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The Story of Joseph (6)

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The Story of Joseph (6)

(Based on Genesis 42:1-24)

9 minuten leestijd

Joseph and the other people in the country of Egypt were not hungry during the famine when nothing grew in the fields. They had much food saved up in barns. Pharaoh told the people to go to Joseph, and he would sell them the food they needed.

What about Joseph’s brothers and his father, Jacob? They lived in another country, the country of Canaan. This country had a famine, too. Nothing grew there either. There was no food. God had not told the people in this country that there would be a famine, so no one had saved any food, and the people were hungry.

Jacob and his family were hungry, too, but he heard that there was an abundance of food in Egypt. In fact, there were numerous barns full of food, so Jacob called his sons together. “Listen,” he said, “I hear that there is corn in Egypt; go down there and buy food so that we may live and not die.”

Joseph’s ten brothers hurried to Egypt. Ten brothers? Yes. Only ten. One stayed behind. That was little Benjamin. Jacob didn’t dare to send him with the others. He had already lost Joseph, and he was afraid he would lose Benjamin, too.

First, the brothers went to the governor or ruler of the country to ask permission to buy corn there. When they went to the governor, they bowed down to him, and what does the Bible tell us? “And Joseph was the governor over the land, and he it was that sold to all the people of the land. And Joseph’s brothers came and bowed down themselves before him with their faces to the earth.”

Did you hear that? The brothers did not know it, but they were bowing down to Joseph—their little brother. That is just what Joseph had dreamed would happen, but his brothers had thrown him in the pit so that it would not happen.

Joseph knew who his brothers were even though they did not know him, and he remembered his dreams, too!

“From where did you come?” Joseph asked them in a mean voice.

“From the land of Canaan,” said his brothers. “We want to buy food.”

“No,” Joseph said. “You are spies; you just want to find out what is going on here.”

“No, we are not,” the brothers cried, but Joseph pretended he did not believe them.

“Truly,” they cried, “we came to buy food. We are from Canaan. There are twelve of us boys. Our little brother is at home now, and the other brother is ... is dead.”

That brother really was not dead; Joseph was talking to them, but they did not know him.

“I will find out if you are really telling the truth,” said Joseph. “You said that you have a little brother at home. I will see if that is really true. I want one of you to go and get him, and the rest of you will stay here until he comes back. You cannot go home until your little brother comes here. If he does not come—well, then, I’ll know you are spies.”

Then, before they could do anything, Joseph had them all put in prison. After three days passed, Joseph let them out of prison. “You may all buy corn and go home now,” he said, “all of you except one. He must stay here in prison. The rest of you can take your corn home, but you must bring your little brother back with you. Then I will know you are telling the truth; I will know that you truly have a little brother.”

The brothers got ready to go home, but Simeon stayed back. He had to stay in prison until Benjamin returned with the other brothers.

The brothers spoke a language called “Hebrew.” We speak English, so we would not have been able to understand them. The brothers did not think Joseph could understand them either because they thought he was from Egypt. Of course, he really could understand because he was a Hebrew just like they were. He had just pretended he could not. He had a man next to him who would tell him what his brothers said. So the brothers began speaking together in their own language. “It is our own fault,” they cried. “We were mean to Joseph. We put him in that pit even though he cried and cried to get out.”

“Did not I tell you not to hurt him?” asked Reuben. “But you would not listen to me.”

Joseph heard them say they were sorry for what they had done to him. He knew their hearts were not so hard anymore. God was making them softer. This made him happy. How much he wanted to tell them who he was. How much he wanted to see Benjamin and father Jacob again. Joseph went in another room and cried and cried.

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Bekijk de hele uitgave van dinsdag 1 januari 2019

The Banner of Truth | 24 Pagina's

The Story of Joseph (6)

Bekijk de hele uitgave van dinsdag 1 januari 2019

The Banner of Truth | 24 Pagina's

PDF Bekijken