It had been nearly 20 years since Joseph was sold into slavery. His father and brothers had continued with their lives and Joseph had become a sad memory. That was soon to change. God allowed the famine to reach Canaan. He placed Israel and his sons in a position to have buy grain to survive. When Israel sent his sons, he sent all but Benjamin as Benjamin was his last tie to Rachel.
The brothers went to Egypt and sought to buy grain. They had no idea that the one they had to deal with was their brother. When they saw him last, he was a teenager, innocent and naive. Now as they faced Him, He was in command of all Egypt hardened and wise beyond all measure. Now as Joseph faced them, he easily recognized them, but they had no idea who Zaphenath-paneah was.
Joseph could have done so many things to exact revenge, but that was not his goal. Joseph’s goal was to take a good look at his brothers and see what had become of them and his little brother Benjamin. So, Joseph used hIs position and the element of surprise to dive deep into his family closet.
We all have opportunities to use circumstances to our advantage. We have better knowledge or experience than those with whom we deal. It then becomes a matter of heart to determine how we use that advantage. What we see in Joseph and other great heroes in the Bible is the desire to honor God even when we can use an advantage. God looks at our hearts and determines if we are living to be like Him or like the world.
When we choose to trust and honor God in our circumstances, He will then bless us and carry us through whatever we face. God will also give us insight and wisdom to deal with others in a way that honors Him. Our journey is long, and trusting God to lead will always straighten the path out and assure we arrive when and where God wants us. That is the picture of Joseph.
God Bless You
42 When Jacob heard that grain was available in Egypt, he said to his sons, “Why are you standing around looking at one another? 2 I have heard there is grain in Egypt. Go down there and buy enough grain to keep us alive. Otherwise, we’ll die.”
3 So Joseph’s ten older brothers went down to Egypt to buy grain. 4 But Jacob wouldn’t let Joseph’s younger brother, Benjamin, go with them, for fear some harm might come to him. 5 So Jacob’s[a] sons arrived in Egypt along with others to buy food, for the famine was in Canaan as well.
6 Since Joseph was governor of all Egypt and in charge of selling grain to all the people, it was to him that his brothers came. When they arrived, they bowed before him with their faces to the ground. 7 Joseph recognized his brothers instantly, but he pretended to be a stranger and spoke harshly to them. “Where are you from?” he demanded.
“From the land of Canaan,” they replied. “We have come to buy food.”
8 Although Joseph recognized his brothers, they didn’t recognize him. 9 And he remembered the dreams he’d had about them many years before. He said to them, “You are spies! You have come to see how vulnerable our land has become.”
10 “No, my lord!” they exclaimed. “Your servants have simply come to buy food. 11 We are all brothers—members of the same family. We are honest men, sir! We are not spies!”
12 “Yes, you are!” Joseph insisted. “You have come to see how vulnerable our land has become.”