However horrible the events that were to follow, they’re not hard to comprehend. To be in that close proximity to, and even to be related to, someone whom you hated would inevitably lead, sooner or later, only to trouble.
And it did.
Read Genesis 37:12-36. What does this teach us about how dangerous and evil unregenerate hearts can be and to what they can lead any one of us to do?
The brothers hated Joseph because they were jealous of God’s favor (Acts 7:9), a favor that will be confirmed at each step in the next course of events. When Joseph has lost his way, a man finds him and guides him (Genesis 37:15). When Joseph’s brothers plot to kill him, Reuben intervenes and suggests that he be thrown into a pit instead (Genesis 37:20-22).
It’s hard to imagine the kind of hatred expressed here, especially for someone of their own household. How could these young men have done something so cruel? Did they not think, even for a few moments, about how this would impact their own father? Whatever resentment they might have had toward their father because he favored Joseph, to do this to one of his children was, truly, despicable. What a powerful manifestation of just how evil human beings can be.
“But some of them [the brothers] were ill at ease; they did not feel the satisfaction they had anticipated from their revenge. Soon a company of travelers was seen approaching. It was a caravan of Ishmaelites from beyond Jordan, on their way to Egypt with spices and other merchandise. Judah now proposed to sell their brother to these heathen traders instead of leaving him to die. While he would be effectually put out of their way, they would remain clear of his blood.” — Ellen G. White, Patriarchs and Prophets, p. 211.
After they cast him into the pit, planning to kill him later, a caravan passes, and Judah proposes to his brothers to sell Joseph to them (Genesis 37:26-27). After Joseph is sold to the Midianites (Genesis 37:28), the Midianites sell him to someone in Egypt (Genesis 37:36), thus anticipating his future glory.
|Why is it so important to seek God’s power in order to change bad traits of character before they can manifest themselves into some acts that, at one point in your life, you would never imagine yourself doing?|