Children’s Study – Joseph, Part 5 Joseph Becomes Ruler of Egypt

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Joseph – Part 5 Joseph becomes ruler of Egypt

In our last study we saw how Joseph was made Pharaoh’s second in command as a result of Joseph’s ability to interpret the Pharaoh’s dream. In Joseph’s interpretation, we learned a valuable lesson about the Bible. Just like the Pharaoh’s dream, the Bible also has that one message.

Gen 41:25 (KJV) And Joseph said unto Pharaoh, The dream of Pharaoh is one: God hath shewed Pharaoh what he is about to do.
Gen 41:26 The seven good kine are seven years; and the seven good ears are seven years: the dream is one.

That one message is the story of our Lord Jesus Christ. It’s the story of God’s plan to turn all of mankind into His image, just like His Son. From darkness to light. From flesh to spirit. From death to life.

Luk 24:25 (GNB) Then Jesus said to them, “How foolish you are, how slow you are to believe everything the prophets said!
Luk 24:26 Was it not necessary for the Messiah to suffer these things and then to enter his glory?”
Luk 24:27 And Jesus explained to them what was said about himself in all the Scriptures, beginning with the books of Moses and the writings of all the prophets.

So that is the reason why there are so many similarities between the story of Joseph and the story of Christ. Joseph and Jesus needed to suffer first before they were given the glory promised to them. Joseph and Jesus had a special relationship with their father. This special relationship was the source of their brothers’ jealousy and hatred. And these brothers’ hatred was used by God to put both Joseph and Jesus into all sorts of trials.

Joseph’s suffering in prison is a symbol of how Christ suffered while He was in sinful flesh.

1Pe 4:1 (ESV) Since therefore Christ suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves with the same way of thinking, for whoever has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin,
1Pe 4:2 so as to live for the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for human passions but for the will of God.

This sinful flesh that we live in is like a prison, and we need someone to free us from it.

1Pe 3:18 (ESV) For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit,
1Pe 3:19 in which he went and proclaimed to the spirits in prison,

It is only Christ through His words who can do that.

Joh 8:31 (ESV) So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples,
Joh 8:32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

The part where the king gave power to Joseph is used as a symbol of how God gave power to our Lord to be the ruler “over my house” and over “all my people”.

Gen 41:39 (CEV) The king told Joseph, “God is the one who has shown you these things. No one else is as wise as you are or knows as much as you do.
Gen 41:40 (KJV) Thou shalt be over my house, and according unto thy word shall all my people be ruled: only in the throne will I be greater than thou.

But Jesus never denied that all this power is given to Him by the Father who is greater than Him in the throne.

Mat 28:18 (KJV) And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

Jesus lived a humble and obedient life all the way to His death. No one among us did that. We all sinned, and we need Him to teach us this humble and obedient way, to the glory of God the Father.

Php 2:8 (GNB) He was humble and walked the path of obedience all the way to death— his death on the cross.
Php 2:9 For this reason God raised him to the highest place above and gave him the name that is greater than any other name.
Php 2:10 And so, in honor of the name of Jesus all beings in heaven, on earth, and in the world below will fall on their knees,
Php 2:11 and all will openly proclaim that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Let’s continue the story:

Gen 41:44 (GNB) The king said to him, “I am the king—and no one in all Egypt shall so much as lift a hand or a foot without your permission.”
Gen 41:45 – 46 He gave Joseph the Egyptian name Zaphenath Paneah, and he gave him a wife, Asenath, the daughter of Potiphera, a priest in the city of Heliopolis. Joseph was thirty years old when he began to serve the king of Egypt. He left the king’s court and traveled all over the land.

Our Lord was also given a wife by God, and we have learned from past studies that this spiritual wife is the church of God.

Isa 62:4 (CEV) Your name will no longer be “Deserted and Childless,” but “Happily Married.” You will please the LORD; your country will be his bride.
Isa 62:5 Your people will take the land, just as a young man takes a bride. The LORD will be pleased because of you, just as a husband is pleased with his bride.

2Co 11:2 (KJV) For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy. For I have espoused you to one Man, to present you as a pure virgin to Christ.

Let’s continue:

Gen 41:47 (GNB) During the seven years of plenty the land produced abundant crops,
Gen 41:48 all of which Joseph collected and stored in the cities. In each city he stored the food from the fields around it.
Gen 41:49 There was so much grain that Joseph stopped measuring it—it was like the sand of the sea.
Gen 41:50 Before the years of famine came, Joseph had two sons by Asenath.
Gen 41:51 He said, “God has made me forget all my sufferings and all my father’s family”; so he named his first son Manasseh.

There will certainly come a time when God will wipe away our tears and will make us forget all of our sufferings. This begins in this life for the elect as we also forget we are of our father the devil and are given a new spiritual family.

Gen 41:52 He also said, “God has given me children in the land of my trouble”; so he named his second son Ephraim.

For the elect, the Lord will come in our flesh, the “land of His trouble”, and we will be His children. Notice how Joseph acknowledges God in everything he is receiving.

Gen 41:53 (GNB) The seven years of plenty that the land of Egypt had enjoyed came to an end,
Gen 41:54 and the seven years of famine began, just as Joseph had said. There was famine in every other country, but there was food throughout Egypt.
Gen 41:55 When the Egyptians began to be hungry, they cried out to the king for food. So he ordered them to go to Joseph and do what he told them.
Gen 41:56 The famine grew worse and spread over the whole country, so Joseph opened all the storehouses and sold grain to the Egyptians.
Gen 41:57 (KJV) And all countries came into Egypt to Joseph for to buy corn; because that the famine was so sore in all lands.

Now we know that the famine was not only in Egypt, but it was in all lands. The Egyptians were the only ones with food, but the other countries didn’t so they had to come to buy food from Joseph. So what spiritual lesson is hidden in this part of the story?

First, we need to remember that the Lord’s flesh and blood is compared to food and water that will give eternal life to whoever “eats and drinks” it.

Joh 6:53 So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man (His words and His body) and drink his blood (His words and His suffering), you have no life in you.
Joh 6:54 Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.

Those verses mean that whoever believes and obeys Christ’s words will have eternal life. Whoever “eats His flesh” or becomes a part of His body and “drinks His blood” or suffers because of Him, will have eternal life.

So this famine, this lack of food that is so severe and global, means the whole world is suffering from the lack of Christ’s words and not being a part of His body. Egypt is being used at this time as the symbol of the elect, the pharaoh’s house and people who Joseph is now ruling. They are the only ones who have food at this time.

The whole world at this time is suffering a famine of His word:

Amo 8:11 Behold, the days come, saith the Lord GOD, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the LORD:

We all have to experience this famine or lacking the understanding of God’s words. But it is God’s people who gets fed first and then the rest of the world. Now the rest of the world are coming to buy food from Joseph.

Gen 41:57 (KJV) And all countries came into Egypt to Joseph for to buy corn; because that the famine was so sore in all lands.

Gen 42:1 (ESV) When Jacob learned that there was grain for sale in Egypt, he said to his sons, “Why do you look at one another?”
Gen 42:2 And he said, “Behold, I have heard that there is grain for sale in Egypt. Go down and buy grain for us there, that we may live and not die.”
Gen 42:3 So ten of Joseph’s brothers went down to buy grain in Egypt.
Gen 42:4 But Jacob did not send Benjamin, Joseph’s brother, with his brothers, for he feared that harm might happen to him.
Gen 42:5 Thus the sons of Israel came to buy among the others who came, for the famine was in the land of Canaan.

Joseph’s brothers, who are the symbols of Babylon or the false churches of this world, will one day admit that they are also starving. Right now, they think they understand his words and have no need for someone to teach them and heal them.

Rev 3:17 You claim to be rich and successful and to have everything you need. But you don’t know how bad off you are. You are pitiful, poor, blind, and naked.
Rev 3:18 Buy your gold from me. It has been refined in a fire, and it will make you rich. Buy white clothes from me. Wear them and you can cover up your shameful nakedness. Buy medicine for your eyes, so that you will be able to see.

We will see that Joseph will also provide food to his brothers who sold him into slavery as well as to everyone who came to Egypt to buy food from him. In the same manner, our Lord will forgive everyone and cleanse them from their sins, but it will cost them their life. Just like the elect, they will also have to give up everything they deemed important in this world.

Gen 42:6 (CEV) Since Joseph was governor of Egypt and in charge of selling grain, his brothers came to him and bowed with their faces to the ground.
Gen 42:7 – 8 They did not recognize Joseph, but right away he knew who they were, though he pretended not to know. Instead, he spoke harshly and asked, “Where do you come from?” “From the land of Canaan,” they answered. “We’ve come here to buy grain.”
Gen 42:9 Joseph remembered what he had dreamed about them and said, “You’re spies! You’ve come here to find out where our country is weak.”
Gen 42:10 “No sir,” they replied. “We’re your servants, and we have only come to buy grain.
Gen 42:11 We’re honest men, and we come from the same family–we’re not spies.”
Gen 42:12 “That isn’t so!” Joseph insisted. “You’ve come here to find out where our country is weak.”
Gen 42:13 But they explained, “Sir, we come from a family of twelve brothers. The youngest is still with our father in Canaan, and one of our brothers is dead.”
Gen 42:14 Joseph replied: It’s just like I said. You’re spies,
Gen 42:15 and I’m going to find out who you really are. I swear by the life of the king that you won’t leave this place until your youngest brother comes here.
Gen 42:16 Choose one of you to go after your brother, while the rest of you stay here in jail. That will show whether you are telling the truth. But if you are lying, I swear by the life of the king that you are spies!
Gen 42:17 Joseph kept them all under guard for three days,

Next time, Lord willing, we will see why Joseph is making his brothers suffer like this.

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