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The Suspicious Sons Of Jacob

“Now the men were afraid, because they were brought to Joseph’s house; and they said, “It is because of the money that was returned in our sacks the first time that we are being brought in, that he may seek occasion against us and fall upon us, and take us for slaves with our donkeys.” (Genesis 43:18 NASB)

There is a French proverb which states: “There is no pillow so soft as a clear conscience.” If a clear conscience brings peace, then a guilty one brings fear, suspicion, and paranoia. This was certainly the case for Joseph’s brothers. Upon finding their money returned to them on their first journey back to Canaan, they respond: “What is this that God has done to us?” (Gen. 42:28). Now, they have been invited to dine at the home of the “Prime Minister” of Egypt — an exceptional honor by anyone’s standards — and what do they think of this? They were afraid and felt that this was a ploy to enslave them! What a peculiar way to respond to what should otherwise be an occasion for celebration.

But harboring guilt in our hearts causes what should be even the happiest and most enjoyable of occasions to fill us with dread and anxiety. A heart pricked by guilt is unable to gratefully accept and fully appreciate the gifts and generosity of others. There is always the notion of an ulterior motive as suspicion torments us to the point where we are reluctant to willingly receive what is freely offered. Guilt prevents us from believing that we are worthy of receiving anything out of the graciousness of another. But praise God that we have a Savior Who has forgiven our sins and will take away the guilt from us if we will let Him. There is no reason for a child of God to harbor guilt in their heart over anything. The Lord Jesus will pardon our sins if we bring them to Him; and if we have wronged another, he will show us how to make it right if we only ask Him. If guilt is tormenting you today, won’t you bring it to the Lord Jesus?

*(New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation)

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2 responses

  1. This is so good! It helps me understand someone close to me that does just this . . .refuses my help, has a hard time accepting anything that I do for them. So, you have gave me a new love and insight into it all. :) I was thinking about this too, when reading about how Judas felt guilt and confessed his wrong to the chief priests. But, unfortunately, he didn’t ask Jesus to forgive him. So feeling bad and even admitting wrong are good starts . . .but we need to go to Him for that forgiveness. So glad that you are sharing all the good stuff you and He are uncovering together! Love that! deb

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  2. Excellent point, Deb. Isn’t it strange how some people have no problem confessing their sins and faults to everyone but God? In one of the most touching moments in the Gospels, Jesus calls Judas “friend” in the Garden of Gethsemane, even as he betrays Him. It seems that even then the Lord was reaching out to Judas and offering him a chance for repentance. But, as you said, he failed to go to the Lord Jesus for forgiveness; only later would he acknowledge his error, and then he chose to take it to the chief priests rather than God.

    My prayers are with you concerning the person close to you :)

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