A Daily Genesis

Genesis 45:4-13

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[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†. [/COLOR]Gen 45:4a . .Then Joseph said to his brothers: Come close to me.[/B]

You can just safely bet they had reflexively shrunk back from him as far as the boundaries of the room would permit.

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†. [/COLOR]Gen 45:4b-7 . .When they had done so, he said: I am your brother Joseph, the one you sold into Egypt! And now, do not be distressed and do not be disappointed in yourselves for selling me here, because it was to save lives that God sent me ahead of you.

. . . For two years now there has been famine in the land, and for the next five years there will not be plowing and reaping. But God sent me ahead of you to preserve for you a progeny on earth and to save your lives by a great rescue.
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If it was only God's ambition to preserve Israel's future, He could have easily prevented the famine. And if He was looking ahead to Israel's rescue from Egyptian slavery, then couldn't He have just simply ordered Jacob to move everybody down to Egypt? No, that wouldn't have worked because the Hebrews were an abomination to the Egyptians. They would never have allowed the Hebrews to immigrate and settle in Egypt's choicest land under normal circumstances.

So then, God set things up so that Egypt would owe the Hebrews a big favor; and would welcome them in spite of their disgust. Pharaoh and the Egyptians couldn't just take Joseph's providence for granted; no, they were deeply indebted for saving them all from starvation and possibly conquest by foreign powers.

[FONT=Garamond][B]NOTE[/B][/FONT][B]:[/B] Famines are the result of climate change; which is a natural earth cycle. Nowadays, climate change is depicted as a man-made evil; but in reality, climate change is normal and would happen anyway regardless of the amount of fossil fuel man burns or doesn't burn. In other words: God didn't cause the famine in Josephs' day as a special event like the Flood; no, He simply saw it coming before anybody else did; just as He had seen many like it in the past.

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 45:8 . . So then, it was not you who sent me here, but God. He made me father to Pharaoh; lord of his entire household and ruler of all Egypt.[/B]

The sense in which Joseph was a "father" to Pharaoh, was in the capacity of a guardian; viz: of a provider and a protector. If not for Joseph, Pharaoh's kingdom would have surely collapsed.

The Hebrew word for "father" is [I]'ab[/I] (awb); which is ambiguous in that it has several applications. It can apply to a genetic ancestor (e.g. Gen 2:24), an inventor of skills and trades (e.g. Gen 4:20-21), a political big shot (2Kgs 5:13), a spiritual counselor (2Kgs 6:21), and God. (Ps 44:1)

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 45:9-11 . . Now hurry back to my father and say to him "This is what your son Joseph says: God has made me lord of all Egypt. Come down to me; don't delay. You shall live in the region of Goshen and be near me-- you, your children and grandchildren, your flocks and herds, and all you have. I will provide for you there, because five years of famine are still to come. Otherwise you and your household and all who belong to you will become destitute."
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Goshen was the fertile region in northeastern Egypt; situated to the west of today's Suez Canal: a district of about 900 square miles; which is pretty much the eastern half of the Nile delta.

[FONT=Garamond][B]NOTE[/B][/FONT][B]:[/B] When Moses left Goshen, he didn't go directly to Palestine along the coastal trade route; but took Yhvh's people a bit south first towards the modern city of Suez (Ex 13:17-18). In his day, the Gulf Of Suez arm of the Red Sea extended about 50 miles farther north than it does now. Lake Timsah-- at the current town of Ismailia --and The Great Bitter Lake, and the Little Bitter Lake are all that remain as witnesses to that portion of the ancient sea bed.

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 45:12-13 . .You can see for yourselves, and so can my brother Benjamin, that it is really I who am speaking to you. Tell my father about all the honor accorded me in Egypt and about everything you have seen. And bring my father down here quickly.[/B]

Jacob would want to know just exactly how the brothers learned Joseph's Egyptian identity. By getting the news right from the horse's mouth, there would be no reason for Jacob to doubt their story.

Joseph didn't refer to Jacob as "our" father; no, he made his association with Jacob far more personal than that. He referred to Jacob as "my" father; which reminds me of another's statement.

"Go to my brethren, and say unto them: I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God." (John 20:17)

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