Daily email Number 153 – from the Vicar

Good morning everybody.
Our story continues today with Genesis Chapter 47.  Do read or listen to it all through first.
The chapter clearly splits into 2 separate sections, verses 1-12 and then verses 13-31, but I think there is a linking theme between the 2, which is to do with Joseph’s character.
In vs.1-12, Joseph’s brothers and then his father meet with Pharaoh, the king of Egypt, and he allows them to live in a particular area, Goshen, gives them property in the best part of the land, the district of Rameses v.11.
Why does he do that?  Because of Joseph, who has proved trustworthy and capable, (because God has worked through him), and has earned the rights and privileges for his wider family.
In vs.13-31, we see that Joseph is actually being very tough on the people of Egypt, and has earned a huge amount of money for the king through selling the stored crops, and effectively nationalised all the livestock (vs.16-17), and then all the land (vs.18-20) so that it is now owned by Pharaoh; as well as introducing a 20% tax of everything going into the future (vs.24-26).
In any circumstance, and it still happens today in different places (think of the land grab in Zimbabwe), it would be considered outrageous.  So how does Joseph get away with it?
Because in desperate times desperate measures are sometimes needed, and people recognise that; but mainly it is because of Joseph, who has proved trustworthy and capable, ‘You have saved our lives’, they say (v.25).  Joseph (because God has worked through him) has earned their gratitude.
It is a wonderful testimony.
Finally we read (vs.28-31), that Jacob is nearing the end of his earthly life, and he asks and makes Joseph swear that his final resting place is not in Egypt, but back in the Promised Land, the land of his fathers, Abraham and Isaac, which if you like is a picture of heaven.
In our prayers do pray for Charlene today, having an operation in hospital.  Also please pray for Doreen’s son, Steven, who was run over by a lorry and badly injured and is in hospital in Coventry.
Thank you too to everyone who has agreed to be part of our day of prayer tomorrow, we have 24 hours covered.
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