This is a question about the numbers in Genesis chapter 46. I have consulted commentaries, and it seems they wish only to talk about Stephen's comment in Acts 7:14. However, my question is unrelated to that comment, and is about a seeming discrepancy in the numbers within Genesis 46.

This chapter lists Jacob's descendants who went into Egypt, both male and female. The numbers specifically do not include Jacob's wives, nor the wives of his sons, (nor do they include Jacob himself, except in v.27,) but do include his sons and daughters, grandsons and granddaughters; all those which came from him. The names of his descendants are grouped according to which of Jacob's wives bore them, and a total is given for each of those four groups.

If you add up all the names given, you will find that there are 71. But this includes Er and Onan, who died in Canaan and did not go to Egypt (v.12.) Subtracting two leaves the total at 69. However, this includes Joseph and his two sons Manasseh and Ephraim, who were already in Egypt. So subtracting those three leaves 66, which matches v.26 "All the persons who went with Jacob to Egypt, who came from his body, besides Jacobís sonsí wives, were sixty-six persons in all." Okay so far?

Now verse 27 says "And the sons of Joseph who were born to him in Egypt were two persons. All the persons of the house of Jacob who went to Egypt were seventy." So here we add back Joseph and his two sons, and Jacob himself (all of the house of Jacob,) to arrive at 70. Still good.

The apparent discrepancy occurs when you look at the totals of the four groups, given as 33 (v.15,) 16 (v.18,) 14 (v.22,) and 7 (v.25,) which total 70, rather than 71. So subtracting Er and Onan, Joseph and his two sons, leaves 65 (doesn't match v.26;) and adding back Joseph and his two sons, and Jacob, makes 69, which doesn't match v.27.

If you count the number of names given for the last three groups, Zilpah, Rachel and Bilhah, they match the given totals (16, 14, 7.) However, all of the names listed in the first group of Leah, total 34 which does not match the given total of 33, either before or after removing Er and Onan!

So where is the problem--is it somewhere within the translation, or is it with the guy behind the keyboard? compute confused


There is no such thing as preaching Christ and Him crucified, unless we preach what nowadays is called Calvinism. It is a nickname to call it Calvinism; Calvinism is the gospel, and nothing else. - C.H. Spurgeon