Joseph and Jesus: Part 1, The Dead One Is Alive!

We were studying the book of Genesis in our adult Sunday School class, and one of the Sundays I had the Joseph narrative to teach. We were using Walter Brueggemann's commentary as a resource.

In Brueggemann's commentary I was struck by the parallels between the Joseph narrative and the gospel accounts, especially the passion, crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus. I'd like to share some of these parallels.

The first is simply to note that we can read the story of Joseph as a story of resurrection. Specifically, Joseph's disclosure to his brothers, who betrayed him, foreshadows Jesus' own betrayal, death, and return. Joseph was betrayed and abandoned by his brothers. And Jesus was betrayed and abandoned by his followers. And both Joseph and Jesus are "left for dead."

And then, out of nowhere, the dead one is standing right in front of you.

As Brueggemann describes it, in Genesis 45, when Joseph reveals himself to his brothers: "We are permitted to witness a gospel disclosure: The dead one is alive! The abandoned one has returned in power!"

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