Summary of passage: With Jacob dead, Joseph’s brothers once again became afraid of retribution from Joseph for what they did to him. They lied (again), saying Jacob told Joseph to forgive them before he died. Joseph wept over this. His brothers humbled themselves before Joseph, offering themselves as slaves.
Joseph told them to not be afraid for God intended good out of the evil they did–to save lives.
8a) They were afraid Joseph would enact revenge and justice upon them now that Jacob was dead. So they lied that Jacob told him to forgive them.
b) He spoke kindly to them, telling them God has worked good out of their evil.
c) Personal Question: That God has a plan that we cannot see. Things happen for reasons we cannot know. We must trust in Him always and learn and grow in our walk of faith no matter the hardships. For good is right around the corner. All things work together for my good.
We must also keep in mind that the evils that befall us are not from God; they are from man. Man enacts evil upon us, not God. But God will work it for good in our lives. All for His glory.
9a) He forgives us; He loves us; He protects us; He provides for us; He showers us with grace when we are in no way worthy.
Psalm 103: “The Lord forgives all your sins…redeems your life…compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love…He does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities…for so great is his love for those who fear him.”
b) Personal Question. My answer: Eternal gratitude.
c) Personal Question. My answer: Could be better. Need to be more God-like.
10a) “To accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives”. To save the seed of the Savior and God’s people.
b) Matthew 28:18-20: “Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them and teaching them to obey”
1 Peter 2:9: “You are a chosen people…that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.”
Acts 1:8: “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and all the ends of the earth.”
Conclusions: Was convicted with 9c. I need to treat my family better than I do strangers. I think a lot of struggle with that. It’s so easy to take them for granted when we cannot. For God didn’t take us for granted. For He knows everything about us.
Why did Joseph weep upon hearing this concocted story of forgiveness? Scholars think probably because his brothers doubted him, his forgiveness, and his character. That the brothers thought so little of him.
Joseph trusted in who God is and trusted God in His promises. We have a problem in doing the same. Trust first in Him. Then love, forgiveness, and comfort naturally flow outwards.