“Now then, please let your servant remain here as my lord’s slave in place of the boy, and let the boy return with his brothers.”-Genesis 44:33
While we have seen in many ways how Joseph’s life foreshadows Yeshua, here in Genesis 44 we get a glimpse of the character of Messiah in Judah.
On their return back to Canaan, the brothers were accused of stealing Joseph’s divination bowl.
After the bowl was discovered, all the brothers except Benjamin were allowed to return to their families in Canaan.
Now here’s an important point I want you to catch.
Although the brothers were free to leave, rather than abandoning Benjamin like they did with Joseph, they decided to stay.
They made the decision to all stick together and endure whatever fate had in store for them.
Isn’t this how we as believers should stick together and support each other through both good times and bad?
In fact, this is exactly how the Bible says the world will know we are believers, by the love we have for each other.
When a brother or sister is down on his or her luck (maybe one of them lost their job, is going through a divorce, or on the verge of homelessness), we are NOT to adopt the “see ya, wouldn’t wanna be ya” attitude so characteristic of the world.
I recently communicated with a fellow believer working in an orphanage in Pakistan and my heart went out to her as I was reminded that some of our brothers and sisters in other parts of the world are experiencing unbelievable suffering.
Let’s move on to the next point.
So the brothers are once again given an audience with Joseph.
It is here that Judah takes center stage and acting as a spokesman for his brothers confesses that although they did not steal the bowl or the money, they are indeed guilty before God.
They are guilty for selling their little brother into slavery.
They are guilty for lying to their father about Joseph’s whereabouts and grieving him to no end.
They are guilty for all of the sins both little and big they had committed throughout their lifetimes.
Judah, now a humbled man, gets down on his knees and offers himself up to pay for the sins of his brothers as Yeshua will do for Israel and the world in the future.
One final point.
Notice Joseph’s words to Judah.
“What made you think you could hide anything from me,
don’t you know I practice divination?”
There is another great spiritual takeaway here.
Just as Judah admitted to Joseph that it was useless to plead innocence before him because he and his brothers were guilty of many crimes before God, so is it useless for us to plead our sinlessness before a perfect, holy and righteous God.
Joseph scolded the brothers for thinking they could hide certain things from him.
Likewise, we will be rebuked if we attempt to hide our sins and failings from an all-knowing God.
YHVH already knows everything.
When we come to him, we must throw away all of our pretensions and falsehoods and come to him in a state of full and open-hearted repentance.
CONNECTING THIS TEACHING TO THE NEW TESTAMENT
“If someone has worldly possessions and sees his brother in need,
yet closes his heart against him, how can he be loving God?”
-1 John 3:17
“Grace and shalom to you from God our Father
and from the Lord Yeshua the Messiah,
who gave himself for our sins,
so that he might deliver us from the present evil world-system,
in obedience to the will of God, our Father.”
“There is nothing covered up that will not be uncovered,
or hidden that will not become known.
What you have spoken in the dark will be heard in the light,
and what you have whispered behind closed doors
will be proclaimed on the housetops.”