Journey through the Book of Genesis with me. The plan is simple. Read ONE chapter a day. Blog or journal 5* things you learned that you previously didn't know and ask 5* questions about the chapter that you'll ponder all week. Let's go!
** You'll probably learn way more than 5 things and have more than 5 questions about each chapter. That's totally fine. The more the merrier!
QUESTION 1: Joseph was not only older, but had been fully assimilated into Egyptian culture. Everything from his bodily features to his accent would have been different than what the brothers remembered. So, how were they convinced that they wereindeed looking at their youngest half-brother? How did Joseph “make himself known” to his brothers?
QUESTION 2: In the midst of their celebration, did the brothers ever apologize to Joseph for their actions?
QUESTION 3: Having been counseled not to quarrel with each other, what did the brothers end up talking about on their journey back home?
QUESTION 4: In their conversation with their father about being reunited with Joseph, did they ever tell confess to him the role they played in Joseph’s disappearance or did they come up with a different cover story?
WHAT I LEARNED
INSIGHT 1: Joseph’s loud wailing, though unbecoming of someone in his position, are tears of joy. This was the moment God had prepared him for, in spite of having suffered unjustly along the way. God had caused all things to work together for good for him, and he was in awe of God’s faithfulness to him and his father’s household.
INSIGHT 2: The brothers being “stunned and dismayed” (AMP) is tantamount to saying this was the worst, possibly most-feared moment of their lives. They couldn’t have fathomed that Joseph was still alive, much less in a position of influence and power over their lives. It’s possible that in their terror, they barely heard a word Joseph spoke in verse 4-13 because they were anticipating severe retribution from him.
INSIGHT 3: Verse 24 shows the incredible sensitivity of Joseph. There was no doubt in his mind that his brothers would revert to the blame game, and possibly even harm one another for their actions against him. All of which makes his last words to them even more poignant, “Then he sent his brothers away, and as they departed, he said to them, “Do not quarrel on the way.”
INSIGHT 4: Jacob had been separated from his favorite son from his favorite wife for almost 20 years (Genesis 37:2 – 17 years old; Genesis 41:46 – 30 years old; Genesis 42:53 – 7 years of famine). It was incomprehensible that Joseph could still be alive, hence his numbness at the news that he was not only found, but was the ruler over all the land of Egypt.
INSIGHT 5: The “care package” (v.16-24) Pharaoh offers to the brothers to take back to Canaan (wagons, goods, provisions, shekels of silver, change of clothes, food, and donkeys) is the same as sending them back home with a jumbo jet filled with a fleet of cars, cash, and crates of luxury food! It’s this fortune (v.27) that actually ends up convinces Jacob that his sons were telling the truth about Joseph!