The Messiah typified by Joseph
(according to Genesis)
1 And Ya‛aqob dwelt in the land of
his father’s sojournings, in the
2 This is the genealogy of Ya‛aqob. Yosĕph, being seventeen years old, was feeding the flock with his brothers. And the young man was with the sons of Bilhah and the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives. And Yosĕph brought an evil report of them to his father.
The chapter starts with a contrast
between Esau, who dwelt in
Working together with his half-brothers, Dan, Naphtali, Gad and Asher, the sons of Bilhah and Zilpah, in feeding Jacob's flocks, he brought to his father the report of their bad practices. If these things were of a serious nature, it may have been necessary for Joseph to do this. What the evil was we are not informed; but Jacob's full-grown sons were now far from the paternal eye, and prone, as it seems, to give way to temptation. Many scandals come out to view in the chosen family.
On the other hand, we know that the Lord Yeshua was always right in communing with his Father about the evils of his brothers according to the flesh and often he exposed what was in their hearts, openly making manifest evil secret thoughts: “And lo, certain of the scribes said within themselves, ‘This one is blaspheming’. And Yeshua, knowing their thoughts, said, ‘Why are you thinking evil things in your hearts?”
3 And Yisra’ĕl loved Yosĕph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age. And he made him a long, varicolored robe.
4 But when his brothers saw that their father loved him more than all his brothers, they hated him and were not able to speak peaceably to him.
God's love for his Son is necessarily unique. When Elohim's Son became incarnate, and was about to begin his public ministry, the heavens were opened and the voice of the Father was heard saying: "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased" (Matt 3:17).
In Col 1:13 the apostle called Yeshua υιος της αγαπης αυτου, Son of his [Elohim's] love.
The garment of many colours Jacob made for Joseph is typical of the many features of the glories of the Lord Yeshua. From a comparison of 2 Sam 13:18 we learn that it was a mark of honour, singling out the wearer as one of noble birth. How appropriate therefore as an adumbration of Messiah Yeshua! He, too, was marked off from all his Jewish brothers, marked off as one of noble birth, marked off by outward signs of peculiar distinction and honour.
Shortly before his royal entry in Jerusalem, he spoke to the crowd one of his many parables, thus starting: “A man of noble birth traveled to a distant land to secure kingly power for himself and to return.” (Luke 19:12).
For them who are interested in the doctrine of gematria:
The NV (numerical value) of kethoneth passim, robe of many colours, is 1060. So it cannot be by chance that Joshua 16:4 has exactly that NV:
So the children of Joseph, Manasseh and Ephraim, took their inheritance.
That scripture, with its value 1060, reminds us powerfully to Joseph's first birthright. He was the first son by Jacob’s actual wife, Rachel. That is why Joseph’s Antitype, Yeshua, in Col 1:15 is called: Firstborn of all creation.
In Israel, the first birthright of Joseph was reflected in his receiving a double inheritance in the form of the two tribes Manasseh and Ephraim.
Joseph had obtained those two sons by Asenath, his pagan wife. Obviously, we then think of Yeshua's marriage contract with his (Christian) Wife-congregation, which is of mostly pagan origin.
In that context, Joseph's two sons remind us forcefully to the double part the Israel of Elohim is going to receive on earth, as is prophetically shown in Zechariah 9:12 >> I will repay to you, O woman, a double portion.
But there is more to remark about that kethoneth passim.
Since Joseph was the seventh son of the two wives, Leah and Rachel together, we obviously are allowed to refer to the seventh day of Elohim's "Creation week", the world as it was then given to man and afterwards appeared multicolour in appearance:
The Garden of Eden with the Adamitic fall; the Flood; the Confusion of tongues, and subsequent the eras of the Patriarchs, the Law, the aeon of his own Congregational Body, and finally his parousia (End time presence), followed by his Messianic Millennium Reign.
However, the Messiah does not just start leading that final appearance of the Seventh ‘Day. In Hebrews 1:2 we read about him [Elohim's] Son whom he appointed heir of all things; by whom also he made the aeons.
From Proverbs 8, where the Son is introduced to us as the personified Wisdom, we learn that YHWH Elohim used him – he himself being the Firstborn of all creation (Col 1:15; Rev 3:14) - in creating all other things. In the verses 22-23 and 30-31 consequently we hear him saying:
“YHWH himself produced me as the beginning of his way, the earliest of his achievements of long ago. From ancient times I was installed, from the start, from times earlier than the earth… Then I came beside him as a master worker. I was the one he was especially fond of day by day; I being glad before him all the time. I rejoiced over his habitable earth, and the things I was especially fond of were with the sons of men”.
In Gen 37:3 the LXX [Septuagint] renders kethoneth passim [the garment of many colours] with χιτωνα ποικιλον.
In Ephesians 3:10-11 we read accordingly about the Son:
So that now to the rulers and the authorities in the heavenly places, through the Congregation [of which the Son is Head], might be made known the greatly diversified wisdom of God [η πολυποικιλος σοφια του θεου], according to the eternal purpose that he formed in the Messiah, Yeshua.
However, the love of Jacob for Joseph drew out the bitter animosity of his brothers. Of course Joseph was not to blame for this; it was Jacob’s love which brought out the heart’s enmity of these men. Joseph then, made manifest both his father’s love and at the same time the hatred of his brothers. And exactly that was what Messiah Yeshua did during his ministry, especially among his Jewish brothers: these two things, revealing the Father’s affectionate love, at the same time exposing the enmity of his Jewish relatives. The way how he addressed them we are hearing in John 8:37-45
“ I know that you are Abraham’s offspring. But you are seeking to kill me, because my word makes no progress among you. I speak the things I have seen while with my Father, but you do the things you have heard from your father.”
In answer they said to him: “Our father is Abraham.”
Yeshua said to them: “If you were Abraham’s children, you would be doing the works of Abraham. But now you are seeking to kill me, a man who has told you the truth that I heard from God. Abraham did not do this. You are doing the works of your father.”
They said to him: “We were not born from immorality; we have one Father, God.”
Yeshua said to them: “If God were your Father, you would love me, for I came from God and I am here. I have not come of my own initiative, but that One sent me. Why do you not understand what I am saying? Because you cannot listen to my word. You are from your father the Devil, and you wish to do the desires of your father. That one was a murderer when he began, and he did not stand fast in the truth, because truth is not in him. When he speaks the lie, he speaks according to his own disposition, because he is a liar and the father of the lie. Because I, on the other hand, tell you the truth, you do not believe me”.
5 And Yosĕph dreamed a dream, and told it to his brothers. So they hated him even more.
6 And he said to them, “Please listen to this dream which I have dreamed:
7 See, we were binding sheaves in the midst of the field, and see, my sheaf rose up and also stood up. And see, your sheaves stood all around and bowed down to my sheaf.”
8 And his brothers said to him, “Shall you indeed reign over us? Shall you indeed rule over us?” So they hated him even more for his dreams and for his words.
9 And he dreamed still another dream and related it to his brothers, and said, “See, I have dreamed another dream, and see, the sun and the moon and the eleven stars bowed down to me.”
10 And he related it to his father and his brothers. And his father rebuked him and said to him, “What is this dream that you have dreamed? Shall we, your mother and I and your brothers, indeed come to bow down to the earth before you?”
11 And his brothers envied him, but his father guarded the word.
YHWH Elohim did not only send the dreams to Joseph, but manifestly in his sovereign wisdom, he also caused Joseph to tell them to his brothers, only thereby increasing their hatred toward him. As likewise the Lord Yeshua told the Pharisees: "I tell you, hereafter you shall see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven" (Matth 26:64).
In Joseph's first dream he tells his brothers that he and they were binding sheaves of grain in the field: his sheaf arose and stood erect, and those of his brothers all bowed down to his sheaf. The meaning is clear: the brothers would yet bow to Joseph's authority, which later on they actually did as Gen 42:6 tells us: Now Joseph was the ruler over the land; he was the one who sold to all the people of the land. And Joseph's brothers came and bowed down to him with their faces to the ground.
Of course, the most vital lesson here is that all Israel will yet bow to the Lord Yeshua, whom they have despised and hated. At the time Joseph's brothers considered it ridiculous that he would ever have dominion over them, and without doubt most of the present Jews keep it impossible that they will ever bow down to Yeshua, recognizing him as their true Messiah. Nevertheless, they will be confronted with the fulfilment of the prophecy in Isaiah 9
For unto us a child is
born, unto us a son is given; and the government shall be upon
his shoulder; and his name is called Wonderful, Counsellor, Mighty God, Father of
Eternity, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and of peace there
shall be no end, upon the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it, and to
uphold it with judgment and with righteousness, from henceforth even for ever.
The zeal of YHWH of hosts will perform this.
It will be exactly as Gabriel announced to Mary:
The angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin promised in marriage to a man named Joseph of David’s house, and the name of the virgin was Mary. And coming in, the angel said to her: “Greetings, you highly favored one, the Lord is with you.”
But she was deeply disturbed at his words and tried to understand what kind of greeting this might be. So the angel said to her: “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And look! you will become pregnant and give birth to a son, and you are to name him Yeshua. This one will be great and will be called Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give him the throne of David his father, and he will rule as King over the house of Jacob forever, and there will be no end to his Kingdom.”
But Mary said to the angel: “How is this to be, since I am having no intercourse with a man?” In answer the angel said to her: “Holy spirit will come upon you, and power of the Most High will overshadow you. And for that reason the one who is born will be called holy, God’s Son.
The second dream seems to have awakened thoughts of questioning in his brothers minds. When he told them and also told his father that he dreamed that the sun and moon and eleven stars bowed down to him, his father rebuked him, evidently feeling it was pride on Joseph's part that occasioned the dream, for he realized that the implication was plain that both he and Rachel and his eleven children would bow down to Joseph.
However, what Joseph dreamed and foretold was nothing less than his future sovereignty. The dream indicated, in reality, a future dual sovereign capacity: The first dream concerned "the field," which pointed to Yeshua’s earthly dominion; but the second dream related to the sun, the moon and the stars, and tells, in type, of the heavenly dominion of the Messiah. As he himself told his disciples after his resurrection: All authority was given to me in heaven and upon the earth (Matth 28:18).
In this respect Ephesians 1:10 is very revealing.
There we read about Elohim’s purpose in the Messiah. It is his pleasure to have an administration [οικονομια] of the fullness of time, to unite all things under one head in the Messiah; the things concerning heaven and the things in earth, in him.
Messiah Yeshua is to be the supreme Head of all. However, at this present time the heavens (or heavenlies) are still in revolt against YHWH Elohim. Within that sphere "invisible" wicked spirits in the heavenlies are opposing Christians. They have a struggle against principalities, against powers, against the world rulers of this darkness, against the wicked spirit forces in the heavenly realms (Eph 6:12). Fortunately however, these creatures will all completely be subjected to Elohim's dear Son, as was also foreshadowed in Joseph's second dream.
The prophetic value of Joseph's two dreams is also powerfully expressed in the Philippians Letter, where the spirit led Paul to paint the lofty elevation of Yeshua after first he had deeply humbled himself to serve his human brothers here on earth:
Let that mental attitude be in you that [was] also in Messiah Yeshua, who, existing in Elohim's form, considered no robbery to be equal to Elohim, but emptied himself, having taken a slave’s form, having become in likeness of men. And having been found in fashion as man, he humbled himself, having become obedient unto death, even death of a torture stake. Therefore also Elohim exalted him high and kindly gave him the name which is above every name, that in the name of Yeshua every knee should bend, of those in heaven and those on earth and those underground, and every tongue should confess openly that Lord [is] Yeshua Messiah, to glory of Elohim [the] Father.
But his brothers envied him.
Did this not indicate that they were apprehensive that Joseph would have such a place of authority? We know too that it was not only unbelief on the part of the Jewish leaders that moved their rejection of Yeshua as their Messiah, but also envy: For Pilate was aware that out of envy they had handed him over (Matth 27:18).
12 And his brothers went to feed their father’s flock in Shechem.
13 And Yisra’ĕl said to Yosĕph: “Are not your brothers feeding the flock in Shechem? Come, I send you to them.” So he said to him: “Here I am.”
14 And he said to him: “Please go and see if it is well with your brothers and well with the sheep, and bring back word to me.” So he sent him out of the Valley of Hebron, and he went to Shechem.
15 And a certain man found him, and see, he was wandering in the field. And the man asked him, saying: “What do you seek?”
16 And he said: “I am seeking my brothers. Please inform me where they are feeding their sheep.”
17 And the man said: “They have left here, for I heard them say: ‘Let us go towards Dothan.’ ” So Yosĕph went after his brothers and found them in Dothan.
The hatred of the brothers found opportunity in the love that sought them. After all, Joseph first sought them at Shechem and afterwards he went even further, to Dothan. We borrow from Arthur Pink:
Here the brethren of Joseph are seen away from their father. Jacob says to his beloved son: Come, and I will send thee unto them. How this reveals the heart of Jacob to us. He was not indifferent to their welfare. Absent from the father’s house as they were, Jacob is concerned for the welfare of these brethren of Joseph. He, therefore, proposes to send his well beloved son on an errand of mercy, seeking their good. And is it not beautiful to mark the promptness of Joseph’s response! There was no hesitancy, no unwillingness, no proffering of excuses, but a blessed readiness to do his father’s will: Here am I…
We are permitted to learn something of what passed between the Father and the Son in the remote past. As the Lord God with divine omniscience foresaw the fall of man, and the alienation of the race from himself, out of the marvellous grace of his heart, he proposed that his beloved Son should go forth on a mission of mercy, seeking those who were away from the Father’s House. Hence we read so often of the Son being sent by the Father: Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins (1 John 4:10). And blessed it is to know that the Beloved of the Father came forth on his errand of love, freely, willingly, gladly. Like Joseph, he, too, promptly responded: Here am I. As it is written of him in Hebrews 10:7 >> Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me) to do thy will, O God.
Joseph was sent out of the valley of Hebron. Hebron means communion, reminding us that the Father sent his Son from the place of intimate communion, which had been the portion of the Father and the Son from the point in ancient times that YHWH himself produced me as the beginning of his way, the earliest of his achievements of long ago. From ancient times I was installed, from the start, from times earlier than the earth, as we already quoted above from Psalm 8.
Shechem means "shoulder" and speaks of assuming responsibility, which Israel did under Thorah. Therefore, when Yeshua was sent by Elohim his Father he came to the place where the Israelites resided under the Thorah that Elohim had laid upon their shoulders. Moreover, even Yeshua himself was born within those circumstances: When the fullness of time came, Elohim sent out his Son, having become out of a woman, having become under Thorah (Galatians 4:4).
However, Joseph did not find his brothers at Shechem, likewise also Yeshua did not find Israel in the place of obedience to Elohim's Thorah. So, he had to rebuke them with the words of Isaiah:
Hypocrites, Isaiah aptly prophesied about you when he said: ‘This people honour me with their lips, but their hearts are far removed from me. It is in vain that they keep worshipping me, for they teach commands of men as doctrines’.
In the neighbourhood of Shechem a certain man found Joseph wandering in the field and asked what he was looking for. The man was able to tell him that he had heard his brothers proposing to go to Dothan, meaning "their decree", or possibly “two wells”. Just as Joseph thus found his brothers at Dothan, so Messiah Yeshua found Israel in a place of their own decrees and traditions, rather than in the place of subjection to the Thorah of YHWH Elohim. He told the Pharisees and scribes: You have made Elohim’s commandment invalid because of your tradition.
If Dothan might mean "two wells" or, perhaps better "cisterns", we are reminded how Elohim blamed Israel: They have forsaken me, the Fountain of living waters, in order to hew out for themselves cisterns, broken cisterns, that cannot hold the water. This was Israel's condition exactly when the One who was "the fountain of life" was in their midst.
18 And they saw him from a distance, and before he came near them, they plotted against him, to kill him.
19 And they said to each other: “See, this master of dreams is coming!
20 Now, then, come and let us now kill him and throw him into some pit, and shall say: ‘Some wild beast has devoured him.’ Let us then see what comes of his dreams!”
21 But Re’ubĕn heard and rescued him from their hands, and said: “Let us not take his life.”
22 And Re’ubĕn said to them: “Shed no blood. Throw him into this pit which is in the wilderness, and do not lay a hand on him” – in order to rescue him out of their hands, and bring him back to his father.
It is striking to notice how that a
conspiracy was formed against Joseph, even before
he drew near unto them.
However, that reminds us of what happened during the days of the One who turned out to be far greater than Joseph! As soon as he started his Messianic career inside Israel, when he presented himself publicly to his Jewish brothers during his public ministry the Pharisees went out and held a council against him, how they might destroy him (Matth 12:14).
We refer again to Pink, although slightly modified:
The prophetic announcement of Joseph seemed unto his brothers as idle tales. They not only hated him, but they refused to believe what he had said. Their scepticism comes out plainly in the wicked proposal Let us slay him . . . and we shall see what will become of his dreams.
Thus it was with the Messiah of Elohim, after he had been nailed to the torture stake:
And those passing by were hurling abuse at him, wagging their heads and saying, “You who are going to destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, save yourself! If you are the Son of God, come down from the cross.”
In the same way the chief priests also, along with the scribes and elders, were mocking him and saying, “He saved others; he cannot save himself. He is the King of Israel; let him now come down from the cross, and we will believe in him.
which was an admission that they indeed did not believe. The Jews believed him not. His teaching was nothing more to them than empty dreams. So, too, after his death and burial:
The chief priests and the Pharisees gathered together with Pilate, and said, “Sir, we remember that when he was still alive that deceiver said, ‘After three days I am to rise again.’
“Therefore, give orders for the grave to be made secure until the third day, otherwise his disciples may come and steal him away and say to the people, ‘He has risen from the dead,’ and the last deception will be worse than the first.”
Pilate said to them, “You have a guard; go, make it as secure as you know how.” And they went and made the grave secure, and along with the guard they set a seal on the stone. (Matthew 27).
When the stone was sealed and the watch was set, the sceptical Pharisees were but saying in effect: We shall see what will become of his dreams.
23 So it came to be, when Yosĕph had come to his brothers, that they stripped Yosĕph of his robe, the long, varicolored robe which was on him.
24 And they took him and threw him into a pit. And the pit was empty, there was no water in it.
How this is bringing out the wicked hatred of these men for the one who had come to seek only their welfare. Like beasts of prey they threw themselves immediately upon him. It was not enough to injure him; they must insult him too. They put him to an open shame by stripping him of his coat of many colours. And how solemnly this agrees with the antitype. He, too, was insulted, and put to shame: Then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus into the common hall, and gathered unto him the whole band of soldiers. And they stripped him (Matthew 27:27-28).
The same horrible ignominy is witnessed again at the torture stake: Then the soldiers when they had crucified Jesus, took his garments (John 19:23).
The pit wherein is no water, which is also mentioned in Zech 9:11, seems to be another name for Hades (Hebrew: Sheol), the common grave of the dead awaiting their resurrection at the Millennium Kingdom of Messiah: For there is no work nor devising nor knowledge nor wisdom in Sheol, the place to which you are going (Eccl 9:10).
We are also reminded of Jonah who was three days in Sheol:
Then some of the scribes and Pharisees said to him, “Teacher, we want to see a sign from you.”
But he answered and said to them, “An evil and adulterous generation craves for a sign; and yet no sign will be given to it but the sign of Jonah the prophet; for just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the sea monster, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. The men of Nineveh will stand up with this generation at the judgment, and will condemn it because they repented at the preaching of Jonah; and behold, something greater than Jonah is here”.
According to Jonah himself he stayed three days in Sheol, as was also Masjiach Yeshua in that ’pit’ three days before he was resurrected by his Father Elohim:
Then Jonah prayed to YHWH his Elohim from the belly of the fish, and he said: “Out of my distress I called out to YHWH, and he answered me. Out of the belly of Sheol I cried for help. You heard my voice” (Jonah 2:1-2).
But there is still more to note about the robe of many colours from which Joseph was stripped off. As we noted earlier above, that kethoneth passim is typical of the many features of the glories of the Lord Yeshua. Through him, YHWH Elohim made the various aeons, the world ages, including the Seventh day of Elohim's "Creation week". The world as it was then given to man appeared likewise multicolour, but in all the successive stages of it Elohim's Son had the spiritual guidance.
So, by stripping him of that ‘robe’ the elite Jewish clergy of the First Century with that action tried to prevent Yeshua from completing his divinely purposed goal, especially during the Millennium Kingdom: the final blessing of mankind as was promised to Abraham: In your seed – at that moment foreshadowed by the sacrificed Yitzchak – all the Gojim of the earth will be blessed because you obeyed my voice (Gen 22:18).
25 And they sat down to eat a meal. And they lifted their eyes and looked and saw a company of Yishma‛ĕlites, coming from Gil‛ad with their camels, bearing spices, and balm, and myrrh, going to take them down to Mitsrayim.
26 And Yehudah said to his brothers: “What would we gain if we kill our brother and conceal his blood?
27 Come and let us sell him to the Yishma‛ĕlites, and let not our hand be upon him, for he is our brother, our flesh.” And his brothers listened.
28 And men, Midyanite traders passed by, so they pulled Yosĕph up and lifted him out of the pit, and sold him to the Yishma‛ĕlites for twenty pieces of silver. And they took Yosĕph to Mitsrayim.
Just as Joseph's brothers coolly sat down to eat, so we are told of those who impaled the Lord Yeshua: sitting down they kept guard over him there (Matth 27:36).
But an unexpected opportunity arises, of which the brothers take selfish advantage. When a company of Ishmaelite traders appear, travelling toward Egypt, Judah is not slow to recognize an ideal way of getting rid of Joseph and at the same time gaining some monetary profit. And evidently in Reuben's absence they sell him to the Ishmaelites. However, mark their hypocrisy: Come and let us sell him to the Yishma‛ĕlites, and let not our hand be upon him, for he is our brother, our flesh.
Like the Jews did with Yeshua, the ‘brothers’ delivered Yoseph up to the Gentiles. Twenty pieces of silver is the price they got for him, just two-thirds the price of an average adult slave. Judas asked the chief priests what they would give for Yeshua. Thirty pieces of silver is their offer; the price of a slave is their estimate of the One who was ever Elohim's daily delight (Matth 26:14-16; Proverbs 8:30)
As we already concluded, the lifting out of the pit is an allusion to Yeshua’s resurrection.
29 And Re’ubĕn returned to the pit, and see, Yosĕph was not in the pit. And he tore his garments.
30 And he returned to his brothers and said: “The boy is gone! And I, where am I to go?”
Presumably, reader, you noticed already in the verses 21 and 22 that Reuben in a timid, half-hearted way had tried to save the life of Joseph. Obviously, at no risk to himself, being too cowardly, he had not stepped out boldly. In his case we are reminded of Yeshua’s own warning in matters like this: Whosoever shall confess me before men, the Son of man will confess him also before the angels of God; but he that shall have denied me before men shall be denied before the angels of God (Luke 12:8-9).
31 So they took Yosĕph’s robe, killed a male goat, and dipped the robe in the blood,
32 and sent the long robe and brought it to their father and said: “We have found this. Please look, is it the robe of your son or not?”
33 And he recognised it and said: “It is my son’s robe. An evil beast has devoured him. Yosĕph is torn, torn to pieces.”
34 And Ya‛aqob tore his garments, and put sackcloth on his waist, and mourned for his son many days.
35 And all his sons and all his daughters arose to comfort him, but he refused to be comforted, and he said: “Now let me go down into the grave [Sheol] to my son in mourning.” So his father wept for him.
36 And the Midanites had sold him in Mitsrayim to Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh and captain of the guard.
The brothers sent the long robe and brought it to their father and said: “We have found this. Please look, is it the robe of your son or not?”
The anticipation of the type is self evident: The blood of Yeshua Masjiach as the blood of a scapegoat, a sin offering, was presented to the Father.
Jacob was now certain that Joseph had been killed. His mourning continued for his son over a long period, and though all his sons and his daughters sought to comfort him, he did not respond to this. How could he? After all, the comforting of his sons was just a display of hypocrisy. He tells them that the agony of his mourning will not be relieved before he goes down to Sheol.
From all these typical facts we can not but conclude that Israel as a nation since 33 AD lives within the sphere of a blatant lie, especially her religious elite.
1 And at that time it came to be that Yehudah left his brothers, and turned aside to a man, an Adullamite whose name was Hirah.
Judah is here seen leaving his brothers. The history of those brothers is not considered in this report, for Israel's long history has really been represented in the history of Judah since the ten tribes were separated from Judah and Benjamin. Here, then, Judah foreshadows the history of the Jews since their rejection of their true Messiah.
The story of Joseph is interrupted to expose in particular the shamefulness of an important part of Judah's history.
Genesis 37 closed with an account of Jacob’s sons selling their brother Joseph unto the Midianites, and they, in turn sold him into Egypt. This speaks, in type, of the Messiah being rejected by Israel, and delivered unto the Gentiles. From the time that the Jewish leaders delivered their Messiah into the hands of Pilate they had, as a nation, no further dealings with him; and YHWH Elohim, too, has turned from them to the Gentiles. Compare the account of Acts, chapter 13; in particular from verse 44.
Hence there occurs an important turn in our type at this stage. Joseph is now seen in the hands of the Gentiles.
But before we are told what happened to Joseph in Egypt, Elohim’s holy spirit traces for us, in typical outline, the history of the Jews, while the antitypical Joseph is absent from the land.
2 And Yehudah saw there a daughter of a certain Kena‛anite whose name was Shuah. And he took her and went in to her.
As we saw already in the previous chapter Judah took the lead in selling Joseph as a slave. In fact, in every relationship of Judah his shame and dishonour is evident. He sold his brother, he deceived his father, and then he married a Canaanite wife. How striking this is! Judah became the representative of all his brothers. So we find him wandering among and mixing with the Gentiles, just like Israel at the present day. He marries a Gentile woman named Shuah.
Canaanite signifies the merchantman and "Shuah" means "riches." How plainly the meaning of these names gives us the leading characteristics of the Jews during the centuries after their rejection of the antitypical Joseph! Israel has exchanged any spiritual values she had for the legal principle of trading or trafficking in the world's markets. No longer are they the settled husbandmen and quiet shepherds as of old; but, instead, travelling merchants. And "riches" has been the great pursuit for many of them. It has been said that Jews appear to be remarkably successful in the accumulation of wealth, and can make money where a Gentile would starve, or speedily become bankrupt.
However, in that respect, we recall the message which the glorified Messiah is previously aiming to the End time Jewish community, represented by the community of Laodicea:
These things says the Amen, the Witness who is faithful and true, the Beginning of Elohim's creation: “I am familiar with your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I would that you were cold or hot. So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I am going to vomit you out of my mouth. Because you say: ‘Rich I am, and I have been enriched and need none at all’, while it is not understood that you are the wretched, and pitiable, and poor, and blind, and naked. I advise you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, so that you may become rich; and white outer garments, that you may clothe and the shame of your nakedness will not be public, and eye ointment to cover your eyes that you may see. All those for whom I cherish affection, I reprove and discipline. Therefore be zealous and repent”.
Without doubt, however, it will require the powerful work of Elohim’s holy spirit in conjunction with the manifestation of the Lord Yeshua in glory, to break down Judah's proud arrogance (Zech 12:7-14), just as we shall see [in Genesis 44:18-44] Judah personally broken down when having to face Joseph.
3 So she conceived and bore a son, and he called his name Ěr.
4 And she conceived again and bore a son, and she called his name Onan.
5 And she conceived yet again and bore a son, and called his name Shĕlah. And he was at Kezib when she bore him.
6 And Yehudah took a wife for Ěr his first-born, and her name was Tamar.
7 But Ěr, Yehudah’s first-born, was evil in the eyes of YHWH, and YHWH took his life.
8 And Yehudah said to Onan, “Go in to your brother’s wife and marry her, and raise up an heir to your brother.”
9 And Onan knew that the offspring would not be his. And it came to be, when he went in to his brother’s wife, that he spilled on the ground, lest he should give an offspring to his brother.
10 But what he did displeased YHWH, so he took his life too.
11 Then Yehudah said to Tamar his daughter-in-law, “Remain a widow in your father’s house until my son Shĕlah is grown.” For he said, “Lest he also die as his brothers did.” And Tamar went and dwelt in her father’s house.
Three sons were born to
Er—awake; rouse up
Onan—strong; dynamic energy
Deeply significant are these names, marking the Jews all through the centuries of the present era. Er proved to be bad in the eyes of YHWH Elohim, hence he put Er to death. In antitype Er may probably represent the majority of the Jews who used their religious energy to rouse up hatred and enmity against all who accept Yeshua as the Anointed One of YHWH Elohim. The old-time enmity that seems as much alive today as it was on the day when they cried out of the hatred of their hearts: Impale him! impale him! The mere mention of the name of "Yeshua of Nazareth" to many of them is sufficient to cause them uttering some awful malediction.
"Dynamic energy" [Onan] surely fits this people as well. He agreed to take the widow of Er as his wife in order to have a child that would be officially his brother's. But he did not complete his contract honourably, and Elohim considered this serious enough to kill him too. The reason was his absolute selfishness, for the child would not be officially his (though actually so).
Onan’s selfishness reminds us of the
figure Peloni Almoni in the story of Ruth. As the predicted pseudo messiah he
fulfils the image of Peloni Almoni who had to admit at the gate of
(Ruth; Chapter 4)
These two cases illustrate the
degrading history of the tribe of
Shelah was the last son born, and the only one of the three brothers to remain alive. Therefore, the long outcast people shall yet know a national revival; their long, dark winter will soon be past, and their spring time of sprouting will have come.
The inspired chronicler is careful to tell us Shelah's birthplace: Now he [Judah] happened to be in Chezib when she [Shuah] bore him. Chezib means "falsehood"; therefore the revival of the nation will take place at a time when false prophets and false messiahs shall abound, the culmination of which will be the arch false Messiah — the Antichrist. And the nation will then have falsehood imposed upon them as has never yet been done before. See again Matthew 24.
12 And after a long time the daughter of Shuwa, Yehudah’s wife, died. And Yehudah was comforted, and went up to his sheep-shearers at Timnah, he and his friend Hirah the Adullamite.
13 And it was reported to Tamar, saying, “See, your father-in-law is going up to Timnah to shear his sheep.”
14 And she took off her widow’s garments, and covered herself with a veil and wrapped herself, and sat at the entrance to Ěnayim which was on the way to Timnah. For she saw that Shĕlah was grown, and she was not given to him as a wife.
15 And Yehudah saw her, and reckoned her for a whore, for she had covered her face.
16 And he turned aside to her by the way, and said, “Please let me come in to you,” for he did not know that she was his daughter-in-law. And she said, “What do you give me to come in to me?”
17 And he said, “Let me send you a young goat from the flock.” And she said, “Do you give me a pledge until you send it?”
18 So he said, “What pledge should I give you?” And she said, “Your seal and your cord and your staff that is in your hand.” And he gave them to her, and went in to her, and she conceived by him.
19 And she arose and went away, and removed her veil and put on the garments of her widowhood.
20 And Yehudah sent the young goat by the hand of his friend the Adullamite, to receive his pledge from the woman’s hand, but he did not find her.
21 And he asked the men of that place, saying, “Where is the cult prostitute who was beside the way to Ěnayim?” And they said, “There was no cult prostitute in this place.”
22 And he returned to Yehudah and said, “I have not found her. And the men of the place also said there was no cult prostitute in this place.”
23 And Yehudah said, “Let her take them for herself, lest we become despised, for I sent this young goat and you have not found her.”
24 And it came to be, about three months after, that Yehudah was informed, saying, “Tamar your daughter-in-law has whored, and see, she has conceived by whoring.” And Yehudah said, “Bring her out and let her be burned!”
25 When she was brought out, she sent to her father-in-law, saying, “By the man to whom these belong, I am pregnant.” And she said, “Please examine whose these are: the seal and the cord and the staff.”
26 And Yehudah examined and said, “She has been more righteous than I, because I did not give her to Shĕlah my son.” And he never knew her again.
27 And it came to be, at the time for giving birth, that see, twins were in her womb.
28 And it came to be, when she was giving birth, that the one put out his hand. And the midwife took a scarlet thread and bound it on his hand, saying, “This one came out first.”
29 And it came to be, as he drew back his hand, that see, his brother came out! And she said, “How did you break through? This breach be upon you!” So his name was called Perets.
30 And afterward his brother came out who had the scarlet thread on his hand. So his name was called Zerah.
The chapter terminates with the sordid story of Tamar, the closing portions of which obviously foreshadowing the End-time conditions of the Jews.
Judah's wife Shuah died at last, for ‘riches’ (the meaning of her name) take themselves wings; they fly away (Proverbs 23:5).
He had promised to give his youngest
son Shelah to Tamar, but he had not kept his promise. She therefore took
matters into her own hands and deceitfully posed as a prostitute to seduce
As is plainly stated in Isaiah 10:2-23
And in that day it shall be that the remnant of Yisra’ĕl, and those who have escaped of the house of Ya‛aqob, never again lean upon him who defeated them, but shall lean upon YHWH, the Set-apart One of Yisra’ĕl, in truth. A remnant shall return, the remnant of Ya‛aqob, to the Mighty Ěl.
For though your people, O Yisra’ĕl, be as the sand of the sea, yet a remnant of them shall return – a decisive end, overflowing with righteousness. For the Master YHWH of hosts is making a complete end, as decided, in the midst of all the earth.
1 And Yosĕph had been taken down to Mitsrayim. And Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh, captain of the guard, a Mitsrite, bought him from the Yishma‛ĕlites who had taken him down there.
2 And it came to be that YHWH was with Yosĕph, and he became a prosperous man, and was in the house of his master the Mitsrite.
3 And his master saw that YHWH was with him and that YHWH made all he did to prosper in his hand.
4 So Yosĕph found favour in his eyes, and served him, and he appointed him over his house, and gave into his hand all that he had.
5 And it came to be, from the time that he appointed him over his house and all that he had, that YHWH blessed the Mitsrite’s house for Yosĕph’s sake. And the blessing of YHWH was on all that he had in the house and in the field.
6 And he left in Yosĕph’s hand all that he had, and he did not know what he had except for the bread which he ate. And Yosĕph was handsome in form and appearance.
There seems to be some sort of connection
between the disgraceful conduct of
In that respect, we remember Paul’s description, in Philippians 2, of the nature of Yeshua’s humiliation at the incarnation:
Yeshua, who, existing in Elohim's form, considered no robbery to be equal to Elohim, but emptied himself, having taken a slave’s form, having become in likeness of men. And having been found in fashion as man, he humbled himself, having become obedient unto death, even death of a torture stake.
And it is this which Joseph here so strikingly typified: having taken a slave’s form, but nevertheless a prosperous slave in the house of Potiphar, because YHWH was with Yosĕph and so Isaiah 53:10 in him had a significant fulfilment: in his hand the delight of YHWH will succeed. Consequently we read: The blessing of YHWH was on all that he [Potiphar] had in the house and in the field. And he left in Yosĕph’s hand all that he had, and he did not know what he had except for the bread which he ate.
How could it be otherwise, Joseph being a type of Yeshua, the One who was entirely different from any other servant Elohim ever had. The fear of YHWH was upon him (Isaiah 11:2). Indeed, so faithfully did he serve Elohim's purpose that he could say: I always do the things that please him (John 8:29).
Nevertheless, he, Elohim's’ dearest Son was tempted, jus as Joseph was; as the divinely inspired report reveals us:
7 And after these events it came to be that his master’s wife lifted up her eyes to Yosĕph and said, “Lie with me.”
8 But he refused and said to his master’s wife, “Look, my master does not know what is with me in the house, and he has given into my hand all that he has.
9 No one is greater in this house than I, and he has not withheld whatever from me but you, because you are his wife. And how shall I do this great evil and sin against Elohim?”
10 And it came to be, as she spoke to Yosĕph day by day, that he did not listen to her, to lie with her, to be with her.
11 And it came to be on a certain day, when Yosĕph went into the house to do his work, and none of the men of the house was inside,
12 that she caught him by his garment, saying, “Lie with me.” But he left his garment in her hand, and fled and ran outside.
13 And it came to be, when she saw that he had left his garment in her hand and fled outside,
14 that she called to the men of her house and spoke to them, saying, “See, he has brought in to us a Hebrew to mock us. He came in to me to lie with me, and I cried out with a loud voice.
15 And it came to be, when he heard that I lifted my voice and cried out, that he left his garment with me, and fled and went outside.”
16 And she kept his garment with her until his master came home.
17 And she spoke to him these same words, saying, “The Hebrew servant whom you brought to us came in to me, to mock me,
18 so it came to be, as I lifted my voice and cried out, that he left his garment with me and fled outside.”
How special! Potiphar, his master,
had left in Joseph’s hand all the things he had, except
for the bread which he ate.
And now exactly that symbolic ‘bread’ is tempting him! And it is here that we
observe Elohim’s holy spirit placing in juxtaposition the account of the
Because he continued steadfastly to resist temptation, Joseph is falsely accused by his temptress, and is cast into prison.
In Joseph's resistance of temptation, and his consequent accusation and suffering, we might see a faint foreshadowing of the temptations of our Lord Yeshua, and the outcome of it. On one occasion, the Jews wanted to make him king over them because he provided them - a crowd of not less than 5000 people - free bread through a miraculous multiplication of five barley loaves: When the people saw the sign he performed, they began to say: “This really is the Prophet who was to come into the world.” Then Yeshua, knowing that they were about to come and seize him to make him king, withdrew again to the mountain all alone (John 6:4-15).
But also in other ways they sought to flatter him, turning him from the path of duty and obedience to his Father's will, if possible. The Devil himself had earlier grasped that way of temptation when he offered Yeshua dominion over all the kingdoms of the world with their glory:
Then the Devil said to him: “I will give you all this authority and their glory, because it has been handed over to me, and I give it to whomever I wish. If you, therefore, do an act of worship before me, it will all be yours.”
In reply Yeshua said to him: “It is written, ‘It is the Lord your Elohim you must worship, and it is to him alone you must render sacred service.’”
After his first temptation by the Devil directly, we read that Satan departed from him until another convenient time. As far as we know, he never attempted to attack our Lord in that immediate way again. Rather he preferred doing so through the instrumentality of men. However, like Joseph, he refused all these blandishments, and, as a result, his flatterers and professed admirers became his accusers, causing him to suffer for his faithfulness, as did Potiphar’s wife.
Of course, she had no ground whatever for a true charge to be brought against Joseph, so she had to resort to dishonesty, to unjust fabrications.
The same was true with regard to him who was loyal, guileless, undefiled, separated from the sinners (Hebrews 7:26). As also Peter wrote: He committed no sin; neither was deceit found in his mouth (1 Peter 2:22).
His enemies, the chief priests and the entire Sanhedrin were looking for false testimony against Yeshua in order to put him to death. But they found none, although many false witnesses came forward, who bore untruthful testimony against him (Matthew 16:59-60).
19 And it came to be, when his master heard the words which his wife spoke to him, saying, “Your servant did to me according to these words,” that his displeasure burned.
20 Then Yosĕph’s master took him and put him into the prison, a place where the sovereign’s prisoners were confined. And he was there in the prison.
So in Joseph in prison we see the suffering Messiah. And we see two others suffering with him — Pharaoh's two officers, his chief butler and his chief baker. However, they do not suffer like Joseph; he suffered innocently, but they, in all probability, were receiving due reward of their deeds, like the two criminals who were impaled with Yeshua:
One of the hanged criminals now began to speak abusively to him: Are not you the Messiah? Save yourself and us. In reply, the other, however, rebuked him: “Do you not fear God at all, seeing you are in the same judgment? And we certainly justly, for we are getting back what our deeds deserve. But this man did nothing wrong”. (Luke 23)
Joseph was ruler in the dungeon, and the verdict of the conscience of his co-prisoners must have been: This man did nothing wrong.
Evidently, Potiphar, the cowardly woman's husband did not really believe his wife's foul lie. It was perhaps only to save appearances that he made a show of punishing Joseph. If he really had believed her story, it is inconceivable why he should not have had this Hebrew slave immediately put to death. He probably knew her character pretty well. This is the only manner in which his great leniency towards Joseph can be accounted for.
And this is just why Pilate was so slow in giving his consent to have Yeshua impaled. He knew the character of his accusers well; and he did not really believe him guilty of death. Only as a matter of policy did he at last pronounce the death-sentence upon him.
Note the contrast in the conduct of
two women in connection with the sufferings of the innocent type and Antitype
of which we are considering. Both were wives of high officers of two of the
most powerful empires the world in Antiquity knew:
As he [Pilate] was sitting on the judgment-seat, his wife sent to him, saying: “Have thou nothing to do with that righteous man; for I have suffered today many things in a dream because of him”.
The wife of the Roman pleaded for the Just; the Egyptian's wife persecuted.
However, when falsely accused by that Egyptian woman, Joseph did not attempt any self-vindication; not a word of appeal was made; nor was there any murmuring against the cruel injustice that was done to him, when he was cast into prison. There was no countercharge; nothing but a quiet enduring of the wrong.
When Joseph was reviled, like the Saviour, he did not revile again. How does all that remind us of what we read in Isaiah 53:7 >>
He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth. As a lamb he was brought to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he did not open his mouth!
Compare Matthew 27:12-14 >>
While he was being accused by the chief priests and elders, he made no answer. Then Pilate said to him: “Do you not hear how many things they are testifying against you?” But he did not answer him, no, not a word, so that the governor was very surprised.
Joseph thus suffered at the hands of the Gentiles. Not only was Joseph envied and hated by his own brothers, and sold by them into the hands of the Gentiles, but he was treated unfairly by the Gentiles too, and unjustly cast into prison. So it was with his Antitype:
The kings of the earth
stood up, and the rulers were gathered together as one against the Lord, and
against his Anointed One. For truly both Herod and Pontius Pilate with men
of the Gentiles and with peoples of
21 But YHWH was with Yosĕph and extended kindness to him, and he gave him favour in the eyes of the prison warden.
22 And the prison warden gave into the hand of Yosĕph all the prisoners who were in the prison, and whatever was done there was his doing.
23 The prison warden did not look into any point that was under Yosĕph’s hand, because YHWH was with him. And whatever he did, YHWH made it prosper.
The antitype of this is found among other things in the fact that the Roman centurion, the one who had charge of Yeshua’s impalement, cried: Certainly this was a righteous man (Luke 23:47).
Thus did Elohim give his Son favour in the sight of this Roman who corresponded with Joseph’s jailor (Pink).
1 And after these events it came to be that the cupbearer and the baker of the sovereign of Mitsrayim sinned against their master, the sovereign of Mitsrayim.
2 And Pharaoh was wroth with his two officers, the chief cupbearer and the chief baker.
3 So he put them in confinement in the house of the captain of the guard, in the prison, the place where Yosĕph was a prisoner.
4 And the captain of the guard put Yosĕph in charge of them, and he served them. So they were in confinement for some time.
5 Then the cupbearer and the baker of the sovereign of Mitsrayim, who were confined in the prison, dreamed a dream, both of them, each man’s dream in one night and each man’s dream with its own interpretation.
6 And Yosĕph came in to them in the morning and looked at them and saw that they were sad.
7 And he asked Pharaoh’s officers who were with him in confinement of his master’s house, saying, “Why do you look so sad today?”
8 And they said to him, “We each have dreamed a dream, and there is no one to interpret it.” And Yosĕph said to them, “Do not interpretations belong to Elohim? Relate them to me, please.”
9 So the chief cupbearer related his dream to Yosĕph, and said to him, “See, in my dream a vine was before me,
10 and in the vine were three branches, and it was as though it budded – its blossoms shot forth, and its clusters brought forth ripe grapes.
11 And Pharaoh’s cup was in my hand. So I took the grapes and pressed them into Pharaoh’s cup, and placed the cup in Pharaoh’s hand.”
12 And Yosĕph said to him, “This is the interpretation of it: The three branches are three days.
13 Yet, within three days Pharaoh is going to lift up your head and restore you to your place, and you shall put Pharaoh’s cup in his hand according to the former ruling, when you were his cupbearer.
14 But remember me when it is well with you, and please show kindness to me. And mention me to Pharaoh, and get me out of this house.
15 For truly I was stolen away from the land of the Hebrews. And also I have done naught that they should put me into the dungeon.”
16 And the chief baker saw that the interpretation was good, and he said to Yosĕph, “I also was in my dream and saw three white baskets were on my head,
17 and in the uppermost basket all kinds of baked goods for Pharaoh, and the birds ate them out of the basket on my head.”
18 And Yosĕph answered and said, “This is the interpretation of it: The three baskets are three days.
19 Yet, within three days Pharaoh is going to lift off your head from you and hang you on a tree. And the birds shall eat your flesh from you.”
20 And on the third day, Pharaoh’s birthday, it came to be that he made a feast for all his servants. And he lifted up the head of the chief cupbearer and of the chief baker among his servants,
21 and he restored the chief cupbearer to his post of cupbearer again, and he placed the cup in Pharaoh’s hand,
22 but he hanged the chief baker, as Yosĕph had interpreted to them.
23 And the chief cupbearer did not remember Yosĕph, but forgot him.
Two men are seen now to be committed
to Joseph's care in the prison, the cup bearer and the baker of Pharaoh, king
Dreams played an important part in Joseph's history previous to his exaltation. YHWH Elohim frequently took this way to communicate his mind, or to reveal beforehand coming events. In the ages before Moses, when there was not yet a written revelation of his will, we read in the book of Job Elohim speaking to men in a dream, in a vision of the night, when deep sleep falls upon men, during the slumbers upon the bed (Job 33:15).
The dreams that both the cup bearer and the baker were given were evidently strongly impressed on their minds, because in the morning Joseph observed that they were worried and they told him there is no one to interpret them.
With his answer Joseph indicated that they should depend on Elohim himself for the right interpretation: Do not interpretations belong to Elohim? So the One whom Joseph foreshadowed, again and again, made known what should come to pass in the future, yet did he say: For I have not spoken of myself; but the Father who sent me, he gave me a commandment what I should say and what I should speak (John 12:49).
Likewise Joseph, he asks them to tell him their dreams. Obviously, Joseph, in communion and the mind of God, had no difficulty in interpreting the dreams.
In both cases he declared that the three branches and the three baskets represented three days, of course a striking spiritual significance with the three days of the death and resurrection of Messiah Yeshua.
The juice of the grapes signifies the shedding of his blood as the only means of forgiveness of sins, and the pressing of the grapes his endurance in suffering of the figurative winepress. Depending on the value of Yeshua’s shed blood the offending sinner is liberated from his guilt and bondage. The cupbearer therefore pictures the sinner who experiences salvations by virtue of that shed blood.
No wonder Joseph’s request to the cupbearer remember me when it is well with you. In the antitypical meaning, a request like that should surely speak to our hearts as being the request from the Lord Yeshua himself. Since he has so greatly blessed us, it is only right that we should show some thankful response.
Joseph desired the cupbearer to speak to Pharaoh on his behalf, because there was no cause in him for his being so ill-treated. How much more that is true of the Lord Jesus, who was totally sinless in every way, yet subjected to far worse treatment than was given Joseph.
The baker, when he heard Joseph's interpretation, expected a favourable interpretation of his dream too, but to him his dream proved to have an ominous content, although in his case the three baskets also had the sense of three days, still reminding us of the death and resurrection of Yeshua. For while this is a great blessing to the believer, it is just as surely the disapproval of the unbeliever.
We saw that the juice of the grapes is typical of the blood of Yeshua Messiah. It was given into the hand of the king. Elohim is delighted with the value of the blood of his Son, and on this basis alone he forgives sin. But the bakery goods were the work of the baker's hands. They were intended for Pharaoh, just as men intend to please Elohim by their good works, not realizing that these things can never take away the sins they have committed. YHWH Elohim can certainly not accept men's works as a substitute for the work of his own son in bearing the agony of terrible judgment at the torture stake.
The bakery goods were intended for Pharaoh, just as men think Elohim will accept their works as payment for their sins, but they did not reach Pharaoh's table: the birds ate them. In the parables spoken by Yeshua the birds of the air are typical of the Satanic activity of evil spirits, who love to deceive people by flattery of their so-called good works. Compare Matthew 13:4 with 13:19.
Joseph's interpretation of the dreams was proven fully true when the third day arrived. And just as Joseph had interpreted so it came to pass. So shall it be with every word of Elohim’s only begotten Son: The heaven and the earth will pass away, but my words shall in no wise pass away (Matth 24:35).
Being Pharaoh's birthday, he made a feast for his servants. Both the cupbearer and the baker were brought forth to public view, but for contrary reasons. The chief cupbearer was restored to his former capacity, while the baker was hanged.
What influenced Pharaoh in these matters is not mentioned, but the evidence of God's presence with Joseph was unmistakable. However, the cupbearer's heart was apparently not drawn to God in thankfulness. Rather than speaking well to Pharaoh about Joseph, he forgot him! May YHWH Elohim preserve us from being like him.
We, who are believers, have incomparably more for which to remember Yeshua than the cupbearer had for remembering Joseph. So we have every reason to heed the encouragement of Yeshua himself when he encouraged his disciples the evening before his death: Keep doing this in remembrance of me, thereby instituting the Supper (Luke 22:19).
A king’s heart is like streams of water in YHWH’s hand.
He directs it wherever he pleases.
In accomplishing his purpose no way is out of YHWH Elohim's reach; the most unlikely circumstances are made to minister to the development of it. It was therefore not at all by accident that Pharaoh dreamed as he did, and when he did. Elohim’s time was in fact come to rescue Joseph from prison and to raise him to a very high position of honour and responsibility.
In chapter 39 he had allowed Satan to manipulate Potiphar’s wife such that Joseph would be found guilty, in such a way that in fact he should be put to death; instead he ended up in jail.
In chapter 40 YHWH was behind the scenes again by using Pharaoh’s chief cupbearer. Although through his ungrateful negligence Joseph had to stay in prison another two years, Elohim was working constantly and graciously behind the scenes to both bring Joseph out of prison and to exalt him in a way that would have naturally been unthinkable for a Hebrew.
So, when the due time came, he brought forth Joseph to depict the Messiah again in other parts of his purpose that he had with his dearest Son.
Now, this is ever Elohim’s prerogative. He is above all and can use all for the accomplishment of his grand and unsearchable designs. All sorts of agents, whether angels or men, are at his sovereign disposal to carry out his purposes.
1 And it came to be, at the end of two years’ time, that Pharaoh had a dream, and saw him standing by the river,
2 and saw seven cows coming up out of the river, fine looking and fat, and they fed amongst the reeds,
3 then saw seven other cows coming up after them out of the river, ugly and lean of flesh, and stood by the other cows on the bank of the river.
4 And the ugly and lean of flesh cows ate up the seven fine looking and fat cows. Then Pharaoh awoke.
5 And he slept and dreamed a second time and saw seven heads of grain coming up on one stalk, plump and good,
6 and saw seven lean heads, scorched by the east wind, coming up after them.
7 And the seven lean heads swallowed the seven plump and complete heads. Then Pharaoh awoke and saw it was a dream.
8 And it came to be in the morning that his spirit was moved, and he sent and called for all the magicians of Mitsrayim and all its wise men. And Pharaoh related to them his dreams, but there was no one who could interpret them for Pharaoh.
9 Then the chief cupbearer spoke to Pharaoh, saying, “I remember my crimes this day.
10 When Pharaoh was wroth with his servants, and put me in confinement in the house of the captain of the guard, both me and the chief baker,
11 each one of us dreamed a dream in one night, he and I. Each of us dreamed according to the interpretation of his own dream.
12 And there was with us a Hebrew youth, a servant of the captain of the guard. And we related to him, and he interpreted our dreams for us. To each man he interpreted according to his own dream.
13 And it came to be, as he interpreted for us, so it came to be. He restored me to my office, and he hanged him.”
14 Then Pharaoh sent and called Yosĕph, and they hurriedly brought him out of the dungeon. And he shaved and changed his garments, and came to Pharaoh.
15 And Pharaoh said to Yosĕph, “I have dreamed a dream, and there is no one to interpret it. Now I myself have heard it said of you that you understand a dream, to interpret it.”
16 And Yosĕph answered Pharaoh, saying, “It is not in me, let Elohim answer Pharaoh with peace.”
17 And Pharaoh said to Yosĕph, “See, in my dream I stood on the bank of the river
18 and saw seven cows coming up out of the river, fine looking and fat, and they fed amongst the reeds,
19 then saw seven other cows coming
up after them, poor and very ugly and lean of flesh, such ugliness as I have
never seen in all the
20 And the lean of flesh and ugly cows ate up the first seven, the fat cows.
21 Yet when they had eaten them up, no one would have known that they had eaten them, for they were as ugly as at the beginning. Then I awoke.
22 Also, I looked in my dream and saw seven heads coming up on one stalk, complete and good,
23 then saw seven heads, withered, lean, scorched by the east wind, coming up after them.
24 And the lean heads swallowed the seven good heads. And I spoke to the magicians, but there was no one who could explain it to me.”
25 And Yosĕph said to Pharaoh, “The dream of Pharaoh is one. Elohim has shown Pharaoh what he is about to do:
26 The seven good cows are seven years, and the seven good heads are seven years – it is one dream.
27 And the seven lean and ugly cows which came up after them are seven years, and the seven empty heads scorched by the east wind are seven years of scarcity of food.
28 This is the word which I spoke to Pharaoh: Elohim has shown Pharaoh what He is about to do.
29 See, seven years of great plenty
are coming in all the
30 but after them seven years of
scarcity of food shall arise and all the plenty be forgotten in the
31 and the plenty shall not be remembered in the land, because of the scarcity of food following, for it is very severe.
32 And the dream was repeated to Pharaoh twice because the word is established by Elohim, and Elohim is hastening to do it.
33 And now, let Pharaoh look for a
discerning and wise man, and set him over the
34 Let Pharaoh do this, and let him
appoint overseers over the land, to take up one-fifth of the
35 And let them gather all the food of those good years that are coming, and store up grain under the hand of Pharaoh, and let them keep food in the cities.
36 And the food shall be for a store for the land for the seven years of scarcity of food which shall be in the land of Mitsrayim, and do not let the land be cut off by the scarcity of food.”
37 And the word was good in the eyes of Pharaoh and in the eyes of all his servants.
38 And Pharaoh said to his servants, “Could we find another like him, a man in whom is the spirit of Elohim?”
39 Then Pharaoh said to Yosĕph, “Since Elohim has shown you all this, there is no one as discerning and wise as you.
40 Be over my house, you yourself, and at your mouth all my people shall kiss – only in the throne I am greater than you.”
41 And Pharaoh said to Yosĕph,
“See, I have set you over all the
42 And Pharaoh took his seal-ring off his hand and put it on Yosĕph’s hand. And he dressed him in garments of fine linen and put a gold chain around his neck.
43 And he had him ride in the second
chariot which he had. And they cried out before him, “Bow the knee!” And he set
him over all the
44 And Pharaoh said to Yosĕph,
“I am Pharaoh, and without a word from you let no man lift his hand
or foot in all the
45 And Pharaoh called Yosĕph’s
name Zaphnath-Pa‛nĕah. And he gave him as a wife
Asenath, the daughter of Poti-Pherah priest of On. And Yosĕph went out
over all the
46 Now Yosĕph was thirty years
old when he stood before Pharaoh sovereign of
Mitsrayim. And Yosĕph went out from the presence of Pharaoh, and went
throughout all the
47 And in the seven years of plenty the ground brought forth generously.
48 And he gathered all the food of
the seven years which were in the
49 Thus Yosĕph gathered very much grain, as the sand of the sea, until he ceased counting, for it was without number.
50 And to Yosĕph were born two sons before the years of scarcity of food came, whom Asenath, the daughter of Poti-Pherah priest of On, bore to him.
51 And Yosĕph called the name of the first-born Menashsheh, “For Elohim has made me forget all my toil and all my father’s house.”
52 And the name of the second he called Ephrayim, “For Elohim has caused me to bear fruit in the land of my affliction.”
53 And the seven years of plenty
which were in the
54 and the seven years of scarcity
of food began to come, as Yosĕph had said. And the scarcity of food was in
all lands, but in all the
55 But when all the
56 And the scarcity of food was over
all the face of the earth, and Yosĕph opened all the storehouses and sold
to the Mitsrites. And the scarcity of food was severe in the
57 And all the earth came to Yosĕph in Mitsrayim to buy grain, because the scarcity of food was severe in all the earth.
Joseph remained in prison two full years longer, a further time of learning in humiliation the practical lesson of self-discipline. However, he was under Elohim's eye, and at the right time, he sent two dreams to Pharaoh of such a character that he was greatly stirred by them. No doubt, he had had many other dreams, but these were so outstanding that he could not ignore them.
Moreover, there was such a
similarity in the dreams that Pharaoh knew they were intended to convey some
meaning. In the morning he was troubled because of them. He therefore called
the magicians and wise men of
is well known, in Scripture Egypt stands as a figure of this world. In Joseph’s
time, the land of the Pharaohs was the center of learning and culture, the
proud leader of the ancient civilizations. But the people were idolaters; they
lacked true knowledge about Elohim, and therefore they lived in deep spiritual
darkness. As we read in the Psalms: With you
is the source of life; by your light we can see light.
Apart from him, all is darkness, morally and spiritually. So Pharaoh’s magicians were impotent, those so called ‘wise men’ displayed their ignorance, and Pharaoh was made to feel the powerlessness of all human resources and the worthlessness of all human wisdom.
exactly thus it was with Nebuchadnezzar. The wise men of Chaldea were as
helpless as the magicians of
Only then did the cupbearer wake up to the realization of his own indifference to Joseph. He told Pharaoh that while he was in prison he and the chief baker had had dreams that distressed them until a young man in the prison, a Hebrew, had interpreted their dreams, and his interpretation proved perfectly correct in each case.
Consequently, Pharaoh sent immediately for Joseph, and he came shaved and with a change of clothing. Nothing was said about the reason for which he had been put in prison. As far as the record goes, he was never cleared of the charge that was falsely brought against him. He evidently left this all in Elohim's hand. After all, YHWH knows how to care for the reputation of his servants who are dear to him.
And so it went with our Lord Yeshua in antitype. Israel might have despised, rejected and impaled him; his lifeless body be taken down and laid in the tomb, the sepulchre sealed and a watch set, but Elohim resurrected him by releasing him from the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to be held fast by it (Acts 2:24).
No; on the third day, he rose again in triumph over the grave, leaving the cerements of death behind him, all beautifully prefigured in the case of Joseph. Compare John 20:5-8 >>
Stooping forward, he [John] saw the linen cloths lying there, but he did not go in [the tomb]. Then Simon Peter also came, following him, and he went into the tomb. And he saw the linen cloths lying there. The cloth that had been on his head was not lying with the other cloth bands but was rolled up in a place by itself. Then the other disciple [John] who had reached the tomb first also went in, and he saw and believed.
So, it is clear that Joseph was delivered from prison by Elohim's hand: Pharaoh’s troubled spirit, the failure of the magicians to interpret his dreams, the cupbearer’s sudden recollection of the Hebrew interpreter, that brought about his release. Joseph himself recognized this, as is clear from his words to his brothers, later:
Elohim sent me ahead of you in order to preserve for you a remnant on the earth and to keep you alive by a great deliverance. So, then, it was not you who sent me here, but it was the true Elohim, in order to appoint me as chief adviser to Pharaoh and lord for all his house and ruler over all the land of Egypt. Return quickly to my father, and you must say to him: This is what your son Joseph has said:
‘Elohim has appointed me
lord over all
And so too it was with the Lord Yeshua in being delivered from the prison of the tomb:
Yeshua who was from
Nazareth, how Elohim anointed him with holy spirit and power, and he went
through the land doing good and healing all those oppressed by the Devil,
because Elohim was with him. And we are witnesses of all the things he did both
in the country of the Jews and in
Pharaoh then told Joseph that he had been unable to find anyone who could interpret a dream for him, but had heard that Joseph was able to do this. Joseph, however, fully disclaims any personal ability or gift for this, telling Pharaoh rather that only Elohim could give the answer, thereby indicating also that he would give him an answer of peace. This simple confidence in YHWH Elohim was the secret of Joseph's receiving such revelations from him.
Therefore, without any hesitation
Joseph interpreted the dreams for Pharaoh, explaining: The dreams are one; the second dream was
simply a confirmation of the first. Elohim was showing Pharaoh beforehand what
he was going to do in
Moreover, the seven cows signified
seven years, and the seven good ears of grain signified seven years. Similarly,
the seven ugly cows and the seven parched ears of grain each signified seven years.
The well-fed cows and the good ears of grain indicated that there would be
seven years of abundant produce through all the
The fact that the second dream was a confirmation of the first indicated that the matter was fully established by Elohim and that he would quickly accomplish his purpose.
Regarding the antitypical fulfilment, the seven years of plenty seem to relate to the current Christian era, the aeon of the Christian congregation - Yeshua’s congregational Body - that began with the outpouring of the spirit in 33 AD and will end at the Rapture. However, when the End time dawns for this old antitypical Egyptian world, the seven good years could well coincide with the seven bad years. As is prophetically announced in Isaiah 65 >>
Look! My servants will eat, but you will go hungry.
Look! My servants will drink, but you will go thirsty.
Look! My servants will rejoice, but you will suffer shame.
Look! My servants will shout joyfully because of the good condition of the heart, but you will cry out because of the pain of heart, and you will wail because of a broken spirit.
In addition, about the latter category we read in Amos 8 >>
Joseph then gave Pharaoh some sound advice
as to how to prepare for the future. He must appoint a wise, dependable man to
manage the great work of gathering produce into storehouses throughout the
Also in this respect Joseph foreshadowed Messiah Jeshua serving in the capacity of a wise counselor:
For a child has been born to us, a son has been given to us; and the rulership will rest on his shoulder. His name will be called Wonderful Counselor.
The interpretation of the dream was
so simple and appropriate that Pharaoh had no difficulty in believing Joseph
and therefore in approving of his advice. But not only this, he realized that
Joseph was the very man who was qualified for the great work of supervising the
Therefore, it is by no means a coincidence that we read about Joseph's Antitype: Carefully concealed in him are all the treasures of wisdom and of knowledge (Col 2:3).
So, too, during his earthly ministry among his own Jewish people the words of Yeshua made a profound impression upon those who heard him: The crowds were astounded at his way of teaching, for he was teaching them as a person having authority, and not as their scribes.
(Matthew 7:28, 29).
After coming into his home territory, he began to teach them in their synagogue, so that they were astounded and said: “Where did this man get this wisdom and these powerful works? (Matthew 13:54).
Just as Pharaoh and his servants were struck by the wisdom in Joseph. So here, those who listened to the Lord Jesus marveled at His wisdom.
Compare also 1 Corinthians 2:14-15 >>
The physical man does not accept the things of Elohim's spirit, because to him they are foolishness and he cannot learn them for they are examined spiritually. However, the spiritual man examines all things; yet he himself is examined by no one.
Not only does the spiritual man discern spiritual things, but also he discerns rightly temporal matters better than any unbeliever does, simply because Elohim is the Creator of material things just as well as things that are spiritual. In that respect, we also remember Yeshua’s own confession:
I do nothing of my own initiative; but just as the Father taught me, I speak these things… For I have not spoken out of myself: but the Father himself who sent me gave me a commandment as to what to tell and what I should speak. (John 8:28 and 12:49)
Thus, YHWH used the imprisonment of
Joseph as a step toward a far higher dignity than he had enjoyed in the house
of Potiphar. He was now set over the house of Pharaoh. By Joseph's word all the
So we read in Revelation 3:21 that the ascended Messiah is saying:
Him who overcomes I will grant to take place with me on my throne, even as I also overcame, and sat down with my Father on his throne.
Today our Lord Yeshua Messiah shares the throne of the Father as Joseph shared the throne of Pharaoh. As Joseph ruled over Pharaoh’s house with his word, so today our Lord Yeshua rules over the Father’s household, the household of faith, the Christian Congregation, by and through his Word.
But there is much more analogy here. YHWH Elohim remains always in the dignity of eternal glory, yet he has given his beloved Son the place of supreme authority over his creation. A blessed change that was, as it was in the case of Joseph: From shame to glory, from the prison to the place of rule, from being a slave in fetters to being elevated high above all, Pharaoh alone being excepted. How beautifully this speaks to us of the One whom Joseph foreshadowed! Here on earth he stayed in humiliation and shame, but he is here so no longer, YHWH Elohim, his Father, has highly exalted his Son:
Therefore also Elohim exalted him high and kindly gave him the name which is above every name, that in the name of Yeshua every knee should bend, of those in heaven and those on earth and those underground, and every tongue should confess openly that Lord [is] Yeshua Messiah, to glory of Elohim [the] Father.
Pharaoh granting Joseph the honour of riding in his second chariot and having heralded ahead of him “bow the knee” also depicted this exaltation.
Take note also of 1 Peter 3:18, 22 what happened to Jeshua Messiah after he had died once for all time concerning sins, a righteous one for unrighteous ones:
He is at Elohim’s right hand, for he went to heaven, and angels and authorities and powers were made subject to him.
Announcing Joseph as Ruler, Pharaoh then took off his signet ring from his hand and put it on Joseph's hand; he let him clothed with fine linen and placed a necklace of gold about his neck.
It is assumed that the ring, having no end, speaks of Yeshua’s eternal identification with Elohim, his Father; the fine linen reminding us of his perfect purity; the golden chain picturing his unity with the Father.
Pharaoh also said to Joseph: I am Pharaoh, and without your consent no man may lift up
his hand or foot in all the
Pharaoh gave Joseph the name of
Zaphenath-paneah, which means in Coptic language "revealer of
secrets," but in Egyptian "Saviour of the world". Both meanings
are appropriate as applying to Messiah Yeshua, for he has revealed the Father and
the Father's counsels, and by virtue of his great sacrifice on
The name Yeshua was the name the Messiah bore while he was on earth, but
at that time it was held as pledge and promise for
As to the wife Joseph was given,
Asenath, we are told almost nothing, except that she was a daughter of
Potiphera, priest of On. But as a Gentile bride she is typical for Yeshua’s
Congregation which for him became as his Wife after having been rejected by
At this time we are told Joseph's age was 30 years, the same as that of Yeshua when he began his public ministry (Luke 3:23).
Thus, his combined time as a slave
and in prison was 13 years. Now he went out throughout all the
During the seven plentiful years two
sons were born to Joseph by Asenath, the first named Manasseh, which means
“forgetting”, for, as he said: Elohim has made
me to forget all my toil and all my father's house. In antitype
Yeshua Messiah forgets – if we may say so – in a sense, the toil of the days of
his flesh, and the sorrow of his rejection at the hands of
His second son Joseph named Ephraim, meaning “fruitful”. For Elohim, he said, has caused me to be fruitful in the land of my affliction.
Though our Lord [according to Daniel 9:26] after the sixty-two weeks, as Messiah was cut off and had nothing as pertaining to the kingdom, he nevertheless became fruitful in the salvation of multitudes of "sinners of the Gentiles", for in the new creation there is true fruitfulness for YHWH Elohim. Manasseh therefore implies the negative side of the truth, Ephraim the positive.
Even in the
The seven years of plenty came to an
end, as YHWH had forewarned by Joseph. The famine came, not only to
The people of
People from all countries came to
Verse 50 of our chapter says distinctly that these sons were born to Joseph before the years of famine came, a type of the ingathering of all Yeshua’s Body-members, the fullness of the Gentiles, into the Olive Tree that has its roots in the Abrahamitic Covenant. In Romans 11:17-28 we read:
If some of the [Jewish] branches were broken
off, and you, being a wild olive, were grafted in among them, and became
partaker with them of the root and of the richness of the olive
tree; don’t boast over the branches… They also, if they don’t continue in
their unbelief, will be grafted in, for Elohim is able to graft them in again…
How much more will these, which are the natural branches, be grafted into their
own olive tree? For I don’t desire, brothers, to have you ignorant of this
mystery, so that you won’t be wise in your own conceits, that a partial
hardening has happened to Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles has come
so all [true] Israel will be saved.
Even as it is written: “There will come out of
Moreover, this type of Joseph's sons makes plain the truth that for Yeshua’s Congregation the day of grace will close before the tribulation period [the time of trouble for Jacob] comes, a truth, however, that is taught directly in the Christian-Judeo Scriptures as well, after the Lord has taken away his Congregation in so-called Rapture.
The history itself is wonderful history of the coming of the Lord Yeshua, his rejection by his own Jewish brothers, his suffering among Gentiles, but his eventual recognition and exaltation while still his brothers, the Jewish nation, are in a state of unbelief that will require a spiritual famine to eventually awaken them to a deep need that will lead to an unexpected and marvellous revelation of their Messiah, with its abounding blessing (Grant).
1 And when Ya‛aqob saw that there was grain in Mitsrayim, Ya‛aqob said to his sons, “Why do you look at each other?”
2 And he said, “See, I have heard that there is grain in Mitsrayim. Go down to that place and buy for us there, and let us live and not die.”
3 And Yosĕph’s ten brothers went down to buy grain in Mitsrayim.
4 But Ya‛aqob did not send Yosĕph’s brother Binyamin with his brothers, for he said, “Lest some harm come to him.”
5 And the sons of Yisra’ĕl
went to buy grain among those who journeyed, for the scarcity of food was in
After having sold their brother Joseph into the hands of the Gentiles, for his kinsfolk, his jealous brothers, he was as good as dead. In particular for their father Jacob who lived in the belief that a wild animal had killed his favourite son. In that experience Joseph foreshadowed the beloved Son of the Father, YHWH Elohim, who, in due time delivered his Son from sheol (the grave), and exalted him to his own right hand in the heavens. Following that ascension and glorification, Yeshua Messiah has been presented as the Saviour of the world, the Bread of Life for a perishing humanity. As he himself had assured in advance: I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will not be hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty.
Compare John 6.
However, during this world-era, the age of the Christian Congregation, Yeshua’s Congregational Body, the Jews have been set aside. Since the First Century, YHWH Elohim has taken a people for his name out from the Gentiles. Only after many centuries of dispersion among the nations, and after the ingathering of the full number of the members of Yeshua’s Congregational Body will be completed, Elohim shall again direct his face on his chosen people of old; as was foretold by Amos:
Behold, the eyes of the Lord Yahweh are on the sinful kingdom, and I will destroy it from off the surface of the earth; except that I will not utterly destroy the house of Jacob,” says Yahweh. “For, behold, I will command, and I will sift the house of Israel among all the nations, as grain is sifted in a sieve, yet not the least kernel will fall on the earth. All the sinners of my people will die by the sword, who say, ‘Evil won’t overtake nor meet us.’
In that day I will raise up the tent of David who is fallen, and close up its breaches, and I will raise up its ruins, and I will build it as in the days of old; that they may possess the remnant of Edom, and all the nations who are called by my name,” says Yahweh who does this.
The present world age of the
heavenly Congregation will therefore soon have run its appointed course and
then shall come the time for Jacob’s trouble,
also called the tribulation period, when, following the removal of
Elohim’s holy spirit from the earth – as a result of the rapture of that
heavenly Congregation - there shall be a grievous time of spiritual famine. And
it will be, during that tribulation period, that YHWH Elohim shall resume his
dealings with the Jews, Messiah’s brothers according to the flesh. How true
therefore the type: Joseph’s brothers figuring prominently in the closing
chapters of Genesis. First, because of the famine, turning to this world,
pictured by the
However, at the start of the famine,
they dwell In Canaan, in a land wherein no corn was, and we are told: They went to buy grain among those who journeyed, for the
scarcity of food was in the
Now, such is the condition in the place where the ungodly dwell. Alienated from the life of Elohim, they are living in a world that is smitten with a spiritual famine, in a world that furnishes no food for the soul. It represents the situation and experiences of the Prodigal Son in Yeshua’s parable: There is nothing for him but the husks which the swine feed upon.
Joseph’s ten brothers
went down to buy grain from
The word "buy" occurs no less than five times in the first ten verses of this chapter. Clearly, the brothers had no other thought of securing the needed food than by purchasing it. Such is ever the conception of the natural man. His own mind never rises to the level of receiving a gift from Elohim, the heavenly Father. He supposes that he must earn Elohim’s approval, win his favour, and merit his acceptance of him. It was thus with Naaman, when he went to Elohim’s prophet, to be healed of his leprosy. This too was the conception of the Prodigal (the lost son), saying to his father: Make me as one of thy hired servants, that is, as one who had to work for what he received. Thus it was here with Joseph’s brothers.
6 And Yosĕph was the governor over the land, he was the one who sold to all the people of the land. And Yosĕph’s brothers came and bowed down before him with their faces to the earth.
7 And Yosĕph saw his
brothers and recognised them, but he acted as a stranger to them and spoke to
them harshly, and said to them, “Where do you come from?” And they said, “From
8 So Yosĕph recognised his brothers, but they did not recognise him.
9 And Yosĕph remembered the dreams which he had dreamed about them, and said to them, “You are spies! You have come to see the nakedness of the land!”
Joseph had been exalted over all the house of Pharaoh, but how could Jacob and his sons know? The same has been true in the case of Jacob’s descendants ever since the time they rejected their Messiah. Because they did not receive the love of the truth, Elohim sent them an operation of error that they should believe the lie, just as was the case with Ahab (1 Kings 22:1-38).
Compare the verses 20-
Yahweh said [to all the army of heaven], Who shall entice Ahab, that he may go up and fall at Ramoth-gilead? One said on this manner; and another said on that manner. There came forth a spirit, and stood before Yahweh, and said, I will entice him. Yahweh said to him, ‘How?’ He said, ‘I will go forth, and will be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets.’ He said, ‘You shall entice him, and shall prevail also: go forth, and do so.’
Through their own fault, because they gave – and still give - preference to the lie, the majority of the Jewish people do not know that Elohim raised his Beloved, the Lord Yeshua, from the dead. Through all the long centuries of the Christian era Yeshua, for their part, was dead. Consequently, all the time a veil has been over their hearts, and therefore the beginning of the tribulation period will find them still ignorant of the exaltation and glory of the Lord Messiah Yeshua.
Joseph’s brothers came, and bowed themselves down to him with their faces to the earth. Joseph saw his brothers, and he recognized them, but acted like a stranger to them…Joseph remembered the dreams which he dreamed about them.
Yes, Joseph "saw" his brothers, his eye was upon them, even though they did not recognize him. Likewise, as his Father’s representative, the eye of Messiah Yeshua has all the time been upon the Jews: For my eyes are on all their ways; they are not hidden from my face, neither is their iniquity concealed from my eyes (Jer 16:17).
10 And they said to him, “No, my master, but your servants have come to buy food.
11 We are all one man’s sons, we are trustworthy, your servants are not spies.”
12 But he said to them, “No, but you have come to see the nakedness of the land.”
13 And they said, “Your servants are twelve
brothers, the sons of one man in the
It’s true, Joseph was now dealing roughly with them by speaking sternly to them, but all the time of their meeting he attempted nothing but to awaken their conscience as to their past dishonesty.
However, remark their denying attitude: We are trustworthy; your servants are not spies.
They assume a self-righteous
attitude, even when coming before the lord of
It is thus when Elohim starts his work in sinful man: He wounds in order that he may heal. By his spirit, he sends forth arrows of conviction, things that condemn the natural Adamitic man. And what is mostly the sinner’s first response? He repudiates the accusations brought against him. He denies that he is depraved as the result of his descent from Adam: dead in trespasses and sins (Epf 2:1-5). He attempts to vindicate himself. He is self-righteous. He boasts that he is a true man!
When Joseph continues interrogating them, they give him the information that their father had twelve sons, one of them remaining at home, while the other, they say, "is not". How little they suspected that the governor knew better than that! But now he is going to test them in regard to their attitude toward another younger brother, Benjamin. He tells them that they must be kept in prison while one of their number returns home to bring Benjamin with him:
14 And Yosĕph said to them, “It is as I spoke to you, saying, ‘You are spies!’
15 By this you shall be proven: By the life of Pharaoh, you do not leave this place unless your youngest brother comes here.
16 Send one of you, and let him bring your brother, while you are kept in prison. So let your words be proven to see whether there is any truth in you, or else, by the life of Pharaoh, you are spies!”
17 And he put them all together in prison for three days.
This was not an unjust action on the
part of Joseph; it was exactly what the brothers deserved. He was putting them
into their proper place, the place of shame and condemnation. It is thus that
YHWH Elohim will deal with Yeshua’s End time brothers. They must be made to
realize what their just due is. They must be taught that they deserve nothing
but punishment, that the place of condemnation and shame is where they rightly
belong. They must be abased before they can be exalted. We'll have to await how
things in that respect will develop in the Times of the end, but we know in
advance with certainty that must be fulfilled in the 70th Week for
Seventy sevens have been determined concerning your people and concerning your holy city, in order to terminate THE TRANSGRESSION.
Which transgression has to
terminate? The Hebrew word פשע is singular with the definite article: THE
transgression, or offense. And of course we guess rightly:
18 Now Yosĕph said to them the third day, “Do this and live, for I fear Elohim:
19 If you are trustworthy, let one of your brothers be confined to your prison house, and you, go, bring grain for the scarcity of food of your houses.
20 And bring your youngest brother to me, and let your words be confirmed, and you do not die.” And so they did.
Joseph said to them the third day, “Do this, and live, for I fear God. If you are honest men, then let one of your brothers be bound in your prison-house; but you go, carry grain for the famine of your houses. Bring your youngest brother to me; so will your words be verified, and you won’t die.” They did so.
By the bounding of Simeon in the place of his brothers, they are here confronted with a principle that their counterparts, the Jews of the End Time, will still have to make their own: the doctrine of substitute suffering for the atonement of sins, a principal taught now already more than 19 centuries within Christianity:
For the love of the Messiah constrains us; because we judged that one died for all. Therefore all died. And he [Messiah Jeshua] died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves, but for him who died for them and was raised [on the third day].
(2 Corinthians 5:14-15)
The apostle Paul, who wrote these divinely inspired truths, knew very well that Yeshua sacrificed his soul for all humanity, a truly liberating sacrifice for the atoning of sins. And it was his deep appreciation for that act of substitute death which propelled him in all his spiritual activities.
In Galatians 2: 9-20 he wrote earlier: I am impaled with [the] Messiah. Therefore, I no longer live, but [the] Messiah lives in me. As far as I now live in [the] flesh I live by faith toward the Elohim's Son, who loved me and surrendered himself for me.
We all, Adam's descendants, fundamentally died to sin in the substitutionary death of Yeshua. Our deliverance from the judgment of sin was implied in that one act of Elohim's Son.
Of course, only those who put their faith in that substitutionary death are actually experiencing the abolition of the death sentence of sin.
It is therefore a perfect illusion on the part of the Jews thinking that by preserving an ever-higher form of Thorah they also can reach a greater degree of sanctity in the eyes of Elohim. Therefore, it would be far better for them to pay close attention to the truth that Isaiah wrote concerning the sufferings of YHWH’s most prominent Ebed:
He was despised, and rejected by men; a man of suffering, and acquainted with disease: and as one from whom men hide their face he was despised; and we didn’t respect him. Surely he has borne our sickness, and carried our suffering; yet we considered him plagued, struck by Elohim, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought our peace was on him; and by his wounds we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; everyone has turned to his own way; and Yahweh has laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed, yet when he was afflicted he didn’t open his mouth; as a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and as a sheep that before its shearers is mute, so he didn’t open his mouth. By oppression and judgment he was taken away; and as for his generation, who among them considered that he was cut off out of the land of the living for the disobedience of my people to whom the stroke was due? They made his grave with the wicked, and with a rich man in his death; although he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth. Yet it pleased Yahweh to bruise him; he has put him to grief: when you shall make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of Yahweh shall prosper in his hand. He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by the knowledge of himself shall my righteous servant justify many; and he shall bear their iniquities. Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he poured out his soul to death, and was numbered with the transgressors: yet he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.
21 And they said to each other, “Truly, we are guilty concerning our brother, for we saw the distress of his life when he pleaded with us, yet we did not listen, that is why this distress has come upon us.”
They said one to another, “We are most assuredly guilty concerning our brother, in that we saw the distress [ צָרַת ] of his soul, when he begged us, and we wouldn’t listen. Therefore this distress [ הצָּרָ ] has come on us.”
The brothers were now smitten in their conscience, but for the time being only among themselves. They admitted toward each other that they had done wrong, but they still had not reached the point to confess their sin before the true Elohim. They recognized their guilt, according to the principle that a man shall reap what he sows, and they also recognized that it was YHWH Elohim who brought back their iniquities upon their own heads.
He did so in the form of distress. The same Hebrew word is found in the announcement of the prophets, predictions regarding the tribulations that the Jewish people will surely experience in the End Times:
Jeremiah (30:4-7) >>
These are the words that
Yahweh spoke concerning
Daniel (12:1) >>
At that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince who stands for the children of your people; and there shall be a time of trouble [שרה], such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time your people shall be delivered, everyone who shall be found written in the book.
Yeshua himself, some days before he was impaled, made mention of Daniels prophecy, indicating that the matter would follow the placing of the abomination of desolation as was also announced by Daniel in his Year Weeks Prophecy:
When, therefore, you see the abomination of desolation, as spoken of through Daniel the prophet [Dan 9:27], standing in a holy place - let the reader use discernment - then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains… For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not occurred from the beginning of the world until now, no, nor will occur again. Unless those days had been shortened, no flesh would have been saved. But on account of the chosen ones, those days will be shortened.
22 And Re’ubĕn answered them, saying, “Did I not speak to you, saying, ‘Do not sin against the boy,’ and you would not listen? And see, his blood is now required of us.”
23 And they did not know that Yosĕph understood them, for he spoke to them through an interpreter.
24 And he turned himself away from them and wept, but came back to them and spoke to them. And he took Shim‛on from them and bound him before their eyes.
Why did Joseph turn away from them, weeping? Because it was evident that Elohim's had started a work in their hearts by the convicting of their consciences. But Joseph would not yet reveal himself to them, for a deeper work was yet required which would take more time. Still, Elohim rewarded Joseph's wisdom up to this point by the apparent self-judgment of his brothers, and he would be encouraged, although he had to practice patience even further. In the mean time he would not suffer his brothers to perish by the way; he ministered unto their need:
25 And Yosĕph commanded and they filled their sacks with grain, also to put back every man’s silver to his sack, and to give them food for the journey. And thus it was done for them.
Pink remarks: “What a lovely touch to the picture is this! The Bread of Life cannot be purchased. It must be accepted as a free gift, if it is received at all. The terms of the Gospel are without money, and without price. Isaiah 55.
And how beautifully was this shown forth here, when Joseph, as the type of Messiah, orders the money to be restored to those who came to "buy the corn." Clearly, this was a foreshadowing of the blessed truth: By grace you are saved, through faith; and that not of yourselves; it is Elohim's gift; not of works, lest any man should boast (Eph 2:8, 9)”.
26 So they loaded their donkeys with the grain and went from there.
27 And as one of them opened his sack to give his donkey fodder at the lodging place, he saw his silver, for there it was in the mouth of his sack!
28 And he said to his brothers, “My silver has been returned, and there it is, in my sack!” And their hearts sank and they were afraid, saying to each other, “What is this that Elohim has done to us?”
29 So they came to Ya‛aqob their father in the
30 “The man, the master of the land, spoke to us harshly, and took us for spies of the land.
31 But we said to him, ‘We are trustworthy, we are not spies.
32 We are twelve brothers,
sons of our father. One is no more, and the youngest is today with our father
33 And the man, the master of the land, said to us, ‘By this I know that you are trustworthy: Leave one of your brothers here with me, and take food for the scarcity of food of your households, and go.
34 And bring your youngest brother to me, then I know that you are not spies, but that you are trustworthy – I give your brother to you, and you move about in the land.’ ”
35 And it came to be as they emptied their sacks, that look, the bundle of each man’s silver was in his sack! And when they and their father saw the bundles of silver, they were afraid.
It is true, through the ages, there has not been a people, nor any other nation, that has suffered so much like the Jews. We need only think of the six million of them who were murdered in Hitler's crematoria. Nevertheless, Elohim always saw to it that they as a people have survived, nor completely assimilated with the peoples among whom they stayed in their Diaspora (Ez 20:32:38).
YHWH has sustained them during all the long centuries that they have been absent from their own land. He has provided for them by the way, as also Joseph will do for his still erring End Time brothers. For that very marked period in history, YHWH inspired Jeremiah to record this prophecy:
It shall come to pass in that day, says Yahweh of Armies, that I will break his yoke from off your neck, and will burst your bonds; and strangers shall no more make him their bondservant; but they shall serve Yahweh their God, and David their king, whom I will raise up to them. Therefore don’t you be afraid, O Jacob my servant, says Yahweh; neither be dismayed, Israel: for, behold, I will save you from afar, and your seed from the land of their captivity; and Jacob shall return, and shall be quiet and at ease, and none shall make him afraid. For I am with you, says Yahweh, to save you: for I will make a full end of all the nations where I have scattered you, but I will not make a full end of you; but I will correct you in measure, and will in no way leave you unpunished.
Their hearts sank [when they opened their sacks and found the money that they had paid for the grain] and they were afraid, saying to each other, “What is this that Elohim has done to us?”
How true to life again! The type is easily interpreted. Elohim will not allow the Jewish souls to rest until they rest definitely upon the recognition of Yeshua alone being their true Messiah. To that end YHWH caused the experiences of the way to dispel the false peace.
Similarly, in a way that he shall
choose, the antitypical Joseph will deal with the awakened remnant of
No, the procedure that will prove to be successful is described in Romans 2:3-4, where the Jew Paul (Saul of Benjamin) is engaged in an imaginary polemic conversation against the haughty attitude of his countrymen: >>
Do you perhaps think, O man who judges those who practice such things [as done by the Gentiles], and do them yourself, that you will escape Elohim’s judgment? Or do you despise the riches of his kindness, forbearance and long-suffering, while you do not know that Elohim's gentleness is trying to lead you to repentance?
Here Saul opposes all Jewish self-praise and self-overestimation, because in reality, the Jews, who condemn the Gentiles and their sins, are guilty to the same bad activities! By posing as judges of the Gentiles they actually also pass judgment upon themselves, since they themselves also are not free from the pagan vices. As Nathan said to David who had shown his indignity about the rich man in the parable: You yourself are the man! (2 Sam 12).
Likewise in the case of Joseph’s brothers, it was simply proof of Elohim's kindness, forbearance and long-suffering when they were shocked founding the money in their bags, because they began to realize that this was a matter in which Elohim was definitely intervening, but for what purpose they did not yet understand.
36 And Ya‛aqob their father said to them, “You have bereaved me – Yosĕph is no more, and Shim‛on is no more, and you would take Binyamin! All this is against me.”
37 So Re’ubĕn spoke to his father, saying, “Take the lives of my two sons if I do not bring him back to you. Put him in my hands, and I myself bring him back to you.”
38 But he said, “My son is not going down with you, for his brother is dead, and he is left alone. If any harm should come to him along the way in which you go, then you would bring down my grey hair with sorrow to the grave [Sheol].”
We can easily imagine why Jacob expressed concern, being greatly disturbed. He accuses his sons that they bereaved him of Joseph - which was more true than suspected by him - and now also of Simeon, and that they now want to take Benjamin away with them. "All these things are against me," he says, having not the slightest idea that all those events were going to work out wonderfully for him.
In all this certainly lessons are found for the repentant Jewish End-time remnant, as was also described by Saul in Romans: We know that for those who love Elohim all things work together for good; to them who, according to his purpose, are called ones (Romans 8:28).
Reuben then proposes to Jacob that he would be responsible for Benjamin if Jacob would send him, offering the lives of his two sons as surety.
But that offer was actually nothing
than thoughtless folly. If Jacob's son Benjamin was taken from him, would then
the death of his two grandsons serve to comfort him? Therefore, Jacob flatly
refuses, saying his son would not go with them to
Without the Benjamin remnant
1 But the scarcity of food was severe in the land.
2 And it came to be, when they had eaten up the grain which they had brought from Mitsrayim, that their father said to them, “Go back, buy us a little food.”
3 But Yehudah spoke to him, saying, “The man vehemently warned us, saying, ‘You do not see my face unless your brother is with you.’
4 If you let our brother go with us, we go down and buy you food.
5 But if you do not let him go, we do not go down, because the man said to us, ‘You do not see my face unless your brother is with you.’ ”
6 And Yisra’ĕl said, “Why did you do evil to me to inform the man that you still had another brother?”
7 And they said, “The man kept asking about us and our relatives, saying, ‘Is your father still alive? Have you another brother?’ And we informed him according to these words. How could we know that he would say, ‘Bring your brother down’?”
8 And Yehudah said to Yisra’ĕl his father, “Send the boy with me, and let us arise and go, and live and not die, both we and you and also our little ones.
9 I myself shall stand guaranty for him – from my hand you are to require him. If I do not bring him back to you and set him before you, then let me bear the blame forever.
10 For if we had not delayed, truly by now we could have returned this second time.”
11 And their father Yisra’ĕl said to them, “If so, then do this: Take some of the best fruit of the land in your vessels and bring a present down for the man, a little balm and a little honey, spices and myrrh, nuts and almonds.
12 And take double silver in your hand, and take back in your hand the silver that was returned in the mouth of your sacks. It could have been a mistake.
13 And take your brother, and arise, go back to the man.
14 And Ěl Shaddai give to you compassion before the man, so that he shall release your other brother and Binyamin. And I, if I am bereaved, I am bereaved!”
15 And the men took that present and Binyamin, and they took double the amount of silver in their hand, and arose and went down to Mitsrayim, and stood before Yosĕph.
It is because of the pressure of
hard circumstances that Jacob finally decided to allow Benjamin to go to
O senseless Galatians, who bewitched you, before whose very eyes Yeshua Messiah was depicted as hanged on a pole? This only I would learn from you: Did you receive the spirit by works of the Law or by hearing with faith? ... He then who gives you the spirit and brings about powerful works in you, [does he perform that] because of works of the Law or by hearing with faith? Like Abraham, who put faith in Elohim and it was reckoned to him for righteousness.
Abraham believed Elohim when he assured the patriarch, although still being childless, that to him a son as his heir would be born and his descendants would become as numerous as the stars in the sky. For YHWH Elohim Abraham’s faith was meritorious since it was in fact contrary to all hope.
As we quoted earlier above from Romans 2: Do you despise the riches of his kindness, forbearance and long-suffering, while you do not know that Elohim's gentleness is trying to lead you to repentance?
How little the brothers knew Joseph!
What did he, as Governor over all
16 And Yosĕph saw Binyamin with them, and said to the one over his house, “Bring the men home, and make a great slaughter, and prepare, for these men are to eat with me at noon.”
17 And the man did as Yosĕph said, and the man brought the men into Yosĕph’s house.
18 And the men were afraid because they were brought into Yosĕph’s house. And they said, “It is because of the silver, which was put back into our sacks the first time, that we are brought in, to throw himself upon us and fall upon us, to take us as slaves, our donkeys too.”
19 So they came near to the man over the house of Yosĕph, and spoke to him at the door of the house,
20 and said, “O my master, we indeed came down the first time to buy food,
21 but it came to be, when we came to the lodging place, that we opened our sacks and saw each man’s silver in the mouth of his sack, our silver in its weight. And we have brought it back in our hand.
22 And we have brought down other silver in our hands to buy food. We do not know who put our silver in our sacks.”
23 But he said, “Peace be with you, do not be afraid. Your Elohim and the Elohim of your father has given you treasure in your sacks – your silver had come to me!” And he brought Shim‛on out to them.
The brothers did not only see Joseph's face, but they were also made his favoured guests. However, that kindness and gracious treatment only awakened their fear and suspicion. That is what grace brings about in those who want matters arranged on legal bases. They were afraid that Joseph was showing such kindness with the motive of finding a pretext for which to steal all they had. How little they knew Joseph's heart! Likewise, many of the End Times Jews will react suspiciously in connection with Elohim's grace showed to them in Messiah Yeshua.
24 And the man brought the men into Yosĕph’s house and gave them water, and they washed their feet. And he gave their donkeys fodder.
25 And they made the present ready for Yosĕph’s coming at noon, for they heard that they were to eat there.
26 And when Yosĕph came home, they brought him the present which was in their hand, into the house, and bowed down before him to the earth.
27 And he asked them about their welfare, and said, “Is your father well, the old man of whom you spoke? Is he still alive?”
28 And they said, “Your servant our father is in good health, he is still alive.” And they bowed their heads down and did obeisance.
Before eating in Joseph's house, the brothers approached the man who went over his house, telling him of their coming the first time and on departing some distance had found in their sacks the money they had brought to buy food. Not knowing how the money had been put there, they tell him they have brought it back, together with money to buy further provisions.
It is all right with you, the man responded kindly, setting them at rest about the matter. They ought only to thank their Elohim, the Elohim of their father, further telling them: Your money came first to me. This was true: he had it, but had restored it, though he does not tell them this. Then he brought Simeon out to them.
Every kindness was shown them for their comfort, even to the feeding of their donkeys. In that typical way the divine truth was taught that Elohim's deliverance comes to man in undeserved kindness. Man is saved by grace, not by deserving works, a truth that those who have been prone to legalism still have to learn, especially the Jewish people.
Hearing that Joseph was to eat with them, they got the gift ready they had brought for him. When he came in, they gave it to him, bowing themselves before him to the ground.
How little these men knew Joseph! As
Governor over all
However, Joseph gave his brothers a foretaste of such undeserved grace; as he had ordered: These men shall dine with me at noon (verse 16). Compare the Gospel parable that Yeshua himself spoke:
A certain man was spreading a great supper and he invited many. And he sent his slave out at the hour of the supper to say to those invited: Come, for all things are now ready. However, all alike began to make excuses.
When Elohim, at the time of the Exodus, chose the Israelites as his own people and took them within a covenant with himself, in principle they received an invitation for a place in the Messianic kingdom. As the natural seed of Abraham, YHWH was willing to make them a kingdom of priests, in that position able to become for a blessing of all other nations, the Gentile peoples.
With the arrival of Yeshua the Messianic era had its start; the intended king was present in their midst. And as the most prominent servant of Yahweh, he reminded his Jewish brothers of the original invitation. At Sinai, they had accepted the invitation unanimously: All that Yahweh has spoken we are willing to do.
That historical fact would make a refusal, with the intended king in their midst, to a form of rudeness towards their heavenly Host. Yet, in the First Century, that rude attitude was exactly what Yeshua encountered from the side of his own Jewish relatives, immediately since he arrived in their midst. In the Messianic issue, they put themselves in unison and in the same position as the invitees in the parable: they let themselves be excused because of meaningless excuses.
29 And he lifted his eyes and saw his brother Binyamin, his mother’s son, and said, “Is this your younger brother of whom you spoke to me?” And he said, “Elohim show favour to you, my son.”
30 And Yosĕph hurried, for his emotions were deeply moved towards his brother, and he looked for a place to weep, and went into his room and wept there.
31 Then he washed his face and came out, and controlled himself, and said, “Serve the food.”
32 And they set him a place by himself, and them by themselves, and the Mitsrites who ate with him by themselves, for the Mitsrites could not eat food with the Hebrews, for that is an abomination to the Mitsrites.
33 And they sat before him, the first-born according to his birthright and the youngest according to his youth, and the men looked at each other in astonishment.
34 And he took portions to them from before him, but Binyamin’s portion was five times as much as any of theirs. And they feasted and they drank with him.
Of course Joseph was vitally interested in knowing about their father: was he still alive? Yes, they tell him, their father was both alive and in good health. Typically this tells us that in the tribulation period the Jewish remnant will have their thoughts exercised as to their relationship to YHWH, the living Elohim.
Again the brothers bowed their heads
in homage to Joseph, not realizing he was the brother whom they had rejected.
Likewise, Elohim's living Son will be dealing with
Benjamin, however, the younger son of Rachel is of vital interest to Joseph, far more so than the brothers could guess. For how could they ever imagine that he, Jacob’s youngest son, served as a type of the End time remnant that so often is announced in Elohim's prophetic Word, as in Isaiah 10:20-25 >>
It will come to pass in
that day that the remnant of Israel, and those who have escaped from the house
of Jacob will no more again lean on him who struck them [the Assyrian like
Pseudo Messiah], but shall lean on Yahweh, the Holy One of Israel, in truth. A remnant will return,
even the remnant of Jacob, to the mighty Elohim. For though your people,
This Benjamin-remnant was also pictured by Hadassah (Esther) in the story Esther, she who hid.
From the Esther story in many ways is clear that Mordecai in antitype represents Messiah Yeshua. After all, Mordecai is the One who continually is driving Esther, a striking figure how in the End time Elohim's spirit will control the Esther remnant through Yeshua Messiah'.
Est 10:3 is also very revealing. There we read about the greatness to which the king raised Mordecai: For Mordecai the Jew was next to king Ahasuerus, and great among the Jews, and accepted of the multitude of his brothers, seeking the good of his people, and speaking peace to all his seed.
As Joseph – typifying Messiah Yeshua – came right after Pharaoh, something similar was the case with Mordecai. As we learn that Mordecai, after his courageous performance, was accepted and loved by his Jewish brothers, we conclude that also Yeshua will be accepted wholeheartedly by the faithful among the ancient people of YHWH Elohim.
Therefore, it was that Joseph said to Benjamin: May Elohim be gracious to you, my son.
However, the sight of his brother moved him with such a surge of emotion that he had to immediately leave them and go to his room to weep. We can well understand this, for he had not seen Benjamin for about 22 years. After weeping, he returned to his normal self-control, washed his face and came out to eat with his brothers.
Yet even in the house there was a
division carefully maintained between them. Joseph ate by himself, the Egyptian
servants by themselves, and Joseph's brothers by themselves. Here we are reminder
that the Lord Yeshua is alone in authority over all, while
We are informed that the Egyptians considered it loathsome to eat with Hebrews. Later, Peter said it was unlawful for a Jew to have company with Gentiles (Acts 10:28).
The brothers were astonished when
they found they were seated in order of their ages.
But as they were served, Benjamin
was given five times as much as any of the others, by which they were taught
that a younger brother was given greater recognition than those older. They had
before rejected a younger brother, and both younger brothers (Joseph and
Benjamin) were meaningful types, respectively of the Lord Yeshua and the End
time remnant. The special favour Joseph showed to Benjamin was intended to
emphasize to the brothers that YHWH Elohim, far from despising a younger
brother, gives him a place of honour. Too often, the older look down on one
younger, but according to natural birth, the Lord Yeshua was a younger brother
The last sentence (verse 34) of this chapter (43) can also be read thus:
So they continued banqueting and drinking with him to the full.
Or: So they feasted and drank freely with him.
Or: And they drank and were merry with him.
Or even: So they ate and drank with Joseph until they were drunk.
Pink has that final sentence therefore thus commented:
“Ah, what is man! Not yet had sin been told out. Not yet had a right relationship been established. Nevertheless, they could be "merry."
A superficial observer would have concluded that all was now well. It reminds us of the stony ground in the parable of the Sower: As for the one sown on rocky ground, this is the one hearing the word and at once accepting it with joy. Yet, he has no root in himself but continues for a time, and after tribulation or persecution has arisen on account of the word, he is at once stumbled (Matthew 13:20-21).
God’s saving work goes much deeper than producing evanescent emotions”.
Led by Elohim's guidance Joseph realises the true situation of the brothers. Therefore, we shall see him in the next chapter determined to bring his brethren out into the fight. Nevertheless, always with the intention to bring them into true repentance. This illustrates powerfully that the Jews of the End Times will have a long way to go in order to be brought to upright repentance in view of their resistance against their most prominent brother.
1 And he commanded the one over his house, saying, “Fill the men’s sacks with food, as they are able to bear, and put each man’s silver in the mouth of his sack.
2 And put my cup, the silver cup, in the mouth of the sack of the youngest, and the silver for his grain.” And he did according to the word of Yosĕph which he spoke.
3 As soon as the morning was light, the men were sent away, they and their donkeys.
4 And when they had gone out of the city, not having gone far, Yosĕph said to the one over his house, “Rise up, follow the men, and when you overtake them, say to them, ‘Why have you repaid evil for good?
5 Is this not the one from which my master drinks, and with which he indeed divines? You have done evil in what you have done.’ ”
6 So he overtook them and spoke these words to them.
7 And they said to him, “Why does my master say these words? Far be it from us that your servants should do according to this word.
8 See, we brought back to you from the
9 With whomever of your servants it is found – he shall die and we shall become my master’s slaves as well.”
10 And he said, “Now also let it be according to your words: he with whom it is found becomes my slave, and you are innocent.”
11 And they hurried, each man let down his sack to the ground, and each opened his sack.
12 And he searched, with the oldest first and with the youngest last, and the cup was found in Binyamin’s sack.
13 And they tore their garments, and each man loaded his donkey and went back to the city.
14 And Yehudah and his brothers came to Yosĕph’s house, and he was still there. And they fell before him on the ground.
15 And Yosĕph said to them, “What deed is this you have done? Did you not know that a man like me indeed divines?”
Indeed, their relief and merriness at Joseph’s table was short lived. Sooner than they could have imagined their superficial peace was disturbed. Joseph had ordered the man of his house to overtake them and accuse them of returning evil for good in stealing Joseph's silver cup. The brothers had to be shocked and touched in their consciences to extremes. In addition, that was exactly the thing happened.
We can easily understand that they were outraged by the accusation and in their self-confidence they went so far as to ensure that if one was found to have the silver cup he should die and the rest would be slaves to Joseph.
The man of Joseph’s house approved of their words, but was much more lenient in answering them. Of course, Joseph had instructed him as he had done so during all the previous encounters with the brothers. Therefore, this special man who acted continually as Joseph’s lengthening piece, might well typify Elohim's active force, his spirit, just as was the case with Abraham’s servant Eliezer who was sent to Charan with the mission to find a wife for his son Isaac.
Compare John 16:12-15, where we hear Yeshua saying to his disciples:
I have yet many things to tell you, but you can’t bear them now. However when he, the spirit of truth, has come, he will guide you into all truth, for he will not speak from himself; but whatever he hears, he will speak. He will declare to you things that are coming. He will glorify me, for he will take from what is mine, and will declare it to you. All things whatever the Father has are mine; therefore, I said that he takes of mine, and will declare it to you.
So, this man, entirely under Joseph's leadership, tells the brothers that the guilty one would be kept as a slave to Joseph and the rest could go free.
What a shock to them all when Joseph’s cup was found in Benjamin’s bag! What a traumatic experience too for Benjamin who knew himself innocent!
The brothers knew they could not leave Benjamin and go home under these circumstances. Heavy-hearted they returned to the city, where Joseph was still in his house. Again, they bow down to him, but he too confronts them with the same accusation: What is this deed that you have done? Do you not know that such a man as I can practice divination?
At this point, the brothers must have understood that the Elohim of their father Jacob was against them, in the sense that he overruled all their so-called trustworthiness. Up to this moment, they still had held the true facts in unrighteousness, as also Saul of Benjamin so much later would write about people who deny the true facts about Elohim and his creation: Since the creation of the world his invisible qualities are indeed clearly distinct from his works. With the mind every honest person can perceive in creation Elohim's eternal power and divinity, so that they are inexcusable (Romans 1:18-20).
16 And Yehudah said, “What do we say to my master? What do we speak? Or how do we clear ourselves? Elohim has found out the crookedness of your servants. See, we are my master’s slaves, both we and he also with whom the cup was found.”
17 But he said, “Far be it from me to do this. The man in whose hand the cup was found, he becomes my slave. And you, go up in peace to your father.”
It is not Reuben, the eldest, who speaks to Joseph, but Yehuda (Judah), the one who had been leader in selling Joseph as a slave. He does not plead any difference whatever. In fact, though he had not been personally guilty of stealing the cup, yet he realizes that Elohim was in this way reminding him of their previous guilt in selling Joseph. He tells the governor therefore: Elohim has found out the iniquity of your servants. In fact, he does not condemn Benjamin and justify himself, but takes his place with Benjamin and his brothers in a willingness to accept the place of slaves to Joseph.
However, Joseph answers that he
would not require the brothers to be slaves, but would keep only Benjamin as a
slave while allowing the others to return home to their father. Joseph knew of
his father's affection for Benjamin and that the very mention of their father
now would devastate the brothers in having to return to him without Benjamin.
There are several striking verses in the Prophets that throw light upon the antitypical significance of this point:
For in my holy mountain,
in the mountain of the height of Israel, says the Lord Yahweh, there shall all
the house of Israel, all of them, serve me in the land: there will I accept
them, and there will I require your offerings, and the first fruits of your
offerings, with all your holy things. As a sweet savor will I accept you,
when I bring you out from the peoples, and gather you out of the countries in
which you have been scattered; and I will be sanctified in you in the sight of
the nations. You shall know that I am Yahweh, when I shall bring you into
Or Hosea 5:15
I will go and return to my place, until they acknowledge their offense, and seek my face.
In their affliction they will seek me earnestly
So it was with Joseph and thus it
will be with his Antitype: As their true Messiah Yeshua will only fully reveal
himself to his Jewish brothers when they sincerely confess their offense [THE
offense or transgression; Daniel 9:24]. Only
You denied the Holy and Righteous One, and asked for a murderer to be granted to you,… Now, brothers, I know that you did this in ignorance, as did also your rulers. But the things which Elohim announced by the mouth of all his prophets, that his Messiah should suffer, he thus fulfilled.
Repent therefore, and turn around, that your sins may be blotted out, so that there may come times of refreshing from the presence of the Lord, and that he may send forth Messiah Yeshua, who was ordained for you before, whom heaven must receive until the times of restoration of all things, which Elohim spoke long ago by the mouth of his holy prophets (Acts 3).
18 And Yehudah came near to him and said, “O my master, please let your servant speak a word in my master’s hearing, and do not let your displeasure burn against your servant, for you are like Pharaoh.
19 My master asked his servants, saying, ‘Have you a father or a brother?’
20 And we said to my master, ‘We have a father, an old man, and a young child of his old age, and his brother is dead, and he alone is left of his mother’s children, and his father loves him.’
21 And you said to your servants, ‘Bring him down to me, and let me set my eyes on him.’
22 And we said to my master, ‘The boy is not able to leave his father, for if he leaves his father, his father shall die.’
23 But you said to your servants, ‘Unless your youngest brother comes down with you, you do not see my face again.’
24 And it came to be, when we went up to your servant my father, that we told him the words of my master.
25 And our father said, ‘Go back and buy us a little food.’
26 But we said, ‘We are not able to go down. If our youngest brother is with us, then we shall go down, for we are not able to see the man’s face unless our youngest brother is with us.’
27 Then your servant my father said to us, ‘You know that my wife bore me two sons,
28 and the one went out from me, and I said, “Truly, he is torn, torn to pieces!” And I have not seen him since.
29 And if you take this one from me too, and harm comes to him, you shall bring down my grey hair with evil to the grave.’
30 And now, if I come to your servant my father and the boy is not with us – since his own life is bound up in his life –
31 then it shall be, when he sees that the boy is not with us, that he shall die. So your servants shall bring down the grey hair of your servant our father with evil to the grave.
32 For your servant went guaranty for the boy to my father, saying, ‘If I do not bring him back to you, then I shall be a sinner before my father forever.’
33 And now, please let your servant remain instead of the boy as a slave to my master, and let the boy go up with his brothers.
34 For how do I go up to my father if the boy is not with me, lest I see the evil that would come upon my father?”
According to verse 16, Yehudah had admitted: Elohim has found out the iniquity of your servants. Speaking on behalf of all the brothers, Yehudah confesses their common guilt.
Yehudah’s last words to Joseph were in particular refreshing in the way they reached the root of the whole matter. After all, he asks Joseph to allow him taking the place of Benjamin as a slave and that Benjamin be allowed to return to his father.
What a contrast to the way Yehudah had before treated his younger brother Joseph! This was the end that Joseph had been seeking, to see in Yehudah a genuine repentance that was willing to suffer as he had made his brother suffer. This too is the repentance that was seen in the thief who was impaled together with the Lord Yeshua. Pointing to Yeshua, he said to the other criminal:
“Don’t you even fear Elohim, seeing you are under the same condemnation? And we indeed justly, for we receive the due reward for our deeds, but this man has done nothing wrong.” (Luke 23:40-41).
What a change from their earlier attitude before him, when the brothers had affirmed they were trustworthy men! Now, they give up all attempts to clear themselves, and take the place of guilty ones before Joseph. That result was the goal Joseph had before him all the way through.
And that aim too will exactly be the design of the activity of Elohim's spirit with respect to the End Time Jews. Not until they cease to vindicate themselves and, in contrast to this, own their common guilt as a nation, they can receive true blessings.
Thus, the "steward" will bring back the brothers into the healthful presence of the antitypical “Joseph”, as we read in Ezekiel’s prophecy:
I will take you from the
nations and gather you out of all countries. Then I will bring you to your
country. I will sprinkle clean water upon you, and you shall be
clean. From all your filthiness and from all your idols I will cleanse
Then I will give you a new heart and a new spirit within you. I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. I will put my spirit within you. I will make you to walk in my judgments, and that you observe my statutes, and keep them.
You shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers, you will be a people for me and I will be a God for you.
In exactly that way
At this stage of our research it seems useful to make a mid-term review of the truths we established.
1. The famine foretold by Joseph was not confined
Accordingly, all countries came into
In Revelation 3:10 we are informed that this particular famine may be typical of the hour of temptation, which shall come upon the whole inhabited world [oikoumene], to try them that dwell upon the earth.
In that message, Revelation 3:7-13, directed to the Jewish End Time community – there represented by Philadelphia - is described the third part of which in Zacharia 13:8-9 is announced that it will be left in the land, refined and tested as if it were by fire. It's about the people who know their Elohim and that shall prevail with his help; according to Daniel it handles about his true people that will be answered by him when they invoke his name (Dan 11: 32-35; 12:10).
Their deceitful brothers who choose the false Pseudo-messiah, for that reason are no true Jews, as defined in Romans 2:28-29.
Messiah Yeshua loves that true (Benjamin) remnant and will guide them safely through the Great Tribulation. For the sake of them, the chosen ones, the days of that tribulation will even be shortened, otherwise no flesh would be saved (Mat 24:22).
The tribulation that (mostly) is on them has a special purpose: to put a test upon the inhabitants of the earth.
To obtain that goal to them the task is entrusted to fulfil Mat 24:14 >> heralding the good news of the [then established] kingdom in all the inhabited earth [oikoumene] for a witness unto all the Gentiles. Their preaching will confront the Gentiles with a decisive challenge: Will they identify themselves with Elohim's people that clearly have his favour? Will they offer them help in their afflictions? (Mt 25:37-40).
2. As remarked above, in Matthew 24:14 we are previously informed about a worldwide preaching:
This Gospel of the Kingdom will be preached in whole the inhabited world [oikoumene] for a testimony to all the Gentiles, and then the end will come.
Since that Messianic Kingdom will be established at the half of the 70th Annual Week, it will be proclaimed during the second half of that ‘Week’, being the period in which the spiritual famine will be so heavy that it apparently coincides with the trial that is announced in Revelation 3:10.
Joseph opened all the storehouses to
the starving peoples, just as Messiah Yeshua will open the rich, full stores of
Elohim's’ grace in behalf of the Gentile nations. Apparently, Messiah Yeshua,
the Governor of the antitypical
Thus says Yahweh of Armies: “In those days, ten men will take hold, out of all the languages of the Gentiles, they will take hold of the skirt of him who is a Jew, saying, ‘We will go with you, for we have heard that Elohim is with you.’”
Therefore, in the nations that flocked to Joseph to buy corn we see pictured a great movement among the nations of Heathendom, eagerly in search of a place where spiritual food for the soul can be found. We expect that this movement will also be brought in motion because of the removal of Yeshua’s Congregational Body, by rapture.
Actually, that congregation, being in principle heavenwards called, will then really be close united with her heavenly Bridegroom, Yeshua Messiah. That action was prefigured in Pharaoh giving Asnath as wife to Joseph, he then being 30 years of age, exactly as Adam at the age of thirty received Eve as his wife.
However, after that event, the rapture, Elohim's spirit will for a certain period of time not be active among mankind. And maybe, that situation will cause a worldwide lack of spiritual nourishment.
3. Further, all those painful exercises and experiences through which Joseph's brothers had to pass before Joseph became known to them, foreshadowed the sorrows and repentance of the Jewish remnant previous to their acceptance of him as their true Messiah in the last days.
1 And Yosĕph was unable to restrain himself before all those who stood by him, and he called out, “Have everyone go out from me!” So no one stood with him while Yosĕph made himself known to his brothers.
2 And he wept aloud, and the Mitsrites and the house of Pharaoh heard it.
3 And Yosĕph said to his brothers, “I am Yosĕph, is my father still alive?” But his brothers were unable to answer him, for they trembled before him.
Now that Elohim’s grace had wrought genuine repentance in the hearts of the brothers, and Judah in particular, and now they had acknowledged their guilt, there was no necessity for any further delay; all the things that had hindered Joseph from revealing himself sooner, were now gone.
Notice that Joseph in particular gave the order: Have everyone leave me! Thus, it will be when Yeshua will reveal himself to his repentant Jewish brothers during his presence. Nobody must come between them and their heavenly Redeemer. Away, therefore, you unbelieving rabbis who were always accustomed to decide for their fellow Jews what was right and permissible, or (usually) impermissible! Away, therefore, all those religionists who always presented themselves as indispensable mediators. Away, all those ritualists who would interpose their self made up ordinances as conditions for salvation: Have everyone go out from me!
In this development, we see clearly what Yeshua had said about the religious elite in the days of his flesh:
Then Pharisees and
scribes came to Yeshua from
Then the disciples came, and said to him, “Do you know that the Pharisees were offended, when they heard this saying?” But he answered, “Every plant which my heavenly Father didn’t plant will be uprooted. Leave them alone. They are blind guides. If, then, a blind man guides a blind man, both will fall into a pit.”
Therefore, away also with those blind guides!
However, what will then, at the
second opportunity for
Zechariah has given far in advance - yes, even long before Yeshua offered himself for the first time as their Messiah to the nation - the prophetic answer to that burning issue:
They will look to the one whom they pierced, and they will wail over him as they would wail over an only son; and they will grieve bitterly over him as they would grieve over a firstborn son (Zech 12:10).
It is quite remarkable that Joseph immediately, when he revealed himself to his brothers, asked them again “Is my father still alive?" According to Gen 43:7 and 27 he had already posed that question twice.
Apparently this refers to the uncertainty if, at the dawn of the End Times, within Judaism still something is remaining of the original patriarchal attachment to their Elohim, Yahweh. Within the current modern Jewry, is there yet to find something of Jacob-Israel's deep confidence in the certainty of his promises? Especially those related to the Seed of Promise and their mission becoming a blessing to the whole Gentile world?
Obviously, Yeshua now knows the accurate answers to these probing questions, but that is now out of order. The questions raised by Joseph are to be valued in their typological meaning.
4 Then Yosĕph said to his brothers, “Please come near to me.” And when they came near, he said, “I am Yosĕph your brother, whom you sold into Mitsrayim.
5 And now, do not be grieved nor displeased with yourselves because you sold me here, for Elohim sent me before you to preserve life.
6 For two years now the scarcity of food has been in the land, and there are still five years in which there is neither ploughing nor harvesting.
7 And Elohim sent me before you to preserve for you a remnant in the earth, and to give life to you by a great escape.
8 So then, you did not send me here, but Elohim.
And He has set me for a father to Pharaoh, and master of all his house, and a
ruler throughout all the
As we saw in verse 4, Joseph’s brothers were unable to answer him, for they trembled before him.
Therefore, what a blessed invitation they are now receiving! Joseph is putting all aloofness and all distance aside. So, too in the End Times, in marvellous grace the antitypical Joseph will put all obstacles aside, so repentant Jews may approach freely him, the One who also is their Saviour, without any hesitation.
After all, he proclaims them a wonderful message in their ears: Because Elohim has sent me ahead of you for the preservation of life. And again, in verse 7 >>
Elohim sent me ahead of you in order to preserve for you a remnant on the earth and to keep you alive by a great deliverance.
How anxious Joseph was to take fully away their fears! Elohim had sovereignly worked in all his experiences in order to preserve life for many. If he did not want them to be angry with themselves, then certainly he was not angry with them. What a wonderful attitude for an exalted ruler!
He also informs them bout the severity of the famine, by letting them know that the two years of famine they had suffered in the mean time, was only a beginning. There were yet five years to come. They must have wondered how he knew such facts ahead of time, but they did not question his word.
And of course, this is showing the Jews of the End Times that their true Messiah is endowed with supernatural abilities, in charge of the administration of all Elohim's governmental affairs.
Compare Ephesians 1:9-11 >>
He [Elohim] made us [the members of Yeshua’s Body members] namely known the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in him, for a domestic administration of the fullness of the times, to unite all things under one head in the Messiah; the things concerning heaven and the things in earth, in him, in whom we also were made to heirs predestined to [the] purpose of him who accomplishes all things according to the counsel of his will.
9 Hurry and go up to my father, and say to him, ‘Thus says your son Yosĕph, Elohim has made me master of all Mitsrayim. Come down to me, do not delay.
10 And you shall dwell in the
11 And I shall provide for you there, lest you and your household, and all that you have, come to poverty, because five years of scarcity of food are still to come.’
12 And look, your eyes and the eyes of my brother Binyamin see that it is my mouth that speaks to you.
13 And you shall inform my father of all my esteem in Mitsrayim, and of all that you have seen. And you shall hurry and bring my father down here.”
14 And he fell on his brother Binyamin’s neck and wept, and Binyamin wept on his neck.
15 And he kissed all his brothers and wept over them, and after that his brothers spoke with him.
According to Joseph’s instructions,
the brothers have now to hurry home to their father, with the electrifying news
that Elohim made him lord of all
Moreover, Joseph urged his brothers: You shall tell my
father about all my glory in
So, too, in marvellous grace, Yeshua will commission his Jewish End Times relatives to go forth, seeking others who do not yet know him.
Joseph insisted that his brothers
would not only tell Jacob that he was alive, but also that YHWH Elohim had made
him lord of all
Compare Daniel 2:43-44
Moreover, see: Mid-term review
Joseph also promises to provide for them during the five years of famine that were yet to come.
In that way Joseph was returning great good to his brothers for the evil that they had shown him. How much greater yet will be the goodness of the Lord Yeshua, who has been treated far more shamefully than Joseph was, but will bless Israel - his brothers according to flesh - in overabounding grace in the coming Millennial age!
Now Joseph again embraced his brother Benjamin, and both of them wept. Of course Joseph had a special attachment to the one who was the son of his mother. Apparently, in figure relegating to the more than cordial relationship between Yeshua and the Benjamin remnant that will appear in the End Times.
And he kissed all his brothers and wept over them, and after that his brothers spoke with him…
That Joseph also kissed the other brothers meant that he had forgiven them. It gave proof that he was now fully reconciled to his brothers. It speaks, too, of love.
Remember that the Prodigal thus was greeted by his father after his return from the far country and confessed that he had sinned:
I will rise and go to my father and say to him: “Father, I sinned against heaven and before you, I am no longer worthy of being called your son; make me as one of your hired servants”. And rising up, he went to his father. And while he still was far off, his father caught sight of him and was moved with pity, and quickly running he fell on his neck and kissed him tenderly.
Notice, it was Joseph who kissed them, and not the brothers who kissed Joseph. So, also, it was the Father who kissed the Prodigal. YHWH Elohim always takes the initiative, an attitude that is carefully imitated by his Beloved Son.
How meaningful, too, were the words which follow: And after that his brothers spoke with him. Their fears were all gone now. Reconciled to Joseph, they could now enjoy his fellowship and converse with him. So it will be when Yeshua’s Jewish brothers sincerely confess their guilt; it will undoubtedly lead to a complete new relationship with their Messianic brother.
16 And the report of it was heard by the house of Pharaoh, saying, “The brothers of Yosĕph have come.” And it was good in the eyes of Pharaoh and in the eyes of his servants.
17 And Pharaoh said to Yosĕph, “Say to your
brothers, ‘Do this: Load your beasts and go, enter the
18 and take your father and your households and come to
me, and I give you the best of the
19 And you, you have been commanded, do this: Take
wagons out of the
20 And do not be concerned about your goods, for the
best of all the
News of the coming of Joseph's brothers reaches Pharaoh, who is pleased to hear this: It was good in the eyes of Pharaoh and in the eyes of his servants.
We refer to Knapp’s commentary: “Elohim and the angels, like Pharaoh and his servants, rejoice when sinners are brought to repentance. There is joy all around: Joseph rejoices; his brothers rejoice; Pharaoh rejoices; his servants rejoice”.
Pharaoh also confirms what Joseph
had said, that the brothers should return to Canaan and bring their father and
their households with them back to
Of course Pharaoh realized that he
was greatly indebted to Joseph and was glad to show his appreciation in this
way. More than this, he orders them to take wagons with them from
21 And the sons of Yisra’ĕl did so. And Yosĕph gave them wagons, according to the command of Pharaoh, and he gave them food for the journey.
22 He gave to all of them, to each man, changes of garments, but to Binyamin he gave three hundred pieces of silver and five changes of garments.
23 And he sent to his father this: ten donkeys loaded with the best of Mitsrayim, and ten female donkeys loaded with grain, and bread, and food for his father for the journey.
Joseph gave them wagons - which would of course include animals to pull them - and provisions for their journey, even including changes of clothing, but to Benjamin he gave five changes of clothing and added to this hundred pieces of silver.
One may wonder if Benjamin might
have had a little difficulty in knowing how to handle this! But Joseph's heart
was abounding in grace, and he sent to his father ten donkeys loaded with the
best things of
24 So he sent his brothers away, and they left. And he said to them, “Do not quarrel along the way.”
25 And they went up out of Mitsrayim, and came to the
26 And they told him, saying, “Yosĕph is still
alive, and he is governor over all the
27 But when they spoke to him all the words which Yosĕph had spoken to them, and when he saw the wagons which Yosĕph had sent to transport him, the spirit of Ya‛aqob their father revived.
28 And Yisra’ĕl said, “Enough! My son Yosĕph is still alive. Let me go and see him before I die.”
In sending them away, Joseph told
his brothers not to quarrel on the way. Why? Because, he knew their character
too well, just as Yeshua knows the natural character of
So, at last they returned home to
their father with the unexpected news that Joseph was still alive and was ruler
Similarly, the Jewish End Times remnant
has to fulfil a mission towards a famine-stricken world. They are to testify
Messiah’s exaltation and glory, just as the burden of the message of the sons
Concerning Jacob, he was stunned and initially he could not believe what his sons were telling him. But they affirmed him that they were merely relating to him all the words Joseph had spoken to them.
that time the truth must have come out, that the brothers had sold Joseph into
However, the knowledge that Joseph was living would for Jacob pass by the deception of his sons.
Finally, as for Joseph's reported words, Jacob was persuaded when he saw the wagons that had been sent by him. His spirit revived and he said: It is enough. Joseph my son is still alive. I will go to see him before I die.
1 And Yisra’ĕl set out with all that he had, and came to Be’ĕrsheba, and brought offerings to the Elohim of his father Yitshaq.
2 And Elohim spoke to Yisra’ĕl in the visions of the night, and said, “Ya‛aqob, Ya‛aqob!” And he said, “Here I am.”
3 And He said, “I am the Ěl, Elohim of your father. Do not be afraid to go down to Mitsrayim, for I shall make you there into a great nation.
4 I Myself am going down with you to Mitsrayim and I Myself shall certainly bring you up again. And let Yosĕph put his hand on your eyes.”
5 And Ya‛aqob rose up from Be’ĕrsheba. And the sons of Yisra’ĕl brought their father Ya‛aqob, and their little ones, and their wives, in the wagons which Pharaoh had sent to transport him.
6 And they took their livestock and their
property which they had acquired in the
7 His sons and his sons’ sons, his daughters and his sons’ daughters, and all his seed he brought with him to Mitsrayim.
On his way to Egypt Jacob stopped at
From Genesis 12 and 13 we learn that
Abraham foolishly left Canaan for
That required assurance Jacob
obtained the same night, when Elohim spoke to him in a vision, a reminder of
the dream YHWH had given the patriarch at
But how different the circumstances
now, Elohim telling him: I am Elohim, your
father’s Elohim, this time approving of his trip to
YHWH Elohim promises his own
presence with Jacob, and that he would surely bring him back again. This return,
of course, referred to Jacob's posterity, the nation
And the sons of Yisra’ĕl brought their father Ya‛aqob, and their little ones, and their wives, in the wagons which Pharaoh had sent to transport him.
As we learned from chapter 45:21, transportation had been provided, since Joseph had given them wagons, according to the command of Pharaoh. In antitype ‘the wagons’ may answer to Elohim's holy spirit, sent of the Father to bring the spiritual helpless Jews to Joseph’s Antitype, their glorious Messianic brother.
After all, for the End Times Elohim's spirit is promised to them in connection with the New Covenant which then will be concluded with the posterity of the Exodus generation:
Look! There are days coming, assurance of YHWH, and I will conclude with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah a new covenant; not one like the covenant that I have concluded with their forefathers in the day that I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt, my covenant which they broke, and I had them as a husband. But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, YHWH is saying: I will put my law in their inward parts, and in their heart I will write it; and I will be their Elohim, and they shall be my people: and they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know YHWH; for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest of them, says Yahweh: for I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more.
In relation to this, we can consider also Joel’s prophecy for the Last Days:
It will happen afterward,
that I shall pour out my spirit upon all flesh [of my people
26 All the beings [all soul; kol nephesh] who went with Ya‛aqob to Mitsrayim, who came from his body, besides Ya‛aqob’s sons’ wives, were sixty-six beings in all.
27 And the sons of Yosĕph who were born to him in Mitsrayim were two beings. All the beings of the house of Ya‛aqob who went to Mitsrayim were seventy.
The 66 people were Jacob’s sons,
grandsons and daughter. They went to
By mentioning the number 70, the
inspired writer apparently wants to indicate that a full number of the Jewish
Community in the End Times will search refuge and care in the antitypical
His name will be called…
Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and of peace there
shall be no end, on the throne of David, and on his kingdom, to establish it, and to
uphold it with justice and with righteousness from that time on, even forever.
The zeal of Yahweh of Armies will perform this. The Lord sent a word into
Jacob, and it falls on
You saw until a stone was cut out without hands, which struck the image on its feet that were of iron and clay, and broke them in pieces. Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken in pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshing floors; and the wind carried them away, so that no place was found for them: and the stone that struck the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth. This is the dream; and we will tell the interpretation of it before the king… The Elohim of heaven shall set up a kingdom that shall never be destroyed, nor shall the sovereignty of it be left to another people; but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever. Because you saw that a stone was cut out of the mountain without hands, and that it broke in pieces the iron, the brass, the clay, the silver, and the gold; the great Elohim has made known to the king what shall happen hereafter: and the dream is certain, and the interpretation of it sure.
28 And he sent Yehudah before him to Yosĕph,
to point out before him the way to
29 And Yosĕph made ready his chariot and went up to
30 And Yisra’ĕl said to Yosĕph, “Now let me die, since I have seen your face, that you are still alive.”
Within the new order of things - a new phase in relation to Joseph’s ‘long varicolored robe’ - Israel will be globally elevated to the earthly part of Elohim's New Israel, representing on earth the heavenly Temple City New Jerusalem (Rev 21:1-5).
Compare: Galatians 6:15-16 >>
For in Messiah Yeshua neither is circumcision anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creation. As many as walk by this rule, peace and mercy be on them, and on Elohim’s Israel.
31 And Yosĕph said to his brothers and to his
father’s household, “I am going up to inform Pharaoh, and say to him, ‘My
brothers and those of my father’s house, who were in the
32 And the men are shepherds, that they have been men of livestock, and they have brought their flocks and their herds, and all that they have.’
33 And it shall be, when Pharaoh calls you and says, ‘What is your occupation?’
34 that you shall say, ‘Your servants have been men of
livestock from our youth even till now, both we and also our fathers,’ so that
you dwell in the
Joseph, led by divine wisdom, prepares his brothers and their households for their being presented before Pharaoh, telling them he will announce their coming to Pharaoh. He also intends to tell Pharaoh his brothers are shepherds, having brought their flocks and herds with them, so that Pharaoh would be prepared to grant them land that would not encroach on the lands of the Egyptians. The latter namely, had accustomed themselves to loathe shepherds.
Therefore, the brothers had to let Pharaoh know that they had been shepherds from their youth and of course desired to continue that activity in spite of the attitude of Egyptians toward shepherds.
Of course, in this approach again a
lesson in typological sense can be found: Elohim expects his own people to have
hearts as shepherds, to care for the needs of other human souls. At present,
the world (
However, in the new aeon, the
Instead, they are expected to follow a program of education.
The small and the great, people who come from all strata of the world population, they all have to learn what constitutes the life for the Millennium period. To this end, scrolls of instruction will be opened to train them in the way of righteousness. Their response to that special form of education will be decisive how judgment will turn out for everyone personally.
See: Revelation 20:11-15.
However, on earth Elohim’s
Strangers shall stand and feed your flocks, and foreigners shall be your plowmen and your vine-dressers. But you shall be named the priests of Yahweh; men shall call you the ministers of our Elohim: you shall eat the wealth of the Gentiles, and in their glory shall you boast yourselves. Instead of your shame you shall have double; and instead of dishonour they shall rejoice in their portion: therefore in their land they shall possess double; everlasting joy shall be to them. For I, Yahweh, love justice, I hate robbery with iniquity; and I will give them their recompense in truth, and I will make an everlasting covenant with them. Their seed shall be known among the Gentiles, and their offspring among the peoples; all who see them shall acknowledge them, that they are the seed which Yahweh has blessed.
1 Then Yosĕph went and spoke to Pharaoh, and
said, “My father and my brothers, their flocks and their herds and all that
they possess, have come from the
2 And he took five men from among his brothers and presented them to Pharaoh.
3 And Pharaoh said to his brothers, “What is your occupation?” And they said to Pharaoh, “Your servants are shepherds, both we and also our fathers.”
4 And they said to Pharaoh, “We have come to dwell
in the land, because there is no pasture for your servant’s flocks, for the
scarcity of food is severe in the
5 And Pharaoh spoke to Yosĕph, saying, “Your father and your brothers have come to you.
The right time came for Joseph to
introduce his family to Pharaoh. So, he chose 5 brothers on behalf of the whole
family to meet Pharaoh; he did not take them all. It is not said on what basis
he chose those five. In the Hebrew text, we literally read that Joseph chose
them from the edge, obviously meaning that he took either the
most impressive, or just the weaker ones. Anyway, in the Bible the number five
seems to refer to a part of whole
● in 2 Kings 7:13, where we read about the drastic measures that were taken at the time of another severe famine during the service of YHWH’s prophet Elisha >>
One of his [of the king] servants answered,
Please let some take five of the horses that remain, which
are left in the city. Behold, they are as all the multitude of
● in two of Yeshua’s parables:
a the five foolish, respectively the five discreet virgins (Matth 25:1-12);
b the five brothers in the sectarian ‘house’ of the Rich man, in the parable of The Rich man and the poor Lazarus (Luke 16:19-31).
Incidentally, among the five foolish virgins and the five brothers of the Rich Man, there is much similarity: Due to their disbelief in Yeshua, their Messianic expectations are misdirected. At the crucial moment, they experience rejection and exclusion.
Maybe, the five that Joseph chose
were those who could well speak on behalf of their other brothers. They
answered Pharaoh's question as to their occupation as Joseph had told them
earlier (in Genesis 46:33-34), confirming Joseph's word that they were
shepherds as their fathers were, and that they desired to sojourn in Egypt
because there was no pasture available in Canaan on account of the famine. They
therefore requested that they might be allowed to settle in the
Pharaoh proved to be very kind to them. He did not behave towards Jacob and his family as if they were strangers; receiving them with pleasure. Obviously, he had this attitude because of Joseph. Joseph had blessed Pharaoh. So, Pharaoh wanted to bless Joseph’s family.
is not exactly known where
kept cattle at
description of the region as the very best of
numerical value of
And the remnant of Jacob must become in the midst of many peoples like dew from YHWH, like copious showers upon the grass, that does not hope for man, nor wait for the sons of men.
By the way, Jeremiah 9:23 has the same NV, and it is really of interest reading that Scripture in its context, especially Jer 9:22-26.
Rather than directly answering the brothers, Pharaoh speaks to Joseph, which reminds us that YHWH Elohim grants all blessing through Yeshua, the One in whom he finds great delight (Matth 3:13-17).
Through Joseph therefore all they desire is freely granted to them, for Pharaoh tells Joseph they may have the best of the land. This was pure grace. But also, on the ground of capability, some could be given the position of being put in charge of Pharaoh's livestock. Since he knew Joseph, he expected that at least some of his brothers would be capable men (Grant).
Incidentally, the best of the land might be a reference
to Gan Eden, the original
paradise-like part of the earth. This may well picture Yeshua restoring
During the Millennium
As Yeshua himself promised to the repentant criminal:
One of the criminals who was impaled insulted him, saying, “If you are the Messiah, save yourself and us!”
But the other answered, and
rebuking him said, “Don’t you even fear Elohim, seeing you are under the same
condemnation? And we indeed justly, for we receive the due reward for our
deeds, but this man has done nothing wrong.” He said to Yeshua, “Lord,
remember me when you come into your Kingdom.” Yeshua said to
him, “Assuredly I tell you, today you will be with me in
Of course, by that
promise Yeshua did not signify that this man would be in heaven that same day.
In fact, Yeshua himself was only raised on the third day and his return to
heaven occurred 40 days thereafter. Here, there is no question at all of
heaven. Yeshua spoke to the believing robber within a Jewish setting.
Consequently, he referred to a
As Elohim’s King of the Messianic Kingdom, Yeshua will not only be with this man, but with all humanity that will be on earth during the Millennium. His royal attention will be given to all.
7 And Yosĕph brought in his father Ya‛aqob and set him before Pharaoh. And Ya‛aqob blessed Pharaoh.
8 And Pharaoh said to Ya‛aqob, “How old are you?”
9 And Ya‛aqob said to Pharaoh, “The days of the years of my sojournings are one hundred and thirty years. Few and evil have been the days of the years of my life, and they have not reached the days of the years of the life of my fathers in the days of their sojournings.”
10 And Ya‛aqob blessed Pharaoh, and went out from before Pharaoh.
11 So Yosĕph settled his father and his brothers,
and gave them a possession in the
12 And Yosĕph provided his father, and his brothers, and all his father’s household with bread for the mouth of the little ones.
Remarkably, we are informed that Jacob blessed Pharaoh before Pharaoh spoke to the patriarch. Obviously, this occurred according to the principle we read about in Hebrews 7:7 >> Now it is undeniable that the lesser one is blessed by the greater.
In that Scripture the inspired writer was referring to Melchizedek who blessed Abraham after his return from defeating the hostile kings, thereby showing that he was the greater and Abraham the lesser.
Of course, that principle was also valid for Abraham’s posterity, especially with a view to the tribe of Levi. As can be derived from Psalm 110, the priesthood of Yeshua, the Messiah, will be after the order of Melchizedek. For that reason, his priesthood will also be superior to that of Levi as was arranged by Thorah! A lesson that will be hard for the Jewish people still to learn!
But here, Jacob [the greater] blessing the Pharaoh [the lesser] is a picture of the coming
Millennium day, when Gentiles will be blessed through
In answer to Pharaoh's question as to his age, Jacob speaks of his years as few and evil, not attaining to the age of his fathers, Abraham and Isaac. He had seen great trouble and sorrow during his 130 year pilgrimage, just as has been true of his descendants, the Jewish nation, who have suffered more affliction than any other nation over a period of centuries. Then Jacob blessed Pharaoh again before leaving him.
13 Now there was no bread in all the land, because the
scarcity of food was very severe, and the
14 And Yosĕph gathered up all the silver that was
found in the
15 And when the silver was all spent in the
16 And Yosĕph said, “Give your livestock, and I give you bread for your livestock, if the silver is gone.”
17 So they brought their livestock to Yosĕph, and Yosĕph gave them bread in exchange for the horses, and for the flocks they owned, and for the herds they owned, and for the donkeys. Thus he fed them with bread in exchange for all their livestock that year.
18 And when that year had ended, they came to him the next year and said to him, “We do not hide from my master that our silver is all spent, and my master also has the livestock we owned. There has not any been left before my master but our bodies and our lands.
19 Why should we die before your eyes, both we and our land? Buy us and our land for bread, and let us and our land be servants of Pharaoh. And give us seed, and let us live and not die, and let the land not lie waste.”
20 And Yosĕph bought the entire
21 And as for the people, he moved them into the cities, from one end of the borders of Mitsrayim to the other end.
22 Only the ground of the priests he did not buy, for the priests had portions allotted to them by Pharaoh, and they ate their portions which Pharaoh gave them. Therefore they did not sell their ground.
23 And Yosĕph said to the people, “Look, I have bought you and your land today for Pharaoh. Look, here is seed for you, and you shall sow the land.
24 And it shall be that in the harvest you shall give one-fifth to Pharaoh. And four-fifths is your own, as seed for the field and for your food, for those of your households and as food for your little ones.”
25 And they said, “You have saved our lives. Let us find favour in the eyes of my master, and we shall become Pharaoh’s servants.”
26 And Yosĕph made it a law over the
The famine was as serious as Joseph had predicted. Egypt and Canaan were both greatly affected. The people continued to buy food from Joseph as long as they had money. However, when they had spent it all and still needed food, Joseph told them to bring their livestock to exchange for food. This arrangement continued for a year, and the people came to Joseph again telling him that had nothing left except their bodies and their lands. Now they request that Joseph should take their land and also make the people the property of Pharaoh.
From this, at the Tribulation Times, the whole world population will have to learn the lesson that all people have been bought with a very precious price, which is by Yeshua’s ransom sacrifice. For that reason, all humanity is Elohim's property.
Back then, in Egypt, the people distinguished that they, for the preservation of their lives, were entirely dependent on the life-sustaining regime that Joseph, with Pharaoh's consent, had been set. They expressed their willingness becoming completely his possession, yes, even his slaves.
In conjunction with that arrangement, Joseph removed the people into cities. The land of the priests was however, excluded from that decree, since they were already supported by Pharaoh and nothing in this respect was altered. Though these were not priests who had any ordination by YHWH Elohim, they still picture the liberty that true believers in the Lord Yeshua have experienced during the whole aeon of Christianity, from Pentecost 33 AD all the way to the present day. In Galatians 5:1 these priests are thus encouraged:
For the freedom [the] Messiah set us free. Therefore stand fast and do not let yourselves re-impose a yoke of slavery.
In summary, the people illustrated the sphere of government, while the priests speak of the sphere of the free operation of Elohim’s spirit. As priests of YHWH Elohim, all Yeshua’s Body members have never been under bondage of Israelite Thorah, because they enjoyed all the time full provision made for them by grace, or undeserved loving kindness.
Joseph was not a cruel dictator who was seeking his own wealth by impoverishing the people. Some have strangely criticized the plan that he carried into execution, but the people themselves appreciated it. He had bought them and their land. In return, he gave them seed to sow the land. For their labour they would receive four fifths of the crop. This arrangement would work remarkably well, only on condition that the rulers fair-minded and considerate of the people, and that the people would act responsibly.
Obviously, all this is strikingly picturing the coming rule of the Lord Yeshua in his kingdom. As all the money of the Egyptians was gathered up by Joseph, so we are prophetically informed in Haggai 2:8, that YHWH is saying: The silver is mine, and the gold is mine.
Just as the livestock also became Pharaoh’s property, through Joseph’s arrangement, so YHWH says: Every wild animal of the forest is mine, and the beasts upon a thousand mountains (Psalm 50:10).
Also, as Joseph bought all the land of Egypt for Pharaoh, so the Lord Yeshua, by the sacrifice of his own life, bought the field, that is the whole world of humanity (Matth 13:38).
Therefore, in the Millennial age it will be declared: To YHWH belongs the earth and that which fills it (Psalm 24:1). More than this, Joseph bought the people themselves, and for that reason YHWH Elohim is telling us in Ezekiel 18:4 >> Look! All the souls, to me they belong.
Our natural selfishness in considering that what we have is strictly our own has been through the years a terrible detriment to our own happiness. For nothing really belongs to us, as Israel will learn in a very practical way in the Millennium. Let believers now remember that we are only stewards, put in charge of what belongs to YHWH Elohim, and responsible to give him some return for all the goodness he is showing to us in Messiah Yeshua. Only this attitude will give true happiness.
Just as the famine in Egypt resulted in the people becoming the property of Pharaoh, so the great famine of the tribulation period will result in Jews and Gentiles realizing they are really the property of the Lord Yeshua, in Revelation 17:14 designated as the Lord of lords and the King of kings.
Because of their great trouble many among the world of mankind will become more content and happy than they have ever been before, just as the people of Egypt all found blessing through the wisdom and kindness of Joseph. Joseph's administration would make for more equality among the people, with all having at least sufficient for their needs.
Present day governments certainly have no reputation like this! Tremendous numbers are suffering to the starvation point, while the number of billionaires in the world increases amazingly. The people of Egypt said they were willing to become Joseph's slaves, but Joseph did not treat them like mere slaves (Grant).
27 And Yisra’ĕl dwelt in the land of Mitsrayim, in the land of Goshen. And they had possessions there and bore fruit and increased exceedingly.
28 And Ya‛aqob lived in the land of Mitsrayim seventeen years. So the length of Ya‛aqob’s life was one hundred and forty-seven years.
29 And the time for Yisra’ĕl to die drew near, and he called his son Yosĕph and said to him, “Now if I have found favour in your eyes, please put your hand under my thigh, and show kindness and truth to me. Please do not bury me in Mitsrayim,
30 but I shall lie with my fathers, and you shall take me up out of Mitsrayim and bury me in their burial place.” And he said, “I do as you have said.”
31 And he said, “Swear to me.” And he swore to him, and Yisra’ĕl bowed himself on the head of the bed.
Jacob’s first concern
was to ensure that his own bones should not rest in foreign soil, not even
temporarily. ‘Israel’ must rest in the Land of Promise! Jacob trusted that YHWH
Elohim would take the family back to Canaan and by Joseph swearing to him,
Jacob reminded his family forcefully that Elohim exactly would do that. Egypt
was not their real home. Elohim
had sworn to give the
The last sentence of this chapter, Yisra’ĕl bowed himself on the head of the bed, may mean in Hebrew that the patriarch leaned on the head of his stick. It may not have been the head of the bed; after all, we know that Jacob was then a weak old man.
1 And after these events it came to be that it was said to Yosĕph, “See, your father is sick.” And he took with him his two sons, Menashsheh and Ephrayim.
2 And Ya‛aqob was told, “See, your son Yosĕph is coming to you.” And Yisra’ĕl strengthened himself and sat up on the bed.
3 And Ya‛aqob said to Yosĕph, “Ěl Shaddai appeared to me at Luz in the land of Kena‛an and blessed me,
4 and said to me, ‘See, I am making you bear fruit and shall increase you and make of you an assembly of peoples, and give this land to your seed after you as an everlasting possession.’
Jacob here speaks to Joseph about Elohim's first recorded appearance to him (Gen 28:11-15) at Luz (or Bethel) in Canaan, giving him his special blessing, promising to multiply him into a multitude of people and to give that land to his descendants for an everlasting possession. Therefore, Jacob was not interested in any other land on earth and very rightly so, because
1.) YHWH Elohim himself had made the promise, the One whom Jacob here designates as El Shaddai, God Almighty, and
2.) he, the patriarch, was deeply concerned about the welfare of his descendants.
5 And now, your two sons, Ephrayim and Menashsheh, who were born to you in the land of Mitsrayim before I came to you in Mitsrayim, are mine – as Re’ubĕn and Shim‛on, they are mine.
6 Your offspring whom you shall bring forth after them are yours, and let them be called by the name of their brothers in their inheritance.
7 And I, when I came from Paddan, Rahĕl died beside me in the land of Kena‛an on the way, when there was but a little distance to go to Ephrath. And I buried her there on the way to Ephrath, that is Bĕyth Lehem.”
Here, Jacob claims Joseph’s two sons as his own, and history has proved this to be an important matter. At that time, Jacob had twelve sons, the exact number of administrative completeness. And now, without doubt fully led by Elohim's wisdom, he gave Joseph an extra place among the tribes by naming them after his two sons. For later we find that Levi was given no distinctive inheritance among the tribes (Num 1:47-53) because that tribe was separated in order to do Elohim's service in the Tabernacle and among all the tribes. Thus the twelve tribes were each given their distinct inheritance in the land of Canaan, while the Levites were dispersed among the tribes.
However, any sons that Joseph might have afterward would be considered connected with either Ephraim or Manasseh.
Verse 7 is the only expression we hear from Jacob's lips as to the death of his favored wife, Rachel. The depths to which his heart was affected is not at all dwelt upon, but though he so restrained his feeling, the memory of it was real and poignant as he tells Joseph of the exact location of her death and the place of her burial. These were things he would not forget (Grant).
8 And Yisra’ĕl saw Yosĕph’s sons, and said, “Who are these?”
9 And Yosĕph said to his father, “They are my sons, whom Elohim has given me in this place.” And he said, “Please bring them to me, and let me bless them.”
10 And the eyes of Yisra’ĕl were dim with age, and he was unable to see. And he drew them near him, and he kissed them and embraced them.
11 And Yisra’ĕl said to Yosĕph, “I had not thought to see your face. But see, Elohim has also shown me your seed!”
12 So Yosĕph brought them from between his knees, and he bowed down with his face to the earth.
13 And Yosĕph took them both, Ephrayim with his right hand toward Yisra’ĕl’s left hand, and Menashsheh with his left hand toward Yisra’ĕl’s right hand, and brought them near him.
14 And Yisra’ĕl stretched out his right hand and laid it on Ephrayim’s head, who was the younger, and his left hand on Menashsheh’s head, consciously directing his hands, for Menashsheh was the first-born.
15 And he blessed Yosĕph, and said, “The Elohim before whom my fathers Abraham and Yitshaq walked, the Elohim who has fed me all my life long to this day,
16 the Messenger who has redeemed me from all evil – bless the youths! And let my name be called upon them, and the name of my fathers Abraham and Yitshaq. And let them increase to a multitude in the midst of the earth.”
To receive Jacob’s blessing, Joseph presented Manasseh on Jacob's right hand and Ephraim on his left, but Jacob crossed his arms, putting his right hand on Ephraim's head and his left on Manasseh's head. However, before blessing the two sons, we are told that Jacob blessed Joseph first and then invoked Elohim's blessing upon both Ephraim and Manasseh, the Elohim of his fathers, Abraham and Isaac, the One who had fed him all his life.
Consistently with his claiming them as his own sons, he asks that his name would be upon them, and the names of Abraham and Isaac, stressing the continuity of Elohim's blessing upon that family: May they grow into a multitude in the midst of the earth: Let them increase to a multitude in the midst of the earth.
17 And when Yosĕph saw that his father laid his right hand on the head of Ephrayim, it was evil in his eyes; and he took hold of his father’s hand to remove it from the head of Ephrayim to the head of Menashsheh.
18 And Yosĕph said to his father, “Not so, my father, for this one is the first-born, put your right hand on his head.”
19 But his father refused and said, “I know, my son, I know. He also becomes a people, and he also is great. And yet, his younger brother is greater than he, and his seed is to become the completeness of the nations.”
20 And he blessed them on that day, saying, “In you Yisra’ĕl shall bless, saying, ‘Elohim make you as Ephrayim and as Menashsheh!’ ” Thus he put Ephrayim before Menashsheh.
21 And Yisra’ĕl said to Yosĕph, “See, I am dying, but Elohim shall be with you and bring you back to the land of your fathers.
22 And I, I have given to you one portion above your brothers, which I took from the hand of the Amorite with my sword and with my bow.”
We refer to the commentary of Arno Gaebelein:
“The adoption of Joseph's sons is interesting and instructive. As the offspring of the Gentile wife Asenath they were in danger of becoming gentilized and thus forget their father's house. Jacob frustrated this by adopting the sons. It was an action of faith: By faith, Jacob, when he was dying, blessed both the sons of Joseph; and worshipped leaning on the top of his staff (Hebrews 11:21).
Again, the younger is preferred… Full of hope dying Jacob predicted the return of his offspring to the land of Canaan”.
About the end of Joseph himself we read in Genesis 50:22-26 >>
22 And Yosĕph dwelt in Mitsrayim, he and his father’s household. And Yosĕph lived one hundred and ten years.
23 And Yosĕph saw Ephrayim’s children to the third generation. The children of Makir, son of Menashsheh, were also brought up on Yosĕph’s knees.
24 And Yosĕph said to his brothers, “I am dying, but Elohim shall certainly visit you and bring you out of this land to the land of which He swore to Abraham, to Yitshaq, and to Ya‛aqob.”
25 And Yosĕph made the children of Yisra’ĕl swear, saying, “Elohim shall certainly visit you, and you shall bring up my bones from here.”
26 And Yosĕph died, being one hundred and ten years old. And they embalmed him, and he was placed in a coffin in Mitsrayim.
Based on this part of Scripture, the apostle Paul (Saul of Benjamin) wrote: By faith Joseph, when his end was near, made mention of the Exodus of the sons of Israel, and he gave orders concerning his bones (Hebrews 11:22).
And indeed, from Exodus 13:19 and Joshua 24:32 we know that at the time of Israel’s Exodus Joseph's bones were actually carried and afterwards buried in the field that Jacob had bought from the sons of Hamor in the land of Canaan.
However, the question could arise as to why Joseph for his burial did not require from his Israelite relations the same procedure as the one that he himself had organised in behalf of his father, 54 years earlier.
About the ceremony of Jacob’s burial we read in Gen 50:7-14 >>
7 And Yosĕph went up to bury his father. And with him went up all the servants of Pharaoh, the elders of his house, and all the elders of the land of Mitsrayim,
8 and all the house of Yosĕph, and his brothers, and his father’s house. Only their little ones, and their flocks, and their herds they left in the land of Goshen.
9 And there went up with him both chariots and horsemen, and it was a very great company.
10 And they came to the threshing-floor of Atad, which is beyond the Yardĕn, and they lamented there with a great and very heavy lamentation. And he observed seven days of mourning for his father.
11 And when the inhabitants of the land, the Kena‛anites, saw the mourning at the threshing-floor of Atad, they said, “This is a grievous mourning for the Mitsrites.” That is why its name was called Abĕl Mitsrayim, which is beyond the Yardĕn.
12 And his sons did to him as he had commanded them,
13 for his sons brought him to the land of Kena‛an, and buried him in the cave of the field of Makpĕlah, before Mamrĕ, which Abraham bought with the field from Ephron the Hittite as property for a burial site.
14 And after he had buried his father, Yosĕph returned to Mitsrayim, he and his brothers and all who went up with him to bury his father.
With his explicit request to be buried in Canaan, in the cave Machpelah near Hebron, Jacob expressed his faith in Elohim's promise that Canaan would definitely become the homeland of his seed, the Israelites. Joseph was characterized by the same faith and it could be that, taking in consideration his position he had held at the court of the Pharaoh, it was difficult for him to establish a similar arrangement as was made for Jacob. The nationalistic feelings of the Egyptians may have resisted against a funeral in the land of Canaan.
Apart from that, Scripture seems to indicate that Elohim, with the dead Joseph, had definitely other intentions than with his father Jacob. And that should not surprise us, especially when we consider that Joseph, as we noticed clearly, was in many ways a prophetic picture of the Messiah, Yeshua.
That the arrangement of Jacob's funeral fitted within Elohim's providence, is evident from the fact that he made this event into a picture of Israel's future exodus out of the world, the antitypical Egypt. The very great and heavy lamentation at the threshing floor of A'tad - literally at the threshing floor of the bramble – apparently was typical for the matchless Great Tribulation where Israel still must pass through to enter the Millennium Rest. Compare Judges 9:14-15.
In the Bible, the threshing floor where
the wheat is separated from the chaff, often is a picture of the separation
that causes Elohim's judgment between the righteous and the wicked. In Ezekiel
20:34-38 such a picture is evoked in conjunction with
However, in the case of Joseph’s death and burial YHWH Elohim obviously had in mind something completely different. Certainly, it is not unlikely that Joseph after his death could have been buried in an Egyptian pyramid, but instead he wished to be embalmed and kept in a coffin so that his bones later – at the time of Israel’s Exodus – could be taken by his brothers and buried in the Land of Promise. With a view to Genesis 15:13-16 and Jacob’s assurance in the matter, Joseph had every reason to expect such an exodus
In retrospect, it turned out that for Jacob's expanding family in Egypt Joseph's will had great spiritual benefits. As a result they remained focused on a future exodus of liberation from that bondage, especially later when they were severely oppressed by the new Pharaoh and even were made to his slaves. After all, once would dawn the time for their departure from Egypt, and with that the opportunity to take with them Joseph's bones towards the land which was promised. As his body remained in their midst until that day - probably in the land of Goshen, in the care of some members of his descendants - that promise was kept alive among them.
Finally, in the year 2514 AM, 144 years after Joseph's death, in Elohim's timetable the day dawned for Israel's departure from Egypt:
And Moses took Joseph’s bones with him, because Joseph had made the sons of Israel solemnly swear: Elohim will not fail to turn his attention to you, and you must take my bones up out of here with you.
The next forty years the coffin with Joseph's embalmed body was carried around in the wilderness, while the people moved from one stopover to the next. And possibly also for some time afterwards, when, under Joshua's leadership, it took Israel almost six years to largely conquer the land. Because only at the end of the book of Joshua Joseph's final burial is related.
When we take into consideration that Joseph remarkably prefigured the Messiah in many ways, we can wonder where and under what circumstances we can find the antitypical significance of that particular fact, namely that Israel carried around Joseph's corpse in the wilderness for at least forty years, before he found rest with Israel in the land of typological Rest (Hebrews 4:8).
It seems that the key to that issue has been provided to us in 2 Corinthians 4:10:
While we are always carrying around in the body Yeshua’s death-dealing treatment, so that Yeshua’s life also may be made manifest in our body.
Up to the present time, that situation was applicable to the members of Yeshua’s Congregational Body, the heavenly part of Elohim's Israel. First, however, with this statement the apostle made mention of his own trials and tribulations during his ministry: At all times he carried around in his body the dying [or: the killing] of Messiah Yeshua.
But when the New Covenant is concluded with the Hebrews - Israel's saints of the End times - and they have washed their robes, having made them white in the blood of the Lamb, they also will find themselves in that situation.
Since they then will be confronted with bitter opposition, persecution and will suffer many things during the Great Tribulation of the 70th Annual Week, they too will carry around in their bodies the death of their Messiah. However, eventually they too will live in the true sense of the word. Thanks to him, real life: the life of their Messiah will be made manifest in them in the form of a new creation.
During his turbulent life the patriarch Joseph in many ways demonstrated his faith; it is therefore all the more remarkable that the apostle precisely made mention of this facet of his faith: By faith Joseph, when his end was near, made mention of the Exodus of the sons of Israel, and he gave orders concerning his bones.
At least forty years, his brothers carried around in the wilderness his embalmed body, a constantly being at hand sign that Elohim's promise - bringing them into the promised land of Canaan - would certainly be fulfilled.
However, this feature of the Exodus also sheds a special light on their rebellion and disbelief at the time of the return of the twelve spies.
Because of the demoralizing report that was made to their brothers by ten of them, the people refused to go up even further. Yes, in their uprising, they even wanted to kill the two faithful spies, Joshua and Caleb, and to replace Moses as their head in order to return to Egypt under a new leader!
What then, in that case, intended they to do with the coffin in which they were carrying Joseph’s bones ? Did they want that particular sign take back to Egypt, considering that sign, granted them graciously by YHWH Elohim's, as worthless? Apparently, they were willing to do so in their unbelief! However, in reality, such an act would mean the breaking of an oath which was made to the dying Joseph, and even more: nothing less than showing disloyalty to Yahweh their Elohim (Nm 13:17 to 14:10).
Above, we pointed already to Ezekiel 20:34:38, where the gathering of Israel out of the diasporah in the End times is compared with the Exodus from Egypt. Even then, there will be rebels among the people and offenders, so there will be again necessity for YHWH Elohim for judging these Jews.
In those days of old, one of the reasons for people’s refuse to continue their journey were the so called ‘giants’, the Nephilim, as the spies reported:
There we saw the Nephilim, the sons of Anak, who come of the Nephilim: and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and so we were in their sight (Num 13:33).
Similar things are awaiting the Hebrews of the End times. They will be led out from the Egypt of this world. They too will be confronted by giants: the demonical locusts during the First Woe, at the time the fifth angel will blow the trumpet. Those ‘locusts’ will arise in the midst of a sooty darkness from the pit of the abyss (Rev 9:1-12).
Therefore, the End Times Jews will be hit hard. However, in a sign that certain victory will be their part, they will carry around – in their own bodies - the dying of the Greater Joseph. For what purpose? So that Yeshua’s life may be made manifest in their own bodies too!