God’s Will for Joseph and its Modern Implications


Joseph Rocco, Contributor

God’s love for all of his children is both pure and eternal. However, as sinners, his children can doubt and criticize his ways of making his love known to them. For this reason, all men and women, who cannot fully comprehend God, have the tendency to sin. This makes it especially important for us to recognize God’s plan for us even when it is easy to blame and criticize how God works. Unlike many sinners, Joseph, son of Israel, trusted in God’s plan for him and his family.

In the very last stories of Genesis, readers are introduced to man named Israel who had 12 sons. One of Israel’s children, Joseph, became especially loved by Israel and he was his favorite child. In fact, Joseph’s father made him a long ornamented tunic as a symbol for his love. When the rest of Joseph’s brothers saw this legendary tunic, they became envious of Israel’s love towards Joseph. To make matters worse, Joseph told his brothers about two suggestive dreams that he had. The first dream was about how his brothers’ sheaves bowed down to Joseph’s sheaf. The second dream was about how eleven stars (representing his brothers), the sun (his father), and the moon (his mother) all bowed down to Joseph again. His brothers grew very angry with Joseph after hearing these dreams and decided to throw him in a well. Joseph was then sold to Midianites and later sold into Egypt as a slave to the chief steward of the Pharaoh. Meanwhile, Israel was told that he lost his son Joseph to a vicious beast.

The chief steward recognized God’s love for Joseph. Once he recognized this, he also favored Joseph and promoted him to the head of his household. Therefore, Joseph had a lot of wealth and was leading a really good life for God was with him. However, the master’s wife was attracted to Joseph. Instead of complying to the temptations of a wedded woman, Joseph rejected her advancements. This left his master’s wife broken-hearted. Because of this, she retaliated against Joseph and claimed that he had tried to rape her. Joseph was then imprisoned, but God was still with him.

Joseph met two prisoners who both had disturbing dreams. He interpreted their dreams for them and predicted that one of them would be executed and that one of them would be reinstated as a cup-bearer to Pharaoh. These predictions ended up being correct, but the cup-bearer forgot about Joseph until Pharaoh himself had two disturbing dreams. The cup-bearer then remembered Joseph and told Pharaoh about his interpretations of his dream. Pharaoh then decided to have Joseph interpret his own dreams. After he heard the Pharaoh’s dreams, Joseph said that they mean that there will be seven years of great production of grain followed by seven years of famine. As a result of this prediction, Pharaoh put Joseph in charge of saving grain for the years of famine. When the famine arrived, not only did Joseph have enough grain for all of Egypt, but also enough grain for his original family who had also been hit with the same disaster.

The story of Joseph is a great example of trusting in God. In modern day society, it is easy to lose hope and to walk away from whatever that was failed. It is easy to get angry and to blame God for various tragedies that are far beyond what we can affect as human beings. It is also easy to blame God for things that are our own fault. But it is important to know that God is with us and whatever that has happened is apart of God’s plan. While Joseph was imprisoned, he might have been angry at God for putting him in such a poor situation even after Joseph made the right decision to reject temptations. However, he did not know that it was God’s intention to get him to meet the Pharaoh to save entire nations from a worldwide disaster. It is impossible for human beings to interpret what God could mean through various forces of society and nature. No matter how many depressing and painful events happen to an individual, they should try their hardest and life will eventually get better because God loves us.