Genesis 45 — God Preserves

by | Oct 6, 2020

READ Genesis 45

Then Joseph said to his brothers, “Please, come near me,” and they came near. “I am Joseph, your brother,” he said, “the one you sold into Egypt. And now don’t be grieved or angry with yourselves for selling me here, because God sent me ahead of you to preserve life. (Genesis 45:4-5) 

The climax of Joseph’s story, he reveals his identity to his brothers. Shortly before, the brothers openly confess and repent from sinning against him. Joseph doesn’t point to his brothers for bringing him to Egypt, but to God alone (45:4-5). It was God who directed Joseph’s father and brothers to this foreign land, fulfilling His promise to Abraham to preserve the lives of his descendants (45:5-7). God sovereignly culminated this family drama with expressions of repentance and forgiveness.

This was not only a story of a family reunion and an act of reconciliation. God displayed His hand in shaping their hearts. Joseph forgave rather than resented his brothers, begging them, “Please, come near me,” asking them to not be angry with themselves for selling him (45:4-5). In addition, the Lord produced in Joseph not a boastful spirit but a generous one, sending the best goods and keeping his family alive (45:7; 18-23).

Why did God set into motion these events? The family reunion and the migration of Jacob’s family to Egypt fulfill God’s promise to Abraham in Genesis 15:13-14 that his offspring would be resident aliens for four hundred years, enslaved and oppressed, and then depart with many possessions. God is faithful and good. Years later, Joseph reminded his brothers that it was God, not they who sent him to Egypt: “You planned evil against me; God planned it for good to bring about the present result — the survival of many people” (Gen. 50:20). God didn’t forget His promise to Abraham. Likewise, God didn’t forget His promise to send us a Redeemer. God remembers us. May we not forget to give Him thanks and praise for His remembrance of us. God preserved our lives through the death and resurrection of His Son, Jesus Christ.

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