Children's Bible Ministry of Connecticut, USA


Joseph and His Brothers

Genesis 37 v 15-17 When Joseph arrives in Shechem he searches the grazing land but cannot find his brothers. A man tells him he overheard them saying they were moving on to find new pastures in Dothan.  Slide 4Joseph was the eleventh of the twelve sons of Jacob. He was most beloved by his father who gave him a very special coat of many colors. But Joseph was hated by his ten older brothers because he reported their evil behavior to their father. They also hated him because of his dreams which suggested that they would all bow down to him. Read about his dreams in Genesis 37.

Before the Bible was written God sometimes used dreams to speak to people. Sometimes He spoke directly. We have His sure written Word today.

Genesis 37 v 12-14 Jacob sends Joseph to find his brothers, who are grazing their flocks in Shechem, and report back on how they are getting on.  Slide 1Joseph was seventeen years old when his father (Jacob) sent on an errand to check on his ten older brothers who were shepherding about fifty miles away. Not finding them Joseph went even further to completely fulfill his father's desire.

He suggests they spare his life but put him into a cistern. (He was secretly planning to rescue Joseph from the cistern later).  Slide 8When they saw him coming they said to one another, "Look, this dreamer is coming!" And they conspired to kill him, but then decided to throw him into a pit, having stripped him of his coat. Reuben, the oldest, would have come to rescue him later, but when they saw a band of merchants headed to Egypt they decided to sell him for twenty pieces of silver, the price of a young slave.

Dipping his coat in a goat's blood they deceived their father into thinking that Joseph had been killed by a wild animal. Jacob was greatly upset when he saw the coat. His sons deceived (tricked) him with goats' blood. [He himself had once deceived his father with goats' skin.] His sons and all his daughters tried to comfort him; but he refused to be comforted. He said, "I will go down into the grave unto my son in mourning."

Potiphar bids for Joseph and buys him from the Ishmaelite traders  Slide 20Meanwhile the "Midianites sold [Joseph] into Egypt unto Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh's" Genesis 37:36. So, Joseph became a slave in Egypt. Many years later, looking back, Joseph would say to his guilty brothers: "as for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive. (Genesis 50:20).

We often don't understand why God allows some things and doesn't stop other things. But God has good purpose in everything, and for the believing child of God "we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose." Romans 8:28.

Joseph, part one - A Coat of Many Colors

Joseph, part three - Joseph in Egypt

Joseph, part four - Joseph and Pharaoh

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