Genesis 38:15 to Exodus 20ish
When last we left, I was traveling with dreamer Joseph to Egypt, where his envious brothers had schemed to first kill him, then in a last minute change of plans, get rid of him by selling him into slavery.
Family dynamics can be a bitch.
Joseph is now under Potiphar, the captain of the guards. As a leader, Potiphar sees that Joseph is one righteous dude and recognizes that God is with him, so he puts him in charge of his entire house. Joseph, always the gentleman, does the right thing. However, Potiphar’s skanky, perhaps lonely, wife has designs on Joseph and tries with all her might to get Joseph into her bed. When he resists, she shows that “Hell has no fury like a woman scorned”. She lies and claims that Joseph tried to molest her and despite the hard work that he has done for Potiphar, is thrown into jail for this crime.
While in jail, Joseph once again proves himself to be the model guy and is soon put in charge of the other prisoners. When Pharaoh’s chief baker and butler are put in jail, Joseph helps them decipher their dreams and asks that they do not forget him when they (well the butler anyway. The baker was a goner.) are released. Once again, Joseph is disappointed because in the excitement of being free, the butler forgets him.
I know that at this point in life, my faith isn’t strong enough to be as faithful and graceful as Joseph. I would be so petulant and hostile, that I would go from being the leader to a sullen prisoner, doing my best to get revenge. Joseph however, remains the same faithful man of God and continues on with his duties.
Let’s examine this portion. Joseph, despite his circumstances, still managed to serve his master even though he wasn’t supposed to be there. I know that at this point, my faith isn’t strong enough to be able to stand by while I see so many unjust things happening around and to me.
Briefly, the rest of this story:
Pharaoh has a dream, Joseph deciphers it to mean a seven year famine is approaching and that the land needs to prepare for the famine. Pharaoh puts Joseph in charge of the stores of food. His brothers come to get some food, Joseph messes with them and then reveals himself. He forgives them, so joyous he is that they are reunited, they eat, be merry, see Jacob/Israel, and Genesis is done.
Next we come to Exodus.
This book is interesting in that God seems to be quite interactive and present for his people. He speaks to Moses and Aaron frequently, and He is honest and open about his expectations to the people.
This is where the more mature saints jump in to say that the Bible is God speaking to me. Okay, yes, reading the Bible is part of my Christian development, but how do I KNOW what God is telling me? This is where I wrestle with my faith once again. But I’m jumping ahead of myself.
Verses that stood out:
Ex 1:8 Now there arose up a new king over Egypt, which knew not Joseph.
I took this to mean that you need to know your history.
Ex 3:6 Moreover he said, I am the God of thy father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. And Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon God.
Afraid to look at God…is this figurative or literal? Is Moses ashamed of his sins (he killed a man) or is it the fear of the Almighty that makes him hide his face?
SNew International Version Moses reported this to the Israelites, but they did not listen to him because of their discouragement and cruel bondage.
And Moses spake so unto the children of Israel: but they hearkened not unto Moses for anguish of spirit, and for cruel bondage.
And Moses said these words to the children of Israel, but they gave no attention to him, because of the grief of their spirit and the cruel weight of their work.