He [Joseph] turned away from them and wept. And he returned to them and spoke to them… And Joseph gave orders to fill their bags with grain, and to replace every man’s money in his sack, and to give them provisions for the journey. Genesis 42:24, 25
Joseph spoke harshly to the brothers, but he could not restrain his own love for them. Emotion overcomes him and he has to leave the room.
Joseph showed kindness to his brothers by putting the money they paid for their grain back in their sacks. It was a wonderfully generous, freely given act of kindness.
But when they discovered the money, the brothers did not know what to make of it. One of the brothers finds the money in his bag and says, “‘My money has been put back; here it is in the mouth of my sack!’ At this their hearts failed them, and they turned trembling to one another, saying, ‘What is this that God has done to us?’” (42:28).
The brothers thought that God must be against them, and this is the first time in the entire story that they mention the name of God. The fascinating thing here is that the brothers do not know what to do with this act of kindness. They don’t understand what has happened, and they completely misinterpret it.
The Bible says that “God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance” (Rom. 2:4). God’s kindness is supremely shown in the great gift of sending His only Son into the world for us.
How are you interpreting God’s kindness to you in sending His Son, Jesus, into the world for you?