Now when the news was heard in Pharaoh’s house that Joseph’s brothers had come, it pleased Pharaoh and his servants.
This week we will look at the story of how Joseph’s family responded to Joseph’s forgiveness. Remember, Joseph is a picture of Jesus Christ. And the way his family responded to Joseph’s forgiveness is a picture of how we should respond to Christ’s forgiveness and the changes that will take place in our lives if we have genuinely accepted that forgiveness.
Let me remind you where we left off last week. Joseph had finally revealed himself to his brothers. The brothers were afraid; they knew Joseph had the authority to give them what they deserved—death. Instead, Joseph granted them life. This reminds us of Jesus Christ. We all deserve eternal death because of our sins, but God graciously offers us forgiveness and gives us life. Joseph granted his brothers a new life, so to speak, in the richest part of Egypt.
Look at the brothers’ reaction to Joseph’s forgiveness. Their reaction resulted in a change in attitude. Look at Genesis 45:16: “Now when the news was heard in Pharaoh’s house that Joseph’s brothers had come, it pleased Pharaoh and his servants.” Word got around that Joseph’s brothers were in Egypt, and Pharaoh was pleased when he heard the news. He said to Joseph, “Say to your brothers, ‘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 best of the land of Egypt and you will eat the fat of the land.’ Now you are ordered, ‘Do this: take wagons from the land of Egypt for your little ones and for your wives, and bring your father and come. Do not concern yourselves with your goods, for the best of all the land of Egypt is yours’” (Genesis 45:17-20).
Why was Pharaoh doing this? It was out of gratitude to Joseph for saving the nation of Egypt by storing up grain and managing it well. Pharaoh loaded up Joseph’s brothers with all kinds of treasure to take back to their families and to Jacob.
Before his brothers left to go back to Canaan. Joseph said to them, “Do not quarrel on the journey” (v. 24). Joseph knew his brothers pretty well. He knew once they were out of his sight, they probably would start blaming one another for all that had happened to them in Egypt. Joseph said, “Don’t do that. Don’t fight over the treasure I have given you.” And to their credit, they didn’t do that. Their attitudes had changed.
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “Elvis Has Not Left the Building” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2009.
Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960,1962,1963,1968,1971,1972,1973,1975,1977,1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.