Joseph has kept his true identity a secret from his brothers, and after setting up Benjamin to take the fall for robbing from him, Joseph now has them where they believe that Benjamin will be kept as a life-long slave to the Grand Vizier of Egypt, and this will just kill Israel. Judah steps forth, as the guarantor for the boy, and offers a beautifully poignant plea on behalf of Benjamin, offering to give his own life in servitude if only Benjamin may be allowed to return to his father, or else the fact that Benjamin is being left in Egypt will kill their father.
At this point Joseph has heard enough, and is convinced of the truth of the T’shuvah (turning from sin) and repentance his brothers have done after the way they treated him as a child. He reveals who he really is to them, and immediately defers any fear of retribution they may have. He gives them assurance that he knows God was the one who placed him where he is so that he could save his family (reminds me of what Mordecai says to Hadassah/Esther, that maybe she was queen and in her position for such a time as they were going through.)
The brothers are overjoyed to see Joseph alive, and with Pharaoh’s approval and help, the entire family of Israel (67 in Canaan and 3 in Egypt, totaling 70) move to Goshen, and thus is planted the seed of a nation. This is why God tells Israel in a dream to go to Egypt, and foretells of the 400 years before they will be able to come back to the land God promised them.
There is so much to talk about regarding Joseph’s spiritual perception. Here is an innocent and God-fearing man who has been mistreated by family, unjustly accused by his master’s wife, forgotten by one who owed him a debt and unfairly jailed for years, yet when he has it in his power to revenge himself on those that caused it all to happen, he forgives and consoles them. He rightly (or better yet, righteously) accounts the events in his life that led to where he is as the work of God. He sees past the obvious and realizes the truth of the meaning of his life, his ups and downs, and all that has led to this moment.
We need to have revelation, just as Joseph did, as to what God is doing in our lives. Joseph’s brothers were blind to his true identity. To be fair, who would have expected to see your brother as Grand Vizier of Egypt when 13 years earlier he was sold into slavery? Yet, as an Egyptian, Joseph would have been clean shaven- no full beard (that a Hebrew would have) to hide his face. Even though it is 13 years later, his face would still be very recognizable, especially to his brothers. His voice should be very similar, also. Yet they didn’t recognize him at all- their expectations of who they were going to see blinded them to be able to see their very own brother, right there in front of them.
That is also what happened with Yeshua: the expectations the Jewish people had for their Messiah was that He would be a Rambo- someone who would lead them in gaining political freedom from Rome. Yeshua wasn’t here for that, and the Scriptures also were clear about the Messiah’s spiritual leadership. When it comes to prophecies about the regathering of the people to the land, it is always God that is the progenitor of that event. Yeshua didn’t meet their expectations, and as such many did not have revealed to them the truth of His ministry and what He was there to do.
When I was a salesman, I learned that perception is everything- once someone perceives the value to be greater than the cost, you have a sale. The value is built up by creating the expectation of the rewards the buyer will receive once they own this thing. When our expectations are unrealistic, due to marketing hype, our personal desire for what we want something to be, or just because we were told to expect something by someone else, there is often much disappointment when that “thing” doesn’t meet our expectations. When we have it and finally realize it is not what we expected, the truth is revealed; but, by then, it is too late.
The end times are very near- Yeshua told the people they could read the signs of the weather but not the signs of the times (Matthew 16:3), and He chided them for their blindness. It was their unrealistic expectations that blinded them, and we are going to be blinded, too, if we expect anything but what the bible tells us is going to happen.
Keep your eyes open for the unexpected- in fact, expect it! Shaul (Paul) tells us that the End Days will come upon us like a thief in the night (Thessalonians 5:2) and so we must always be watching. There are many parables Yeshua tells about being prepared and not knowing when He will return, but He does tell us what signs to look for.
You don’t need to look for Yeshua because His return will not be a secret one- He’ll be riding on the clouds, the entire sky will be filled with His presence. I don’t think you will need to strain to see that. But the Anti-Christ will be the exact opposite at the beginning- he will work secretly, in shadows and subversively until he comes to full power, so you need to watch for him, but maybe not for any one person. Look at the fruits, as Yeshua told us, because you can tell the good tree from the bad tree by the type and kind of fruit it produces. No one really knows who the Anti-Christ is, and as far as I am concerned, I don’t know if it is really just one person. The United Nations seems to be acting just as we would expect the enemy to act, yet it is not one person. If the UN is not the Anti-Christ, it is unquestionably one of the tools of the enemy. It’s fruit is rotten and full of worms.
The point today is this: look for the fruits, do not let yourself be blinded by human expectations or what you have been told by your religious leaders alone- read the bible, read Revelations (I don’t think anyone really can understand it, but it will help a lot just to be familiar with the process) and especially read what Yeshua tells us about the End Days. Knowledge is power, and as the old adage says, “Luck favor’s the prepared”, so make your own luck by knowing what to look for and not blinding yourself with unrealistic expectations. Perceive with spiritual eyes, ask the Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit) to see for you so that you will not be like the blind man being led by another blind man, with the end result that they both fall into a hole.
Perception is everything- so be as wise as serpents and gentle as doves, let the Ruach guide your perception so that you will not be blinded by human expectations.