The Brothers Return For Jacob

John Brentz, a friend of Luther, and one of the stalwarts of the Reformation, incurred the hatred of Charles V who made many attempts to kill the minister. Hearing that a troop of Spanish Cavalry was on the way to arrest him, he cast himself upon God in prayer. At once the guidan … More


Joseph had hinted to his brothers that vast resources were at his command. The Holy Spirit now emphasizes their sources (vv. 16-20). Joseph made no mention to Pharaoh the guilt of these men. That was not only forgiven but forgotten. When Pharaoh heard about Joseph’s brothers all coming to Egypt he was pleased and offered them the best of the land of Egypt. What Joseph had promised to his brethren in grace Pharoah confirmed by decree. He even provided carts for transporting all the family. With the kings blessing, Joseph gave his brothers elaborate provisions for their journey, including clothing and food. For Jacob he sent the best things of Egypt which were loaded on 10 donkeys and ten other donkeys loaded with grain, bread and other food for the return trip. (vv. 21-22). As they left he told his brothers not to quarrel on the way (vv. 23-24). It certainly was not a time for accusations but a time for joyful reunion. The Spirit of God not only points to the source of God’s resources but he also points to their sufficiency. He gave them sufficient provisions for every step of the way.

After all the preparation Joseph’s brothers left Egypt for the long journey to Canaan (v. 25). No doubt Jacob was anxiously waiting for their return and was relieved when he saw the long line of donkeys coming. When they told him that Joseph was alive, he was a ruler in Egypt and that he wanted all of them to move to where he was Jacob could not believe it (v. 26). But then seeing all Joseph had sent and hearing the story Jacob was convinced and immediately decided to make the move and see his son (vv. 27-28). This royal invitation to Jacob and to the 10 brothers burdened with guilt was a turning point in their lives and a fulfillment of God’s prediction (Gen. 15:13-16). In brief it was stated that they would go into isolation in a foreign country and multiply without losing their identity.


It is comforting to see that even after years of heart­ache and suffering  God, in His timing, can bring blessing. When I go through trials in this life I must remember this record of Joseph. 

Genesis 45:16-28 (English Standard Version)

When the report was heard in Pharaoh's house, "Joseph's brothers have come," it pleased Pharaoh and his servants. And Pharaoh said to Joseph, "Say to your brothers, 'Do this: load your beasts and go back to the land of Canaan, and take your father and your households, and come to me, and I will give you the best of the land of Egypt, and you shall eat the fat of the land.' And you, Joseph, are commanded to say, 'Do this: take wagons from the land of Egypt for your little ones and for your wives, and bring your father, and come. Have no concern for your goods, for the best of all the land of Egypt is yours.'" The sons of Israel did so: and Joseph gave them wagons, according to the command of Pharaoh, and gave them provisions for the journey. To each and all of them he gave a change of clothes, but to Benjamin he gave three hundred shekels of silver and five changes of clothes. To his father he sent as follows: ten donkeys loaded with the good things of Egypt, and ten female donkeys loaded with grain, bread, and provision for his father on the journey. Then he sent his brothers away, and as they departed, he said to them, "Do not quarrel on the way." So they went up out of Egypt and came to the land of Canaan to their father Jacob. And they told him, "Joseph is still alive, and he is ruler over all the land of Egypt." And his heart became numb, for he did not believe them. But when they told him all the words of Joseph, which he had said to them, and when he saw the wagons that Joseph had sent to carry him, the spirit of their father Jacob revived. And Israel said, "It is enough; Joseph my son is still alive. I will go and see him before I die."

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