Genesis Chapter 47:1-6 Out of Canaan

            Gen. 47:1 “Then Joseph came and told Pharaoh, and said, My father and my brethren, and their flocks, and their herds, and all that they have, are come out of the land of Canaan; and, behold, they are in the land of Goshen. 2 And he took some of his brethren, even five men, and presented them unto Pharaoh. 3 And Pharaoh said unto his brethren, What is your occupation? And they said unto Pharaoh, Thy servants are shepherds, both we, and also our fathers. 4 They said moreover unto Pharaoh, For to sojourn in the land are we come; for thy servants have no pasture for their flocks; for the famine is sore in the land of Canaan: now therefore, we pray thee, let thy servants dwell in the land of Goshen. 5 And Pharaoh spake unto Joseph, saying, Thy father and thy brethren are come unto thee: 6 The land of Egypt is before thee; in the best of the land make thy father and brethren to dwell; in the land of Goshen let them dwell: and if thou knowest any men of activity among them, then make them rulers over my cattle.”

            “Then Joseph came and told Pharaoh, and said, My father and my brethren, and their flocks, and their herds, and all that they have, are come out of the land of Canaan; and, behold, they are in the land of Goshen.”  Joseph announced to Pharaoh that his family and their flocks and herds and possessions have come out of Canaan and are currently in the land of Goshen.  This allowed Pharaoh to know that his orders had been carried out.  This is in likeness to Christ announcing on the cross that “It is finished” signifying that Christ had fulfilled the commandments of the Father to deliver his children from their state of condemnation to a state of righteousness. 

            “And he took some of his brethren, even five men, and presented them unto Pharaoh.”  Joseph served an intermediary for his brethren in presenting them unto Pharaoh.  Likewise, Christ is our intercessor as we read in Rom. 8:34 “Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us.”

            “And Pharaoh said unto his brethren, What is your occupation? And they said unto Pharaoh, Thy servants are shepherds, both we, and also our fathers. 4 They said moreover unto Pharaoh, For to sojourn in the land are we come; for thy servants have no pasture for their flocks; for the famine is sore in the land of Canaan: now therefore, we pray thee, let thy servants dwell in the land of Goshen.”  The brethren of Joseph confessed to Pharaoh what their occupation was and then made request to dwell in the land of Goshen.  Their occupation as shepherds was an abomination to the Egyptians.  This is somewhat akin to God’s humble obedient children confessing they are sinners and asking for a home in the Lord’s New Testament church.  They knew that for their request to be considered was because of their relationship to Joseph and his work as their mediator.  Likewise, we know that for us to have a part of the New Testament church comes through our relationship to Christ as children of God and to his work as our mediator. 

            “And Pharaoh spake unto Joseph, saying, Thy father and thy brethren are come unto thee: The land of Egypt is before thee; in the best of the land make thy father and brethren to dwell; in the land of Goshen let them dwell:”  Pharaoh made an agreement with Joseph that Joseph’s family would dwell in the land of Goshen, the best of the land.  Likewise, there was an agreement between the Father and Christ that God’s obedient children could dwell in the church while they sojourned here on earth.  Moreover, there is an eternal covenant between the Father and Christ that the elect will dwell eternally in the glory world.  This covenant was made before the foundation of the world:

                        1.  Rom. 8:29, 30: “For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.  Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.”

                        2.  Eph. 1:4, 5: “According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:

Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will…”

                        3.  Eph. 1:11: “In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will:”

            “And if thou knowest any men of activity among them, then make them rulers over my cattle.”  Joseph had the authority from Pharaoh to appoint men as rulers over Pharaoh’s cattle.  This is similar to Christ having the authority to appoint ministers to take the oversight and leadership over the Lord’s “sheep:”

                        1.  Eph. 4:11, 12: “And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:”

                        2.  1 Pet. 5:2 “Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;”

                        3.  Acts 20:28: “Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.”

                        4.  Matt. 28:18-20: “And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.  Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”


Genesis Chapter 47:7-10 "Few and Evil"

            Gen. 47:7 “And Joseph brought in Jacob his father, and set him before Pharaoh: and Jacob blessed Pharaoh. 8 And Pharaoh said unto Jacob, How old art thou? 9 And Jacob said unto Pharaoh, The days of the years of my pilgrimage are an hundred and thirty years: few and evil have the days of the years of my life been, and have not attained unto the days of the years of the life of my fathers in the days of their pilgrimage. 10 And Jacob blessed Pharaoh, and went out from before Pharaoh.”

            This interaction between Jacob and Pharaoh is quite remarkable in that it illustrates to us a great spiritual lesson.  In the eyes of the world, these two individuals would seem to have been on the opposite end of the social spectrum.  Pharaoh was at the time, the ruler of the greatest nation on earth.  Jacob was a sojourner.  He had lived as a sojourner in Canaan, then Pandanaram, then back to Canaan, and now in Egypt.  He never had a permanent possession of a dwelling place in any of those countries.  He also was a shepherd, which was an abomination to the Egyptians.  He was a financially poor man as he came to Egypt to dwell because of the famine of the land. 

            Moreover, Jacob’s view of his life was that his days had been few and evil and had not attained unto the days of the years of the life of his fathers in the days of their pilgrimage.  Thus, Jacob considered himself to be a poor sinner whom God had richly blessed. 

            The world view of Pharaoh would have been that he was a great man.  The world view of Jacob would have been that he was an insignificant peasant. 

            It is at this point that we see a great spiritual lesson as the scripture says that “Jacob blessed Pharaoh.”  According to the scriptures: Heb. 7:7 “And without all contradiction the less is blessed of the better.”  In the eyes of God Jacob was better than Pharaoh and greater than Pharaoh.  Spiritually, Jacob had a very close relationship with God and God richly blessed Jacob.  Moreover, Jacob had the knowledge of God’s covenant promises.  Truly, Pharaoh could not have blessed Jacob in the sense that Jacob blessed Pharaoh.  By all evidence, this Pharaoh was a child of God and did many good things for his people and was indeed gracious toward Joseph and his family, however, Pharaoh did not have the kind of fellowship with God that Jacob had with God. 

            The above should teach us that it is better to have a spiritually fellowship with God than to arise to great acclaim and position in the world.