14:13 A fugitive 1 came and told Abram the Hebrew. 2 Now Abram was living by the oaks 3 of Mamre the Amorite, the brother 4 of Eshcol and Aner. (All these were allied by treaty 5 with Abram.) 6
39:14 she called for her household servants and said to them, “See, my husband brought 7 in a Hebrew man 8 to us to humiliate us. 9 He tried to have sex with me, 10 but I screamed loudly. 11
39:17 This is what she said to him: 12 “That Hebrew slave 13 you brought to us tried to humiliate me, 14
41:12 Now a young man, a Hebrew, a servant 15 of the captain of the guards, 16 was with us there. We told him our dreams, 17 and he interpreted the meaning of each of our respective dreams for us. 18
1 tn Heb “the fugitive.” The article carries a generic force or indicates that this fugitive is definite in the mind of the speaker.
2 sn E. A. Speiser (Genesis [AB], 103) suggests that part of this chapter came from an outside source since it refers to Abram the Hebrew. That is not impossible, given that the narrator likely utilized traditions and genealogies that had been collected and transmitted over the years. The meaning of the word “Hebrew” has proved elusive. It may be related to the verb “to cross over,” perhaps meaning “immigrant.” Or it might be derived from the name of Abram’s ancestor Eber (see Gen 11:14-16).
3 tn Or “terebinths.”
4 tn Or “a brother”; or “a relative”; or perhaps “an ally.”
5 tn Heb “possessors of a treaty with.” Since it is likely that the qualifying statement refers to all three (Mamre, Eshcol, and Aner) the words “all these” have been supplied in the translation to make this clear.
6 tn This parenthetical disjunctive clause explains how Abram came to be living in their territory, but it also explains why they must go to war with Abram.
7 tn The verb has no expressed subject, and so it could be treated as a passive (“a Hebrew man was brought in”; cf. NIV). But it is clear from the context that her husband brought Joseph into the household, so Potiphar is the apparent referent here. Thus the translation supplies “my husband” as the referent of the unspecified pronominal subject of the verb (cf. NEB, NRSV).
8 sn A Hebrew man. Potiphar’s wife raises the ethnic issue when talking to her servants about what their boss had done.
9 tn Heb “to make fun of us.” The verb translated “to humiliate us” here means to hold something up for ridicule, or to toy with something harmfully. Attempted rape would be such an activity, for it would hold the victim in contempt.
10 tn Heb “he came to me to lie with me.” Here the expression “lie with” is a euphemism for sexual intercourse.
11 tn Heb “and I cried out with a loud voice.”
12 tn Heb “and she spoke to him according to these words, saying.”
13 sn That Hebrew slave. Now, when speaking to her husband, Potiphar’s wife refers to Joseph as a Hebrew slave, a very demeaning description.
14 tn Heb “came to me to make fun of me.” The statement needs no explanation because of the connotations of “came to me” and “to make fun of me.” See the note on the expression “humiliate us” in v. 14.
15 tn Or “slave.”
16 tn Heb “a servant to the captain of the guards.” On this construction see GKC 419-20 §129.c.
17 tn The words “our dreams” are supplied in the translation for stylistic reasons.
18 tn Heb “and he interpreted for us our dreams, each according to his dream he interpreted.”