Genesis Chapters 44-45

Jul 16, 2012  |  Genesis, Old Testament  |  No Comments

Joseph Reveals Himself and God’s Plan to His Brothers

Joseph sent his brothers on their way, but once again had his steward place the silver in the mouths of their bags and, in Benjamin’s bag, his special cup. He then has his steward go after the brothers and says that whoever has the cup will become Joseph’s slave. When the cup is found in Benjamin’s bag, the other brothers are distraught.

  • Genesis 44:16 And Judah said, “What shall we say to my lord? What shall we speak? Or how shall we clear ourselves. God has found out the iniquity of your servants. Behold, we are my lord’s slaves, both we and he also with whom the cup is found.

When the older brothers plead with Joseph regarding Benjamin, and even offer to take his place, Joseph broke down, sent his servants away and revealed his identity to his brothers. He asks them to come closer and tells them that he is Joseph, their brother, whom they sold into slavery.

  • Genesis 45:5-9 Now, therefore, don’t be grieved or angry with yourselves, that you sold me here; for God sent me before you to preserve life. For these two years, the famine has been in the land and there are still five years in which there will be neither plowing nor harvesting. And God sent me before you to preserve a posterity in the earth, and to save your lives by a great deliverance. So now, it was not you who sent me here, but God, and he has made me a father to Pharaoh, and lord of all his house, and ruler throughout all the land of Egypt. Hurry and go to my father and say to him, “Thus says your son, Joseph, God has made me lord of all Egypt. Come down to me; do not tarry.”

Reflection on Genesis Chapters 44-45

  • Judah’s statement regarding God having revealed their sins is almost stunning. Normally, we’re so caught up in the story that we gloss over this, but the indisputable truth of their sin and ours, is fundamental and damning. Although Judah knew they were not guilty of stealing the silver and the cup, he also knew they were guilty of the sin of selling their brother. Likewise, we may not be guilty of a particularly heinous sin such as murder, but we know, in our hearts, that we are guilty of many small sins, and, most of all, of rebelling against God.
  • Joseph explains to his brothers what he has known for a long time – their sin was part of God’s plan to send Joseph ahead to provide for their salvation and deliverance.
  • Joseph also reminds his brothers and his father that the prophecy in his teenage dream has now been fulfilled – they would all bow down to him. Why is this so much more palatable in its actual form than in the teenaged prophecy?
  • Lord, I too acknowledge my sin. Thank you for providing a way of deliverance and salvation in your son, Jesus Christ.

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