Genesis 42 : Joseph Toys with His Brothers

July 12, 2023 ·

Summary:
Joseph’s family, facing the dire effects of the famine, sends ten of his brothers (excluding Benjamin) to Egypt in search of food. Unbeknownst to them, Joseph recognizes his brothers, but they fail to recognize him. Seizing the opportunity, Joseph feigns suspicion, accusing them of being spies and demanding that they return with their youngest brother as proof. In the meantime, Simeon is held captive in Egypt. As the nine brothers return to Canaan, they discover that Joseph had discreetly placed their payment money back into their sacks along with the grain, causing them great distress and uncertainty. Jacob, still grieving the loss of Joseph and Simeon, is reluctant to risk Benjamin’s safety by allowing him to go on the journey.

Key verse:
21. Then they said to one another, “In truth we are guilty concerning our brother, in that we saw the distress of his soul, when he begged us and we did not listen. That is why this distress has come upon us.” 

My thoughts:
One can only imagine the deepening sorrow that engulfs Jacob’s heart as he witnesses his sons being taken away, one by one, fearing that he may lose even more of them. In his current state of despair, Jacob could hardly fathom the possibility of having all twelve of his sons reunited.

Joseph, now assuming complete control over the situation, leaves us questioning his intentions. It remains unclear whether he seeks to punish his brothers for their past actions or if his overwhelming emotions cloud his judgment (v.24). Perhaps revealing his true identity as their long-lost and now powerful brother, the governor of Egypt, seems too difficult a task. However, Joseph’s prolonged manipulation and the distress it causes cannot be justified.

In category:Genesis
Next Post

Genesis 43 : Joseph's brothers return

Summary: Jacob and his sons run out of food again, so Jacob sends his sons back to Egypt to get food. The sons are unwilling to face 'the governor of Egypt' again without Benjamin, but Jacob does not want to…
Read
Previous Post

Genesis 41 : Joseph Rises from Prison

Summary: The Pharaoh experiences two significant dreams—a vision of seven thin cows devouring seven fat cows, and another of seven withered grains consuming seven healthy grains. None of his wise men can decipher the dreams' meaning. However, the cupbearer, who…
Read
Random Post

Genesis 47 : Israel’s Dying Wish

Summary: Pharaoh engages in a conversation with Jacob, who affirms that they are indeed shepherds. In a generous act, Pharaoh grants them permission to settle in the prime land of Egypt, providing them with sustenance while the surrounding regions suffer…
Read
Random Post

Genesis 32 : Jacob Wrestles with God

Summary: Jacob sets off towards Canaan and sends a message ahead to his brother, Esau. Upon learning that Esau is approaching with 400 men, Jacob becomes fearful and divides his group into two, hoping that at least one might survive…
Read
Random Post

Genesis 34 : First chopped, then sworded

Summary: Jacob's daughter Dinah is raped by Shechem, the son of Hamor, a Hivite. Shechem expresses his desire to marry Dinah, and Hamor proposes intermarriage between their families. However, Jacob's sons, furious over Dinah's assault, demand that the men of…
Read
Random Post

Genesis 4: From Jealousy to Murder

Summary: Cain and Abel were born to Adam and Eve, with Cain being the firstborn. Abel offers a better sacrifice to God than Cain, which makes Cain jealous. In his jealousy, Cain kills Abel. God discovers the crime and curses…
Read
From Dust to Glory is made by Ric Moseley