Joseph in the Bible
Joseph is an important figure in the Bible's Book of Genesis. Sold into slavery by his jealous Joseph, son of Jacob and Rachel, lived in the land of Canaan with ten half-brothers, one full brother, and at least one half-sister. . hands of the Mighty God of Jacob (From there is the Shepherd, the Stone of Israel), By the God of. The behavioral aspect of “love-hate” relationships is undoubtedly in view in This must not be taken to indicate Jacob's emotional disconnection or d. for his astounding wisdom, Joseph's informing his brothers of God's plan. Answer: Joseph was the second youngest of twelve brothers born to Jacob, who You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is.
When Jacob asked Joseph to go to Shechem to check up on his sons and on his flocks verseshe was not sending Joseph around the corner to spy upon and then tattle on his brothers. It was 50 miles or more to Shechem and about 70 miles to Dothan! Since Shechem had been the scene of the slaughter of the men of that city years before It was the kind of responsibility that he would give only to one who had proven his capabilities as a leader.
A sensitive and potentially dangerous mission would not be given to a son without reliability and authority. And when the plot to kill him is first conceived, the dreams are a prominent part of their hostility and motivation: Idle or fanciful dreams provide an occasion only for laughter.
Under most circumstances the worst that might be considered would be that Joseph needed to be put into a padded cell for his own protection.
Joseph, I have maintained, was rejected by his brethren because they deeply resented the authority his father had granted him over them, especially when they reasoned that it should be theirs. Was this not the very root reason for the rejection of Jesus by the religious leaders of His day? When Jesus taught the people, the response of the masses was significant: The result was that when Jesus had finished these words, the multitudes were amazed at His teaching; for He was teaching them as one having authority, and not as their scribes Matthew 7: All of these lines of evidence lead me to the same conclusion: Joseph was rejected by his brethren because he, the youngest of these men save Benjamin, of coursewas placed in a position of authority over them.
Now it was only a matter of time and opportunity. That opportunity finally arrived when Jacob sent Joseph to Shechem. Come, and I will send you to them. Since Jacob had purchased land there But there was always the danger of some angry relative of one of those Shechemites who were killed or captured seeking vengeance.
This seems to be what Joseph was sent to look into. Only a man with proven skill and wisdom would ever be sent to handle a task as sensitive and volatile as this. Joseph wandered about the fields of Shechem in search of his brothers. Not willing to give up his search and return to his father without completing his task, Joseph went on to Dothan. While at a considerable distance Joseph was recognized by his brothers.
They immediately conspired in a violent and daring plot which would rid them once and for all of their brother: When they saw him from a distance and before he came close to them, they plotted against him to put him to death.
So it came about, when Joseph reached his brothers, that they stripped Joseph of his tunic, the varicolored tunic that was on him; and they took him and threw him into the pit.
Now the pit was empty, without any water in it Genesis It may also have been that coat which triggered the pent-up feelings of jealousy and hostility toward the beloved son of their father.
They saw the great distance from their father and the remoteness of this spot as the ideal opportunity to do away with the threat which Joseph posed. The opportunity for a perfect alibi was also at hand, for wild animals were a threat to life and limb in the open field.
Only a bloody robe need be presented to Jacob. His imagination would take care of the rest. Reuben had good reason to hate his brother, for it was Joseph who would obtain the birthright that could have belonged to him. But it seems that Reuben feared facing his father more than he hated Joseph. He was still the oldest of the family. Whether or not he had the rights of the first-born, he was still saddled with the responsibilities.
I must admit, however, that I would not have wanted to stand up against these fellows either. They were mean, really mean. The slaughter of the Shechemites was only one evidence of their brutal natures.
Reuben therefore suggests that they kill Joseph without the shedding of blood. Throw the boy in a cistern and let nature do him in. The idea had some definite advantages, and so the plan was agreed to. When Joseph arrived, his reception was far from friendly. They tore off his coat, the symbol of all that they rejected, and threw the defenseless young man into a pit.
What is the story of Joseph and his brothers?
It is significant that this pit was empty, for normally it would have contained water. Then they sat down to eat a meal. And as they raised their eyes and looked, behold, a caravan of Ishmaelites was coming from Gilead, with their camels bearing aromatic gum and balm and myrrh, on their way to bring them down to Egypt. Come and let us sell him to the Ishmaelites and not lay our hands on him; for he is our brother, our own flesh. Then some Midianite traders passed by, so they pulled him up and lifted Joseph out of the pit, and sold him to the Ishmaelites for twenty shekels of silver.
Thus they brought Joseph into Egypt. Now Reuben returned to the pit, and behold, Joseph was not in the pit; so he tore his garments. Having thrown Joseph into the pit, they sat down to eat a meal. There is no loss of appetite, no sense of guilt or remorse. And there is no pity, for they eat their meal probably well within hearing of the cries that were continuing to come from the bottom of the pit.
While they were eating, a caravan of Ishmaelites approached them on their way to Egypt from Gilead verse Rather than leaving Joseph to die of starvation and exposure, why not sell him into slavery to these traders? This would dispose of their problem, avoid the messy matter of murder, and get rid of any evidence of wrongdoing. Perhaps most appealing, it would provide them with a profit.
While Reuben sought to return Joseph to his father, Judah is not said to have any such intention. While slavery may seem to be a more humane fate than death, some who lived in such a state of slavery might challenge this fact. Selling a brother as a slave was hardly more commendable than putting him to death.
In the end, Joseph was sold to the Midianite 30 traders for twenty shekels of silver, the price which Moses later fixed for a young slave boy Leviticus Reuben had been gone during the time his brothers sold Joseph to the traders. Very likely this was to distract their attention from Joseph in the hope of their leaving him quickly, so that he could return to rescue Joseph. What a shock it must have been for him to return to the dry cistern and find Joseph gone.
Reuben, as the oldest son, is the one who must face his father, and that to him is not a very pleasant thought. There is no gentle approach, no careful preparation for the tragic news, only the crude act of sending the bloody coat to him and letting him draw the desired conclusion. It was a heartless deed, but one that accurately depicted their spiritual condition at the time.
Like most of us, Jacob jumped to a conclusion, assuming the very worst had happened: A wild beast has devoured him; Joseph has surely been torn to pieces! Then all his sons and all his daughters arose to comfort him, but he refused to be comforted. And it was covered with blood. Such a blood-stained garment without a body led Jacob to the conclusion his sons desired: Joseph must have been attacked and devoured by a wild animal.
Perhaps the brothers of Joseph prided themselves in the fact that they never said Joseph was dead. Jacob seemed to have handled the death of Deborah There was no way that his children could comfort him.
How hypocritical these efforts must have been anyway. Life for Jacob seemed hardly worth living any longer. The only thing Jacob could look forward to was the grave. For many years Jacob would live with the lie that his son was dead. In one sense believing this was a gracious thing.Joseph and His Brothers - Kids Bible Stories - Beginner's Bible - Holy Tales Bible Stories - 4K UHD
Can you imagine the mental torment it would have been for Jacob to know what was actually happening to his son? We have just seen the dramatic conclusion to the hostage crisis in Iran, which lasted less than two years. We know something of the agony of the relatives and friends of these captives, but Jacob would have had to endure such suffering and anguish for over twenty years.
Joseph, in fact, was not dead, nor was he outside of the providential care of God. Conclusion Contextually and historically the sale of Joseph into slavery explains how Joseph and ultimately the entire nation of Israel ended up in Egypt, from whence the exodus commenced.
More importantly, this chapter tells us a good part of the reason why it was necessary for the years of bondage to occur.
The fact that this bondage would take place was no mystery, for God had revealed it to Abraham: Spiritually, the state of the sons of Israel was at an all-time low.
Nowhere have we yet seen any kind of relationship with God such as that of their forefathers. Internally, there was no unity among these brothers. They were simply the sons of four different mothers perpetuating the strife which existed between them cf. There was no brotherly love, only the seeking of self-interest. God has not chosen them because they are righteous; rather, because God has chosen them they must be righteous.
Mindful of His covenant with Abraham to bless all the nations of the earth, God elects Jacob-Israel, not to privilege, but to service, to further His saving purpose among the nations.
She is to be a dedicated nation, a light for the Gentiles Is Everything is against Jacob, except the mysterious ways of God, and these eventually triumph in him. He is the youngest brother in a land where pre-eminence is naturally given to the oldest son. In contrast with Esau, Jacob is clearly the lesser vehicle; yet he bears the promise and the blessing. And yet, like her ancestor, Jacob-Israel, she is chosen by God to be the instrument of salvation . Joseph-Patriarch of Love Joseph is very different from his father.
The Joseph-saga Gen is a superb presentation of the biblical doctrine of vicarious suffering, for Joseph, when triumphant, saves his brothers who had cruelly wronged him. The act whereby they attempted to destroy him, eventually leads to their salvation in time of famine.
No tension between nature and grace, disbelief and faith is found in Joseph. There is no wrestling with the deity Jacob: No tensions between faith and unfaith Abraham or sinfulness and grace Jacob appear in Joseph, but rather in his brothers. When Joseph jails them for three days, his brothers begin to repent because their harsh treatment reminds them of their past cruelty to Joseph Joseph insists on the presence of Benjamin for his own purposes.
The old crime against Joseph is still on their consciences when, accused of stealing the sliver cup, they throw themselves down in guilt and penance. Joseph leads his brothers to an effective penance and conversion of heart. By re-enacting the first scene and setting up the very same circumstances Joseph wishes to see whether his brothers will for a second time abandon the other son of Rachel, their youngest brother, Benjamin, and return home to theirfather telling him that his son is lost.
If they refuse to abandon Benjamin, their moral renewal and penitence will be proven. It their hearts are changed, they are forgiven.
This is their judgement in which Joseph identifies himself with Benjamin to test his brothers, just as Christ identifies Himself with the least of men when He comes to judge at the Final Judgement. In each case the judge determines his relationship to the judged by their freely chosen relationship to others. Only when they have shown their love of Benjamin in their refusal to depart without him does Joseph reveal himself as their brother, and restores their friendship.
While his brothers recover from their shock, Joseph Despite famine and their sins God has been looking after the family of Jacob-Israel to insure their survival. Salvation is bestowed on the group because of the suffering of one just man.
Salvation for both criminal and victim is seen in this amazing insight into Providence. He is the type of Messiah in whom the people of God believe and hope. With Joseph, the people of God easily make the transition from the historical individual to the corporate personality. Joseph saves his brothers. He is the loving, beneficent ruler who not only cares for the physical needs of his people, feeding them in famine, but also for their moral rebirth, leading them to a change of heart and reconciliation.
A Messianic Figure In Joseph there is a fulfillment, in a certain sense of the divine promise made to Abraham: Against fantastic odds, God preserves his life and brings him to a position in which he is responsible for saving, not only the life of the family of Jacob, but of the whole world. The universal nature of the original promise made to Abraham is recalled in the statement: Perhaps the people of God came to see in Joseph the salvation motif which, after the fall of the nation, was expressed in the Servant of God: In any case, Joseph is everything Israel loves most.
Joseph is the living personification of covenant love: The Covenant of Faith, Hope and Love God had taken the initiative in establishing the covenant alliance with His people. Because the Lord is a Person, His worshippers are bound to a personal response of loyalty, service and devotion that is summed up in love; and because His covenant is with the people as such, individuals are bound in similar loyalty to each other. This is the meaning of Joseph for the people of God. Today we tend to express our basic relationship to God in terms of faith, hope and love, whereas the men of the Bible preferred to express these same concepts in the concrete terms of a corporate personality.
God was always in control. Joseph kept his eyes on God, and He used Joseph greatly. What an encouragement to us. Let God use you where you are. Let Him use you in the hard times, as well as the good times.
The story of Joseph spans many chapters, Genesis We could actually do an entire study just on the life of Joseph, but because of time limitation, we will just focus on the key events in his life. Encourage me through his life to seek you more intimately and to trust you for every situation that comes into my life. Keep me mindful that you are always in control. Could Joseph have prevented the jealousy of his brothers? Why or why not? How would you describe his relationship with his father Jacob?
Why would these two, of all the brothers, try to save Joseph? Looking Deeper We are told in Genesis What was the significance of this tunic and what impact might that have had on his brothers? Are you willing to let God do whatever He needs to in your life to make you usable to Him?
Be honest with the Lord, and ask Him to make you willing, trusting His loving and sovereign hand in your life.
We pick up our narrative of Joseph in Chapter Yet, how did God use this for good? Have you ever been falsely accused? How did you handle it?
What resulted from it? How does one gain favor?
Joseph in the Bible
Looking Reflectively Joseph lived a life of integrity and was faithful to God in the midst of prosperity and adversity. He is a great example for us to follow. Are you living faithfully in the midst of prosperity and adversity?
Do others around you see Christ in you?