Book of Jasher 41
And at the revolution of the year the
sons of Jacob journeyed from Shechem, and they came
to Hebron, to their father Isaac, and they dwelt there, but their flocks and
herds they fed daily in Shechem, for there was there
in those days good and fat pasture, and Jacob and his sons and all their
household dwelt in the valley of Hebron.
And it was in those days, in that
year, being the hundred and sixth year of the life of Jacob, in the tenth year
of Jacob’s coming from Padan-aram, that Leah the wife
of Jacob died; she was fifty-one years old when she died in Hebron.
And Jacob and his sons buried her in
the cave of the field of Machpelah, which is in
Abraham had bought from the children of Heth, for the
possession of a burial place.
And the sons of Jacob dwelt with
their father in the
inhabitants of the land knew their strength and their fame went throughout the
And Joseph the son of Jacob, and his
brother Benjamin, the sons of Rachel, the wife of Jacob, were yet young in those
days, and did not go out with their brethren during their battles in all the
cities of the Amorites.
And when Joseph saw the strength of
his brethren, and their greatness, he praised them and extolled them, but he
ranked himself greater than them, and extolled himself above them; and Jacob,
his father, also loved him more than any of his sons, for he was a son of his
old age, and through his love toward him, he made him a coat of many colors.
And when Joseph saw that his father
loved him more than his brethren, he continued to exalt himself above his
brethren, and he brought unto his father evil reports concerning them.
And the sons of Jacob seeing the
whole of Joseph’s conduct toward them, and that their father loved him more
than any of them, they hated him and could not speak peaceably to him all the
And Joseph was seventeen years old,
and he was still magnifying himself above his brethren, and thought of raising
himself above them.
At that time he dreamed a dream, and he
came unto his brothers and told them his dream, and he said unto them, I
dreamed a dream, and behold we were all binding sheaves in the field, and my
sheaf rose and placed itself upon the ground and your sheaves surrounded it and
bowed down to it.
And his brethren answered him and
said unto him, What meaneth this dream that thou
didst dream? dost thou imagine in thy heart to reign or rule over us?
And he still came, and told the thing
to his father Jacob, and Jacob kissed Joseph when he heard these words from his
mouth, and Jacob blessed Joseph.
And when the sons of Jacob saw that
their father had blessed Joseph and had kissed him, and that he loved him
exceedingly, they became jealous of him and hated him the more.
And after this Joseph dreamed another
dream and related the dream to his father in the presence of his brethren, and
Joseph said unto his father and brethren, Behold I have again dreamed a dream,
and behold the sun and the moon and the eleven stars bowed down to me.
And his father heard the words of
Joseph and his dream, and seeing that his brethren hated Joseph on account of
this matter, Jacob therefore rebuked Joseph before his brethren on account of
this thing, saying, What meaneth this dream which
thou hast dreamed, and this magnifying thyself before thy brethren who are
older than thou art?
Dost thou imagine in thy heart that I
and thy mother and thy eleven brethren will come and bow down to thee, that
thou speakest these things?
And his brethren were jealous of him
on account of his words and dreams, and they continued to hate him, and Jacob
reserved the dreams in his heart.
And the sons of Jacob went one day to
feed their father’s flock in Shechem, for they were
still herdsmen in those days; and whilst the sons of Jacob were that day feeding
in Shechem they delayed, and the time of gathering in
the cattle was passed, and they had not arrived.
And Jacob saw that his sons were
delayed in Shechem, and Jacob said within himself,
Peradventure the people of Shechem have risen up to
fight against them, therefore they have delayed coming this day.
And Jacob called Joseph his son and
commanded him, saying, Behold thy brethren are feeding in Shechem
this day, and behold they have not yet come back; go now therefore and see
where they are, and bring me word back concerning the welfare of thy brethren
and the welfare of the flock.
And Jacob sent his son Joseph to the
came for his brothers to Shechem, and could not find
them, and Joseph went about the field which was near Shechem,
to see where his brothers had turned, and he missed his road in the wilderness,
and knew not which way he should go.
And an angel of the Lord found him
wandering in the road toward the field, and Joseph said unto the angel of the
Lord, I seek my brethren; hast thou not heard where they are feeding? and the
angel of the Lord said unto Joseph, I saw thy brethren feeding here, and I
heard them say they would go to feed in Dothan.
And Joseph hearkened to the voice of
the angel of the Lord, and he went to his brethren in Dothan and he found them
in Dothan feeding the flock.
And Joseph advanced to his brethren,
and before he had come nigh unto them, they had resolved to slay him.
And Simeon said to his brethren,
Behold the man of dreams is coming unto us this day, and now therefore come and
let us kill him and cast him in one of the pits that are in the wilderness, and
when his father shall seek him from us, we will say an evil beast has devoured
And Reuben heard the words of his
brethren concerning Joseph, and he said unto them, You should not do this
thing, for how can we look up to our father Jacob? Cast him into this pit to
die there, but stretch not forth a hand upon him to spill his blood; and Reuben
said this in order to deliver him from their hand, to bring him back to his
And when Joseph came to his brethren
he sat before them, and they rose upon him and seized him and smote him to the
earth, and stripped the coat of many colors which he had on.
And they took him and cast him into a
pit, and in the pit there was no water, but serpents and scorpions. And Joseph
was afraid of the serpents and scorpions that were in the pit. And Joseph cried
out with a loud voice, and the Lord hid the serpents and scorpions in the sides
of the pit, and they did no harm unto Joseph.
And Joseph called out from the pit to
his brethren, and said unto them, What have I done unto you, and in what have I
sinned? why do you not fear the Lord concerning me? am I not of your bones and
flesh, and is not Jacob your father, my father? why do you do this thing unto
me this day, and how will you be able to look up to our father Jacob?
And he continued to cry out and call
unto his brethren from the pit, and he said, O Judah, Simeon, and Levi, my
brethren, lift me up from the place of darkness in which you have placed me,
and come this day to have compassion on me, ye children of the Lord, and sons
of Jacob my father. And if I have sinned unto you, are you not the sons of
Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob? if they saw an orphan they had compassion over him,
or one that was hungry, they gave him bread to eat, or one that was thirsty,
they gave him water to drink, or one that was naked, they covered him with
And how then will you withhold your
pity from your brother, for I am of your flesh and bones, and if I have sinned
unto you, surely you will do this on account of my father!
And Joseph spoke these words from the
pit, and his brethren could not listen to him, nor incline their ears to the
words of Joseph, and Joseph was crying and weeping in the pit.
And Joseph said, O that my father
knew, this day, the act which my brothers have done unto me, and the words
which they have this day spoken unto me.
And all his brethren heard his cries
and weeping in the pit, and his brethren went and removed themselves from the
pit, so that they might not hear the cries of Joseph and his weeping in the