Genesis 50:25 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 50:25, NIV: And Joseph made the Israelites swear an oath and said, 'God will surely come to your aid, and then you must carry my bones up from this place.'

Genesis 50:25, ESV: Then Joseph made the sons of Israel swear, saying, “God will surely visit you, and you shall carry up my bones from here.”

Genesis 50:25, KJV: And Joseph took an oath of the children of Israel, saying, God will surely visit you, and ye shall carry up my bones from hence.

Genesis 50:25, NASB: Then Joseph made the sons of Israel swear, saying, 'God will assuredly take care of you, and you shall carry my bones up from here.'

Genesis 50:25, NLT: Then Joseph made the sons of Israel swear an oath, and he said, 'When God comes to help you and lead you back, you must take my bones with you.'

Genesis 50:25, CSB: So Joseph made the sons of Israel take an oath: "When God comes to your aid, you are to carry my bones up from here."

What does Genesis 50:25 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Joseph, 110 years old, is dying (Genesis 50:22). In the previous verse, he has assured his family that they are not destined to remain in Egypt forever. God will visit them and take them back to Canaan. God will keep the promise He made to Abraham, Isaac, and their father Jacob to give their people the land of Canaan for their own possession (Genesis 17:5–8).

Because Joseph believes this so fervently, he follows in his father's footsteps. He commands a solemn oath from "the sons of Israel" (Genesis 35:10–11), likely meaning the heads of each of tribes. They must swear to carry his remains back to Canaan after God comes to take them home. His father, Jacob, wanted to be buried immediately in Canaan (Genesis 49:29–30). Joseph's body will remain in Egypt, but not forever.

The request is made plausible, in part, because Joseph knows his body will be embalmed by Egyptians. Though several hundred years will pass, his bones will retain enough structure to be transported to Canaan when the time comes (Exodus 13:19).