Genesis 47:18
When that year was ended, they came unto him the second year, and said unto him, We will not hide it from my lord, how that our money is spent; my lord also hath our herds of cattle; there is not ought left in the sight of my lord, but our bodies, and our lands:
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(18) The second year.—Not the second year of the famine, but the year following that in which they had given up their cattle.

47:13-26 Care being taken of Jacob and his family, which mercy was especially designed by Providence in Joseph's advancement, an account is given of the saving the kingdom of Egypt from ruin. There was no bread, and the people were ready to die. See how we depend upon God's providence. All our wealth would not keep us from starving, if rain were withheld for two or three years. See how much we are at God's mercy, and let us keep ourselves always in his love. Also see how much we smart by our own want of care. If all the Egyptians had laid up corn for themselves in the seven years of plenty, they had not been in these straits; but they regarded not the warning. Silver and gold would not feed them: they must have corn. All that a man hath will he give for his life. We cannot judge this matter by modern rules. It is plain that the Egyptians regarded Joseph as a public benefactor. The whole is consistent with Joseph's character, acting between Pharaoh and his subjects, in the fear of God. The Egyptians confessed concerning Joseph, Thou hast saved our lives. What multitudes will gratefully say to Jesus, at the last day, Thou hast saved our souls from the most tremendous destruction, and in the season of uttermost distress! The Egyptians parted with all their property, and even their liberty, for the saving of their lives: can it then be too much for us to count all but loss, and part with all, at His command, and for His sake, who will both save our souls, and give us an hundredfold, even here, in this present world? Surely if saved by Christ, we shall be willing to become his servants.The seventh year is now come. The silver and cattle are now gone. Nothing remains but their lands, and with these themselves as the serfs of the soil. Accordingly they make this offer to Joseph, which he cannot refuse. Hence, it is evident that Pharaoh had as yet no legal claim to the soil. In primeval times the first entrants into an unoccupied country became, by a natural custom, the owners of the grounds they held and cultivated. The mere nomad, who roamed over a wide range of country, where his flocks merely cropped the spontaneous herbage, did not soon arrive at the notion of private property in land. But the husbandman, who settled on a promising spot, broke up the soil, and sowed the seed, felt he had acquired by his labor a title to the acres he had cultivated and permanently occupied, and this right was instinctively acknowledged by others. Hence, each cultivator grew into the absolute owner of his own farm. Hence, the lands of Egypt belonged to the peasantry of the country, and were at their disposal. These lands had now become valueless to those who had neither provisions for themselves nor seed for their ground. They willingly part with them, therefore, for a year's provision and a supply of seed. In this way the lands of Egypt fell into the hands of the crown by a free purchase. "And the people he removed into the cities." This is not an act of arbitrary caprice, but a wise and kind measure for the more convenient nourishment of the people until the new arrangements for the cultivation of the soil should be completed. The priestly class were sustained by a state allowance, and therefore, were not obliged to alienate their lands. Hence, they became by this social revolution a privileged order. The military class were also exempted most probably from the surrender of their patrimonial rights, as they were maintained on the crown lands.16. And Joseph said, Give your cattle—"This was the wisest course that could be adopted for the preservation both of the people and the cattle, which, being bought by Joseph, was supported at the royal expense, and very likely returned to the people at the end of the famine, to enable them to resume their agricultural labors." The second year; not the second from the beginning of the famine, but from their great extremity, the second year after that last mentioned, wherein they had sold their cattle; but this seems to have been the last year of the famine, because he now gives them corn for food and for seed too, Genesis 47:23, whereas in the first six years there was no sowing nor reaping, Genesis 45:6.

When the year was ended, they came unto him the second year,.... Which seems to be the seventh and last year of the years of famine; not the second year of the famine, as Jarchi, but the second year of their great distress, when having spent all their money they parted with their cattle; for it cannot be thought that they should be drained of their money and cattle too in one year:

and said unto him, we will not hide it from my lord, how that our money is spent; my lord also hath our herds of cattle; both these were well known to Joseph, and therefore cannot be the things which they say they would not hide: Musculus thinks it should be rendered in the past tense, "we have not hid"; this they told him the last year, that their money was gone, and he knew he had their cattle for their last year's provision: the sense seems to be this, that seeing their money was spent, and their cattle were in the hands of Joseph, they would not, and could not conceal from him what follows:

there is not enough left in the sight of my lord, but our bodies and our lands; and the one were starving and the other desolate.

When that year was ended, they came unto him the second year, and said unto him, We will not hide it from my lord, how that our money is spent; my lord also hath our herds of cattle; there is not ought left in the sight of my lord, but our bodies, and our lands:
18. We will not hide] The LXX μή ποτε ἐκτριβῶμεν = “lest we be utterly ruined,” misunderstood the Hebrew.

our bodies, and our lands] The inhabitants propose that Pharaoh should become the feudal lord of all Egypt, with complete possession of the land and absolute control over the lives of the people. The proposal is represented as emanating from the people themselves. Joseph’s authority is unquestioned; his popularity never in doubt.

Verses 18, 19. - When that year was ended, they came unto him the second year (not the second from the commencement of the dearth, but the second from the consumption of their money), and said unto him, We will not hide it from my lord, how that - literally, for if (so we should speak openly), hence equivalent to an intensified but - our money (literally, the silver) is spent; my lord also hath our herds of cattle; - literally, our herds of cattle also (sc. have come) to my lord - there is not ought left in the sight of my lord, but our bodies, and our lands: wherefore shall we die before thine eyes, both we and our land? buy us and our land for bread, and we and our land will be servants unto Pharaoh: and give us seed, that we may (literally, and we shall) live, and not die, that the land be not desolate (literally, and the land shall not be desolate). Genesis 47:18When that year had passed (תּתּם, as in Psalm 102:28, to denote the termination of the year), they came again "the second year" (i.e., after the money was gone, not the second of the seven years of famine) and said: "We cannot hide it from my lord (אדוני, a title similar to your majesty), but the money is all gone, and the cattle have come to my lord; we have nothing left to offer to my lord but our bodies and our land." אם כּי is an intensified כּי following a negation ("but," as in Genesis 32:29, etc.), and is to be understood elliptically; lit., "for if," sc., we would speak openly; not "that because," for the causal signification of אם is not established. תּם with אל is constructio praegnans: "completed to my lord," i.e., completely handed over to my lord. לפני נשׁאר is the same: "left before my lord," i.e., for us to lay before, or offer to my lord. "Why should we die before thine eyes, we and our land! Buy us and our land for bread, that we may be, we and our land, servants (subject) to Pharaoh; and give seed, that we may live and not die, and the land become not desolate." In the first clause נמוּת is transferred per zeugma to the land; in the last, the word תּשׁם is used to describe the destruction of the land. The form תּשׁם is the same as תּקל in Genesis 16:4.
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