The Ultimate Family Reunion
From the moment we meet the spoiled, arrogant young Joseph, there is tension in his family. The tension builds throughout the story. The grief and the guilt linger in Jacob and his sons. The story begins to unwind and the tension is released in chapter 45 as Joseph reveals his identity to his brothers.
Grab your tissues, it is a tear jerker. Right out of a scene from the new hit TV drama "This is Us" (If you haven't seen it, I cry during every episode!) Joseph has been fighting back his emotions from the moment he saw his brothers. But what makes this family reunion so beautiful is Joseph's forgiveness. And through Joseph we see God's forgiveness and blessing as well.
But, we shouldn't underestimate the way Judah has set the stage for this amazing scene. Judah has demonstrated true repentance and self-sacrifice on behalf of his brothers. Joseph's forgiveness would not have the same impact on the family if his brothers were the same men they were 17 years ago when they sold Joseph into slavery.
Forgiveness finds its fulfillment in repentance. Still, the forgiveness of Joseph is stunning all by itself. As we hear Joseph speak words of life and love to his brothers it is filled with the testimony of God's great plan for His people. Joseph is able to see that all the events of his life have been orchestrated by God. He can forgive because he has seen God's hand at work even in spite of the evil acts of his brothers.
As you prepare for the message this week, ponder the role that forgiveness has played in your life. Who has forgiven you? Who have you had to forgive? As we gather with our families this holiday season, maybe you have some tension in your family. How might your forgiveness affect that tension?
See you Sunday! -Kris