Jan 29 (Daily reading: Genesis 48-50) Genesis concludes with reminders of God’s work in the lives of His people. Jacob left instructions to be buried in Canaan and not Egypt (47:30) and it was done as he requested (50:13). Joseph declared his faith in the future exodus from Egypt: “I am about to die, but God will assuredly take care of you and bring you up from this land to the land which He promised on oath to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob … and you shall carry my bones up from here” (50:24-25). (See the fulfillment of Joseph’s request in Exodus 13:19 and Joshua 24:32). There was continuity in and completion of the promises of God. We know that God continues today to be at work among His people, and He will fulfill all His promises to us!
Joseph’s brothers teach us a lesson about forgiving ourselves. Years had passed since Joseph had forgiven his brothers, but they still carried the guilt. When Jacob died, they were afraid Joseph would finally get his revenge. But Joseph said to them, “Do not be afraid, for am I in God’s place? As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result, to keep many people alive” (50:19-20). It is often harder to forgive ourselves than to forgive others. But if God has forgiven us, we do not need to carry that burden! And isn’t it amazing how God can make good things happen even when we make mistakes?
By God’s grace, Joseph had lived, and he became a means by which God saved many lives: “You have saved our lives” (47:25). In this role of “savior,” Joseph can be seen as a type of Christ. Christ died and lived again so that He could save His people from their sins. What Satan intended for evil (crucifixion), God turned into the ultimate good (Christ’s resurrection and our salvation)!