“Joseph sells grain to the Egyptians. Pharaoh receives the Egyptians’ cattle and lands.”
13 And there was no bread in all the land; for the famine was very sore, so that the land of Egypt and all the land of Canaan fainted by reason of the famine.
14 And Joseph gathered up all the money that was found in the land of Egypt, and in the land of Canaan, for the corn which they bought: and Joseph brought the money into Pharaoh’s house.
15 And when money failed in the land of Egypt, and in the land of Canaan, all the Egyptians came unto Joseph, and said, Give us bread: for why should we die in thy presence? for the money faileth.
16 And Joseph said, Give your cattle; and I will give you for your cattle, if money fail.
17 And they brought their cattle unto Joseph: and Joseph gave them bread in exchange for horses, and for the flocks, and for the cattle of the herds, and for the asses: and he fed them with bread for all their cattle for that year.
18 When that year was ended, they came unto him the second year, and said unto him, We will not hide it from my lord, how that our money is spent; my lord also hath our herds of cattle; there is not ought left in the sight of my lord, but our bodies, and our lands:
19 Wherefore shall we die before thine eyes, both we and our land? buy us and our land for bread, and we and our land will be servants unto Pharaoh: and give us seed, that we may live, and not die, that the land be not desolate.
20 And Joseph bought all the land of Egypt for Pharaoh; for the Egyptians sold every man his field, because the famine prevailed over them: so the land became Pharaoh’s.
21 And as for the people, he removed them to cities from one end of the borders of Egypt even to the other end thereof.
22 Only the land of the priests bought he not; for the priests had a portion assigned them of Pharaoh, and did eat their portion which Pharaoh gave them: wherefore they sold not their lands.
23 Then Joseph said unto the people, Behold, I have bought you this day and your land for Pharaoh: lo, here is seed for you, and ye shall sow the land.
24 And it shall come to pass in the increase, that ye shall give the fifth part unto Pharaoh, and four parts shall be your own, for seed of the field, and for your food, and for them of your households, and for food for your little ones.
25 And they said, Thou hast saved our lives: let us find grace in the sight of my lord, and we will be Pharaoh’s servants.
President Lorenzo Snow said:
“Joseph, in the land of Egypt, was called upon to perform a certain class of duties, which were made incumbent upon him. He was not called to preach the gospel without purse or scrip, but to build granaries, and to use all his influence with the king, nobles, and people of Egypt to store their grain against a day of famine. I have often thought, in reflecting upon this subject, how little proof they had of the importance of doing what Joseph required of them, when compared with the abundance of proof we possess in relation to the importance of the duties required of us. There was Pharaoh—a Gentile, making no profession of religion—he had a dream which none could interpret save Joseph, a stranger in the land, whom no one knew, who had been bought for money, and who was taken from prison into the presence of the king. No doubt the nobles and the people who heard of the interpretation of the dream believed that Joseph made that for his own benefit, glory, and exaltation, and that the king might think well of him; and when they saw him riding round in pomp and splendor, trying to establish granaries all through the country, they, no doubt, thought he was an impostor, and placed no credence in his predictions. In fact, I think I could hardly have believed it myself had I lived in those days. Many of the people placed such little faith in his words that, failing to lay up their food, when the famine overtook them, to save themselves from starvation they had to sell themselves for slaves to the King [see Gen. 47:19, 25].”
(“Remarks,” Deseret Evening News, Mar. 27, 1868, 2.)