Summary: What old-wounds… What broken-relationships does God want to heal in you?
God in the Ebb & Flow of Life:
Healing Old Wounds
Scripture Text: Genesis 45.1-15
Last week we were left with loose-ends. The brothers sat at the table, …feasting and drinking with Joseph ~ …although they had no-idea who he really-was, …and they didn’t understand why this-stranger was treating them this-way.
They were afraid that he was gonna trick them: …that he was-going-to steal their donkeys, …and make them his slaves.
There’s other loose-ends… Is Joseph toying with his brothers? Why doesn’t he tell them who he is? Why the charade of accusing them of being spies?
Although I’m convinced that Joseph had-forgiven them for the hurt-and-pain that they had caused-him… I’m sure that he forgave-them, at-some-point, earlier-in-his-life: …whether it-was while he was being-transported in the slave-gang-caravan (just hours after he was betrayed and sold into slavery), …or whether it was while he sat in prison (when he lots-of-time to reflect on his life), …or certainly by-the-time he was released from-prison, … and when his first-born-son came-along; …at whatever-point, Joseph had-forgiven them, …Still, …we’re left wondering whether he’s taken-it-back because the-way that he treats his brothers (on their two-visits) …it’s perplexing!...
He hides his identity! He speaks harshly to them He accuses them of being spies. (On-the-first-visit) He put the whole-lot-of-them in prison for 3 days… …and-then, he kept one-brother (Simeon) and-sent the rest back-to-Canaan. Then, after-they-returned for a second-visit, (and Joseph hosted them for a feast in his-own-house) …then he pulled a big-bad swithcheroo: …putting all-their-money back in the food-sacks, …along with his own-personal silver-cup!
Of course, …the brothers didn’t know about this, …and they were just-glad to get-outta-Dodge with-their-lives and-the-food that they so-desperately needed. But-then, …Joseph sent a posse after-them to collect his mug. The brothers denied stealing anything… but-alas!
There it was! In Benjamin’s sack! The posse took the dejected-brothers back-to-face their doom, …back to face their terrible-master!
When they come before Joseph (for the third-time, now), …Joseph accuses them of deception and stealing and ingratitude. Chapter-44 is a heart-rending-exchange as Joseph accuses, …and Judah passionately-pleads for his youngest-brother’s-life!
As you read through the story, your heart-breaks, …and you have so-many questions because there are so-many loose-ends: “What is he waiting for? “Why doesn’t he tell them who he is? “How long will the charade go on? “Is he going to forgive them - (now-that they are face-to-face), “…or, will he unleash on-them a torrent-of-vengeance?”…