Parashat Vayeishev (and he dwelt) Genesis 37:1-40:23
Haftarah: Amos 2:6-3:8
In this week’s Torah portion Joseph is sold into slavery by his brothers. One of the primary reasons for this was his dreams revealing that he would be exalted over his brothers. This, along with the special relationship Joseph had with his father caused the brothers to ultimately stage his death and send him to Egypt. The question that I would like to ask is, were the brothers simply annoyed by Joseph’s dreams or did they believe that these dreams were actual revelation concerning Joseph’s future?
If one pays close attention to the clues of the text the answer to this question is that the brothers believed that these dreams were indeed divine communications concerning Joseph’s future. For the reader is told,
“And his brothers were jealous of him…” Genesis 37:11
The choice of the word “jealous” conveys the idea of desiring something that another possesses. Hence, each brother desired to be the one who would be exalted above the others. If they merely thought these dreams were Joseph’s own words, then they too could have made up their own dreams. However, because they believed that these dreams were prophetic, they took drastic action to thwart the fulfillment of them. This fact is seen in their statement:
“…And we will see what will be with his dreams.” Genesis 37:20
In other words, the brothers were knowingly striving against the prophetic plan of HaShem in their action against Joseph. Joseph, who functioned as a type of savior in Egypt, actually personifies Messiah. The point I want to make is that many people, both Jew and Gentile alike, reject Yeshua as the Messiah, not out of ignorance or simply not knowing, but a cognitive desire to reject HaShem’s plan. Like the brothers, this is often rooted in pride. This is true not only in regard to Messiah’s first coming, but also in regard to the events concerning His Return.
I would like to encourage individuals to pay close attention to what the Bible reveals about the Millennial Kingdom. Although Scripture makes it undeniably clear that Yeshua will return prior to the Millennium, more and more people are discounting the reality of the Millennium or spiritualizing it into far less than the word of G-d states about it. The reality of the Millennium is inherently related to HaShem’s promises to Israel and therefore will manifest His faithfulness. Those who scoff at the Millennium are most similar to those who discounted Joseph’s dreams.
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