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Featured With Bros Like These…: Joseph Sold By His Brothers: Genesis 37:12-36

Discussion in 'Scriptural Debates' started by sealchan, Oct 11, 2018.

  1. 2ndpillar

    2ndpillar Well-Known Member

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    You might want to reread the story.

    New American Standard Bible Genesis 37:28
    Then some Midianite traders passed by, so they pulled him up and lifted Joseph out of the pit, and sold him to the Ishmaelites for twenty shekels of silver. Thus they brought Joseph into Egypt.
     
  2. The Anointed

    The Anointed Well-Known Member

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    You might want to read my previous post on page 1. As seen below.

    For a better understanding of the brothers of Joseph, download, "THE TESTAMENTS OF THE TWELVE PATRIARCHS."

    Although the OT states that Joseph was sold for 20 pieces of silver, Gad reveals that it was he and Simeon who sold Joseph for 30 pieces of silver/gold, hiding 10 pieces for themselves and sharing the twenty with their brothers, with which money they all bought new sandals.

    It was from here that the Hebrew custom began, where a sandal would be removed and given to the purchaser of a sale. See Ruth 4: 7.
     
  3. The Anointed

    The Anointed Well-Known Member

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    The Testament of Reuben to his descendants, 3: 11; For had I not seen Bilhah bathing in a covered place, I had not fallen into this great iniquity. 12 For my mind taking in the thought of the woman's nakedness, suffered me not to sleep until I had 13 wrought the abominable thing. For while Jacob our father had gone to Isaac his father, when we were in Eder, near to Ephrath in Bethlehem, Bilhah became drunk and was asleep uncovered in her 14 chamber. Having therefore gone in and beheld nakedness, I wrought the impiety without her 15 perceiving it, and leaving her sleeping I departed. And forthwith an angel of God revealed to my father concerning my impiety, and he came and mourned over me, and touched her no more.

    Many months later, while Jacob's family was still camped in Eder, near to Ephrath, Rachel died while giving birth to Benjamin.

    The Testament of Benjamin 1 1 The copy of the words of Benjamin, which he commanded his sons to observe, after he had lived 2 a hundred and twenty-five years. And he kissed them, and said: As Isaac was born to Abraham 3 in his old age, so also was I to Jacob. And since Rachel my mother died in giving me birth, I had 4 no milk; therefore I was suckled by Bilhah her handmaid. For Rachel remained barren for twelve years after she had borne Joseph; and she prayed the Lord with fasting twelve days, and she 5 conceived and bare me. For my father loved Rachel dearly, and prayed that he might see two 6 sons born from her. Therefore was I called Benjamin, that is, a son of days.

    Rachel had remained barren for twelve years after she had borne Joseph; Bilhah, who had been raped by Reuben the first-born son, had been barren longer than Rachel, but she just happened to be lactating at the time that Benjamin was born.

    Benjamin was born 12 years after Joseph and was only 5 years old when the 17 year old Joseph was sold by his brothers.
     
    #23 The Anointed, Oct 18, 2018
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2018
  4. 2ndpillar

    2ndpillar Well-Known Member

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    Your "testaments of the twelve patriarchs" is as reliable as most of what you project. Ruth 4:7 is about Ruth and Boaz and the purchasing of land to seal the deal. The custom is about purchasing of land.
     
  5. Twilight Hue

    Twilight Hue Twilight, not bright nor dark, good nor bad.

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    It's always 30 pieces of silver for betrayal in the Bible.
     
  6. The Anointed

    The Anointed Well-Known Member

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    The Hebrew custom of removing a sandal and giving to the Purchaser was done in the case of redeeming, exchanging or any transaction in those days.

    BTW, It's not my Testament of the twelve Patriarchs, it's the Lord's. What a pity that the woman who sits on the seven hills of Rome, who rejected the books of Enoch and many other books of scripture, has confined you to her limited canon.

    Be careful not to eat anything that she does not offer you, it might be poisonous. But to the true believer, nothing is poisonous.
     
  7. 2ndpillar

    2ndpillar Well-Known Member

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    Yeh, I get it. If it contradicts the Law and the Prophets, it must be good. Good luck with that one.

    The "woman" doesn't sit on 7 hills of Rome, she sits on the beast with 7 heads, and those 7 heads are kings and mountains/nations. (Revelation 17:3 & 9). The Roman church is just one of the harlot daughters of Babylon the Great, and she sits on the Roman empire (nation), by the authority originally stemming from the Roman emperor (king) Constantine, who stood in the shoes of Julius Caesar, as an Augustus Caesar.
     
    #27 2ndpillar, Oct 18, 2018
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2018
  8. The Anointed

    The Anointed Well-Known Member

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    Who is the Whore of Babylon in Revelation?

    Now don't you dare to eat of the fruit that she has forbidden. The Books of Enoch, from which Jesus and his apostles taught, were cherished by the early Christians right up until the fourth century, when they were banned by dogmatic Roman religious authorities such as Jerome, Hilary and Augustine, after which they gradually passed out of circulation and were thought lost for Millennia. Yep! the stone that builders of the Roman Church rejected, has turned out to be the most important stone at all.

    Myself, I eat whatever physical food is set before me, the creative and maintenance forces within me, takes what it needs for the continuance of my growth and health, and dumps the rubbish out of the old tucker shut, and so it is with the spiritual food I eat, He who is Creating "WHO I WILL BE" takes that which he needs for the growth of the spirit/mind that I currently am, storing that which will be needed and rejecting the rubbish.

    No spiritual food can harm me. And all scripture is good for learning the truth.
     
    #28 The Anointed, Oct 19, 2018
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2018
  9. 2ndpillar

    2ndpillar Well-Known Member

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    There is no "whore of Babylon" per se. That is a term devised by Luther and his Protestant fellow leaders to describe the Roman church. You have "Babylon the Great, the mother of harlots" (Revelation 17:5) , who sits on the beast, and you have the "great harlot" who sits on "many waters" (Revelation 7:1). They are not the same.

    As for you "eat whatever physical food set before" you, that would most likely include swine and mice. That reminds me of Isaiah 65:3-6. Did you hear of the guy who ate squirrel brains and supposedly died of mad cow disease?

    The tare seed (Revelation 13) is the included in your food supply, provided through your "whore of Babylon", by way of her canon.

    3A people who continually provoke Me to My face,
    Offering sacrifices in gardens and burning incense on bricks;

    4Who sit among graves and spend the night in secret places;
    Who eat swine’s flesh,
    And the broth of unclean meat is in their pots.

    5“Who say, ‘Keep to yourself, do not come near me,
    For I am holier than you!’
    These are smoke in My nostrils,
    A fire that burns all the day.
    6“Behold, it is written before Me,
    I will not keep silent, but I will repay;
    I will even repay into their bosom,
     
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  10. sealchan

    sealchan Well-Known Member

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    Trickiness seems to be a motif in Genesis. God plays tricks on humanity (Garden of Eden, Tower of Babel, Abraham's Sacrifice), the snake on Eve, Abram and God on the Pharoah, Rebekah on Isaac, Jacob on Esau, Laban on Jacob, Jacob on Laban, Rachel on Laban her father...

    So this history of tricksiness seems significant. What does this pattern suggest about the nature of God and His creation?
     
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  11. sealchan

    sealchan Well-Known Member

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    Yes, I read the story, you have merely repeated it.

    What about the plot hole regarding Reuben's whereabouts?

    Also I noticed that you inserted "half-brothers" and "firstborn" into your version above. This differs from the source you quoted as well as from the NIV which I am working from. These adjectives are true but they are not a part of the original text. Why did you insert them?
     
  12. sealchan

    sealchan Well-Known Member

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    Let's not whitewash it, it was a deception none the less. God approved, but not demonstrably something that Isaac was aware of or he must be accused of not siding with God.

    I find it unlikely, given Esau's later anger with his "younger" brother and the concern of his parents regarding that anger, that Esau took the sale of his birthright seriously. Jacob was uncharitable at best and insulting, taunting at worst and in no legitimate position to demand something like a birthright in exchange for food. He was his brother after all. At most Esau merely humored Jacob because his stomach was louder than his cleverness of mind to outwit Jacob. Esau never took the exchange seriously that we can see from the story. Neither did Isaac, if he ever heard of it. In this way Jacob is in the role of the serpent in the Garden of Eden using his cleverness to produce a choice against God's Will. That Jacob even knew God favored him is highly debatable. He likely did what he did for his own personal reasons.

    Only we, the audience, know that Rebekah had word from God about His preference. This revelation, as far as the text goes, was private to her. So the deception is still a deception.
     
  13. sealchan

    sealchan Well-Known Member

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    We know that Jesus' apostle Judas, a name which references the tribe of Judah and is the basis of the ethnic/religious identification of the Jews, receives money in exchange for his betrayal. This story is unique to Matthew who, as I understand, evidences the most thorough knowledge of Jewish scripture among the gospel authors. It is likely that this reference is further evidence of one of the more subtle ways that the author of Matthew crafted his unique narrative of the life of Jesus.
     
  14. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    Just adding details for clarity and interest.

    The Bible does not say where Reuben went, but as all his brothers were there trying to decide what to do with Joseph, someone had to be keeping an eye on the flock....the firstborn, I assume had more responsibility as the oldest. There is no hole really unless you want to fill it with imagination. Why make intrigue where there is none? :shrug:

    The NWT attempts to give accuracy to the reading. Does the insertion of these words change the meaning of any of it....or does it simply clarify what is written? They were Joseph's "half brothers", since his only full sibling was at home with his father. Reuben was the "firstborn"....so why does it matter? Using the NIV gives us the same information.

    Isaac had always been fond of Esau, because he was the outdoor type, a hunter and a man of the field, and this meant game in Isaac’s mouth. (Genesis 25:28) So, with failing eyesight and a feeling he did not have long to live, Isaac prepared to give Esau the firstborn’s blessing. (Genesis 27:1-4) Whether he was unaware that Esau had sold his birthright to his brother Jacob and whether he failed to remember the divine decree, given before the two boys’ were born, that “the older will serve the younger,” is not known. (Genesis 25:23; 29-34) Whatever the case, Jehovah remembered, and so did Rebekah, who quickly arranged things so that Jacob received the blessing. When Isaac learned of the ruse that had been used to accomplish this, he refused to change what was unmistakably Jehovah’s will in the matter. Isaac also prophesied that Esau and his descendants would reside far away from the fertile fields, would live by the sword, and would finally break the yoke of servitude to Jacob from off their necks. (Genesis 27:5-40; Romans 9:10-13)

    Esau was only ticked off about the birthright when he realized what he had thrown away for a bowl of stew.

    As Genesis 25:34 stated..."Esau despised his birthright".

    Jacob was no such thing. I think you are confusing Jacob with Joseph. [​IMG]

    You are completely departing from the truth of the story now. Why? It was clearly God's will that "the older would serve the younger" and that Jacob was God's choice to receive the right of firstborn. From the womb, God knew the personalities of the two brothers, and Esau was not a spiritual man...Jacob was God's choice.

    Are we the audience to be the judges here? I am happy to let God be the judge because Jacob was God's choice from the beginning.
    Jacob, (in contrast to Esau who loved outdoor life and was a cunning hunter,) was an honest, harmless and innocent man who preferred to live in tents. Jacob appreciated spiritual things; his God was close and real to him, as can be seen by his vow and prayers. Without doubt Jacob noticed that Esau did not highly value his spiritual heritage, otherwise he would hardly have dared to suggest that Esau give it up for a mere bowl of stew. Had Esau truly appreciated his birthright, then, even though ravenously hungry, he would have rejected Jacob’s offer. But no, Esau was a materialistic, fleshly-minded man. Jacob did him no injustice in bargaining with him for the birthright. It was God's will.
     
  15. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    It is indeed an interesting line to follow......

    When dealing with creatures to whom he has given free will, God has to sometimes be three steps ahead of the game. As he has to allow the humans to exercise their free will before he can respond to their choices, he has to be prepared for any eventuality.

    I don't know what tricks you think God played in Eden, but the outcome of that scenario had an impact on what happened next. It could have been one of several outcomes.....
    1) the devil had not rebelled...in which case the woman would never have succumbed to his deception. The humans would have filled the earth and extended the borders of paradise until the whole earth resembled the garden of Eden.

    2) The devil may have offered his temptation but the woman could have stood her ground and reject his reasoning. She had already told him what her husband had told her. God would have dealt with the rebel spirit and God's first purpose would have gone ahead as above.

    3) The woman may have fallen for the temptation, but her husband would not disobey the direct command of his God. In which case, the woman would have received the stated punishment but the man would not. Perhaps God would have remover her from the scene and given the man a new mate, with the experience of what happened to Eve to deter any future disobedience?

    4) All three rebels set in motion the groundwork for Genesis 3:15 to begin a process that would taken thousands of years, and involved the testing of the whole human race as to fitness to occupy the world that God first offered them....the one from which they were evicted. The whole reason why Jesus came was to undo the damage caused by the actions of those three selfishly motivated rebels.

    The devil said that all the kingdoms of the world were delivered to him, and that he could give them to whomever he wanted.(Luke 4:5-8) As all mankind have been living in a world that was ruled by the devil (from the time humans chose him as their ruler and god,) all the "trickiness" that followed was part of the devil's MO to thwart God's purpose. It isn't God who is tricky...its his adversary. Free will means that we have to choose who it is that we will obey.

    Not quite sure how these questions tie into Joseph's experience but.....

    Thirty pieces of silver ($66, if shekels) was the price offered.(Matthew 26:14-15) The sum fixed by the religious leaders appears designed to show their contempt of Jesus, viewing him as of little value. According to Exodus 21:32, the price of a slave was 30 shekels. Carrying this forward, for his work as a shepherd of the people, Zechariah was paid “thirty pieces of silver.” Jehovah scorned this as a very meager amount, regarding the wages given to Zechariah as an estimation of how the faithless people viewed God himself. (Zechariah11:12-13) Consequently, in offering just 30 pieces of silver for Jesus, the religious leaders made him out to be of little value. But at the same time, they were fulfilling Zechariah 11:12, treating Jehovah as of low value by doing this to the representative he had sent to shepherd Israel.

    The designation for the traitor apostle Judas (and his father Simon) sets him apart from the other apostle, also named Judas. (Matthew 10:4; Luke 6:16; John 6:71) If “Iscariot” means, as is most commonly thought, “Man From Kerioth,” then it likely identifies Simon and his son as being from the Judean town of Kerioth-hezron. If that is the case, then Judas is the only Judean among the 12.

    It helps to also remember that Matthew was a former tax collector....so no surprise that his account has to do with financial matters.
     
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  16. sealchan

    sealchan Well-Known Member

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    Changing the way the Bible is written messes with the author's original intent. Single words add context and import and resolve ambiguity. But using those words to specify Joseph's biological relationship with his brothers introduces a potential distance between those brothers that reduces the impact of the fact that they were brothers. That is a potentially important change.

    The story introduces this strange event. I think that the author and the original audience would naturally ask, "Where did Reuben go?" It suggests that Reuben isn't the protective brother after all but is distracted. I don't think this was a slip up of the author of Genesis but rather a subtle ambiguity meant to raise questions.

    Why cover it up if it is what the Bible says?

    It matters a great deal when read with the literary sensitivity that the author of Genesis demonstrates time and time again. In fact, the precision of wording in Genesis belies any criticism that the story might have been written with anything less than a profound attention to detail. To miss this is to miss the deep intelligence of the narrative.

    You raise an interesting point in regards to Isaac's blessing to the real Esau. It is a bit peculiar and seems to uphold God's preference. I will consider that further.

    That makes more sense than that he was angry because of the blessing? Try reading Genesis 41 again.

    True...that is a good point. The way it shows up in the story is as a kind of conclusory statement as if the author had said, "and that is the story of how Esau gave up his birthright." It would be interesting to know if this is considered a later emendation from that of the rest of the story as it is unique so far as I can recall in Genesis. But even as it answers the questions raised in the story it raises its own question in my mind. Why not write the story to be more clear?

    When did Joseph use a convenient meal to obtain a birthright?

    I guess we will have to agree to disagree here. I read a story about a clever person causing another less clever person to give up something given as a birthright although in both cases it could be argued that the person giving up didn't understand or believe they were doing so. Cleverness, deception and its consequences is a story arc over the whole of Genesis from the serpent's deception through to the deception of Joseph's brothers that it seems well substantiated that it play out its role. Sometimes God is the author, but usually it is the human individuals practicing deceit.

    You are reading this story only from a God's eye point of view, which no doubt you would approve of. However, you are not reading the story as if it was important to recognize the story itself as describing our truly human experience. You are jumping to the punchline without knowing the joke. This means you miss the point.

    Of course, hence this sacred story. The very point for the original audience of these stories was to discuss the stories, to bring up one's own assumptions and to attempt to resolve the ambiguities if possible. By doing this the audience contemplates this story as if they were living in it and attempts to relate to the outcome. That is how the Bible teaches the sole of its reader. If you just pick out all the "right answers" to each "problem" that is presented in story form but then forget about the problem (which is a problem that we all face), then you are not teaching your soul, just memorizing the "right answers".

    Definitely disagree.

    Yes, Esau is what you have said and God has chosen Jacob...but you cut through all the scripture as if the story were a merely formality for presenting these conclusions.

    Jacob is not innocent because he was deceitful. Sure Esau is a lunkhead who is impatient and insensitive to the more spiritual matters of life, but that doesn't justify Jacob's tease. Sure God told Rebekah that Jacob was preferred by him, but that doesn't excuse Jacob for his misbehavior.

    What this teaches us is that God doesn't choose perfect people to do His will but He does see qualities in them that can be grown until their flaws are balanced out. If Jacob is merely innocent then the whole story of his experience with his tricksy uncle Laban looses its moral depth. Jacob learns not to trick his way through the world by becoming subject to years of practical servitude under the cleverness of his uncle. When Jacob returns he offers Esau much more than a convenient meal in atonement for his prior attitude that caused his long exile. This is not a story of innocence but of arrogance taught a lesson of humility. That Jacob would learn this lesson is why God chose him, not because Jacob was ideal or perfect. Jacob can learn, on a personal level, to transcend his original nature. This makes Jacob's story both human and divine.

    If we read that whatever Jacob does is okay, then we ignore the obvious injustice that Jacob did. This is the same sort of immorality of those who justify any of their deeds saying that God approves. Since no one can speak for God, this is always a dubious claim at best.

    I have enjoyed your thoughtful responses. Thanks!
     
    #36 sealchan, Oct 24, 2018
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2018
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  17. sealchan

    sealchan Well-Known Member

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    Yes, the devil is the king of politics it seems and political power is his pride. Trickiness seems generally to be involved with securing one's future political inheritence in Genesis and so does tie in all the way back to "you will not die" for eating the fruit.

    My last question is more looking forward at the particular similarity and not so much about what it says about Joseph's story.

    Thanks for your thoughts here.
     
  18. Kelly of the Phoenix

    Kelly of the Phoenix Well-Known Member

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    1. Amen.
    2. LOL. For sure.
    3. Don't know?
    4. Every girl ever sold into slavery? I mean, it was codified into law. Joseph ends up doing MUCH better than most Jewish children, especially girls.

    Joseph wouldn't shut up about all the honors to be heaped upon him. The eldest son was to get the majority if not the entire inheritance. This is all about waiting like vultures around a rich parent, much like Jacob did.

    Don't know if it's intended, but it could be read as a criticism of being at constant war with Canaanites, who were, after all, kin. You have elders upset that some new kid is hogging all the glory.

    What were they supposed to do? They didn't have automatic rifles back then.

    Why didn't they one-up the little tattle tale by bringing Jacob a stuffed bear?

    Different sources maybe?

    With a concubine?

    Yeah, it's probably more of a trope than a real number anyway.

    If all these stories are designed later to provide origin stories for the different tribes current as of the writings, then the public itself is being tricked. Might as well make it a thing.

    And his mom greased the wheels. The prophecy most likely was something she told her son. Maybe she's like Cerce or whatever from Game of Thrones? Momma's Boy needs to be on the throne, so to speak. It doesn't matter what kind of a horrible jerk he is. He is willing to sit around and listen to her unlike Esau, who is independently minded and perfectly able to spend long days and nights hunting and presumably not caring what Mommy wants.
     
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  19. sealchan

    sealchan Well-Known Member

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    Haven't seen Game of Thrones at all...will some day...

    Yeah, there is plenty of good speculation to be had in this in many of the stories.

    My read on Joseph is that he was naive enough to go talking about dreams without knowing how much resentment they were harboring...I suppose they couldn't rough him up from time to time to teach him a lesson for fear of their father. I do like the idea someone raised that the story of Jacob/Israel's own experience, of nabbing the birthright out from under his barely older brother, might have caused some concern about how traditional Jacob would be when it came time to hand down the legacy.
     
  20. IndigoChild5559

    IndigoChild5559 Loving God and my neighbor as myself.

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    I believe Hashem blessed the house of Judah for altering Joseph's fate from death to life -- it enabled Joseph to rise from slavery to Pharaoh's right hand man.
     
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