“So when the Midianite merchants came by, his brothers pulled Joseph up out of the cistern and sold him for twenty shekels of silver to the Ishmaelites, who took him to Egypt.” [Genesis 37:28]
"You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good"When Joseph’s brothers saw that their father was dead, they said, “What if Joseph holds a grudge against us and pays us back for all the wrongs we did to him?” So they sent word to Joseph, saying, “Your father left these instructions before he died: ‘This is what you are to say to Joseph: I ask you to forgive your brothers the sins and the wrongs they committed in treating you so badly.’ Now please forgive the sins of the servants of the God of your father.” When their message came to him, Joseph wept.
His brothers then came and threw themselves down before him. “We are your slaves,” they said.
But Joseph said to them, “Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. So then, don’t be afraid. I will provide for you and your children.” And he reassured them and spoke kindly to them.
Now of course Joseph is a clear type of Christ. He goes down into the pit (which is Biblical imagery of death), his cloak is covered in blood, and yet he comes back from the death twice (firstly by being sold rather than killed, secondly by coming out of prison to become the second most powerful man in Egypt). Resurrection motifs if ever there were any, and add to that the fact that the “death” (in the pit and then selling him) that is meant to destroy Joseph actually becomes the means of salvation for the brothers when Joseph is in the exact right place to save them years later.
Joseph in Egypt
“But Joseph said to them, “Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. ” [Genesis 50:19-20]
Joseph and his brothers