So, maybe I just like characters of the Bible with J-names. Jacob. Joseph. Jonah. Josiah. But I do. And for the past few days, and for the next few days as I am finishing up Genesis, the main character of this family story is Joseph. Therefore, I’m gonna blog about him for a few days. I’m gonna tell his story in bits and pieces, even though I’ll be moving on to Exodus by the end of the week. I’m gonna start with him & his brothers, then cover the first part of Egypt. Then go into the second part of his story in Egypt. Then a concluding piece. Each time pulling out truths that God has shown me in His story.
Maybe it’s because I’ve never really read the story in one continuum like I have been. Usually when you think of Joseph, you only get half the picture, the coat of many colors. Really this is not the significant part of the story…at all. Except to show that Jacob, father of 12, had a favorite, and it was Joseph, his 17 year old. Which put him at odds with his brothers. This coat caused his brothers to never speak peacefully with him.
Then, a monkey wrench in thrown in. Joseph starts to dream. Because they come true later on in the story, I’d say they are straight from God. His dreams are very vivid, showing all the boys in the field, and Joseph’s sheaf (a bundle of wheat stalks, tied together) stands up straight, while his brothers’ sheaves bowed down to it. Weird picture. But the meaning is obvious. And his brothers caught on and said to him: “Are you indeed to reign over us?” And they repeat the question. And it caused them to hate him even more.
He has another dream, of the same nature. This time, however, he sees the sun, the moon, and the stars bow down to him. The sun & moon represent his father and mother. And his father rebuked him. But his brothers became jealous of him.
Soon his brothers looked for an opportunity to kill him. They decide, thanks to the intervention of Ruben, to throw him into a pit, and rip his coat of many colors to make it look like he was killed. Then they saw a caravan coming down, heading to Egypt. They sold their brother for 20 pieces of silver. Reuben came back to get him out of the pit and take him home, but Joseph was halfway to Egypt by then. His brothers tore his coat up, dipped it in blood, and took it to his father. And his father immediately recognized it and began to mourn for his son in sackcloth. He mourned for many days, refusing to be comforted.
And in Egypt, Joseph had been sold to Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh, the captain of the guard.
The theme of Joseph’s entire story is God’s sovereignty. This part looks rather bleak. His father loves him, but that causes his brothers to hate him. Any fathers or fathers to be out there, don’t choose favorites. It only makes things hard, as this story shows the extreme of that. But maybe your out there, experiencing a difficult situation. Hopefully your brothers don’t hate you and are out to kill you. Maybe you hate yourself. Maybe you are experiencing persecution for your faith. Maybe people are laughing at the dreams He has given you to dream (maybe not literally, but God does still work that way). Or perhaps you know people experiencing some hard times. Remember God’s sovereignty today. Remember that He is in control, even in the chaos. Remember Romans 8:28. With that I leave Him to speak to you.
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.”