As we continue with the study of the similarities between Joseph and Jesus, Chapters 37 to 50 speaks about the story of Joseph who was sold by his jealous brothers to Ishmaelites and was taken to Egypt where from being Potiphar’s servant, he was finally exalted to the position of Governor of Pharaoh after interpreting dreams while in prison. Joseph lived in a very high position of great power and authority. According to the dreams of Pharaoh which Joseph interpreted with godly wisdom he stored food during the first seven years of prosperity so that he could feed the entire world in the next seven years of famine.
It was in this scenario that Joseph’s brothers who had sold him previously came to him all the way from Canaan to buy food. Joseph recognised them immediately but they did not recognise him. Similarly Jesus came to Israel after 4000 years of prophecy, his own ( Jews) did not recognise him though all the signs of the coming of the Messiah were fulfilled according to the Scriptures in him. Both Joseph and Jesus were not recognised by their own brothers.
Joseph the younger one, had a heart to forgive the cruelty of his older brothers.
Genesis 45.4 And Joseph said to his brothers, “Please come near to me.” So they came near. Then he said: “I am Joseph your brother, whom you sold into Egypt.
This was a big revelation.
Genesis 45.14 Then he fell on his brother Benjamin’s neck and wept, and Benjamin wept on his neck. 15 Moreover he kissed all his brothers and wept over them, and after that his brothers talked with him.
In the first visit of his brothers to Egypt, Joseph did not reveal himself. Instead he tricked them into bringing Benjamin, hiding his silver cup in their sack, imprisoning Simeon etc. For Joseph, Benjamin was his own mother’s son and precious to him. Joseph could have treated them cruelly, but he had a large heart to forgive each one of them. This is a lesson for each one of us: to forgive those who have treated us cruelly, only then can God exalt us. God exalted Joseph only because he was never bitter to his brothers or anyone who treated him badly. He forgave everyone. Jesus too forgave everyone who treated him badly and crucified him in Luke 23.34 when he said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”
We also see in Genesis 45. 5-7, Joseph comforting his brothers as they were guilty for what they did. 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.
He even saw God’s goodness in this situation.
Jesus said the same thing in John 19.20 onwards. When Jesus was taken to be crucified, all the disciples left him. They were even guilty of not praying when Jesus asked them to do so in Gethsemane. Jesus comforts them many times and says “Peace be with you!”.
Both Joseph and Jesus told their brothers/disciples “Fear not” as they were terrified.
Also there are two times that Joseph cries privately when he sees his brothers.
Genesis 45.1 Then Joseph could not control himself before all those who stood by him. He cried, “Make everyone go out from me.” So no one stayed with him when Joseph made himself known to his brothers. 2 And he wept aloud, so that the Egyptians heard it, and the household of Pharaoh heard it.
Jesus too cried over Lazarus and Jerusalem .
There is a scene where Joseph’s brothers bow in front of him and later his parents too come to him. This is the fulfilment of the dreams that God had earlier given him when he was small. Genesis 37.7 your sheaves gathered around it and bowed down to my sheaf and in verse 9, Behold, I have dreamed another dream. Behold, the sun, the moon, and eleven stars were bowing down to me.”
After his exaltation, Joseph had a non jewish wife (Genesis 41.50, Asenath, the daughter of Potiphera priest of On). Jesus also got a non Jewish bride which represents each one of us.
Genesis 41.57 Moreover, all the earth came to Egypt to Joseph to buy grain, because the famine was severe over all the earth.
He is visited and honoured by all earthly nations.
Isaiah 49.6 says:“It is too light a thing that you should be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob and to bring back the preserved of Israel; I will make you as a light for the nations (gentiles), that my salvation may reach to the end of the earth.”
This is a prophecy about Jesus being the Saviour of not just Israel but for the entire world. We are also asked to be His witness for the entire earth. Whatever God has given us whether it be the Word or Testimony, we must give others. What we receive , we must give others. We must not be like the Dead Sea that does not not flow out and hence has no life but be like the Sea of Galilee that has life and fish living in it because it flows out.
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About the Author
Ps. Damien Antony
Born and brought up in a Christian family, Ps. Damien Antony possessed an unquenching quest for truth right from his boyhood days and eventually his relentless search led him to the Bible. He is a Revival Preacher, Bible Teacher, Leadership Trainer, Author and a Life Coach. He moves under the anointing for Prophetic, Healing, Deliverance, Inner Healing and Financial Breakthrough. God has also blessed him with an Apostolic Mandate to take the Universal Body of Christ to the next level of revelation and anointing.
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