Jesse Tree – Day 9: Joseph

Out of all the Old Testament stories, this one is probably my favorite. It’s one of those epic stories that has everything: a hero that comes across absolutely every sort of obstacle — and yet who overcomes everything nonetheless. And not only does he overcome it, but he succeeds in such away that even he couldn’t even

It’s the story of Joseph! You know… the dreaming Joseph that has the awesome coat with “divers colors” according to the Douay-Rheims bible, or a coat of “many colors” according to the King James Version.

And so… I present to you, the ornament!

Is that colorful enough for you??? Anyway, here is the crochet pattern for this ornament, just in case you want to make an ornament like this!

Now, the story of Joseph is a long, sprawling story in Genesis that is many, many chapters long, and there’s no way that I can do justice to the whole story in just a short blog. So, you’re going to get a truncated version of the story for today. And by truncated, I mean it’s still going to be long, but it won’t be as long as reading the whole thing.

So! I am going to focus on how Joseph’s brothers turned against him and betrayed him in a terrible manner. And then, I am going to skip a whole bunch of the story and then show you how Joseph revealed himself to them when he met with them years after they betrayed him.

…are you ready?

The Betrayal of Joseph

Joseph of Egypt, by Master of the Griselda Legend, c. 1490-95. National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., United States.
Joseph of Egypt, by Master of the Griselda Legend, c. 1490-95. National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., United States.
Joseph Telling His Dreams, by Rembrandt van Rijn, c. 1633. Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, Netherlands.
Joseph Telling His Dreams, by Rembrandt van Rijn, c. 1633. Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, Netherlands.
Joseph Explaining His Dream to His Brothers, by Antonio Tempesta, c. 1600. Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Massachusetts, United States.
Joseph Explaining His Dream to His Brothers, by Antonio Tempesta, c. 1600. Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Massachusetts, United States.
Joseph and his Brethren, by Antonio del Castillo y Saavedra, c. 1655. Museo del Prado, Madrid, Spain.
Joseph and his Brethren, by Antonio del Castillo y Saavedra, c. 1655. Museo del Prado, Madrid, Spain.
Joseph Thrown into the Well by His Brothers, by Johann Heiss, c. 17th century. Private collection.
Joseph Thrown into the Well by His Brothers, by Johann Heiss, c. 17th century. Private collection.
Joseph Sold By His Brothers, by Adriaen van Nieulandt the Younger, c. 1658. Private collection.
Joseph Sold By His Brothers, by Adriaen van Nieulandt the Younger, c. 1658. Private collection.
Joseph Sold Into Slavery by His Brothers, by Damiano Mascagni, c. 1602. Private collection.
Joseph Sold Into Slavery by His Brothers, by Damiano Mascagni, c. 1602. Private collection.
Joseph Sold by His Brothers, by Antonio del Castillo y Saavedra, c. 1655-60. Museo del Prado, Madrid, Spain.
Joseph Sold by His Brothers, by Antonio del Castillo y Saavedra, c. 1655-60. Museo del Prado, Madrid, Spain.
Joseph’s Coat Brought to Jacob, by Domenico Fiasella, c. 1640. El Paso Museum of Art, El Paso, Texas, United States.
Joseph’s Coat Brought to Jacob, by Domenico Fiasella, c. 1640. El Paso Museum of Art, El Paso, Texas, United States.
Jacob Shown Joseph’s Bloody Coat, by Circle of Rembrandt van Rijn, c. 1650s. Leiden Collection, New York, New York, United States.
Jacob Shown Joseph’s Bloody Coat, by Circle of Rembrandt van Rijn, c. 1650s. Leiden Collection, New York, New York, United States.

A Quick Summary

Years pass! Joseph is enslaved, falsely accuse, imprisoned, and basically suffers greatly — until his ability to read dreams comes in handy with Pharaoh. Pharaoh puts Joseph in a position of great authority as a steward of sorts. Which is a good thing because Joseph is able to foresee a famine and is able to prepare all of Egypt for it so that Egypt does not have to starve.

And then, Joseph’s brothers come to beg this steward — whom they do not recognize as their brother, Joseph — for food during a particularly severe famine.

Joseph at first does not reveal who he is at first… and then this happens.

Joseph’s Grand Reveal

Joseph Pardons His Brothers, by Bacchiacca, c. 1515. National Gallery, London, United Kingdom.
Joseph Pardons His Brothers, by Bacchiacca, c. 1515. National Gallery, London, United Kingdom.
Joseph and His Brothers, by Abraham Bloemaert, c. 1595-1600. Central Museum, Ultrecht, Netherlands.
Joseph and His Brothers, by Abraham Bloemaert, c. 1595-1600. Central Museum, Ultrecht, Netherlands.
Joseph Recognized by his Brothers, by Giovanni Battista Gaulli, c. 17th century. Musée Fesch, Ajaccio, France.
Joseph Recognized by his Brothers, by Giovanni Battista Gaulli, c. 17th century. Musée Fesch, Ajaccio, France.
Joseph Revealing Himself to His Brothers, by Peter von Cornelius, c. 1816-17. Alte Nationalgalerie, Berlin, Germany.
Joseph Revealing Himself to His Brothers, by Peter von Cornelius, c. 1816-17. Alte Nationalgalerie, Berlin, Germany.

And with that, we are officially out of Genesis! Time to go to the next book… Exodus. Because now that Israel has settled temporarily in Egypt, you know they can’t stay there…

Karina Tabone

Karina Tabone is a wife, mother of four, author, blogger, and lover of Christian artwork. She's the author of the Illustrated Rosary series, which pairs every prayer of the Rosary with beautiful religious artwork. She likes also milkshakes, sunshine, and mystery novels. Follow her on Twitter at @illustr_prayer.

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