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“Jacob lived in the land where his father had stayed, the land of Canaan. This is the account of Jacob’s family line. Joseph, a young man of seventeen, was tending the flocks with his brothers, the sons of Bilhah and the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives, and he brought their father a bad report about them. Now Israel loved Joseph more than any of his other sons, because he had been born to him in his old age; and he made an ornate robe for him. When his brothers saw that their father loved him more than any of them, they hated him and could not speak a kind word to him. Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brothers, they hated him all the more. He said to them, “Listen to this dream I had: We were binding sheaves of grain out in the field when suddenly my sheaf rose and stood upright, while your sheaves gathered around mine and bowed down to it.” His brothers said to him, “Do you intend to reign over us? Will you actually rule us?” And they hated him all the more because of his dream and what he had said. Then he had another dream, and he told it to his brothers. “Listen,” he said, “I had another dream, and this time the sun and moon and eleven stars were bowing down to me.” When he told his father as well as his brothers, his father rebuked him and said, “What is this dream you had? Will your mother and I and your brothers actually come and bow down to the ground before you?” His brothers were jealous of him, but his father kept the matter in mind.”
‭‭Genesis‬ ‭37:1-11‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Today we step onto the soil where Joseph grew up. We find him as a seventeen-year-old tending sheep with his brothers in the midst of complex family dynamics, many of which stemmed from the favoritism of his father and the jealousy of his brothers. If you’d hoped we could ease into Joseph’s story with a cup of chamomile and a “once upon a time” opening line, the author of Genesis gives us no such luxury. Instead he takes the more direct approach of immediately plunging us into the middle of a dysfunctional family. If you need that cup of tea, you’ll have to pour it yourself or come over to my house.

If nothing else, many of us will find these pages of Genesis relatable. Despite the cultural differences of wardrobe choice, empty cisterns, and bizarre dreams involving bowing sheaves, the longings of the human heart appear to have stayed the same. Thankfully, the God who transforms our hearts hasn’t changed either.

Read Genesis 37:1-11 and think about the strong words of animosity used to describe the brothers’ feelings toward Joseph. Because of Joseph’s dreams and Jacob’s partiality toward Joseph, the brothers allowed jealousy to overtake their hearts and determine their decisions.

I’ve often wondered why Joseph shared his dreams with his brothers. Did he do it out of excitement or spite? Did he hope they might start showing him respect? We’re not told Joseph’s motives in the biblical narrative, but the effects of his confession on the brothers are obvious. I’m reminded here of the importance of pure motives and wise timing when we talk about the good and exciting things in our lives—even the things God is doing. While we can’t make others jealous, we don’t want to unwisely foster it.

The beauty of Joseph’s story is that in the midst of favoritism, jealousy, and anger, God is working out His purposes. His covenant promises will prevail despite the sin and brokenness of the people to whom the promises were made. God is faithful. This story would have been much less tumultuous if everyone could have recognized at the time that while God does choose different people for different things, He is altogether good and doesn’t show favoritism (Acts 10:34; Rom. 2:11).

I wish Jacob and the brothers could have known that Joseph’s dreams would prove to be good news for them, that they were part of God’s story, as well.
 

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“Jacob lived in the land where his father had stayed, the land of Canaan. This is the account of Jacob’s family line. Joseph, a young man of seventeen, was tending the flocks with his brothers, the sons of Bilhah and the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives, and he brought their father a bad report about them. Now Israel loved Joseph more than any of his other sons, because he had been born to him in his old age; and he made an ornate robe for him. When his brothers saw that their father loved him more than any of them, they hated him and could not speak a kind word to him. Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brothers, they hated him all the more. He said to them, “Listen to this dream I had: We were binding sheaves of grain out in the field when suddenly my sheaf rose and stood upright, while your sheaves gathered around mine and bowed down to it.” His brothers said to him, “Do you intend to reign over us? Will you actually rule us?” And they hated him all the more because of his dream and what he had said. Then he had another dream, and he told it to his brothers. “Listen,” he said, “I had another dream, and this time the sun and moon and eleven stars were bowing down to me.” When he told his father as well as his brothers, his father rebuked him and said, “What is this dream you had? Will your mother and I and your brothers actually come and bow down to the ground before you?” His brothers were jealous of him, but his father kept the matter in mind.”
‭‭Genesis‬ ‭37:1-11‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Today we step onto the soil where Joseph grew up. We find him as a seventeen-year-old tending sheep with his brothers in the midst of complex family dynamics, many of which stemmed from the favoritism of his father and the jealousy of his brothers. If you’d hoped we could ease into Joseph’s story with a cup of chamomile and a “once upon a time” opening line, the author of Genesis gives us no such luxury. Instead he takes the more direct approach of immediately plunging us into the middle of a dysfunctional family. If you need that cup of tea, you’ll have to pour it yourself or come over to my house.

If nothing else, many of us will find these pages of Genesis relatable. Despite the cultural differences of wardrobe choice, empty cisterns, and bizarre dreams involving bowing sheaves, the longings of the human heart appear to have stayed the same. Thankfully, the God who transforms our hearts hasn’t changed either.

Read Genesis 37:1-11 and think about the strong words of animosity used to describe the brothers’ feelings toward Joseph. Because of Joseph’s dreams and Jacob’s partiality toward Joseph, the brothers allowed jealousy to overtake their hearts and determine their decisions.

I’ve often wondered why Joseph shared his dreams with his brothers. Did he do it out of excitement or spite? Did he hope they might start showing him respect? We’re not told Joseph’s motives in the biblical narrative, but the effects of his confession on the brothers are obvious. I’m reminded here of the importance of pure motives and wise timing when we talk about the good and exciting things in our lives—even the things God is doing. While we can’t make others jealous, we don’t want to unwisely foster it.

The beauty of Joseph’s story is that in the midst of favoritism, jealousy, and anger, God is working out His purposes. His covenant promises will prevail despite the sin and brokenness of the people to whom the promises were made. God is faithful. This story would have been much less tumultuous if everyone could have recognized at the time that while God does choose different people for different things, He is altogether good and doesn’t show favoritism (Acts 10:34; Rom. 2:11).

I wish Jacob and the brothers could have known that Joseph’s dreams would prove to be good news for them, that they were part of God’s story, as well.
I figured that Lord directed Joseph to share dream, so brorhers would realize God's fullfillment
 

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Amen
 
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