruel and hardhearted, rough and severe in their tempers and dispositions, and such an one they had represented this man to be; one that had spoke roughly to them, and used them roughly: Jacob therefore sent him a present to soften his mind, and now he puts up a prayer to God, and dismisses his sons with his good wishes for them, that God would incline the heart of the governor to show kindness to them, and let them have corn, nor use any of them ill: particularly:

that he may send away your other brother and Benjamin; release Simeon, and send him and Benjamin aiming with them when they returned:

if I be bereaved of my children, I am bereaved; this he said, not as utterly despairing of their return, but as expressive of his patient submission to the divine will, be it as it may be.

And {c} God Almighty give you mercy before the man, that he may send away your other brother, and Benjamin. If I be {d} bereaved of my children, I am bereaved.

(c) Our main trust should be in God, not in worldly means.

(d) He speaks these words not so much in despair, but to make his sons more careful to return with their brother.

14. God Almighty] Heb. El Shaddai. See note on Genesis 17:1. Unless inserted by the Compiler, this is the only occurrence of this Sacred Name in JE (see note on Genesis 49:23, which is earlier than JE). Jacob gives his parting blessing. Notice the emphasis on Benjamin’s name, and the reference to Simeon (E).

give you mercy] Cf. the parallel expression in Nehemiah 1:11. Lat. facial vobis eum placabilem gives the general meaning.

if I be bereaved] or, “according as I am bereaved.” Jacob is resigned, he is ready mournfully to acquiesce in the Divine will. His forebodings are gloomy. Cf. Genesis 42:36. His expectation of the worst result heightens the interest of the story, as the crisis is evidently approaching.

Genesis 43:14Thus Israel let his sons go with the blessing, "God Almighty give you mercy before the man, that he may liberate to you your other brother (Simeon) and Benjamin;" and with this resigned submission to the will of God, "And I, if I am bereaved, I am bereaved," i.e., if I am to lose my children, let it be so! For this mode of expression, cf. Esther 4:16 and 2 Kings 7:4. שׁכּלתּי with the pausal a, answering to the feelings of the speaker, which is frequently used for o; e.g., טרף for יטרף, Genesis 49:27.
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