Friday 02 October 2015

Bible Book:

“His brothers said to him, ‘Are you indeed to reign over us? Are you indeed to have dominion over us? So they hated him even more because of his dreams and his words.” (v. 8)

Genesis 37:3-28 Friday 2 October 2015

Psalm: Psalm 102:1-11


And so begins one of the most famousOld Testament stories ever told on a West End stage! Joseph and theAmazing Long Robe with Sleeves (NRSV), or should we call it 'God'sDysfunctional Family: The Next Generation'?

Indeed, we don't have to read very much tosee those unhelpful traits of the family leaping off the page.Joseph is Jacob's favourite, and Jacob (who was his mother'sfavourite) didn't imagine it would be a problem at all to have hima lovely jacket made to prove it! Oh dear! Joseph therefore didn'tsee it as a potential problem to share his dreams with his brothers- dreams in which he is exalted above them.

This story is often used to show how Godcan bring good endings out of difficult or evil times, even howGod's providential way might have planned it all along. Joseph endsthis passage being sold as a slave and carried off to Egypt. Hisfather has been deceived and thinks the firstborn son of hisfavourite wife is dead. His brothers harbour a dark and shamefulsecret. And another goat has been needlessly killed! For the timebeing, at this cliffhanger, we're left with the question of howJoseph's dreams will work out, and just how God could possibly meanall this for good. How will blessing emerge from the strife?

To Ponder

  • Can you think of times in your own life when things seemed tobe lost or hopeless, but you have traced God's working through thedarkness into new light? What happened?
  • When unhelpful traits pass down the generations in a family, itcan be very damaging. How can the church help, as a family (orcommunity) of faith, to support, guide or transform families andindividuals?
  • Do you have a dream? Perhaps a vision for a better world, or abetter church? When do you think it is wise to share your dream,and when is it best to be quiet?

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