EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(20) Regard not your stuff.
—Heb., and let not your eye have pity
) upon your vessels,
that is, upon your implements and household furniture.
45:16-24 Pharaoh was kind to Joseph, and to his relations for his sake. Egypt would make up the losses of their removal. Thus those for whom Christ intends his heavenly glory, ought not to regard the things of this world. The best of its enjoyments are but lumber; we cannot make sure of them while here, much less can we carry them away with us. Let us not set our eyes or hearts upon the world; there are better things for us in that blessed land, whither Christ, our Joseph, is gone to prepare a place. Joseph dismissed his brethren with a seasonable caution, See that ye fall not out by the way. He knew they were too apt to be quarrelsome; and having forgiven them all, he lays this charge upon them, not to upbraid one another. This command our Lord Jesus has given to us, that we love one another, and that whatever happens, or has happened, we fall not out. For we are brethren, we have all one Father. We are all guilty, and instead of quarrelling with one another, have reason to fall out with ourselves. We are, or hope to be, forgiven of God, whom we have all offended, and, therefore, should be ready to forgive one another. We are by the way, a way through the land of Egypt, where we have many eyes upon us, that seek advantage against us; a way that leads to the heavenly Canaan, where we hope to be for ever in perfect peace.
The intelligence that Joseph's brethren are come reaches the ears of Pharaoh, and calls forth a cordial invitation to come and settle in Egypt. "It was good in the eyes of Pharaoh." They highly esteemed Joseph on his own account; and that he should prove to be a member of a respectable family, and have the pleasure of again meeting with his nearest relatives, were circumstances that afforded them a real gratification. "The good of the land of Mizraim." The good which it produces. Wagons; two-wheeled cars, fit for driving over the rough country, where roads were not formed. "Let not your eye care for your stuff;" your houses, or pieces of furniture which must be left behind. The family of Jacob thus come to Egypt, not by conquest or purchase, but by hospitable invitation, as free, independent visitors or settlers. As they were free to come or not, so were they free to stay or leave.
17-20. Pharaoh said unto Joseph, Say unto thy brethren—As Joseph might have been prevented by delicacy, the king himself invited the patriarch and all his family to migrate into Egypt; and he made most liberal arrangements for their removal and their subsequent settlement. It displays the character of this Pharaoh to advantage, that he was so kind to the relatives of Joseph; but indeed the greatest liberality he could show could never recompense the services of so great a benefactor of his kingdom. Regard not your stuff;
Heb. let not your eye pity or spare
any part of your stuff,
as loth to leave it behind you, or afraid to lose it. Sparing or pitying is an act of the mind, but it is ascribed to the eye here, as also Ezekiel 7:4,9 16:5
; partly, because there it discovers itself by tears, or otherwise; and partly, because the sight of the eye doth oft affect the heart, and move pity.
Also regard not your stuff,.... Or "your vessels" (g), utensils, household goods; he would not have them to be concerned if they could not bring all their goods with them, but were obliged to leave some behind, and which, because of the distance of the way and difficulty of the road, lying through sandy deserts, could not well be brought, since there was enough to be had in the land of Egypt; therefore, as it may be rendered, "let not your eye spare" (h), or "pity": do not be grieved at it, or say it is a pity to leave these good things behind. Some render and explain the words just the reverse, "leave nothing of your household goods" (i); bring all away with you, as if he would not have them think of returning again, but of settling and continuing in Egypt; but this does not so well agree with what follows as the former sense does:
for the good of all the land of Egypt is yours: whatever good things were in it, whether for food or use for themselves, their houses, or their flocks, all were at their service, and they were welcome to them; or the best or most fruitful part of the country was designed for them, and would be given to them, or was at their option.
(g) "vasis vestris", Fagius, Drusius, "supellectilibus vestris", Pagninus, Schmidt; "propter vestra supellectilia", Junius & Tremellius, Piscator. (h) "oculus vester non parcat", Pagninus, Montanus, Munster, Drusius, Schmidt. (i) "Nee dimittatis quicquam de supellectili vestra", V. L. so Mercerus. Also regard not your stuff; for the good of all the land of Egypt is yours.