“Come now, let’s kill him and throw him into one of these cisterns. . . .”
Joseph’s brothers hated him because their father “loved Joseph more than any of his other sons.” Joseph had also had dreams in which his brothers bowed down to him, and he had told them about those dreams (see Genesis 37:1-11).
The brothers hated Joseph so much that they wanted to kill him. One day the opportunity came, as Joseph went out to the fields where his brothers were grazing their flocks. The brothers seized Joseph and threw him into a pit.
Instead of killing him, Joseph’s brothers sold him as a slave to some traveling merchants, who took him to Egypt. Imagine Joseph as a slave being dragged around at the market. Imagine the hardship he endured as a slave in Egypt. What kinds of pain would have filled his heart?
Looking at the rest of Joseph’s life, we can see that “the Lord was with him” and “gave him success in everything he did” (Genesis 39:3, 23; chap. 40-50). Through that path of hardship Joseph eventually became second in command over Egypt. God used Joseph to save people from a terrible famine, including his whole family and people from all the surrounding nations.
Jesus came to suffer and die for our sake, and through that path of many hardships he rose in victory over death and ascended to heaven, where he now rules over all the earth. His path through suffering has led to blessings for us all!
Lord, when we face sufferings, help us to focus on the blessings we have in Jesus, and to persevere. In his name we pray. Amen.
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