Joseph son of Jacob

Joseph son of Jacob

Jacob, whom God later renamed Israel, had 12 children.  These 12 children and their descendants became known as the 12 tribes of Israel.  When Jacob was preparing to die he called his sons to him. He said to Joseph, "Joseph is a fruitful tree beside a fountain.  He has been severely injured, but his bow remains steady; his arms and his hands are reinforced by the aid of the Mighty one of Jacob, the Shepherd, the Rock of Israel."

This was true of Joseph's life.  When he was a young man he was nearly killed by his older brothers, who decided instead to sell him to some traveling merchant men.  These merchants sold him to an Egyptian named Potiphar, who was a high official for Pharaoh.  God blessed Joseph with many talents.  Potiphar saw this and put Joseph in charge of everything he had.

While Joseph was faithfully carrying out his work, Potiphar's wife tried to seduce him.  Joseph responded by saying, "How can I do this great wickedness and sin against GOD." Joseph ran from her, but she held on to his garment and cried out to the other servants of the house, saying that Joseph tried to rape her and had left his garment as he ran away.

Joseph was put into prison.  But even in prison God cared for Joseph and blessed him there.  Eventually God worked a miracle so that Joseph was taken out of prison and put in charge of all of Egypt under the Pharaoh.  A famine in the land brought Joseph's brothers to Egypt in search of food.  In this way God reunited the 12 children of Jacob.

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