Author: Ron Graham
Adventures of Joseph
—And his faithfulness
Time —1. Promises to Abraham
Figures —Abraham Isaac Jacob
Begins with —God's call to Abram
Ends with —Jacob's family settling in Egypt
The time of the promises to Abraham spans the generations of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. It also includes the marvelous story and time of Jacob's son Joseph.
1 From Slave to Prince
The time of the promises draws to a close when one of Jacob's sons, Joseph, is sold by his brothers into slavery in Egypt.
When they did this, they did not realise that they themselves would later settle in that land.
Furthermore, and their own great grandchildren would become slaves there after Joseph's death.
Joseph's bondage in Egypt was a kind of figure of the bondage that his family was going to suffer some three generations down the track.
The time of the promises ends where the book of Genesis ends. The children of Israel settle in Goshen, with Joseph as their ruler —indeed he is ruler of all Egypt, second only to the Pharaoh.
"So Joseph dwelt in Egypt, he and his father's household. And Joseph lived one hundred and ten years". He saw his great grandchildren before he died.
2 Bible Summary (Genesis 35-50)
- Isaac dies (35)
- Esau's descendants listed (36)
- Joseph dreams of sheaves and stars bowing down (37)
- Joseph sold by his brothers (37)
- Judah's descendants listed (38)
- The sin of Onan (38)
- Judah thinks Tamar is a jinx (38)
- Tamar tricks Judah into sleeping with her (38)
- Perez (ancestor of David) and Zerah born to Tamar (38)
- Joseph imprisoned on account of Potiphar's wife (39)
- Joseph interprets the cupbearer's and baker's dreams (40)
- Joseph interprets Pharaoh's dream of thin and fat cows (40)
- Joseph given charge of Egypt, and marries Asenath (41)
- Manasseh and Ephraim born (41)
- Joseph's brothers (without Benjamin) come to Egypt (42)
- Joseph holds Simeon hostage (42)
- Joseph's brothers fetch Benjamin to Egypt (43)
- Joseph weeps at the sight of Benjamin his only full brother (43)
- Joseph's brothers set off home, but they are stopped (44)
- A "stolen" silver cup is found in Benjamin's sack (44)
- All go back to Egypt; Judah pleads for Benjamin (45)
- Joseph makes himself known to his brothers (45)
- He arranges for Jacob's offspring to settle in Egypt (45)
- Jacob and family leave Beersheba for Egypt (46)
- The family settles in Goshen Jacob 130 years old (47)
- Famine binds all Egypt to Pharaoh (47)
- Jacob makes Joseph swear to bury him in Canaan (47)
- Jacob blesses younger Ephraim first, then Manasseh (48)
- Jacob blesses his sons; Jacob dies (49)
- Joseph buries his father in Canaan (50)
- Joseph reassures his brothers (50)
- Joseph dies remembering God's promises (50)
"I am dying," Joseph told the family, "but God will surely visit you and bring you out of this land to the land of which he swore to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob" (Genesis 50:24-26).
3 The Main Point
Behind Joseph's story is the faith that he showed in God by his determination to do what was right.
Joseph may have found this a most difficult course at times. Joseph certainly experienced many ups and downs. But he always clung to the promises and commandments of God.
4 Joseph's relatives
- Great-grandson of Abraham and Sarah
- Grandson of Isaac and Rebekah
- Son of Jacob and Rachael
- Full brother of Benjamin
- Husband of Asenath (an Egyptian)
- Father of Ephraim and Manasseh
5 Joseph's Ups and Downs
- 1~Favoured son of Jacob,
- 2~Sold into slavery,
- 3~Made overseer in Potiphar's house,
- 4~In prison after resisting Potiphar's wife,
- 5~Made overseer of the prisoners,
- 6~Chief butler forgets him,
- 7~Chief butler remembers him,
- 8~Interprets Pharaoh's dreams,
- 9~Made governor of all Egypt, marries, has children, and is reunited with his father and brothers.
Our lives have their ups and downs too. Never forget God, whether you are up on top or down at rock bottom. Sometimes we have adversity even when we do good. God is always guiding us, even when things seem blackest. We can react to adversity with wisdom, faith, hope, and love, just as Joseph did. God will not forsake us. Trust at all times in his good promises.