Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The Parallel of Joseph and Messiah c4p8

I have long been amazed by the parallels in the Bible. These intertwining passages skip across the pages of history like a stone on the water, splashing here and there to leave behind a hint of the same truth told in another life or place. One of the most impressive parallels is that between Joseph (of Genesis) and the Messiah. The Torah portions in January just went through this story. Joseph (the favorite son of his father) is sent to his brothers by his father.  Jesus (the only son of his father) was sent to his own people (brothers) by his father. When Joseph relates dreams he had that cast his brothers in a lowly light and himself as the brightest star in the universe, they become furious and throw him into a pit as they argue about his fate. In like manner, Jesus used parables and stories to expose the sinful practices of the religious authorities. This truth infuriated them, and they saw to it that he was executed and buried in a tomb. The brothers end up selling Joseph to traders who take him down to Egypt while they fake Joseph’s death by soaking his torn coat in blood and show it to their father. Similarly, Jesus’ garment became soaked with blood when his body was prepared for burial.
In Egypt, Joseph goes through many difficult tests and passes them all, until he is given the second highest position in the land. By interpreting the dreams of others, Joseph prophesies a coming severe drought and prepares Egypt to be both the "savior" and the "lord" of all that live in the near Middle East. These dreams are full of Messianic imagery, such as bread, wine, cups, and a dead man hanging on a tree. When Joseph’s 10 brothers come to buy food and bow down before Joseph, they do not recognize him and Joseph does not reveal himself to them immediately. Joseph is dressed up as an Egyptian and behaves as an Egyptian. So it has been with Jesus; most of his Jewish brothers have looked at the Jesus that the Church has presented and they have not recognized him as their brother. The Gentile church is partly responsible for this, because over the centuries we have largely stripped Jesus of his Jewishness. Then finally, Joseph could not stand it any longer. Once his family was all present, he cleared the room and revealed himself to them. With tears of joy and sorrow, Joseph proved to them that he was their brother and that he held no ill will toward them. This emotional scene foreshadows the day when Yeshua the Messiah will reveal Himself to Israel and they say “Blessed is He who comes in the Name of the Lord”. 
There are many promising evidences of that even now. We have Messianic friends in Israel who tell us of the ever increasing numbers of Jews coming to faith in Yeshua in Hebrew speaking congregations all across Israel and the world. I don’t know why this century long interlude has happened, but I think that God is waiting for his Church to initiate the reunion. We need to pray fervently for revival and the spreading of the whole truth, including the fact that Jesus/Yeshua is the Jewish Messiah who will set up his kingdom in Jerusalem at the end of days.

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