Book of Jasher 67

Book of Jasher 67

Chapter 67


There was a man in the land of Egypt of the seed
of Levi, whose name was Amram, the son of Kehath, the son of Levi, the son of

And this man went and took a wife,
namely Jochebed the daughter of Levi his father’s sister, and she was one
hundred and twenty-six years old, and he came unto her.

And the woman conceived and bare a
daughter, and she called her name Miriam, because in those days the Egyptians
had embittered the lives of the children of

And she conceived again and bare a
son and she called his name Aaron, for in the days of her conception, Pharaoh
began to spill the blood of the male children of

In those days died Zepho the son of
Eliphaz, son of Esau, king of Chittim, and Janeas reigned in his stead.

And the time that Zepho reigned over
the children of Chittim was fifty years, and he died and was buried in the city
Nabna in the land of Chittim.

And Janeas, one of the mighty men of
the children of Chittim, reigned after him and he reigned fifty years.

And it was after the death of the
king of Chittim that Balaam the son of Beor fled from the
land of Chittim, and he went
and came to
Egypt to Pharaoh
king of

And Pharaoh received him with great
honor, for he had heard of his wisdom, and he gave him presents and made him
for a counsellor, and aggrandized him.

And Balaam dwelt in Egypt, in honor
with all the nobles of the king, and the nobles exalted him, because they all
coveted to learn his wisdom.

And in the hundred and thirtieth year
Israel‘s going down
Egypt, Pharaoh
dreamed that he was sitting upon his kingly throne, and lifted up his eyes and
saw an old man standing before him, and there were scales in the hands of the
old man, such scales as are used by merchants.

And the old man took the scales and
hung them before Pharaoh.

And the old man took all the elders
Egypt and all its
nobles and great men, and he tied them together and put them in one scale.

And he took a milk kid and put it
into the other scale, and the kid preponderated over all.

And Pharaoh was astonished at this dreadful
vision, why the kid should preponderate over all, and Pharaoh awoke and behold
it was a dream.

And Pharaoh rose up early in the
morning and called all his servants and related to them the dream, and the men
were greatly afraid.

And the king said to all his wise
men, Interpret I pray you the dream which I dreamed, that I may know it.

And Balaam the son of Beor answered
the king and said unto him, This means nothing else but a great evil that will
spring up against
Egypt in the
latter days.

For a son will be born to Israel who will
destroy all
Egypt and its
inhabitants, and bring forth the Israelites from
Egypt with a
mighty hand.

Now therefore, O king, take counsel
upon this matter, that you may destroy the hope of the children of Israel and
their expectation, before this evil arise against Egypt.

And the king said unto Balaam, And
what shall we do unto
Israel? surely
after a certain manner did we at first counsel against them and could not
prevail over them.

Now therefore give you also advice
against them by which we may prevail over them.

And Balaam answered the king, saying,
Send now and call thy two counsellors, and we will see what their advice is
upon this matter and afterward thy servant will speak.

And the king sent and called his two
counsellors Reuel the Midianite and Job the Uzite, and they came and sat before
the king.

And the king said to them, Behold you
have both heard the dream which I have dreamed, and the interpretation thereof;
now therefore give counsel and know and see what is to be done to the children
Israel, whereby we
may prevail over them, before their evil shall spring up against us.

And Reuel the Midianite answered the
king and said, May the king live, may the king live forever.

If it seem good to the king, let him
desist from the Hebrews and leave them, and let him not stretch forth his hand
against them.

For these are they whom the Lord
chose in days of old, and took as the lot of his inheritance from amongst all
the nations of the earth and the kings of the earth; and who is there that
stretched his hand against them with impunity, of whom their God was not

Surely thou knowest that when Abraham
went down to Egypt, Pharaoh, the former king of Egypt, saw Sarah his wife, and
took her for a wife, because Abraham said, She is my sister, for he was afraid,
lest the men of Egypt should slay him on account of his wife.

And when the king of Egypt had taken
Sarah then God smote him and his household with heavy plagues, until he
restored unto Abraham his wife Sarah, then was he healed.

And Abimelech the Gerarite, king of
the Philistines, God punished on account of Sarah wife of Abraham, in stopping
up every womb from man to beast.

When their God came to Abimelech in
the dream of night and terrified him in order that he might restore to Abraham
Sarah whom he had taken, and afterward all the people of Gerar were punished on
account of Sarah, and Abraham prayed to his God for them, and he was entreated
of him, and he healed them.

And Abimelech feared all this evil
that came upon him and his people, and he returned to Abraham his wife Sarah,
and gave him with her many gifts.

He did so also to Isaac when he had
driven him from Gerar, and God had done wonderful things to him, that all the
water courses of Gerar were dried up, and their productive trees did not bring

Until Abimelech of Gerar, and
Ahuzzath one of his friends, and Pichol the captain of his host, went to him
and they bent and bowed down before him to the ground.

And they requested of him to
supplicate for them, and he prayed to the Lord for them, and the Lord was
entreated of him and he healed them.

Jacob also, the plain man, was
delivered through his integrity from the hand of his brother Esau, and the hand
of Laban the Syrian his mother’s brother, who had sought his life; likewise
from the hand of all the kings of Canaan who had come together against him and
his children to destroy them, and the Lord delivered them out of their hands,
that they turned upon them and smote them, for who had ever stretched forth his
hand against them with impunity?

Surely Pharaoh the former, thy
father’s father, raised Joseph the son of Jacob above all the princes of the
land of Egypt, when he saw
his wisdom, for through his wisdom he rescued all the inhabitants of the land
from the famine.

After which he ordered Jacob and his
children to come down to
Egypt, in order
that through their virtue, the
land of Egypt and the land of Goshen might be
delivered from the famine.

Now therefore if it seem good in
thine eyes, cease from destroying the children of Israel, but if it be not thy
will that they shall dwell in Egypt, send them forth from here, that they may
go to the land of Canaan, the land where their ancestors sojourned.

And when Pharaoh heard the words of
Jethro he was very angry with him, so that he rose with shame from the king’s
presence, and went to Midian, his land, and took Joseph’s stick with him.

And the king said to Job the Uzite,
What sayest thou Job, and what is thy advice respecting the Hebrews?

So Job said to the king, Behold all
the inhabitants of the land are in thy power, let the king do as it seems good
in his eyes.

And the king said unto Balaam, What
dost thou say, Balaam, speak thy word that we may hear it.

And Balaam said to the king, Of all
that the king has counselled against the Hebrews will they be delivered, and
the king will not be able to prevail over them with any counsel.

For if thou thinkest to lessen them
by the flaming fire, thou canst not prevail over them, for surely their God
delivered Abraham their father from Ur of the Chaldeans; and if thou thinkest
to destroy them with a sword, surely Isaac their father was delivered from it,
and a ram was placed in his stead.

And if with hard and rigorous labor
thou thinkest to lessen them, thou wilt not prevail even in this, for their
father Jacob served Laban in all manner of hard work, and prospered.

Now therefore, O King, hear my words,
for this is the counsel which is counselled against them, by which thou wilt
prevail over them, and from which thou shouldst not depart.

If it please the king let him order
all their children which shall be born from this day forward, to be thrown into
the water, for by this canst thou wipe away their name, for none of them, nor
of their fathers, were tried in this manner.

And the king heard the words of
Balaam, and the thing pleased the king and the princes, and the king did
according to the word of Balaam.

And the king ordered a proclamation
to be issued and a law to be made throughout the
land of Egypt, saying,
Every male child born to the Hebrews from this day forward shall be thrown into
the water.

And Pharaoh called unto all his
servants, saying, Go now and seek throughout the land of Goshen where the
children of Israel are, and see that every son born to the Hebrews shall be
cast into the river, but every daughter you shall let live.

And when the children of Israel heard this
thing which Pharaoh had commanded, to cast their male children into the river,
some of the people separated from their wives and others adhered to them.

And from that day forward, when the
time of delivery arrived to those women of
Israel who had
remained with their husbands, they went to the field to bring forth there, and
they brought forth in the field, and left their children upon the field and
returned home.

And the Lord who had sworn to their
ancestors to multiply them, sent one of his ministering angels which are in
heaven to wash each child in water, to anoint and swathe it and to put into its
hands two smooth stones from one of which it sucked milk and from the other
honey, and he caused its hair to grow to its knees, by which it might cover
itself; to comfort it and to cleave to it, through his compassion for it.

And when God had compassion over them
and had desired to multiply them upon the face of the land, he ordered his
earth to receive them to be preserved therein till the time of their growing
up, after which the earth opened its mouth and vomited them forth and they
sprouted forth from the city like the herb of the earth, and the grass of the
forest, and they returned each to his family and to his father’s house, and
they remained with them.

And the babes of the children of Israel were upon
the earth like the herb of the field, through God’s grace to them.

And when all the Egyptians saw this
thing, they went forth, each to his field with his yoke of oxen and his
ploughshare, and they ploughed it up as one ploughs the earth at seed time.

And when they ploughed they were
unable to hurt the infants of the children of
Israel, so the
people increased and waxed exceedingly.

And Pharaoh ordered his officers
daily to go to
Goshen to seek for
the babes of the children of

And when they had sought and found
one, they took it from its mother’s bosom by force, and threw it into the
river, but the female child they left with its mother; thus did the Egyptians
do to the Israelites all the days.

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