A Future Time of Blessing

 •  3 min. read  •  grade level: 7
Genesis 46:28-47:3128And he sent Judah before him unto Joseph, to direct his face unto Goshen; and they came into the land of Goshen. 29And Joseph made ready his chariot, and went up to meet Israel his father, to Goshen, and presented himself unto him; and he fell on his neck, and wept on his neck a good while. 30And Israel said unto Joseph, Now let me die, since I have seen thy face, because thou art yet alive. 31And Joseph said unto his brethren, and unto his father's house, I will go up, and show Pharaoh, and say unto him, My brethren, and my father's house, which were in the land of Canaan, are come unto me; 32And the men are shepherds, for their trade hath been to feed cattle; and they have brought their flocks, and their herds, and all that they have. 33And it shall come to pass, when Pharaoh shall call you, and shall say, What is your occupation? 34That ye shall say, Thy servants' trade hath been about cattle from our youth even until now, both we, and also our fathers: that ye may dwell in the land of Goshen; for every shepherd is an abomination unto the Egyptians. 1Then Joseph came and told Pharaoh, and said, My father and my brethren, and their flocks, and their herds, and all that they have, are come out of the land of Canaan; and, behold, they are in the land of Goshen. 2And he took some of his brethren, even five men, and presented them unto Pharaoh. 3And Pharaoh said unto his brethren, What is your occupation? And they said unto Pharaoh, Thy servants are shepherds, both we, and also our fathers. 4They said moreover unto Pharaoh, For to sojourn in the land are we come; for thy servants have no pasture for their flocks; for the famine is sore in the land of Canaan: now therefore, we pray thee, let thy servants dwell in the land of Goshen. 5And Pharaoh spake unto Joseph, saying, Thy father and thy brethren are come unto thee: 6The land of Egypt is before thee; in the best of the land make thy father and brethren to dwell; in the land of Goshen let them dwell: and if thou knowest any men of activity among them, then make them rulers over my cattle. 7And Joseph brought in Jacob his father, and set him before Pharaoh: and Jacob blessed Pharaoh. 8And Pharaoh said unto Jacob, How old art thou? 9And Jacob said unto Pharaoh, The days of the years of my pilgrimage are an hundred and thirty years: few and evil have the days of the years of my life been, and have not attained unto the days of the years of the life of my fathers in the days of their pilgrimage. 10And Jacob blessed Pharaoh, and went out from before Pharaoh. 11And Joseph placed his father and his brethren, and gave them a possession in the land of Egypt, in the best of the land, in the land of Rameses, as Pharaoh had commanded. 12And Joseph nourished his father, and his brethren, and all his father's household, with bread, according to their families. 13And there was no bread in all the land; for the famine was very sore, so that the land of Egypt and all the land of Canaan fainted by reason of the famine. 14And Joseph gathered up all the money that was found in the land of Egypt, and in the land of Canaan, for the corn which they bought: and Joseph brought the money into Pharaoh's house. 15And when money failed in the land of Egypt, and in the land of Canaan, all the Egyptians came unto Joseph, and said, Give us bread: for why should we die in thy presence? for the money faileth. 16And Joseph said, Give your cattle; and I will give you for your cattle, if money fail. 17And they brought their cattle unto Joseph: and Joseph gave them bread in exchange for horses, and for the flocks, and for the cattle of the herds, and for the asses: and he fed them with bread for all their cattle for that year. 18When that year was ended, they came unto him the second year, and said unto him, We will not hide it from my lord, how that our money is spent; my lord also hath our herds of cattle; there is not ought left in the sight of my lord, but our bodies, and our lands: 19Wherefore shall we die before thine eyes, both we and our land? buy us and our land for bread, and we and our land will be servants unto Pharaoh: and give us seed, that we may live, and not die, that the land be not desolate. 20And Joseph bought all the land of Egypt for Pharaoh; for the Egyptians sold every man his field, because the famine prevailed over them: so the land became Pharaoh's. 21And as for the people, he removed them to cities from one end of the borders of Egypt even to the other end thereof. 22Only the land of the priests bought he not; for the priests had a portion assigned them of Pharaoh, and did eat their portion which Pharaoh gave them: wherefore they sold not their lands. 23Then Joseph said unto the people, Behold, I have bought you this day and your land for Pharaoh: lo, here is seed for you, and ye shall sow the land. 24And it shall come to pass in the increase, that ye shall give the fifth part unto Pharaoh, and four parts shall be your own, for seed of the field, and for your food, and for them of your households, and for food for your little ones. 25And they said, Thou hast saved our lives: let us find grace in the sight of my lord, and we will be Pharaoh's servants. 26And Joseph made it a law over the land of Egypt unto this day, that Pharaoh should have the fifth part; except the land of the priests only, which became not Pharaoh's. 27And Israel dwelt in the land of Egypt, in the country of Goshen; and they had possessions therein, and grew, and multiplied exceedingly. 28And Jacob lived in the land of Egypt seventeen years: so the whole age of Jacob was an hundred forty and seven years. 29And the time drew nigh that Israel must die: and he called his son Joseph, and said unto him, If now I have found grace in thy sight, put, I pray thee, thy hand under my thigh, and deal kindly and truly with me; bury me not, I pray thee, in Egypt: 30But I will lie with my fathers, and thou shalt carry me out of Egypt, and bury me in their buryingplace. And he said, I will do as thou hast said. 31And he said, Swear unto me. And he sware unto him. And Israel bowed himself upon the bed's head. (Genesis 46:28‑47:31)
Judah went on ahead of the rest of his brothers and was the first to meet Joseph. The rest came later. This would remind us of how the Jews (the two tribes) will be brought back to their land and be the first to meet the Lord when He appears in glory. Then the other ten tribes will be gathered back also, and the whole twelve tribes will be made one in the land. What a time of blessing that will be for Israel, just as it was for all Joseph’s brethren as they were nour­ished in the best of the land.
Five of Joseph’s brothers were brought to Pharaoh and he asked them about their occupation. They replied that they were shepherds, so he gave them the land of Goshen for their dwell­ing place, where they could be near Joseph. Then Jacob came in and blessed Pharaoh. Poor failing Jacob was used to bless so great a king, and we know that the Jews who are so despised today will someday be used of God in blessing to all nations. All will have to come to Jerusalem each year to worship there (Zechariah 14:1616And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles. (Zechariah 14:16)) and acknowledge that “God ruleth in Jacob unto the ends of the earth” (Psalm 59:1313Consume them in wrath, consume them, that they may not be: and let them know that God ruleth in Jacob unto the ends of the earth. Selah. (Psalm 59:13)).
Dependence on the Lord
While Jacob and his sons had plenty, because they were depending on Joseph, the Egyptians had to come and buy their corn with money. Before long all their money was gone and yet they were still hungry. They, too, were de­pendent on Joseph, but they did not realize it as long as they had money of their own. As long as a sinner’s money lasts, he can get along fairly well, but when his money is gone, then all his pleasure is gone too. Joseph then told them to bring their cattle, and this kept them from starvation for an­other year. But what about the next year? They had to sell their land to provide the needed food for themselves and their families. This would remind us of how the Lord often has to bring the sinner to the end of his own re­sources, like the men of Egypt, and then He gives His free gift of eternal life. After the Egyptians had sold everything they had, they were willing to accept the corn which Joseph gave them freely to sow their land. They were to give a fifth of their harvest to the king and acknowledge that the land was his. They said to Joseph, “Thou hast saved our lives,” and they were willing to give what he asked from them. The Lord has done far more than this for us, and He wants our all. Are we willing to give it?
Reigning in Power
Joseph bought up all the land in Egypt, and this is a beautiful picture of how the Lord Jesus, in a coming day, will receive all the kingdoms of the world and reign in power over them. But Joseph had bought them for Phar­aoh, and so after the Lord Jesus has reigned for one thousand years, He will then turn the kingdom over to the Father, that God may be all in all (Revelation 11:1515And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever. (Revelation 11:15); 1 Corinthians 15:24).
Jacob was 147 old, and he knew that he was near the end of his earthly life. He called Joseph to him and made him promise not to bury him in Egypt. Jacob believed God’s promise that his descendants were to possess the land of Canaan, and he knew that even though his whole family had come down into Egypt, God would bring them back to the promised land in His own time.
Further Meditation
1. What did Pharaoh give to Joseph’s brothers?
2. The Lord Jesus’ reign of power is something that all Christians are looking forward to. A small number of the details are given in Revelation 20. What do they tell us about that time to come?
3. You would no doubt enjoy the short and enlightening book The Coming and Reign of Our Lord Jesus Christ by E. H. Chater.