Genesis 42-45 God’s Sovereignty in the Midst of Suffering

Genesis 42-45

The brothers who had sold Joseph into slavery were now in need of his help (ch 42 v 1-7). They felt guilt for what they had done to Joseph though I feel that Reuben tried to limit his own guilt in the matter (ch 42 v 22).

Joseph gave them food and sent them on their way but kept Simeon until they returned with the youngest brother, Benjamin. Eventually, all of the brothers were reunited (ch 43 v 29-34).

Joseph then revealed his identity to the brothers (ch 45 v 3). And his words to them are filled with incomprehensible grace.

“Do not be distressed or angry with yourselves because you sold me here…” (ch 45 v 5).

How was he able to respond that way?

Remember, the Lord was with him every step of the way. And Joseph recognized that fact. And, now, when faced with those who wronged him, Joseph said, “It was not you who sent me, but God” (ch 45 v 5, 8).

Joseph acknowledged the sovereignty of God in the midst of his suffering and it gave him the ability to extend grace to the very ones who wronged him.

Imagine – grace for those who hurt us.

And, not just that, but a genuine concern for their emotional state. That’s a sign of a forgiveness that can only come from an understanding of the forgiveness we ourselves have been given – when we don’t desire distress for those who wronged us.

Lord – give me a heart that gives grace.

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