21 November 2020Genesis 50:15-25
"So have no fear; I myself will provide for you and your little ones.' In this way he reassured them, speaking kindly to them. (v. 21)
It seems clear in this passage, that once they had settled in Egypt it was Joseph who was more concerned than his brothers with caring for their father, Jacob, in the last years of his life. After Jacob's funeral, Joseph's brothers came together, alarmed that Joseph might now attempt to pay them back for the way in which they had treated him in the past. They come to him, mentioning the way in which their father would have wanted Joseph to relate to them, and they offer themselves as his slaves. However Joseph reiterates something he had mentioned earlier – that he viewed what had happened to him as being part of God's plan and God was leading him to the place where he wanted him to be. He then tells his brothers that he will care for them and keep them safe. According to what we read here, Joseph didn’t leave Egypt in his lifetime. He lived to a remarkable age of 110, seeing the birth of the next generations, and the building of the nation of Israel. When Joseph is about to die, he tells his brothers that after his death God will enable them travel once more to the promised land. His body was embalmed before being placed in the coffin, so his brothers could take him with them when they continued on the predicted journey.
- Do you find the story of Joseph and his brothers helpful in considering the Jewish faith, from which our own faith was born?
- Do you feel it is important for us to fully understand the background in which Jesus was born?
- Do you think that we who are his disciples should not look beyond the place in which we are placed, but continue to ask for guidance for our journey?
- Do you find it helpful to look to history when seeking to find a way forward, especially perhaps in these difficult times as we live with the coronavirus?