When Jacob died in the land of Egypt
he was embalmed and then carried back
to the land of Canaan.
It took 40 days to embalm his body,
then another 70 days
for the Egyptians to mourn him.
That’s 110 days -
almost four months to make his body ready.
After that, his son Joseph went to Pharaoh’s court,
to make a request about keeping his oath.
Jacob made Joseph swear to him
that he would bury his body
in the proper location -
in the cave near Mamre, in the land of Canaan.
This was the tomb that was bought by Abraham,
Jacob’s grandfather, from Ephron the Hittite
as their family’s burial tomb.
Well, Pharaoh not only gave Joseph permission,
but he sent all his officials to accompany him.
Every dignitary of his court
and all the dignitaries of Egypt went with him.
Joseph and Jacob
most have made quite an impression.
So all the members of Joseph’s household
and his brothers and all those belonging
to his father’s household went along.
Only their children
and their flocks and their herds
stayed back, in the land of Goshen.
Even Chariots and horsemen
also went up with him.
It was quite a funeral procession.
When the vessels reached
the threshing floor of Atad,
near the Jordan, they loudly lamented.
At the threshing floor,
Joseph observed 7 full days of mourning.
Across the river, just west of the Jordan,
was the land of Canaan.
The Canaanites are recorded as having said,
“The Egyptians are holding
a solemn ceremony of mourning.”
That is why the threshing floor
is called Abel Mizraim -
it means “the place beyond” or “east of the Jordan.”
The Canaanites looked east of the Jordan
and saw the sadness of the family of Israel,
and the lament of the Egyptian people.
After setting his father in the cave,
Joseph and his brothers
and all the Egyptian dignitaries
returned to Pharaoh.
They stayed there many more years
until God was ready to raise up a savior