When the favor of God is upon an individual’s life nothing can prevent that person from accomplishing the will and purpose of God in our lives. The story of Joseph found in Genesis chapter 37 to 50 is one of the most interesting biblical narratives. This is because of its structure and the chronological order of events. The style and uniqueness of the story of Joseph presents it as a well written bible narrative story. The story helps us to understand that when fellow men might be planning evil against us that does not turn out to be the plan of God in our lives. It shows clearly that God has good plans for our lives despite the tribulations we face.
The background of this biblical analysis is based on various aspects that occurred during Joseph’s life. The issue which arises from this story include; Jealousy and betrayal, False witness, Salvation and empowerment and then finally Forgiveness and reconciliation. All this themes come out clearly in the story of Joseph and they present a major lesson to the life of true believers nowadays. Joseph was able to overcome all this difficulties in his life through the power, blessings and the grace of God. Jealousy and betrayal is the first theme that comes out in chapter thirty seven.
Joseph was one of the twelve sons of Jacob Abraham’s grandson. Jealousy and betrayal is illustrated as a result of his father’s love. The Bible says that his father had made for him a richly ornamented robe. When his brothers noticed that their father loved him more than them they started to hate him and they could not speak a kind word to him. His brothers due to Jealousy felt that Joseph wanted to reign over them and moreover because of his dreams and what he had said betrayal comes out clearly when Joseph is sold as a slave to Egypt by his brothers. According to the New International Version (NIV) it states that “the Midianities sold Joseph in Egypt to Potiphar one of Pharaohs officials, the captain guard” (30). The brothers deceived their father by showing him Josephs robe covered with blood. After being sold to a foreign land Joseph is without the robe, he is vulnerable, powerless and also a stranger in the land where he also experiences false witness.
Joseph’s service to Potiphar was good. Every thing he deed for him succeeded because the Lord was with him. The New International Version (NIV) stated that the “blessing of the Lord was on everything Potiphar had both in house and in field and he left in Josephs care everything he had; with Joseph in charge he did not concern himself with anything except the food he ate” (31). As a result of false witness Joseph’s service to Potiphar comes to an end when Potiphar’s wife falsely accuses him of an attempted rape. This accusation took Joseph into prison. New International Version (NIV) states that “Josephs master took him and put him in prison the place where the kings prisoners where confined” (31). While in prison Joseph became trusted quickly because God granted him favor in the eyes of the prison warder. Joseph was put in charge of all those held in the prison and he was made responsible for all that was done there. This incident leads to the third theme of salvation and empowerment which Joseph experiences while in prison.
Salvation and empowerment is evident from the time Joseph goes into prison to the time he is promoted to the second most powerful person in the land of Egypt after Pharaoh. While in Prison, Joseph interpreted the dreams of the chief baker and the cupbearer who served the king of Egypt Pharaoh. The two officials where assigned to Joseph by the captain guard who attended to them. Later the chief cupbearer is restored to his position by Pharaoh, so that he put the cup into Pharaohs hand while the chief baker is hanged as the dreams were interpreted by Joseph. Later the chief cupbearer brought Joseph to Pharaohs attention when the king had some disturbing dreams of his own. Joseph interpreted all the dreams Pharaoh had dreamed because all the magicians and wise men of Egypt had failed. New International Version (NIV) continues to say that “then Pharaoh said to Joseph since God has made all this known to you there is no one so discerning and wise as you, you shall be in charge of my place and all my people are to submit to your orders (33). Joseph was put in charge of the whole land of Egypt. As a result of all this Salvation and empowerment leads us to the second theme of forgiveness and reconciliation, which comes after being promoted by Pharaoh.
Forgiveness and reconciliation is evident when the seven years of abundance came to an end in Egypt and the seven years of famine began just as Joseph had said. There was famine in all the other lands but in the whole land of Egypt there was food. New International Version (NIV) states that “when famine spread over the whole country Joseph opened the store houses and sold grain to Egyptians” (33). The bible also notes that all the other countries came to Egypt to buy grain from Joseph because the famine was severe in the entire world. Some of those people who came to buy grain from the land of Egypt were Joseph’s brothers from Canaan. When his brothers came, Joseph recognized them, but they did not know who he was. According to the New International Version (NIV) “when Josephs brothers arrived they bowed down to him with their faces on the ground (33)”. Forgiveness and reconciliation is illustrated well when Joseph was in a position of power and could gain revenge for the way his brothers had treated him but he did not revenge.
In conclusion, Joseph notices the favor that God had given to him before the king of Egypt Pharaoh and realized that God had done all this to him and given the chance to preserve his family from the famine. Joseph understood that out of the shocking treatment he had experienced from his brothers he received a blessing out of that hard situation. Joseph is very appreciative to God instead of being fumed of his brothers. In real life circumstances it is rare to do the right thing. We learn that in all things, God is there to uphold us just like Joseph when we depend on Him for our support. In real life the qualities of Joseph are those that should also be proficient in a Christian. Of all the themes discussed above from this biblical story forgiveness and reconciliation presents the most important part of this biblical story of Joseph. Forgiveness plays the most important part of our Christian life as God forgives us.