In both his character and his life, Joseph is one of the most Christ-like figures in all history, at least that God has told us about in His Word. One of the 12 sons of Jacob, and one of the two sons of Rachel along with Benjamin, Joseph was specially favored by his father. Not only did he receive a Coat of Many Colors as a gift from Jacob, but his Brothers’ Envy boiled over after he shared a few dreams that the Lord gave him showing that he would be in authority over them one day. Joseph’s Brothers’ Scheme was originally to kill him, but Reuben and Judah convinced the others to have Joseph cast into a Pit, the Pit of Dothan, and Sold Into Slavery.

Joseph found himself a slave in Egypt, in the house of Potiphar. Instead of complaining and quitting, though, he worked diligently and was soon promoted to being over all of Potiphar’s house! However, trouble arose as Potiphar’s Wife began to tempt Joseph to commit adultery with her. He avoided her for some time until one day her Coercion intensified: she grabbed Joseph and again Enticed him. But when Joseph ran away from this Temptation, she lied to her husband that Joseph had attempted to commit adultery with her by force. This sadly led to Joseph in Prison, but still he did not complain or quit! He continued to work diligently, pleasing the Lord most importantly, but also gaining the favor of the Egyptian Warden over Pharaoh’s Prison, such that he again was promoted to be in charge.

Also while Joseph was in prison, Pharaoh’s Baker and Pharaoh’s Cupbearer were each put by Guards in jail alongside him, and each had a dream that Joseph interpreted for them. After two years of being forgotten by the cupbearer who Joseph had foretold would be reinstated, Pharaoh had a Dream that greatly troubled him. The Dreaming Pharaoh called for the Egyptian Magicians and Egyptian Wise Men, but none could interpret it. When the cupbearer remembered Joseph had previously interpreted his dream correctly, he told Pharaoh and quickly was Joseph Before Pharaoh. As always, the Lord gave Joseph the interpretation: Seven Years of Plenty were coming, with Seven Years of Famine to follow directly after. Joseph advised Pharaoh to fill Storehouses with the surplus food of the initial plentiful years, such that the nation would have enough to live during the famine to follow. Pharaoh was so pleased that Joseph was promoted for the 3rd time – and this time, to the #2 position in the entire land of Egypt! He was also given the daughter of Potiphera, Priest of On as his wife.

As the plentiful years gave way to the devastating famine, back in Canaan, Joseph’s family soon became desperate for food. They, like many others, came to Egypt Begging for Grain. Joseph’s brothers did not recognize him, however, but when Joseph saw them he was full of compassion and sought out a Gentle Resolution with his family. One of his servants placed Joseph’s Silver Cup in Benjamin’s bag, and Judah and the rest of Joseph’s brothers were accused of theft against Egypt. Once Joseph had them in this position of humility, it was a beautiful Brother’s Reunion as he revealed to them who he was, forgave them their sin against him, and had them all come and Journey to Egypt to live in peace and safety.

Joseph is like Jesus in many ways. The Forgiveness of Joseph is very similar to Jesus’ forgiveness, how it is completely undeserved and yet given freely out of an unconditional love for we who have sinned against Him. Additionally, the humility, faithfulness, honesty, integrity, and purity of Joseph’s character all resemble the Lord’s perfectly holy heart.

Joseph told his brothers in Genesis 50:20 – “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.” Though not willingly, Joseph was lowered and suffered to the end that others would ultimately be saved. Compare this to Jesus, who willingly left His high and holy habitation of Heaven to be low, ridiculed, rejected, a servant of all, and to suffer and die – all that people would be saved eternally.

Finally, notice how God exalted the humble and lowly Joseph- from Potiphar’s house, to Pharaoh’s prison, and then in Pharaoh’s court – not to mention, in history. Just like Jesus…

“Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” – Philippians 2:5-11

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