“There was no food, however, in the whole region because the famine was severe; both Egypt and Canaan wasted away because of the famine. Joseph collected all the money that was to be found in Egypt and Canaan in payment for the grain they were buying, and he brought it to Pharaoh’s palace.“-Genesis 47:13-14
Perceived economic superiority has always been one of the prime factors fueling Jew-hatred.
As a result of the Jews’ commitment to their God and His commandments, they have always led much higher-quality lives than their non-Jewish neighbors in almost every foreign society where they have lived.
In general, Jews have been better educated.
Their family lives are usually more stable.
In times of need, Jews have aided each other more than their non-Jewish neighbors.
The Jewish population has always had a much lower alcoholism rate than their Gentile peers.
And Jewish men have been less likely to beat their wives or abandon their children.
Due to these factors, the quality of life of the average Jew, regardless of economic status, was always higher than that of a comparable Gentile in the same society.
I submit that it is this higher quality of life that has provoked vicious envy and hostility among non-Jews.
Right here in Genesis 47, we see a similar development when Joseph begins collecting all the money from the people in Egypt and Canaan.
Even white supremacist David Duke in his book “Jewish Supremacism: My Awakening” points to this very section of the Bible as an example to support his twisted views of how the Jews manipulate society for their own economic benefit.
He relates, “I took out my Bible and turned to the last pages of Genesis and the first of Exodus, and after reading and reflecting on what I had read, I think I finally understood why God was so often put out with the ‘Chosen People’.”
I find it so ironic that some people can turn the story of how God used Joseph to save Egypt and Canaan on its head and interpret it in such a negative fashion.
For if it wasn’t for Joseph, Egypt would have perished.
Unfortunately, human nature is fickle and irrational.
As the people’s money to buy food ran out, they had to sell their livestock and eventually give up ownership of their land just to survive.
And finally they ended up selling themselves into the service of Pharaoh.
The key point is that although the people were giving up everything they owned and their very lives to Pharaoh, it was Joseph the Hebrew with whom they were directly dealing.
Think about how Joseph was viewed by the people.
It was Joseph’s own plan and his implementation of it that caused the people to become paupers and serfs.
It was Joseph’s face the people saw confiscating land and livestock.
Irony of ironies.
The man who was brought to Egypt as a slave now reduces the Egyptians to slavery.
Take note that right here is the beginning of Egyptian hatred towards the Israelites and the moment the clock started ticking towards the fulfillment of the prophecy God gave to Abraham about his descendants being enslaved.
The present Semite Pharaoh who was now on the throne could have cared less about the Egyptian people.
However, years later the Egyptian people will overthrow the hated foreign Hyksos rulers, and enthrone an Egyptian Pharaoh.
Once this happens, they will exact revenge for 100 years of pent up anger and envy towards the Hebrews.
One final point and I would even call this a God pattern that is repeated throughout Scripture.
At the same time the Egyptian people were giving up their land to survive, the Israelites were ACQUIRING land in Goshen.
This is one incident out of many where we will see God protecting and greatly blessing those who are His amidst a world of chaos.