Get You To Egypt
Gen 42:1 Now when Jacob saw that there was corn in Egypt, Jacob said unto his sons, Why do ye look one upon another?
Egypt is where they had sold Joseph, twenty years in the past, now they were remembering in remorse. Buried sins surface in our minds. It is best to confess them and get them out so that they do not destroy God's direction in our lives.
Gen 42:2 And he said, Behold, I have heard that there is corn in Egypt: get you down thither, and buy for us from thence; that we may live, and not die.
The corn was sheber, grain corn: wheat, barley, millet and even lentils and beans were under the label of corn, in the King James Bible. Other Bible versions translate it as grain.
Gen 42:3 And Joseph's ten brethren went down to buy corn in Egypt.
Gen 42:4 But Benjamin, Joseph's brother, Jacob sent not with his brethren; for he said, Lest peradventure mischief befall him.
Benjamin was the only brother left from Jacob's (Israel's) beloved Rachel. He had been grieved so at the lost of his favored Joseph, now he takes special care of Benjamin.
Gen 42:5 And the sons of Israel came to buy corn among those that came: for the famine was in the land of Canaan.
Gen 42:6 And Joseph was the governor over the land, and he it was that sold to all the people of the land: and Joseph's brethren came, and bowed down themselves before him with their faces to the earth.
Here then is the fulfillment of Joseph's young dream from the Lord. What we see is God's purpose coming to pass. Our purpose should be his purpose for our lives. We should not oppose another's vision. We are not to mock or hinder Gods plans; they will come about with or without our help. In time of need there will be many seeking help from the Church. This will be our opportunity to share with them materially and spiritually. The message of Jesus forgiveness of sins, the gospel will be the salvation of those who seek.
LORD God, draw people to you by any means, may they find new life and new hope in your son Jesus. In his name I pray, Amen
Accused as Spies
Joseph's brothers had shown no remorse or repentance concerning their treatment of Joseph. Now Joseph is going to cause the brothers some remorse. They will have to search their souls and think of what they did to their brother Joseph.
Gen 42:7 And Joseph saw his brethren, and he knew them, but made himself strange unto them, and spake roughly unto them; and he said unto them, Whence come ye? And they said, From the land of Canaan to buy food.
Joseph being a ruler of Egypt spoke through an interpreter. He was giving the brothers a bit of a scare and he was able to understand their words.
Gen 42:8 And Joseph knew his brethren, but they knew not him.
His brothers are bowing before him, yet they did not know it was Joseph. They did not get the picture, at least not yet. Joseph, being a type of Christ; he was bowed down to but not known. They did not have the excellent spirit that Joseph had.
John 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
Gen 42:9 And Joseph remembered the dreams which he dreamed of them, and said unto them, Ye are spies; to see the nakedness of the land ye are come.
Joseph remembering the dreams and the way they were accused as spies, now plays on their brother's consciences, if they have any. He accuses them of being something they were not. Now what is their reaction, will they justify themselves?
Gen 42:10 And they said unto him, Nay, my lord, but to buy food are thy servants come.
Gen 42:11 We are all one man's sons; we are true men, thy servants are no spies.
Gen 42:12 And he said unto them, Nay, but to see the nakedness of the land ye are come.
Gen 42:13 And they said, Thy servants are twelve brethren, the sons of one man in the land of Canaan; and, behold, the youngest is this day with our father, and one is not.
We are true, we are honest men. Surely this made them search their conscience, and in there was the past treachery to their brother Joseph. Can any of us before we were saved say that we were honest and true people? God was using this to convict them of their sins and to bring restoration. We cannot be blessed if we disobey God and refuse to be made clean by him.
Rom 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
Gen 42:14 And Joseph said unto them, That is it that I spake unto you, saying, Ye are spies:
Gen 42:15 Hereby ye shall be proved: By the life of Pharaoh ye shall not go forth hence, except your youngest brother come hither.
Gen 42:16 Send one of you, and let him fetch your brother, and ye shall be kept in prison, that your words may be proved, whether there be any truth in you: or else by the life of Pharaoh surely ye are spies.
If you are honest show me the younger brother. They would have to take the last brother of Jacob's choice from him. They must go through his mourning one more time. They have hurt their father before, surely this would bring all of them sorrow.
Gen 42:17 And he put them all together into ward three days.
Like a jury they are left together to decide another's fate, and their own. Is this not like Jesus in the grave three days, or like Jonah in the fish, not his choice but it had to be endured. Sometimes we are put in bad places, but it is a chance to think. What have I done in the past and what is my future. This was a time to make plans and seek Gods face.
Gen 42:18 And Joseph said unto them the third day, This do, and live; for I fear God:
Joseph doing a work in his brothers heart's gives them a plan, and says reassuringly "I fear God". It is reassuring to know that he who controls, also fears God, and is accountable to him. A foolish leader would mock God, whoa to the people whose leaders mock God and do not fear him for they serve satan and death.
Gen 42:19 If ye be true men, let one of your brethren be bound in the house of your prison: go ye, carry corn for the famine of your houses:
If you are true men, or honest men, let one of your brothers be bound in prison, a hostage for the rest of you.
Gen 42:20 But bring your youngest brother unto me; so shall your words be verified, and ye shall not die. And they did so.
Corn (or grain) would be given but Benjamin must come, to supposedly show that the men were true and not spies. One of them must be bound, held hostage until Benjamin is brought forth to Joseph.
Gen 42:21 And they said one to another, We are verily guilty concerning our brother, in thatwe saw the anguish of his soul, when he besought us, and we would not hear; therefore is this distress come upon us.
Gen 42:22 And Reuben answered them, saying, Spake I not unto you, saying, Do not sin against the child; and ye would not hear? therefore, behold, also his blood is required.
The brothers knew they were getting what was coming to them for having no mercy on young Joseph. God is not mocked.
Gen 42:23 And they knew not that Joseph understood them; for he spake unto them by an interpreter.
Gen 42:24 And he turned himself about from them, and wept; and returned to them again, and communed with them, and took from them Simeon, and bound him before their eyes.
Hearing his brothers own up to their sin made Joseph weep. How many have been mistreated by family, would not each shed tears if they heard the family members be remorseful? The greatest pain comes from close friends and family who have betrayed their position of trust to God. God will require much from them until they have learned the lesson. Simeon was chosen to be bound for a time; we don't know exactly why Simeon was chosen. Simeon was known for his hardness of heart in killing all the newly circumcised men of Shechem; perhaps this would do a work in his heart? There will be a lesson learned from this. The conscience will comvict them of sin. We learn from the hard times, it is God's way of teaching us. Each lesson learned is a step closer to being like Jesus.
Gen 42:25 Then Joseph commanded to fill their sacks with corn, and to restore every man's money into his sack, and to give them provision for the way: and thus did he unto them.
Joseph secretly restored their money in the sacks of grain corn. This appears as an act of kindness and grace, but there was more to this. Beware of free gifts from another, it may be a trap. Would they be accused as being thieves?
Gen 42:26 And they laded their asses with the corn, and departed thence.
Gen 42:27 And as one of them opened his sack to give his ass provender in the inn, he espied his money; for, behold, it was in his sack's mouth.
Gen 42:28 And he said unto his brethren, My money is restored; and, lo, it is even in my sack: and their heart failed them, and they were afraid, saying one to another, What is this that God hath done unto us?
They had fear when they saw their money in the sacks. Fear often comes suddenly when we feel all is well. Fear is of satan, but it is also the result of unconfessed sin or a real danger. They thought that God surely was punishing them for their sin in some way. Well they might fear, for they had sinned greatly in selling young Joseph. In the Old Testament law that would come with Moses, God did punish sin swiftly.
Gen 42:29 And they came unto Jacob their father unto the land of Canaan, and told him all that befell unto them; saying,
Gen 42:30 The man, who is the lord of the land, spake roughly to us, and took us for spies of the country.
Gen 42:31 And we said unto him, We are true men; we are no spies:
Gen 42:32 We be twelve brethren, sons of our father; one is not, and the youngest is this day with our father in the land of Canaan.
Gen 42:33 And the man, the lord of the country, said unto us, Hereby shall I know that ye are true men; leave one of your brethren here with me, and take food for the famine of your households, and be gone:
Gen 42:34 And bring your youngest brother unto me: then shall I know that ye are no spies, but that ye are true men: so will I deliver you your brother, and ye shall traffic in the land.
Gen 42:35 And it came to pass as they emptied their sacks, that, behold, every man's bundle of money was in his sack: and when both they and their father saw the bundles of money, they were afraid.
They still had not recognized Joseph, as the Lord of the land. Now the father too was fearful of what had happened. Simeon was held hostage and the "true men" the remaining brothers, would they be accused of stealing back their money?
Gen 42:36 And Jacob their father said unto them, Me have ye bereaved of my children: Joseph is not, and Simeon is not, and ye will take Benjamin away: all these things are against me.
Gen 42:37 And Reuben spake unto his father, saying, Slay my two sons, if I bring him not to thee: deliver him into my hand, and I will bring him to thee again.
Gen 42:38 And he said, My son shall not go down with you; for his brother is dead, and he is left alone: if mischief befall him by the way in the which ye go, then shall ye bring down my gray hairs with sorrow to the grave.
The blessings of free grain had a price. Joseph is not; Simeon is not, now perhaps also Benjamin, their father's dear son from Rachel? What would this cost Reuben, would it mean his two sons would die? They had all this remorse because of the sin of selling Joseph. Would the old father die in sorrow, because of the sins of his vengeful sons? Sin has a price, all that is done will be tainted by it, you may get by but you want get away. Praise God for Jesus and grace. Our sins are forgiven; we no longer fear Gods judgment. Still satan reminds us of the past. But satan, why bother? You are a liar, we need not fear, we are the children of the most high God and we are forgiven and made free. Thank you Jesus.