This blog post will cover the devotionals #183, 184 for Genesis Chapter 45.
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 Genesis 45:1-8,14,15
Joseph had seen evidence of true repentance from his brothers and was satisfied not to test them more. After Judah offered himself in place of Benjamin, he couldn’t hold his secret or emotion any longer. He passionately ordered everyone but the family to leave the room, and then he wept loudly. He said, “I am Joseph, does my father still live?” His brothers froze in fear and wonder. They weren’t able to respond to him. They remembered everything as they realized the young boy they hated, envied, planned to murder, and then sold as a slave, was now the ruler over all of Egypt. They remembered the dreams he had that had increased their ill feelings towards him, and yet, their conviction of it caused them (in their bad mindset) to want to do whatever it took to keep them from coming true. Yet, their act in selling him was the part they played in the very fulfillment of the dreams. They had no doubt that, now that they were under his hand, he’d get vengeance on them. However, just as Joseph hadn’t expected their bad treatment of him as a teenager when he arrived to them after such a long journey from home, they didn’t expect his good treatment of them after their long journey to him from home—especially after all they’d done to him. Joseph could see they were troubled, and kindly asked them to draw near to him. He restated who he was, with more facts, and reassurance. “I am Joseph, your brother, whom you sold into Egypt.” After he spoke with them, he embraced Benjamin and they cried. He then kissed the rest of his brothers and cried, and they finally spoke to him, humbly confessing their sin and begging for his forgiveness. They could now rejoice that he was alive after suffering for so long with anxiety and remorse. What did Joseph say to his brothers after he revealed his identity? “Now, therefore, do not be grieved nor angry with yourselves for selling me here: because God sent me ahead of you to preserve life.” He knew they’d already suffered enough from the effects of their cruelty against them, and he was looking to get rid of their fears and calm the bitterness of their self-blame. He acted nobly towards them. Joseph continued explaining what’d happened in Egypt: “The famine has been in the land for these two years: and there are still five years in which there will be neither earing nor harvest. And God sent me ahead of you to preserve you a posterity in the earth, and to save your lives by a great deliverance. So now, it was not you that sent me here, but God: and He has made me a father to Pharaoh, and lord over all his house, and a ruler throughout all the land of Egypt.” I can just imagine the flood of understanding and realization that came over them about not just their past history, but how and why everything had happened the way it did on their trips to and from Egypt for food. “Why the specific questions about our father and brother, why the money and cup in our bags, why the extra food, why our perfect arrangement (from oldest to youngest) at his table, why the toughness and false accusations / suspicion, etc.? It all made sense now. What would our father think?”
 Genesis 45:9-13,16-28
The news of what’d happened between Joseph and his brothers reached the king swiftly. Pharaoh was happy to hear about it and excited to have an opportunity to show Joseph his own gratitude, so he backed up the invitation to Joseph’s family, and said “The good of all the land of Egypt is yours.” Pharaoh told Joseph how to instruct and furnish his family. “Do this, load your beasts, and go to the land of Canaan; and take your father and your households, and come to me: and I will give you the good of the land of Egypt, and you will eat the fat of the land. Now you are commanded, do this; take wagons out of the land of Egypt for your little ones, and your wives, and bring your father, and come. Also do not regard your stuff; for the good of all the land of Egypt is yours.” Joseph provided them with carriages and provision for the trip, and everything else they’d need to move their families and servants to Egypt. Joseph sent Jacob ten donkeys loaded up with the good things Egypt had to offer, and ten female donkeys loaded with corn, bread, and meat for his father’s trip. All his brothers were given changes of clothing, but Benjamin was given five changes, and three hundred pieces of silver. Joseph gave his younger brother more valuable gifts than everyone else, but then, likely considering the unwise manner in which their own father had done the same for Joseph with the coat of many colors (and how his brothers responded)—he implored his brothers, “See that you do not fall out by the way.” In other words, “Avoid disputes or jealousy on your trip—and maintain unity.” He was gently reminding them not to repeat their past and ruin their future. After Joseph had told his brothers his true identity, he told them what to relay to their father for him. “This is what your son, Joseph, says: God has made me lord over all of Egypt: come down to me, do not tarry: and you will dwell in the land of Goshen, and you will be near me, you and your children, and your children’s children, and your flocks, and your herds, and all that you have: and I will nourish you there; because there are still five years of famine; otherwise you, and your household, and all that you have, will come to poverty. And look, your eyes see, and the eyes of my brother, Benjamin, see, that it is my mouth that speaks to you.” He told them to tell Jacob of all his honor in Egypt, and all they’d seen, and to hurry and bring Jacob to Egypt. After receiving their gifts and provisions, they did what they were asked, and returned to Canaan. They had news for Jacob, and he was naturally overwhelmed at first. “Joseph is still alive, and he is governor over all the land of Egypt.” The old man couldn’t believe it at first, but after hearing Joseph’s message and seeing all he’d sent him, along with Benjamin’s safe return, he was fully convinced. He couldn’t hold back his joy, he said, “It is enough; Joseph, my son, is still alive: I will go and see him before I die.” The conversation wasn’t over though. Joseph’s brothers had one more thing to tell their father. They humbly confessed their terrible sin towards him and Joseph, which had made all their lives so bitter for so many years. They were guilty of deceit and cruelty, and their father never suspected them of committing such a low act. However, he saw how God had overturned their sin for good, and decided to forgive his children, and even bless them.