faith, Genesis Series

Genesis 43 Great Testing of the Heart

Chapter of the Day: Read Genesis 43.

Meditate on Genesis 43:34 “When portions were served to them from Joseph’s table, Benjamin’s portion was five times as much as anyone else’s. So they feasted and drank freely with him.”

God has a peculiar way of drawing us to Himself and revealing and testing the conditions of our hearts. This story is a beautiful journey that might mirror your journey to salvation. It began with a need and from that need, the brothers are prompted to leave everything they know in search of help. However, God loves them too much to let them stay stuck in their wretched ways. He first has to reveal their great need for forgiveness and rescue.

When the time that the brothers could have gone and returned two times Jacob finally agreed to let them return to Egypt. He tells them to take double the silver and extra gifts to appease Joseph. Upon their arrival, the brothers fear the worst and confess that they had found the silver and had returned with additional.

Joseph’s steward unexpectedly comforted them, washed their feet, and brought them into Joseph’s home for a feast. At this feast, the brothers were completely shocked when they were seated before Joseph in the order of their age. The chapter ends with a true test of the conditions of these brother’s hearts when Benjamin was served five times as much food as the rest of them.

Maybe you are in the midst of a journey similar to this? Maybe you have truly experienced the painful uncertainty of God peeling back the layers to help you realize your great need for Him, but have also been shocked by His knowledge of your innermost details. Either way, keep in mind even though testing and painful revelation was occurring don’t miss what was happening at the same time, and look for signs of it in your life a well. Joseph was providing, loving and caring for his brothers.  It is the same with us. God knows our past and our needs and there is still a seat for us at his table.  God is preparing our heart for forgiveness and our lives for full reconciliation to Him and this sometimes involves the testing of our heart, but He is not forsaking any opportunity to love us well along the way.

Prayer: God thank you that you care about me enough to lovingly guide me back to you. You provide for my physical needs, but you love me too much to leave the matters of my heart unattended. Thank you for the picture of how you do this simultaneously with full reconciliation in mind. You are a good, good father. Lord, you love me more than I deserve. Please continue to test my heart and sift out the parts that are no good for showing a hurting world the love that you’ve shown me in my great need. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Application:

In what ways does Joseph’s treatment of these brothers show the balance of God’s truth and grace in our own lives?

What kind of growth do we witness when remembering what these brothers had done to Joseph compared to their response to Benjamin’s portion of food?

Has there ever been a time in your life where you felt God was testing your response to a certain temptation to compare or grumble?

Memorize Psalm 129:23 “Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.

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