If you have ever been betrayed, you know that it is a painful experience. We find a pattern of betrayal in the life, and family of Jacob.
Jacob and Rachel betrayed Isaac (Genesis 27).
Next, we see a pattern of betrayals in the story of Jacob and Laban. See particularly in Genesis 31:36-42.
We see another experience of betrayal in the life of Jacob and his sons in Genesis 34.
The story I want to focus on today, however, is discovered in the life of Joseph (one of Jacob’s sons) who experienced much betrayal. Notice this terrible list of betrayals by Joseph’s own flesh and blood.
They envied him (Genesis 37:11), despised him (Genesis 37:18-20), cast him into a pit (Genesis 37:23,24), sold him to travelers (Genesis 37:27, 28), and lied to their father about him (Genesis 37:31-34). It is interesting that they used a kid of the goats.This is the exact animal that Jacob had used to deceive his father Isaac years before.
Joseph was not only betrayed by his family, but he was also betrayed, in Egypt, by his master's wife (Genesis 39:13-18), by his master (Genesis 39:19,20), and by the butler (Genesis 40:13,14….23).
All of this betrayal, and now Jospeh is in prison. This is a terrible predicament. Then comes the dream of Pharaoh and the exaltation of Joseph; and then comes his BROTHERS (Ch. 42:1-8).
What will Joseph do? He is brought face to face with his “BROTHERS.” YES, the brothers that had betrayed him. What will Joseph do?
HE WILL TRUST THEM!
WHAT? TRUST THAT GANG?
HOW DO I KNOW THIS?
READ GENESIS 50:22-26
THIS PASSAGE SHOWS THAT JOSEPH TRUSTS THEM. HE TRUSTS THEM WITH HIS BONES, AFTER HIS DEATH - NOW THAT IS TRUST! HOW COULD HE DO THIS?
Jospeh REALIZED HIS POSITION - (GENESIS 41:39-44). He was basically the ruler of the land....representing Pharaoh.
YOU MAY SAY, I AM NO RULER! IF YOU ARE A CHLD OF GOD, LISTEN TO HOW THE BIBLE DESCRIBES YOU (Revelation 1:5,6; Revelation 5:9,10; I Peter 2:9).
NEXT, JOSEPH REALIZED THAT GOD WAS ULTIMATELY IN CONTROL (GENESIS 50:20). This is a very important realization when learning to trust again. Jonah also learned this lesson about who is ultimately in control. Consider who cast Jonah into the sea. - Jonah 1:15; 2:2,3. Job had to learn this same lesson. Satan was clearly responsible for the destruction which came into Job’s life, yet, Job did not say, "God has given, and Satan has taken away." Instead, he said, “The LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away...” (Job 1:21). Have you learned this lesson?
FURTHER, JOSEPH REALIZED THERE WAS A HIGHER PURPOSE IN BETRAYAL (Genesis 50:20). Remember that Jesus was betrayed and the higher purpose was that he might die for the sins of the world. (Acts 2:23; 3:18-19; 4:28; Matthew 26:24).
Consider also, that Jospeh REALIZED THE PAIN THAT BETRAYERS LIVE WITH - Judah pleads his pitiful case with Joseph (Gen. 42:21-24; 44:19,20,27-34). If we fully knew the agony of conscience that betrayers live with, we would pity them. Think about Judas (the betrayer). His pain, for betraying Christ, was so great he killed himself.
Next, FOCUSING ON ONE’S DUTY Is both curative and protective (Gen. 41:39-41). The cure for many a hurt is found in engaging with and helping others.
Jospeh also learned that HE NEEDED TO PROVE (TEST) PEOPLE TO PROTECT HIMSELF (Genesis 42:16-20). Why did he command Benjamin to be brought, Simeon to be bound, their money put back in their sacks mouths, Benjamin's mess to be made 5x more than any of the other brothers, the silver cup to be put in Benjamin's sack, and then threaten to keep Benjamin? All to Prove those brothers. Joseph wanted to see that his brothers had truly changed. He did not commit himself to them right away.
In the life of Jesus, many were believing in his name and yet…
"Jesus did not commit himself unto them, because he knew all men, And needed not that any should testify of man: for he knew what was in man”….and yet he was committing himself and his truths to some....his disciples.
On the road to a recovery of trust, Joseph MAINTAINED A LOVING HEART - (Gen. 42:24; 43:29,30; 45:1-3) - He didn't allow anger or fear to get the better of him.