Acts 7:13 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Acts 7:13, NIV: On their second visit, Joseph told his brothers who he was, and Pharaoh learned about Joseph's family.

Acts 7:13, ESV: And on the second visit Joseph made himself known to his brothers, and Joseph’s family became known to Pharaoh.

Acts 7:13, KJV: And at the second time Joseph was made known to his brethren; and Joseph's kindred was made known unto Pharaoh.

Acts 7:13, NASB: And on the second visit, Joseph made himself known to his brothers, and Joseph’s family was revealed to Pharaoh.

Acts 7:13, NLT: The second time they went, Joseph revealed his identity to his brothers, and they were introduced to Pharaoh.

Acts 7:13, CSB: The second time, Joseph revealed himself to his brothers, and Joseph's family became known to Pharaoh.

What does Acts 7:13 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Stephen, one of the church's first deacons and a gifted apologist, is defending himself against the charge that he disrespects Moses, the Mosaic law, and the temple (Acts 6:12–14). In his story about Joseph, he shows that the Israelites have a long tradition of rejecting the prophets God sends them.

At this point, Joseph was second in command of Egypt and had spent seven years accumulating grain in preparation for a multi-regional famine (Genesis 41:37–57). To his shock, the brothers who sold him into slavery appeared to buy grain from him (Genesis 42). On their second visit, when he was assured his younger brother Benjamin was safe, he revealed himself.

In Stephen's audience is a young Pharisee named Saul (Acts 7:58). After a rocky start, Saul/Paul will follow Jesus and bring Jesus' story to the Gentiles (Acts 9:3–19). It's possible he has this part of Joseph's story in mind when he writes 1 Corinthians 15:5–7. After Jesus' resurrection, He revealed Himself to Peter, the rest of the twelve disciples, over five hundred "brothers," then to James, then to all the apostles. James was Jesus' half-brother. James had rejected the idea that Jesus was the Messiah, thought He was crazy (Mark 3:21), and openly mocked Him (John 7:2–5). This is the same James who became the pastor of the church in Jerusalem and, according to tradition, died for the name of his Brother.

Like James, Joseph's brothers realized that the one they rejected has the power to save them. Stephen would have been encouraged to know at least one in the audience would come to that same realization.