15 So the men took the gifts and double the amount of silver, and Benjamin also. They hurried down to Egypt and presented themselves to Joseph. 16 When Joseph saw Benjamin with them, he said to the steward of his house, “Take these men to my house, slaughter an animal and prepare a meal; they are to eat with me at noon.”17 The man did as Joseph told him and took the men to Joseph’s house. 18 Now the men were frightened when they were taken to his house. They thought, “We were brought here because of the silver that was put back into our sacks the first time. He wants to attack us and overpower us and seize us as slaves and take our donkeys.”19 So they went up to Joseph’s steward and spoke to him at the entrance to the house. 20 “We beg your pardon, our lord,” they said, “we came down here the first time to buy food. 21 But at the place where we stopped for the night we opened our sacks and each of us found his silver—the exact weight—in the mouth of his sack. So we have brought it back with us.22 We have also brought additional silver with us to buy food. We don’t know who put our silver in our sacks.”23 “It’s all right,” he said. “Don’t be afraid. Your God, the God of your father, has given you treasure in your sacks; I received your silver.” Then he brought Simeon out to them.”NIV

Take these men to my house, slaughter an animal and prepare dinner; they are to eat with me at noon” (16b).

‘Oh the welcome I have found there.’ So says an old hymn, about the Christian’s acceptance before God through Jesus.

Mark Twain is quoted as saying: ‘I am an old man and have known a great many troubles, but most of them never happened.’ These words have also been attributed to Winston Churchill. Well, whoever spoke them, they contain wisdom.

The brothers headed back to Egypt, no doubt fearing the worst, but oh the welcome they found there!

There is an acrostic of F.E.A.R:


Sometimes, when unbelievably wonderful things happen, we find we are still afraid (17-22). All we read here is true to life. There is something so pitiable in the brothers desperate attempts to clear themselves (19-22). Doesn’t your heart go out to them? They couldn’t enjoy the good thing happening to them.

‘Joseph’s steward had orders from his master to take them to his house. Even this frightened them. Those that are guilty make the worst of every thing.’ Matthew Henry.

The final verse in our reading takes us back to the theme I wrote about just the other day: the miraculous mystery of divine economics. When we give as God in His Word shows us to give, He receives our “silver’, but He also gives us “treasure” in our sacks. Of course, the motive for generous Christian giving should never be in order to get. But the testimony of vast numbers of believers is that you just can’t out-give God.

PRAYER: Lord, you truly are no man’s debtor. How I thank you for your rich generosity to me.