PARASHA: “VaYeshev” (and he settled)
GENESIS 37:1-1-40:23..................AMOS 2:6-3:8................MATT 14:1-15:39, JOHN 10:22-23
In this study, the focus in on Yosef, who is going to be in the lime-light of God. Things seem to be going from bad to worse for this young teen-ager. But it wasn't all his fault we could say. His father Jacob held him high up on a pedestal, “Papa's favorite”. Always when there is family favoritism among sons and daughters, there is bound to be trouble, especially from the other siblings who are the “less preferred”
Papa Jacob makes him a “coat of many colors” this is like getting a kid a three piece suit make of fine silk, and then sending out to the fields where his brothers are wearing overalls and straw hats. This is going to get jealousy aroused. These brothers are boiling mad, and to make matters worse, Yosef is given dreams by YHVH and he doesn't keep them to himself, he shares them. He shares them not to be haughty, but just to let his family know what is happening, or rather, what is “going to happen” in the future. But I don't think that at that time, Yosef understood the meaning of the dreams.
To make a long story short, he gets out to the fields, the brothers strip him of his coat, rip it, dip it in goat's blood, plan to kill him, Judah talks them out of it, and instead, throw him in an empty well, wait until a group of Ishmaelite traders come by, they sell him to the buyers for 20 pieces of silver , and that is that, they are rid of brother Yosef, “daddy's boy” the dreamer, yet unknowingly, they are playing right into the perfect plan of YHVH, they are “investing” in their own future welfare.
But let's go back to the events. How do these events symbolize, compare with Messiah Yeshua? We do not see any blemish on Yosef, as if he is “perfect and righteous” as Yeshua was/is “Tzadik v'Kadosh” (Righteous and Holy” Yosef is the “victim” of his own people ( his brothers). As Yeshua was given up to the Roman governor, by a group of religious leaders.
The brothers striped Yosef of his coat, the coat was dipped in goat's blood. Yeshua was striped of his clothing, and was beaten, his flesh “ripped” by a Roman whip, until the blood poured out. The “goat's blood” reminds us of “Yom Kippur” where goat's were sacrificed and one was “set free” the blood of the goat reminds us of our sins “covered by the blood” (back then) but now, our sins are “erased” by the blood of “God's chosen LAMB” the “Lamb of God” which taketh away the sins of the world.
Yosef was thrown into a pit, an empty cistern, void of water. Scripture doesn't say, but I imagine that his brothers tied him up with a rope and lowered him into the pit by the rope. A “water well” symbolizes “Life” but when it is empty, it can symbolize “death”. Just try to climb out a deep pit with dirt sides without anything, you can't, might as well be dead. Yosef being lower into the pit can symbolize Yeshua's death, and his descent into “Sheol” yet when the Midianites came by, the brothers pulled him “out” of the pit, it could symbolize Yeshua's “resurrection unto life”. Before the pit, Yosef was part of his immediate family, after the incident of the pit, he is on his way to a “new life”, with trials, testings, troubles, suffering, and finally, rewards! Doesn't that sound like our life today?
Yosef was sold for “20 pieces of silver” by “Y'hudah Ben Ya'akov” (Judah son of Jacob)
Yeshua was sold for “30” pieces of silver by “Y'hudah Ish Kariot” (Judah, a man from the region of Kariot)
Y'hudah Ben Ya'akov was part of Jacob's family, whose name changed to Israel. Y'hudah Ish Kariot was part of Yeshua's family of talmidim (disciples) by “name only” not spiritually. The name “Israel” comes from “Yasher-El” (straight to God) “Yeshua” relationship is “straight to God” . The difference between 30 pieces of silver and 20 pieces of silver is “10” the number of “Torah”. ALL is recorded and written down in the Torah, and Yeshua is the “Living Torah”
The prophet preaches “judgment on Israel” (because they sell the righteous for silver), and for many more evil deeds, they have turned away from God and are behaving like the heathen, that know not the LORD. Yosef was righteous, and he sold for 20 pieces of silver, Yeshua was / is righteous, and was sold for 30 pieces of silver. Israel has traded a “Torah” (30-20=10) walk for an “unrighteous” walk and lifestyle, trouble is ahead, judgment is coming, and it came, God used Babylon, Greece, Antiochus, Rome, as instruments of judgment, yet Israel prevailed, through YHVH's grace, goodness, righteousness, and through a “few gallant men” who fought the fight of freedom.
MATT 14:1-15:39 and JOHN 10:22-23
“Yeshua blesses the crowd” we see that Yeshua went to a place alone, perhaps to morn the death of his cousin, Yochanan the Baptist, yet the crowd found him, he had compassion and healed the sick, he fed them when he multiplied the 5 loaves and 2 fish. Interesting enough, when we add 5 and 2 we get “7” the perfect number , the number of Holiness, we have the “Bread (loaves) of Life” and he who makes “fishers of men” (fish). Also, the symbol of the “fish” was used in early messianic believers.
In John, we see that Yeshua attends the Feast of Hanukkah, the “dedication” and takes this opportunity to tell the Jews, “I AM the Messiah....yet you do not believe” the choice to believe, is always OURS. Shabbat Shalom
Rabbi Ben Avraham