1 Kings 13
23 After the meal the old prophet got a donkey ready, 24 and the prophet from Judah left. Along the way, a lion attacked and killed him, and the donkey and the lion stood there beside his dead body.
25 Some people walked by and saw the body with the lion standing there. They ran into Bethel, telling everyone what they had seen.
26 When the old prophet heard the news, he said, “That must be the prophet from Judah. The Lord warned him, but he disobeyed. So the Lord sent a lion to kill him.”
Richard: Clearly, it is important to obey what God has said, centered on your conscience.
2 Treat others as you want them to treat you. This is what the Law and the Prophets are all about.
Joseph, the dreamer, was hated by his brothers and sold into slavery in Egypt; yet years later when he rose to a high position and his brothers came to Egypt to buy food, he had the opportunity to help them in their distress. Joseph’s troubles with his older brothers, and their eventual reconciliation, mirrored Jacob’s life-long struggle with his older brother Esau. but Joseph is also a story of a godly man rising to a position of great power. Unlike Jacob, Joseph had the power to get revenge on his brothers, and indeed he used it to discomfit them and make them admit their former crime. Yet in the end he forgave them and helped them, because he saw some goodness in them—that they truly cared for their father Jacob.
Father Moon identifies with Joseph’s life of misfortunes and supposedly chance encounters that turned out to be part of a larger divine plan. He is particularly interested in Joseph’s motives for forgiveness, and he applies it to his own situation, as a leader who has endured persecution from his Christian “brothers.”
1. Joseph the Dreamer
When Joseph said to his father, “O my father, I saw eleven stars and the sun and the moon—I saw them making obeisance to me.” He said, “O my son, do not tell this dream to your brothers, lest they devise a plan against you. The devil is indeed an open enemy to man. And thus will your Lord choose you, and teach you the interpretation of sayings, and make His favor complete to you and to the children of Jacob, as He made it complete before to your fathers, Abraham and Isaac. Surely your Lord is Knowing, Wise.”
Verily in Joseph and his brothers there are signs for the inquiring.
When they said, “Certainly Joseph and his brother (Benjamin) are dearer to our father than we, though we are a company. Surely our father is in plain error.” (One said), “Slay Joseph or banish him to some other land, so that your father’s regard may be exclusively for you, and that after that you may be accounted a righteous people.” Another said, “Slay not Joseph, but if you must do something, cast him into the bottom of the well. Some travelers may pick him up.
”They said, “O our father, why won’t you trust us with Joseph, when we are good friends to him? Send him with us tomorrow that he may enjoy himself and play, and we will take good care of him.” He said, “In truth it saddens me that you should take him with you, and I fear lest the wolf devour him while you are heedless of him.” They said, “If the would should devour him while we are so strong a band, then surely we should have already perished.”
Then when they led him off, and were of one mind that they should place him at the bottom of the well, We inspired in him (Joseph): You will tell them of this deed of theirs when they do not know you.
And they came to their father at nightfall, weeping and saying, “O father! We went off racing with one another and left Joseph by our goods, and a wolf devoured him. You won’t believe us, though we are truthful.” And they came with false blood on his shirt. He said, “No. Your minds have beguiled you into some matter. My course is comely patience. And God it is whose help is to be sought about that which you describe.”
And there came travelers, and they sent their water-drawer. He let down his bucket into the well. He said, “Good news! Here is a youth.” And they concealed him as an article of merchandise, and God was Cognizant of what they did. Then they sold him for a low price, a few pieces of silver, for they attached little value to him.
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