Week Seven: Day 2

    February 20, 2024 | Be God's Light

    Joseph Makes Himself Known to His Brothers

    Scripture: Genesis 45(NIV)

    1 Then Joseph could no longer control himself before all his attendants, and he cried out, “Have everyone leave my presence!” So there was no one with Joseph when he made himself known to his brothers. 2 And he wept so loudly that the Egyptians heard him, and Pharaoh’s household heard about it.

    3 Joseph said to his brothers, “I am Joseph! Is my father still living?” But his brothers were not able to answer him, because they were terrified at his presence.

    4 Then Joseph said to his brothers, “Come close to me.” When they had done so, he said, “I am your brother Joseph, the one you sold into Egypt! 5 And now, do not be distressed and do not be angry with yourselves for selling me here, because it was to save lives that God sent me ahead of you. 6 For two years now there has been famine in the land, and for the next five years there will be no plowing and reaping. 7 But God sent me ahead of you to preserve for you a remnant on earth and to save your lives by a great deliverance.

    8 “So then, it was not you who sent me here, but God. He made me father to Pharaoh, lord of his entire household and ruler of all Egypt. 9 Now hurry back to my father and say to him, ‘This is what your son Joseph says: God has made me lord of all Egypt. Come down to me; don’t delay. 10 You shall live in the region of Goshen and be near me—you, your children and grandchildren, your flocks and herds, and all you have. 11 I will provide for you there, because five years of famine are still to come. Otherwise you and your household and all who belong to you will become destitute.’

    12 “You can see for yourselves, and so can my brother Benjamin, that it is really I who am speaking to you. 13 Tell my father about all the honor accorded me in Egypt and about everything you have seen. And bring my father down here quickly.”

    14 Then he threw his arms around his brother Benjamin and wept, and Benjamin embraced him, weeping. 15 And he kissed all his brothers and wept over them. Afterward his brothers talked with him.

    16 When the news reached Pharaoh’s palace that Joseph’s brothers had come, Pharaoh and all his officials were pleased. 17 Pharaoh said to Joseph, “Tell your brothers, ‘Do this: Load your animals and return to the land of Canaan, 18 and bring your father and your families back to me. I will give you the best of the land of Egypt and you can enjoy the fat of the land.’

    19 “You are also directed to tell them, ‘Do this: Take some carts from Egypt for your children and your wives, and get your father and come. 20 Never mind about your belongings, because the best of all Egypt will be yours.’”

    21 So the sons of Israel did this. Joseph gave them carts, as Pharaoh had commanded, and he also gave them provisions for their journey. 22 To each of them he gave new clothing, but to Benjamin he gave three hundred shekels of silver and five sets of clothes. 23 And this is what he sent to his father: ten donkeys loaded with the best things of Egypt, and ten female donkeys loaded with grain and bread and other provisions for his journey. 24 Then he sent his brothers away, and as they were leaving he said to them, “Don’t quarrel on the way!”

    25 So they went up out of Egypt and came to their father Jacob in the land of Canaan. 26 They told him, “Joseph is still alive! In fact, he is ruler of all Egypt.” Jacob was stunned; he did not believe them. 27 But when they told him everything Joseph had said to them, and when he saw the carts Joseph had sent to carry him back, the spirit of their father Jacob revived. 28 And Israel said, “I’m convinced! My son Joseph is still alive. I will go and see him before I die.”


    Finally, we come to the denouement of the story. After toying with his brothers, setting them up, threatening them, giving them feasts to eat, and returning their money along with ample food, Joseph couldn’t take it anymore. He wept like a baby and told his brothers, “I am Joseph!” Their response was terror.

    Who could blame them? The teenage brat they hated was now the powerful man they feared. The scenes of all they had done to him must have flashed through their minds like a bad nightmare. They were the walking dead.

    Joseph then flips the plot on its head. It wasn’t them who sent Joseph to Egypt; it was God. It wasn’t for death, but for life. It wasn’t to break up the family of Israel, but to preserve a remnant of it for all time. This was not a time of retaliation; it was a time of embracing.

    Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 reminds us that “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens… a time to tear down and a time to build… a time to tear and a time to mend… a time to love and a time to hate…” Joseph understood this principle. This was not time for payback. It was time to pay it forward. The family of Israel would be saved. The nation of Israel would be preserved.

    Has there ever been a time when something terrible turned out to be a blessing in your life? Even now, are you in the middle of something that is difficult or painful? How might God be using that to shape you and to call you to benefit others?

    Make a short list of some of the most difficult things you have experienced over the past handful of years. How has God been present in those times? What might the Lord do with them in your future? Romans 8:28 says, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Amen!



    How many
    Have I
    Held back
    These tears
    Too afraid
    To allow them
    To form
    Knowing that
    Once they
    Over the
    They'd crumble
    My control
    And never
    Stop flowing
    They watered
    Both of our
    Back to Life

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