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  • Gwen Diaz

32 - The Brothers Return to Egypt

February 1 - Nº 32 Genesis 43:1 – 45:8

When the grain they had purchased was gone, Jacob instructed his sons to make the long journey back to Egypt to buy more. But there was a problem—the governor had warned the Israelites not to return unless they brought their youngest brother with them (see #31 - January 31). After already losing Joseph, the thought of losing Benjamin was heart-wrenching for Jacob. However, when Judah promised his father that he would personally keep Benjamin safe, Jacob finally agreed to let them all go. They packed many gifts, along with twice the amount of money they had found mysteriously hidden in their sacks and headed off to Egypt. Jacob wept and prayed that God would bless his sons and keep them safe. When they arrived in Egypt, Joseph instructed his steward to escort the men to his mansion. This frightened the brothers. They had no idea what was going on. They thought they might be arrested and sold into slavery because of the money they owed. As they arrived at the house, they tried to explain their situation to the steward. He told them not to worry. The God of their father had put the money in their sacks. Then he brought Simeon, the brother who had been left behind as a prisoner, out to greet them. Later, when Joseph walked in the door, his brothers bowed down and gave him the gifts they had brought from home. Joseph asked about their elderly father. They replied that he was still alive and doing well. When Joseph saw his little brother Benjamin, he couldn’t control his emotions any longer. He quickly left the room so no one could see his tears. Joseph had his servants prepare a meal. He sat down to eat at a separate table from his brothers. But much to their surprise, they were seated at their table according to their birth order, and Benjamin was given five times as much food as anyone else. While they were eating, Joseph’s steward loaded their sacks with grain and, once again, the payments were hidden back inside the sacks. However, this time Joseph’s personal silver cup was placed in Benjamin’s sack as well. The next morning, as they set off, Joseph’s steward caught up with them and accused them of stealing his master’s cup. They were shocked. “We would never do such a thing!” they insisted. “If you find that one of us has taken it, that person will die and the rest of us will become slaves of your master.” They quickly lowered their sacks and the steward searched. Sure enough, there it was in Benjamin’s sack. They returned to the city under guard and fell at Joseph’s feet begging for mercy. He commanded that the guilty one be made his slave and the rest return immediately to their father. But Judah spoke up. He begged Joseph to let him become the slave instead. “If I return without the boy, our father will die!” he explained. Joseph realized how much his brothers’ hearts had softened. He sent his Egyptian servants out of the room and began to sob. Then he said, “I am Joseph—the brother you sold into slavery. But don’t be upset about what you did to me. God is the One who planned this. There are still five years left of famine, and He sent me ahead so I could save your lives!

Has someone harmed you in the past? God does not want any of us to remain the victims of other people’s evil actions. He promises to give us victory over our past traumas! He wants to turn them into triumphs—just like He did for Joseph. But we must be willing to trust Him. [Important note: If you are currently suffering from abuse, please do not hesitate to seek immediate help. Ask God to guide you to exactly the right person or place right now!]

32 - The Brothers Return to Egypt
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