Joseph tests his brothers; his brother had changed. From Genesis 44: 1-34 commented by ASV and questions

שלום חברי   אל שדי  רוח הקודש

 

The guilty one to death

To Joseph it could look like his brothers had changed in their heart from their evil ways; however, it was possible that this change was only on the surface; Joseph wanted to know how sincere they were in their heart. He ordered his steward to put his silver bowl on top of Benjamin’s sack and sent them on their way. Then after a short while, the steward overtook them and accused them of steeling the silver bowl. All the brothers knew they didn’t steal the bowl and condemned the guilty one to death and the other’s to lives as slaves forever.

Hoped hi would die

The steward, however said, “Now let it be as you say; he with whom the cup is found will be my slave, but the rest of you shall be blameless” the steward searched the sacks and found the bowl on top of Benjamin’s. The brothers could have reacted in different ways, they could have saved themselves, sacrificed Benjamin and left for home telling their father what had happened and hoped he would die, getting rid of both their father and Benjamin.

The sin exposed

Nevertheless that was not what happened, “Then they tore their clothes and after each man had loaded his donkey again, they returned to the city” Tearing clothes at that time was a sign of deep grief and distress; they obviously loved both their father and Benjamin. They arrived at Joseph’s house and stood before him, and Joseph accused them again. Now Judah took the lead and said, “What can we say to my lord? What can we reply? Or how can we clear ourselves, since God has exposed the sin and guilt of your servants? Behold, we are my lord’s slaves, the rest of us as well as he with whom the cup is found”  

Start the journey

Judah said that God had exposed their sin. When they sold Joseph as slave, it was on Judah’s suggestion, and all agreed. Judah now understood that God made them pay for what they had done to Joseph. Joseph however let them all go except Benjamin. Now once more they had the chance to save themselves. Then Judah again took the lead, asked for a private talk with Joseph, and after this conversation Joseph understood that Judah and his brothers was willing to sacrifice themselves for their father and for Benjamin. The test was over; Joseph now knew the hearts of his brothers; they could now start the journey to become the nation of Israel.

Questions

  1. What did God do towards Joseph’s brothers?
  2. What made God act on behalf of Joseph?

ASV notes on Genesis 24:1-9 and questions

The only way

Grief

At this time, Abraham was 140 and Isaac 40, and Abraham thought that it was time for his son to marry. Three years had passed since the death of his mother Sarah, but he was still grieving for her, may be Abraham thought that a wife would help Isaac to get his mind off the death of his mother.

Faith

Abraham had a faithful and clever servant, Eliezer from Damascus, who he made swear that he would go and fetch a wife for Isaac from Abraham’s family in the Haran area in the north part of Mesopotamia. Eliezer had been a good and faithful servant, however, Abraham didn’t have his faith in his servant and he said. The LORD, the God of heaven, who took me from my father’s house, from the land of my family and my birth, who spoke to me and swore to me, saying, ‘To your descendants I will give this land’—He will send His angel before you and you will take a wife from there for my son

Blessings

Abraham trusted in his God, but he didn’t just wait for things to happen, he made all the necessary preparation, like having the servant Eliezer swear to not take the easy way and pick a wife for Isaac among the daughters of Canaan. Eliezer had to travel all the way to Mesopotamia and look for a wife among the family of Abraham. Abraham did “set his hand to” the task and then God could bless the work of Eliezer seeking a wife for Isaac.

On the sofa

The same goes for you today, if in Jesus God blesses all the things you “set your hand to”, but “on the sofa” there is no blessings to be found.

Questions

  1. How do the blessings work?
  2. Can we trust in humans?

ASV mark on Genesis 13:2-4 and questions to consider

שלום חברי

Abraham suffered a famine in South Canaan and had to go to Egypt to survive, he could have complained to God, but he just went on. In addition, in Egypt, they took his wife away from him and then chased him away into the desert. Abraham experienced negative circumstances, but he was confident in his God, and God made him extremely rich and he got his wife back untouched. Moreover, Abraham’s faith in God grew even stronger.

Now Abraham and Lot came to the Mountain between Ai and Bethel and pitched their tents there and Abraham called on the name of his God, YHWH, in Hebrew written with four consonants, however, Moses says nothing about Lot doing the same. Abraham knew that God looked after him and that all he had obtained came from Him.

Many people of today only calls to God when things go wrong, and when things go good they think they did it, a very common remark of today is; “I am so proud of myself, of what I have managed”. Nevertheless, when things are bad they blame God, “How could God do this terrible thing” God didn’t do it, every day you are living by the world’s ideas run by the devil and his future for you is steeling, killing and destroying.

Wake up look to Abraham and call on Jesus your only savour and provider.

Questions to consider

  1. Can God make people rich?
  2. Lot chose what he saw, what did Abraham choose?
  3. Do you blame God?
  4. Who is goberning this world?