Continuing the story of ‘rejection’ and ‘love hurts’, John Reiss looked at the story of Joseph. (The coat-of-many-colors’ Joseph.)
In talking with John about this, there were many aspects he was unable to cover in the time he (John, the author) had available.
Let’s look at what John said…
Joseph was an obedient son who was loved by his father but rejected his older brothers. Jacob gave him a coat of many colors to show his special affection for his son. BibleHub.com says that “It was a garment of privilege and status.”
This favoritism is included in the Bible as one of the reasons why Joseph was hated by Jacob’s other sons.
“And he [Joseph] said unto them [his family], Hear, I pray you, this dream which I have dreamed: For, behold, we were binding sheaves in the field, and, lo, my sheaf arose, and also stood upright; and, behold, your sheaves stood round about, and made obeisance [bowed] to my sheaf.”
“And he dreamed yet another dream, and told it his brethren, and said, Behold, I have dreamed a dream more; and, behold, the sun and the moon and the eleven stars made obeisance to me.”
Genesis 37: 6, 7 & 9
When Joseph later related his dreams, his brothers interpreted them as saying that he would have dominion over them, and it pushed them over the brink.
What John did not have time to include in his sermonette, but we talked about, was the ‘history’ between the brothers.
Joseph was a much younger brother, the son of Rachel, the one his father had expected to be marrying in the first place. There was much rivalry between the mothers, as well as Joseph very clearly being his father’s favorite.
As John said, they interpreted that as their young brother saying he would ‘rule’ over them. Well, they certainly did bow before him when he was second in command in Egypt, but at that time did it seem an example of arrogance from an indulged and favored son?
Once again, John gave me several meditation points…
Family rivalry is still in existence today. One child may believe another is favored, and because of divorce and remarriage… often original offspring struggle with feelings of rejection and self-worth.
As adults it would be helpful to realize that through a child’s eyes things might seem totally different to the way the parent or adult meant.
Some years ago, on a trip home to Scotland I remember being amazed to hear my brother say that I had been my mother’s favorite. As a child, it seemed quite the opposite to me. She favored him in so many ways. According to him she frequently talked about how ‘clever’ I was, what good marks I had in school, and how successful I was. I might add here – he was successful. He was lead guitarist and singer of a popular group… in spite of having blown part of his hand off in a young teenage experiment.
Did my mother favor either of us, or was she skilled in letting each of us think the other was the favorite? I don’t know. But that discussion with my brother was very helpful.
Communication is necessary in avoiding misunderstandings… we need to keep open communication, two-way communication. Sometimes what a person hears is not what the other person says.
Something to think on
Next time John has a look at the rejection of Jephthah the Gileadite