Thursday, October 29, 2015

From Genesis to Now: Genesis 37:1-11

Dear Christa—
From Genesis to Now: Genesis 37:1-11
Joseph was loved more than his brothers because he was born to him in his old age. The other issue was that he was a child of Rachel’s, the person Jacob chose and truly loved. It is a wonderful event when 2 people who love each other have a child.
Joseph was spoiled as a child. How could he not be? Israel (Jacob) outwardly favored him. He had a special robe made for him. All the other brothers knew he was their father’s favorite. And, perhaps these brothers of concubines felt slighted and shiftless. Perhaps they justified their poor actions, feeling like secondhand children, whose shortcomings Joseph readily reported to their father.
And since children cannot change how their parents regard them, Joseph’s brothers’ hurt turned to hatred, and that hatred settled on Joseph. Instead of hating their father, they, instead, hated what Israel loved above them—Joseph.
Being the favored child among so many, being a younger brother, being immature, probably gave Joseph the confidence to lash out the only way he could against them. He gave a bad report of them; he gloated over them with details of his special dreams.  And, all the while, they hated him more.
Finally, he tells his dreams to Israel, and his father rebukes him. Maybe he, too, had become perturbed with Joseph; or maybe he desired to protect him from his brothers. But, as Joseph’s brothers despised him more and more, Israel “kept the matter in mind.” He has to wonder on which of his many sons will God’s promise fall. By now he has realized that gaining the inheritance was sovereignly given to him by God and not through his craftiness.
Maybe Israel had learned that it’s best to just wait on God and let Him bring about His plan in due time, which is exactly what happens with Joseph—just not in the manner either Joseph or Jacob could have desired or imagined. But, there was purpose behind the trials Joseph would endure in Egypt. Joseph would not turn from the spoiled, favored child to the wise and trusting servant of God overnight. That would take a long stay in Egypt—in far less than favored circumstances.
—the parishioner who doesn’t do anything

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