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Summary: 6th sermon in the joseph series with a salvation twist

As we begin this sermon this morning Simeon is still being held in an Egyptian prison, Joseph other brothers have gone home, reasoned with dad, ran out of food and now on our their way back with Benjamin.

This time they are coming hoping to accomplish four things:

• To show their good faith

• To prove they are not spies

• To buy more food

• To get Simeon out of prison

Can you imagine how these guys must have felt? Will Simeon still be alive, will the prime minister actually release him? And what about this money issue? No doubt it is safe to say these guys were making the trip back to Egypt with a tremendous amount of apprehension.

Let’s dive into the scripture this morning and see what is happening…Genesis 43 lets start at verse 15…

15 So the men took the gifts and double the amount of silver, and Benjamin also. They hurried down to Egypt and presented themselves to Joseph. 16 When Joseph saw Benjamin with them, he said to the steward of his house, "Take these men to my house, slaughter an animal and prepare dinner; they are to eat with me at noon."

OK lets set the stage, 9 men plagued with guilt over what they had done to their little brother over twenty years ago, one brother still being held a prisoner, one younger brother who has no idea what’s going on, all he knows is that the prime minister demanded he make this trip & dad wasn‘t to happy about it, and Joseph eager and excited that his brother s had arrived back safely…cant you sort of see Joseph doing a head count…watch him now as he sort of stares at Benjamin…that’s him all right, he was just a little toe head of a kid when Joseph left home that day.

So for no apparent reason to all involved Joseph says lets have a banquet…Wonder what the servant’s thought…why a banquet for a dirty road weary bunch of Hebrew travelers? But without hesitation the plans get carried out…

17 The man did as Joseph told him and took the men to Joseph’s house. 18 Now the men were frightened when they were taken to his house. They thought, "We were brought here because of the silver that was put back into our sacks the first time. He wants to attack us and overpower us and seize us as slaves and take our donkeys."

19 So they went up to Joseph’s steward and spoke to him at the entrance to the house. 20 "Please, sir," they said, "we came down here the first time to buy food. 21 But at the place where we stopped for the night we opened our sacks and each of us found his silver—the exact weight—in the mouth of his sack. So we have brought it back with us. 22 We have also brought additional silver with us to buy food. We don’t know who put our silver in our sacks."

Isn’t it funny how guilty will make us act weird? I mean these guys were sure the worst is coming...we have been had…

It was William Shakespeare who said; “Suspicion always haunts the guilty mind.”

Their guilt was about to get the best of them right about now…they weren’t even hungry now, they just wanted to get it over with because they knew they were in trouble!

I just wonder how did Joseph keep from laughing at these guys, how did he keep his cover…I mean he had them…But watch this man of gods response…

23 "It’s all right," he said. "Don’t be afraid. Your God, the God of your father, has given you treasure in your sacks; I received your silver." Then he brought Simeon out to them.

Hey men, calm down no one thinks you stole the money...guys relax…I put eh money there guys…are you guilt or something…

Joseph’s brother not one time ad even considered that God may have had anything to do with the money in the bags…why…because GUILT clouded their thinking! Yet look at this, don’t miss this, even in their guilty stage of life Gods grace, his unmerited favor was being poured out on them!

There are some of us here this morning, and we are guilty of sinning against God, we are guilty of unconfessed sin and if we really had our just dues…we would deserve sins penalty, and yet somehow though the grace of God…he has given us this day, this service, all the blessings of life…I cant explain I…Its JUST Gods GRACE!!!

Its God mercy in abundance!

24 The steward took the men into Joseph’s house, gave them water to wash their feet and provided fodder for their donkeys. 25 They prepared their gifts for Joseph’s arrival at noon, because they had heard that they were to eat there.

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