37:28 So when the Midianite 4 merchants passed by, Joseph’s brothers pulled 5 him 6 out of the cistern and sold him to the Ishmaelites for twenty pieces of silver. The Ishmaelites 7 then took Joseph to Egypt.
45:22 He gave sets of clothes to each one of them, 8 but to Benjamin he gave three hundred pieces of silver and five sets of clothes. 9
1 sn A thousand pieces [Heb “shekels”] of silver. The standards for weighing money varied considerably in the ancient Near East, but the generally accepted weight for the shekel is 11.5 grams (0.4 ounce). This makes the weight of silver here 11.5 kilograms, or 400 ounces (about 25 pounds).
2 sn To your ‘brother.’ Note the way that the king refers to Abraham. Was he being sarcastic? It was surely a rebuke to Sarah. What is amazing is how patient this king was. It is proof that the fear of God was in that place, contrary to what Abraham believed (see v. 11).
3 tn Heb “Look, it is for you a covering of the eyes, for all who are with you, and with all, and you are set right.” The exact meaning of the statement is unclear. Apparently it means that the gift of money somehow exonerates her in other people’s eyes. They will not look on her as compromised (see G. J. Wenham, Genesis [WBC], 2:74).
5 tn Heb “they drew and they lifted up.” The referent (Joseph’s brothers) has been specified in the translation for clarity; otherwise the reader might assume the Midianites had pulled Joseph from the cistern (but cf. NAB).
6 tn Heb “Joseph” (both here and in the following clause); the proper name has been replaced both times by the pronoun “him” in the translation for stylistic reasons.
7 tn Heb “they”; the referent (the Ishmaelites) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
8 tn Heb “to all of them he gave, to each one, changes of outer garments.”
9 tn Heb “changes of outer garments.”