Genesis 50: 15-21

When Joseph’s brothers saw that their father was dead, they said, “What if Joseph holds a grudge against us and pays us back for all the wrongs we did to him?” So they sent word to Joseph saying, “Your father left these instructions before he died:  This is what you are to say to Joseph:  I ask you to forgive your brothers the sins and wrongs they committed in treating you so badly.’ Now please forgive the sins of the servants of the God of your father.” When their message came to him, Joseph wept.

His brothers then came and threw themselves down before him. “We are your slaves,” they said.

But Joseph said to them, “Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. So then, don’t be afraid. I will provide for you and your children.” And he assured them and spoke kindly to them.

A Thought

Joseph was in a place of authority where he could have made his brothers accountable for the sins and wrongs they had committed against him. Joseph not only choose to forgive his brothers but he also tried to assure them that it was all God’s way of saving the lives of many. Joseph tells them ‘don’t be afraid.’ And he spoke kindly to them, ‘I will provide for you and your children.’ Joseph’s actions remind me of how Jesus the Christ responded to the actions of all who nailed him to the cross. In this same manner, we should forgive all who would spitefully use us and to do good unto them. Joseph wept at the death of his father. Do you think that God wept when his Son was crucified?

Our Prayer

Father thank you for the many examples you have given in your word to all who will receive your gift of love and forgiveness. First, we receive your love and forgiveness made possible through your Son Jesus Christ. Then, we are to love and forgive others in the same manner you love us. Thank you that your goodness leads man to repentance. We desire to forgive like you forgive us. We thank you in Jesus’ name, amen.