Background Probability

The Agnostic Popular Front has moved to its new home at Skeptic Ink, and will henceforth be known as Background Probability. Despite the relocation and rebranding, we will continue to spew the same low-fidelity high-quality bullshit that you've come to expect.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Genesis 47: Land o' Goshen

In this chapter, Joseph secures huge tracts of land for his sheparding relatives from the north. Also, Jacob stands before Pharaoh and declares "The days of the years of my pilgrimage are an hundred and thirty years: few and evil have the days of the years of my life been, and have not attained unto the days of the years of the life of my fathers in the days of their pilgrimage." Such beautiful language, and it underscores the point that we expect to have things as well as our forefathers and are disappointed whenever we fall short in that respect. After all, when Abraham was 130 years old, he was still making new babies with his new wife.

The later part of this chapter describes Joe's shrewd dealings as the viceroy of Pharaoh, buying up pretty much everything from the people of Egypt: firstly their monetary savings, then their herds, then their lands, and finally even the people themselves as serfs. Meanwhile, even as Joe is buying up everything and everyone in Egypt, the people of Israel are thriving and multiplying in the land of Goshen.

Finally, in a scene which makes little sense to us moderns, Jacob undergo a testicular testimonial, swearing solemnly to bury his father with his ancestors back in Canaan. I hear this was really quite routine back then, so, um, nothing to see here.

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