Read Genesis 41:1-57
In this portion of HIS story of man’s rescue, the land of Egypt became the center of the earth. All eyes turned there.
But chapter 41 is only a small portion of a larger installment that spans from Genesis chapter 37 to chapter 50. It is the story of twelve brothers…the sons of Jacob. Prophetic dreams made clear that one of the brothers, Joseph, was to have an important, dominant role among them. His jealous brothers sold him to merchants who carried him off to Egypt. And here in chapter 41, Joseph interprets dreams which depict years of abundant harvest followed by years of famine. Joseph, this descendant of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, was given the responsibility of helping Egypt prepare for the famine.
As a result of Joseph’s preparation, Egypt became the center of the earth. Apparently the other peoples on the earth had not been given the same divine foresight of the coming famine. It seems that they did not have their storehouses filled with food in anticipation of widespread hunger. Word spread quickly that Egypt was the Wal-Mart of the world. In a small microcosmic way, the promise extended to Abraham was being realized. The nations were blessed through one of his descendants.
News of the food supplies even spread to the rest of Abraham’s descendants…Joseph’s brothers…the very ones who had sold him into slavery. Their eyes also turned to Egypt. There, they encountered Joseph…first of all without realizing who it was. Through a series of unusual requests and responses, the brothers experienced reconciliation. In fact, Joseph’s father, brothers, and their families eventually uprooted from their land and settled in the land of the pyramids.
God rescued His people from famine and starvation. He used one of His own, Joseph, in order to bring it about. In fact, Joseph’s actions resulted in the feeding of countless thousands around the world. But Joseph is but a foreshadowing of one who does much more than save people by satisfying their temporal hunger for food. Jesus satisfies the deepest longings of the heart…and He saves those who express repentant faith in Him from the eternal ramifications of sin.