Notes: Genesis 44-45

Joseph reveals himself to his brothers, and shows how God has used their hatred to save His people.


I. Joseph, a second time, sends his brothers home with money in their grain sacks (1-5)

1-2: Not only was all of the brothers’ money returned, Joseph also planted his silver cup in Benjamin’s sack.

4: Evil for good. Nobody likes ingratitude.

5: His servant is told to announce that Joseph’s "divining" cup is missing


II. When faced with the accusation of stealing, his brothers confidently submit to a search (6-12)

7-8: The brothers cannot imagine why anyone would accuse them of stealing from Joseph.

9: They propose death for the one who has stolen and slavery for the rest if any of Joseph’s good be found amongst them.

11. Speedily the search is begun.

12: Benjamin has been framed.


III. "Take all of us." "No, just one." (13-17)

16: "How shall we clear ourselves?" God has found us out.  With such evidence against them, they do not deny being in possession of stolen property.

17: Joseph declares his intent to punish only Benjamin


IV. "Take me." "No, none." (18-34)

18: Judah asks permission to speak again; and he provides Joseph details of their full adventure.

29: Jacob’s love for Benjamin is presented.

33: To save his father from grief that would kill him, Judah offers to die in Benjamin’s stead.


V. God’s purpose in Joseph’s slavery (Genesis 45:1-14)

1-2: If it had been a practical joke, everyone would have had a good laugh; instead Joseph cries.

3-4: He proves that he is their brother whom they sold into slavery.

5-8: Though the brothers had willed to destroy Joseph, God’s intention was to save him and his family.

9-14: With five more years of famine before them, Joseph invites his brothers to bring their families to Egypt to live, where he can care for them.


Meditation Points:

  1. Would you have checked your sack before departing from Egypt the second time?
  2. Quickly the brothers denounced the accusations against them, and quickly they submitted to the search of their stuff, and quickly they returned to Egypt to accept punishment for a crime that they did not commit. Perhaps guilt for the crime against Joseph 20 years earlier lay heavy upon their conscience.
  3. A loving son will do almost anything to keep his father from grief.
  4. Joseph’s explanation of the events: God sent me here; God intended to preserve life; God is saving you a posterity; God is saving your lives; God is effecting a great deliverance; God elevated me to authority in Egypt.   You meant it for evil; but God worked it for good (Acts 3:14-18).
  5. Had God foretold Abraham that his descendants would be 400 years in a foreign land and oppressed (Genesis 15:13-14)? This is the beginning.