Daily Word

Indulgent blessing | Genesis 45:21-24

21 The sons of Israel did so: and Joseph gave them wagons, according to the command of Pharaoh, and gave them provisions for the journey. 22 To each and all of them he gave a change of clothes, but to Benjamin he gave three hundred shekels of silver and five changes of clothes. 23 To his father he sent as follows: ten donkeys loaded with the good things of Egypt, and ten female donkeys loaded with grain, bread, and provision for his father on the journey. 24 Then he sent his brothers away, and as they departed, he said to them, “Do not quarrel on the way.”

Genesis 45:21-24 (ESV)

Special favor

The brothers joyfully obey the Pharaoh’s command to them. Joseph gives them all a change of clothing – a traditional custom then. But he gives Benjamin five plus a bag of silver! Why does Joseph continue to show favor to Benjamin? JFB commentary suggests, “The great number given to Benjamin [showed] the warmth of his brother’s attachment to him.” JFB continues that the brothers had demonstrated a great love and care for Benjamin that allowed Joseph to express his special fondness.

Indulgent blessing

Why does Joseph send a bunch of stuff from Egypt that they’ll have to just bring right back when they move to Egypt? Doesn’t that seem like a waste of resources? Yes, it may not seem wise. But, sometimes the right thing to do is not the most economical or efficient. Joseph wanted to bless his father and overwhelm him with kindness. He also needed to convince him that he really is alive and to leave the promised land and move to Egypt.

Don’t quarrel

Why does Joseph tell the brothers to not quarrel on their return? “[Joseph] knew they were but too apt to be quarrelsome; and [the recent events would remind them] of what they had done formerly against their brother, [and] might give them occasion to quarrel. Now Joseph having forgiven them all, lays this obligation upon them, not to [quarrel with] one another.” (Wesley commentary)


  • Some of us need to learn that efficiency and economics are not the most important aspects of a decision or action. Does anyone else struggle with this, other than me?
  • Sometimes we need chastening from others to help us stay away from sin. Left to our own devices, we may give in and stray from the path.
  • How many of us are forgiven a great debt of sin yet still hold another’s sin against them? This should not be.
Indulge in doughnut. Image from Pxfuel.com

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