Joseph’s Power over His Brothers

This meditation is based on a passage for March 3, 2010 in the Daily Lectionary Year 2 from the Book of Common Worship for the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) (1993).

Text: Genesis 42:18-28 1

Reflection and Question: This passage is part of the long story of Joseph at the end of Genesis. At this point Joseph is at the height of his power as Pharaoh’s steward when the seven years of famine begin. His brothers have come to buy grain. Joseph recognizes them immediately but holds back in revealing himself. He accuses them of being spies, interrogates them belligerently and sends them off with the money they brought. I think he’s stalling because he has no idea what to do with the power he has over them. Why do you think Joseph acts this way?

Prayer: Spirit of God, Joseph’s brothers knew something was up when they saw their money in their sacks and they knew You were behind it, whatever it was. As it all turned out okay for them, may such moments of confusion turn out okay for us, too. Amen.