St. John’s EBCs, Everyday Bible Conversations!

For the week leading to worship, Sunday, September 27th.


This week’s Theme:   Family for Good                               Reading:  Genesis 37:3‐8, 17b‐22,22‐34;50:15‐21


Summary of the Reading:


This week’s reading highlights the story of Joseph.  Joseph is the favorite son of Jacob, and Jacob’s brothers hate Joseph for being his father’s favorite.  Joseph does not help matters any when he dreams that he will rule over his brothers (and then tells his brothers the dream!).   Joseph’s brother plot to kill him, and throw him into a pit, but eventually they determine to sell Joseph to desert nomads who sell him to Egypt in slavery.  These verses include a lesser known story of second thoughts from one brother, and a rescue plan that is too late.  Later, of course, Joseph’s terrible ordeal turns into great good as part of God’s plan.  Joseph rises to power in Egypt with God’s help, shows mercy on his brothers, and saves his family from famine.  “Even though you intended to do harm to me, God intended it for good, in order to preserve a numerous people, as he is doing today.  So have no fear. . . .”  


A Creation Question:   


In the early Bible there is nearly constant, harsh, even violent, familial strife.  Who are you in your family when disagreement occurs?  Are you an instigator? A favorite?  A peacemaker?   These verses are filled with almost surreal debate amongst brothers, about whether and how to kill Joseph – yet when the time comes, Joseph forgives his brothers.  Do you have a close friend or family member in need of forgiveness?  Do you owe that “reach out,” but are afraid or worried about past events or the passage of time?  Take courage and strength in Joseph’s story!   


An Everyday Question:   


Sometimes there are level of nuance in Bible verses, but the message of Genesis 50:20 is plainly stated.  God works through evil to do good things.  Can you think of times in your life where you have seen God at work for good, even when bad things are happening?       


An Action Step:  


In a family squabble, big or small, extend an olive branch.  Not everyone has the grace and mercy of Joseph, but have the faith to try!            


Don’t like these questions?  Do these verses say something different to you?  Great!  What it is?  


Find a friend (or two or many) and take an EBC coffee break!  Find 15‐25 minutes somewhere in the week and come to share or just listen and enjoy (virtual) company.  Have fun finding God this week in your Everyday Life!  


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