Summary: This is part 2 in the series looking at Joseph's life. Joseph did not excuse himself because of the circumstances he found himself in. His hard work caused him to rise to the top because the favor of God was on his life.
It’s Time To Get Up—Joseph Got Up Part 2
Last week, we looked at how Joseph’s family was really messed up. It was a home being torn apart by favoritism, privilege, anger, resentment and jealousy. Joseph had 11 other brothers. Joseph was his father’s favorite son, and he was the second youngest. One day His father Jacob had become worried about his ten sons who were missing and sent Joseph after them to make sure they were safe. Joseph went after them wearing his famous mutli-colored robe
On his way there, the brothers saw Joseph, and because of their bitterness and hatred, they decided to kill Joseph by throwing him into a pit. Joseph had no idea that his brothers wanted to kill him, and was shocked when they threw him into the pit. He begged and pleaded with them to get him out of the pit.
We ended last week’s message with his brothers seeing a caravan heading to Egypt. Judah came up with the idea, “Why kill our brother and get nothing for it. Why not sell him and make some money on the side. After all, he is our brother.” 9 of the brothers agree to this plan. For some reason, Reuben the oldest had gone somewhere and missed out on this scheme.
One of them no doubt yells, down. “we’re throwing a rope down to you, we’re going to get you out of there.”
They begin to help Joseph out of the pit. Joseph thinks this cruel joke they have played on him is over, little does he know just how bad things are about to get. He’s probably thinking, “when I get home and tell our father what you did, you’re really going to be in big trouble.”
His brothers dust him off, not to help him but to get a better deal from the slave traders. When Joseph realizes that he’s being sold as a slave, he begs and pleads for his life, but all his efforts fall on deaf ears. His hands are tied. He’s led away like an animal, having to walk many, many miles to Egypt.
I wonder how long did the brothers look at the caravan after they had sold him.
The oldest brother Rueben showed back up, thinking he would rescue Joseph out of the pit and give him back to his father. He’s shocked to learn what the other brothers had done. Now they have to get their lie straight to go back to their father. They take Joseph’s multi-colored coat. They rip it.
They slaughter a goat, a pour some blood over it. They take the robe to their father and say, “We found this. Examine this, and see whether or not if it is your son’s robe. Jacob cries out, “Oh my son Joseph has been torn apart by some wild animal.” Jacob tears his clothes, indicative of his grief.
For many days he mourns for his son whom he believes to be dead. His other children try to comfort him, but he refuses their comfort. This becomes the secret of Joseph’s 10 brothers. “We sold our brother as a slave.”
I wonder, was it Joseph they wanted to hurt because they were jealous of him or was it their father they really wanted to hurt because of his showing favoritism. When we do things in anger, more people get hurt than we intended.
Joseph is betrayed by those who knew him best. He’s betrayed by the very people whom he had gone looking for to make sure they were okay. You may know what’s its like to have been betrayed by someone very close to you.
Sometimes you don’t know whether you need to cry or just rage out in anger. Family betrayals happen all the time in all kinds of situations. We have sexual abuse taking place in our homes. We have family members stealing from us.
We discover those we trusted have been lying to us all along. What do you do with the anger and frustration left behind? Sometimes you even are tempted to blame yourself. “I should have seen this coming. I should have known what was going on.”
We have a Savior whose name is Jesus, who deals with betrayals all the time. There was a time when 12 men had agreed to stand by his side no matter what.’ 12 men that he loved, taught and ate with. But when he was finally arrested, he was arrested alone. When he was beaten, he was beaten alone. When he was nailed to the cross, he was nailed there alone.
There is something about our walk with God that is going to require a certain amount of suffering in it. During that time we will have to journey alone in order for God to use us in a powerful way. Anybody that was watching Joseph being led away to Egypt in chains would have thought, “that’s the last we will hear about that boy. It’s over for him.”