What was the particular sin of the Jewish people in this case? Their desire to assimilate. As proof of the people’s massive assimilation, Professor Leibowitz notes that when the children of Jacob first entered Egypt, they declared to Pharaoh (Genesis 47:4) that they intended to stay in Egypt only temporarily, “La’goor ba’ah’retz bah’noo.” Eventually, however, Genesis 47:27 reports, “Vah’yay’shev Yisrael…vah’yay’ah’chah’zoo vah,” that not only did the sons of Jacob settle in Egypt, they took permanent foothold in Egypt! (Heb niphal verb “achaz” – to be caught or grasped or settled).
Quoted in “Billy Graham Speaks: The Evangelical World Prospect,” Christianity Today, vol.3, no.1, p.5, Oct.13, 1958.