July 12, 2021 Devotion

posted by Ty Garvey | Jul 12, 2021

Monday, July 12


Genesis 43:33-34: “Joseph told each of his brothers where to sit, and to their amazement, he seated them according to age, from oldest to youngest. And Joseph filled their plates with food from his own table, giving Benjamin five times as much as he gave the others. So they feasted and drank freely with him.”


At this point in the story of Joseph, he has been sold into slavery by his brothers, risen to power, only to then be imprisoned by Potiphar’s wife, forgotten about in jail, and now, through the power of God, has become second only to Pharaoh in Egypt. His brothers have come from his homeland to seek food for their family and they are unaware that who they are dining with is the brother they sold into slavery all those years earlier. Regardless of what the brothers did to Joseph in the past, he doesn’t hesitate to feed them, and feed them well, with food from his very own table.  It’s also of note that the youngest, Benjamin, is given five times as much food as everyone else.  I’ve sometimes read this as some sort of slight against the other brothers, but as I was thinking about it for this devotional, I came to a different realization.  Joseph’s brothers did not want to go back to get Benjamin to bring him with them.  He was too dear to their father and the risk of losing him was too big.  By Joseph giving Benjamin five times as much food, he was communicating to his brothers that he was going to take care of everything.  That which was dear to them, was dear to him also.  It was a beautiful sign of solidarity and recognition of their risk and sacrifice. Let us go and do likewise. So, in conclusion: 1. Hospitality should be extended to everyone we cross paths with.  Even those who may have done us harm in the past. 2. The way in which we are hospitable to others should communicate that we care for them and that we are their advocate and friend.


God, help us to be welcoming and inclusive to all who come to our door.