Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Project 4:4--Day Twenty-One

Day Twenty-One, Genesis 48-50

As Jacob is becoming ill and about to die, Joseph brings his sons to Jacob. Interesting that Jacob intentionally gives the greater blessing to the younger of Joseph's sons, saying that Ephraim will be greater than Manasseh, the firstborn.

Then he calls for all of his sons to bless them according to what will happen to them in the future. The ones I find most interesting are those given to Judah and Joseph.

Judah is said to be the ruler over his brothers. Centuries later, God would anoint one, David, of the line of Judah, to be king over Israel. And it is from this line that the King of Kings, the Lion of Judah, would descend.

Joseph is said to be blessed, as Jacob says he will be fruitful and will have the blessings of the Almighty God multiplied upon him.

After Jacob dies, his sons mourn for him 40 days, then they take his body for burial in Canaan, as he had requested.

Also, after Jacob is dead, Joseph's brothers begin to fear him, for they believe that perhaps he was only showing them kindness for the sake of their father. Surely after Dad is dead, they thinik, he will exact his revenge. So they send word to him, asking him to continue treating them kindly.

At this, Joseph weeps. He assures his brothers that what they intended for evil, God intended for good.

I love the polar-opposite ending that this story has from its beginning. Recall that Scripture said Joseph's brothers hated him so much they couldn't speak a kind word to him. Now, years later, Joseph is reassuring his brothers and speaking kindly to them!

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