The Bride in Genesis
By Arlen L. Chitwood
Joseph and Asenath
Exalted Over All Egypt
(In chapter 5, Joseph was seen delivered from prison and placed at the right hand of power; and from this position, Joseph took a Gentile bride.
The antitype, of course, is easy to see. Jesus was delivered from the place of death and placed at the right hand of Power; and from this position, Jesus is presently taking a Gentile bride.
The bride that Christ is presently taking from the Gentiles is for a purpose that will be realized in the coming age. Christ, in that day, will hold the earth’s scepter as He ascends His Own throne; and His bride, who will then be His wife, will ascend the throne and exercise power as co-regent with Him [Revelation 2:26, 27; 3:21].)
Two Complete Periods (Genesis 41:1-54)
Joseph revealed to Pharaoh the interpretation of two dreams, and these dreams had to do with events transpiring during two seven-year periods. “Seven” is the number of perfection. It signifies the completion of that which is in view. Events transpiring during these two periods, thus, point to events transpiring during two complete periods of time in the antitype.
A completeness shown by the number “seven” is evident throughout Scripture. The six-day restoration of the earth in Genesis chapter one — an earth that had become “without form and void” as a result of Satan seeking to exalt his throne (cf. Isaiah 14:12-17; Jeremiah 4:23-28; Ezekiel 28:14-19) — was incomplete without the seventh day of rest (Genesis 1:2b-2:3). These seven days set forth in type, at the very beginning of Scripture, the period of time that biblical revelation covers, which is the period of time that God concerns Himself with the affairs of man on this present earth. From the point of man’s fall, the complete length of this time will be seven days — 7,000 years — one complete period of time (cf. Matthew 16:28-17:5; 2 Peter 1:15-18; 3:3-8). God will work six days in the restoration of a ruined creation (ruined man, along with the ruined material creation once again) and then rest the seventh day, exactly as He did in the prior restoration of a ruined creation set forth in the opening verses of Genesis (cf. Genesis 1:1-2:3; Exodus 31:13-17).
“The thought of a ruined condition of the earth succeeding its original creation . . . is required by the typical view.”
— F. W. Grant
God later dealt with Israel, not only in completely keeping with this established pattern, but in related numeric fashions as well.
The Sabbath was given to Israel as a “sign” (pointing to a day of rest following God’s present six-day restorative work [Exodus 31:13-17]).
And the complete sacred calendar of Israel, in both history and prophecy, was set forth in another septenary manner — in the seven “feasts of the Lord” (Leviticus 23:1ff).
That which was depicted by these festivals begins in history with the birth of a nation during Moses’ day on the night of the Passover in Egypt; and this festival foreshadows that day when the nation will be reborn, that day when Israel will complete the observation of her national Passover during the days of the One who is greater than Moses — by appropriating the blood of the Lamb that the nation slew 2,000 years ago.
A deliverance from Gentile dominion occurred under Moses; and this was followed by the nation being led into the land covenanted to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, with the nation being placed in that land within a theocracy under “Joshua” (a transliteration of the Hebrew name for “Jesus” [transliterated from the Greek], meaning Salvation). A deliverance from Gentile dominion is about to occur under Christ; and this will be followed by a restoration of the nation to the land covenanted to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, with the nation being placed in that land within a theocracy under Christ.
These are among events foreshadowed by the “feasts of the Lord” in Leviticus chapter twenty-three.
The time of the captivity of the children of Israel in Babylon was set by God at seventy years, which is “ten” sevens (Jeremiah 25:11, 12; 29:10). “Ten” is the number of ordinal completion relating to the earth. “Ten,” like seven, is a complete number, but from a different perspective (cf. Matthew 25:1; Luke 19:13).
Daniel’s prophecy of the Seventy Weeks (Daniel 9:24-27) constitutes a period of time (490 years) that equals seven times seventy, or seven times seven times ten. These four hundred ninety years constitute a complete period of time determined upon the Jewish people and the city of Jerusalem, which will be followed by the Messianic Era (v. 24).
Note also that the Beast in Revelation 13:1ff, the end-time world ruler (who will appear during the final seven years of this four-hundred-ninety-year period), will have seven heads and ten horns.
All Scripture rests upon a divinely established numeric arrangement, and, consequently, numbers in Scripture are fraught with spiritual significance and meaning.
The world is presently enjoying its time of abundance, set forth by the seven years of plenty in Pharaoh’s dreams. But the world will shortly be ushered into a time of trouble, set forth by the seven years of famine in these same dreams. This time of trouble/famine is described in Genesis as being so grievous that “the plenty will not be known in the land because of the famine following” (Genesis 41:31). The antitype of this period is described in Matthew’s gospel as a time of trouble “such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be” (Matthew 24:21).
Throughout both the complete times of plenty and famine Joseph occupied a position at the right hand of the ruler over all Egypt in the type. In the antitype, Jesus presently occupies a position at the right hand of the Ruler over all the earth (and the universe at large) during the time of plenty, and He will continue to occupy this position during the time of famine that will follow.
(Note that God is the Supreme Ruler over the entire universe, which includes the earth. And Messianic angels rule various provinces in the universe under God, with Satan [a fallen Messianic angel] presently ruling the earth in this capacity.)
Joseph took a Gentile bride during the time of plenty. And Jesus is presently taking a Gentile bride during the time of plenty.
Joseph was arrayed in fine linen, a gold chain was placed about his neck (“gold,” in Scripture, speaks of deity), he was made to ride in the second chariot, all Egypt was commanded to bow the knee before Joseph, and he was given a new name — Zaphnath-Paaneah — which means, “Savior of the world” (Genesis 41:40-43, 45). Pharaoh, at this time, said to Joseph,
I am Pharaoh, and without your consent no man may lift his hand or foot in all the land of Egypt. (Genesis 41:44)
For those who have eyes to see, the antitype is clear. God the Father has placed His Son, Jesus, in exactly this same position (Philippians 2:6-10; Hebrews 2:9; 1 Peter 3:22; Revelation 3:21).
But, as previously seen, by the position that Christ occupies will remain unchanged (as the position that Joseph occupied), conditions on this earth, as occurred in Egypt, will change; and these conditions, as in Egypt, will change drastically.
Exactly as occurred in Egypt, the time of plenty is going to come to an end, with a time of unparalleled famine following — a time so grievous that conditions existing during the previous time of plenty “will not be known” throughout the earth because of the famine (Genesis 41:31). And all of this is something that man not only seems to know very little about but also doesn’t even seem to want to discuss today. Man wants to remove that day far from him — that day when the time of plenty ends, and the time of famine begins.
Scripture though cannot be broken. The time of plenty is going to end, and the time of famine is then going to begin:
Then the seven years of plenty which were in the land of Egypt ended,
and the seven years of famine began to come, as Joseph had said . . . .
(Genesis 41:53, 54a)
In the type, the time of plenty came to an end, and the time of famine followed, just as Joseph had said. And in the antitype, the time of plenty during which we presently live will come to an end, and the time of famine will follow, just as Jesus has said (Matthew 24:21, 22).
Go unto Joseph (Genesis 41:55-57)
When the famine came upon Egypt, “the people cried to Pharaoh for bread. Then Pharaoh said to all the Egyptians,”
Go to Joseph; whatever he says to you, do.
The famine was over all the face of the earth, and Joseph opened all the storehouses and sold to the Egyptians. And the famine became severe in the land of Egypt. (Genesis 41:55b, 56)
This sets forth a truth that Christians appear to have little appreciation for today. Although the famine in this verse refers to the coming Tribulation in the antitype, the application to Christians during a time of famine (need) today is too evident to pass by without a few comments.
Do you have a need? Do you know how to obtain a supply for any need that might arise in your life? The answer is found in Genesis 41:55, 56:
“Go to Joseph [Jesus]; whatever he says to you, do.” He will then open “all the storehouses.”
A similar thought is set forth in the words of Jesus in John 14:14:
If you ask anything in My name, I will do it.
Asking in the name of Jesus is a very misunderstood subject today. These words do not constitute a magic formula that can be repeated at the end of a prayer merely to obtain things that an individual may desire to have. “In Jesus’ name” implies that the person is acting on the Lord’s behalf, using the talents and/or pounds left in their possession to bring forth an increase (Matthew 25:14-20; Luke 19:11-27). That would be to say, they would be trading and trafficking, using that which the Lord had entrusted to them in order to carry out business on His behalf during His time of absence. And, in the process of carrying out this business, a person would have certain needs that must be met. That person could then make requests “in Jesus’ name,” with the assurance that such requests would be answered and met.
If a person is truly conducting business on the Lord’s behalf, in the manner that He has been told to conduct business, it should go without saying that the person would be doing that which the Lord had told him to do. A person in this position could then go to Jesus with his needs, the storehouses would be opened, and the Lord would supply these needs (cf. John 16:23, 24; James 4:3; 1 John 3:22).
One of the main cries heard in Christian circles today is the plea for money to carry on the Lord’s work. That is a strange sound coming from the trumpet. Reverse that into the type in Genesis, chapter forty-one and you will have the people of Egypt going out trying to raise money to help Joseph. NO! The only correct biblical response is to “GO to Joseph; whatever he says to you, DO!” He will THEN open “ALL the storehouses.”
The attitude of too many Christians today is, “Tell the people, and trust the Lord.” Arno Gaebelein, one of the great Bible teachers in past years, used to say that when you tell the people, you cease to trust the Lord. The attitude of Dr. Gaebelein in this area was far more Scriptural than the position many Christians are taking today. Not only are there certain pseudo-religious programs on radio and television, which are little more than fund-raising campaigns preying on the biblical ignorance of Christians, but many churches throughout the land are carrying on man-made programs that are little different. If Christians followed the admonition of Scripture concerning their needs in all areas, they would find that not only would many (probably most) Church-related programs of today cease to exist, but many others would come into existence; and the Lord would supply the necessary funds to carry on His work.
Any group of Christians doing what the Lord has told them to do need only ask of the Lord, and He will supply any need that might arise. Any church in financial straits today has not done one or both of two things: The members constituting that church have either not done what the Lord has told them to do or they have not gone to Him for their needs.
What has the Lord told you to do? Two related thoughts will be set forth that individuals might consider, and that will perhaps shed light on the central reason why many Christian organizations and churches have been beset by problems — financial and otherwise.
1) Attitude of Christians toward the Word of God in General
God has placed pastor-teachers in churches to lead Christians into a mature knowledge of the Word of God. Christians, in turn, are to take this knowledge and do what God has told them to do in His Word. God speaks to us today through His Word.
This Word is to be taught “precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept, line upon line, line upon line, here a little, there a little.” The ones whom the Lord will teach “knowledge” and make to understand “doctrine” are those who are “weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts” (Isaiah 28:9-13). If one follows God’s Revelation to man, his teachings will center around God’s firstborn Sons — Jesus, Israel, and the Church (awaiting the adoption). Not only will his teachings center around God’s firstborn Sons, but the goal toward which all things are moving — the earth’s coming Sabbath rest, the Messianic Era — will be placed in its proper perspective.
Teachings concerning Christ begin in Genesis 1:1 (cf. John 1:1-5, 14). Jesus stated that ALL Scripture was about Him (Luke 24:27, 44; John 5:39, 46). Thus, it matters not where a person turns in Scripture, he will find himself studying about some facet of the person and work of Christ.
Teachings concerning the nation of Israel also begin in Genesis. Not only is Abraham, the father of this nation, introduced in this book (Genesis 11:26ff), but teachings concerning Israel can be seen much earlier in typology. Genesis, chapter four, for example, sets forth Cain (responsible for the death of Abel) as a type of Israel (responsible for the death of Christ); and Noah passing through the Flood is a type of Israel passing through the coming Tribulation.
Teachings concerning the Church also begin in Genesis. Adam and Eve constitute the original type of Christ and His bride, and Enoch constitutes a type of Christians being removed before the coming Flood, before the coming Tribulation.
Teachings concerning the kingdom also begin in Genesis. The Sabbath day of rest (2:1-3), following six days of work (1:2b-31), sets forth the fact that a Sabbath day of rest is coming following six days of work. And each one of these days will be 1,000 years in length (cf. Exodus 31:13-17; Hebrews 4:4-9; 2 Peter 1:15-18; 3:3-8).
Genesis is rich beyond degree. There’s not a single biblical doctrine that cannot be found in some form in Genesis. In order to correctly understand the work of the Son — past, present, and future — along with the place occupied by Israel and the Church in God’s eternal plans and purposes, one MUST begin in Genesis.
A teaching example for the servants of the Lord to follow has been set by Jesus Himself: “beginning at Moses and all the Prophets. . .” (Luke 24:27). Great spiritual lessons concerning Christ, Israel, and the Church can be drawn from the Old Testament Scriptures, beginning with the writings of Moses. And spiritual lessons of this nature can be derived only through extensive studies of the types.
Thus, the importance of types in Scripture can immediately be seen. Not only will God’s three firstborn Sons — Christ, Israel, and the Church (following the adoption) — be placed in their proper positions, but teachings drawn from “Moses and all the Prophets” will be directed toward the earth’s coming Sabbath day of rest — the coming Messianic Era, when God’s three firstborn Sons will occupy their proper positions on and over the earth. No wonder it was said by more than one great Bible teacher of past years that types commend themselves to the spiritually minded.
2) Attitude of Christians toward the Word of God in Particular
The central message of Scripture, the Word of the Kingdom, is the message upon which Satan has centered his attack throughout the dispensation. And this is perhaps nowhere better depicted in Scripture than in the parables of Matthew chapter thirteen.
In these parables, Satan is the one who seeks to bring about barrenness in the lives of Christians as they find themselves placed in various parts of the world, with a view to their bringing forth fruit (vv. 4-8, 19-23); he is the one responsible for sowing tares among the wheat, with a view to barrenness among Christians (vv. 24-30); he is the one who produced an unnatural growth in Christendom early in the dispensation, which continues today, resulting in his messengers finding ready acceptance therein (vv. 31, 32); and he is the one responsible for the leavening process that has been occurring within Christendom throughout the dispensation, resulting in an every-increasing corruption, which will continue until the whole has been leavened (v. 33).
Satan's attack in this fashion has not been an attack upon biblical doctrine in general. Rather, it has been an attack upon biblical doctrine in a very particular and specific manner. It has been an attack similar to that which is referred to in military circles today as “a surgical strike [an attack directed at one specific target, using computer-guided missiles, leaving that which surrounds the target largely untouched].” It has been an attack directed specifically at the Word of the Kingdom, leaving biblical doctrine in general largely untouched.
(This is the reason fundamentalism, as it is often called, is alive and well in Christians circles today. Satan’s attack is not against biblical doctrine in general but against biblical doctrine in particular.
And this can readily be seen in these same fundamental circles today. Biblical doctrine in general is staunchly defended. But exactly the opposite is invariably seen relative to biblical doctrine in particular, that upon which Satan has centered his attack for the past 2,000 years — the Word of the Kingdom. This message is spoken against; individuals proclaiming this message are maligned, etc.
For more information on this subject, refer to the author’s book, Mysteries of the Kingdom.)
And it should come as no great surprise to anyone that the direct command to Christians in the Word of God runs completely contrary to that which can be seen occurring on almost every hand in Christendom today. To avoid being caught up in the wiles of Satan — in which almost the whole of Christendom finds itself today — Christians are commanded to study the Word, remaining in complete keeping with the Old Testament prophecies. It is only through a knowledge gleaned from the Word after this fashion that Christians can know how to properly array themselves in armor, know how to properly combat the enemy, know how to remain faithful, and know how to maintain a proper spiritual awareness (cf. Ephesians 6:10ff; 1 Timothy 1:18, 19; 2 Timothy 2:15).
Further, Christians are commanded to strain every muscle of their being in the present race of the faith, something that they would know very little about apart from a proper study of the Word (1 Timothy 6:11-19; 2 Timothy 4:7, 8; Jude 3). And Christians are to govern their lives after this fashion with a view to a prize that awaits the victors at the end of the race of the faith (1 Peter 4:12, 13; 5:1-6).
And it is not just any prize awaiting Christians who govern their lives after this fashion. Rather, it is the highest of all prizes. It is the greatest thing that God could ever design for redeemed man — that of one day being elevated into the heavens and being privileged to ascend the throne with God’s Son, ruling the earth as co-regent with the King of kings, and Lord of lords.
Can Christians expect the storehouses to be opened and the blessings of the Lord to flow out, even though they have gone to Him for their needs, if they refuse to do what He has told them? Look once again at the order in Genesis 41:55, 56: GO…DO…and He will THEN open ALL the storehouses.
Famine upon the Earth (Genesis 42:1-38)
The time of famine is coming. It came during Joseph’s day, and it will come during the present day. The brethren of Joseph faded from view after he had been sold into the hands of the Gentiles (37:28), and they did not reappear until the time of famine (42:1).
The brethren of Jesus, according to the flesh, faded from view after He had been sold into the hands of the Gentiles. Israel has been set aside while God, during the time of plenty, takes out of the Gentiles a people for His name.
However, when the time of famine begins, just as the brethren of Joseph in the type reappeared, the brethren of Jesus in the antitype will reappear. And then, as Joseph dealt with his brethren, God will deal with Israel on a national basis once again.
1) When the time of famine came, Joseph’s brethren were driven from their land and forced to go into Egypt (v. 3)
During the coming time of famine, Jesus’ brethren will be driven from their land and be forced to go out into the Gentile world. The Jews in the land of Israel today are there in unbelief awaiting the man of sin. He will one day appear, exactly as foretold in Scripture, and will make a seven-year covenant with many in Israel. After three and one-half years this covenant will be broken, and Satan, through the man of sin, will launch his final and most intense attack against Israel. The Jews in the land who do not escape to the place of safety prepared by God (Revelation 12:6) will either be killed or sold as slaves throughout the Gentile world. And in his campaign against Israel, during a three and one-half year period, this man will succeed in destroying two-thirds of the world’s Jewish population (Zechariah 13:8), though he will fail miserably in his ultimate goal — the complete destruction of the Jewish people (Revelation 12:13-17; cf. Jeremiah 31:35-37).
2) During the time of famine, Joseph’s brethren had no place to turn but to him (v. 6)
During the coming Great Tribulation, Jesus’ brethren will have no place to turn but to Him (Exodus 3:2, 7-9).
3) Joseph’s brethren confessed their guilt in his presence. The time was after two days, on the third day (vv. 18-23)
Jesus’ brethren will confess their guilt in His presence. The time will be after two days, on the third day, after 2,000 years, in the third 1,000-year period (Hosea 5:15-6:2). The Word of God states that Israel in that day,
. . . will look upon Me [Jesus, the Aleph and the Tau, the Alpha and the Omega] whom they pierced . . . . (Zechariah 12:10)
(In the Hebrew text of Zechariah 12:10 there is a non-translated two-letter word between “Me” and “whom” — a demonstrative pronoun formed from the first and last letters in the Hebrew alphabet, an Aleph and a Tau. This would be equivalent to Christ’s use of Alpha and Omega — the first and last letters in the Greek alphabet — to describe Himself in Revelation 1:8.
A demonstrative pronoun is used to point out, to identify. And the use of this pronoun in Zechariah 12:10 [comprised of an Aleph and a Tau] points out, identifies, the Pierced One as none other than the Alpha and the Omega in Revelation 1:8, Jesus the Christ, the One upon whom the Jewish people will look in that coming day.)
And the Jewish people looking upon the Aleph and the Tau, the Alpha and the Omega, the Pierced One in that coming day — after they realize the identity of the One upon whom they will be gazing, will,
. . . will look on Me whom they pierced. Yes, they will mourn for Him as one mourns for his only son, and grieve for Him as one grieves for a firstborn.
In that day there shall be a great mourning in Jerusalem, like the mourning at Hadad Rimmon in the plain of Megiddo.
And the land shall mourn, every family by itself: the family of the house of David by itself, and their wives by themselves; the family of the house of Nathan by itself, and their wives by themselves;
the family of the house of Levi by itself, and their wives by themselves; the family of Shimei by itself, and their wives by themselves;
all the families that remain, every family by itself, and their wives by themselves. (Zechariah 12:10b-14)
4) Joseph helped his brethren and supplied their needs — without price — during the time of famine (vv. 25, 26)
Jesus will help His brethren and supply their needs — without price — during the coming time of famine (Isaiah 55:1).
The Silver Cup and the Confession (Genesis 43, 44)
When Joseph’s brethren journeyed to Egypt the first time, Benjamin did not accompany them. Benjamin was Joseph’s full-blood brother. The remainder of the sons of Jacob were Joseph’s half brothers. Benjamin was the youngest of all Jacob’s sons and was the only remaining son who had been conceived by Rachel. Rachel, the wife Jacob had worked seven additional years to procure, died at the time Benjamin was born; and since Jacob presumed that Joseph was dead, Jacob had refused to allow Benjamin to accompany his brothers to Egypt for fear that something might befall the only remaining son whom Rachel had borne him.
The remainder of Joseph’s brethren, on their first trip to Egypt, bowed themselves before Joseph in accordance with Joseph’s previous dreams (37:5-10; 42:6, 9), pointing to that time yet future when the brethren of Jesus will be forced to come and bow before Him. Joseph knew his brethren, but they did not know him (42:8), pointing to that future day when Jesus will still be a stranger to the house of Israel, after they have gone to Him for help. He will know them, but they will not know Him until He reveals Himself to them, exactly as seen in the type.
Even in Israel’s present state of unbelief, the attitude of Jesus toward the house of Israel is graphically illustrated in the attitude of Joseph toward his brethren. Note that Joseph turned aside and wept while his brethren were still unaware of his true identity (42:24; 43:30; cf. Matthew 23:37-39; Luke 19:41; John 11:35).
Joseph questioned his brethren concerning the welfare of their father and whether or not they had another brother who was not with them. Not knowing that he already knew one brother was absent, Joseph’s brethren told him about Benjamin. Joseph then forced them into a position where they would have to bring Benjamin with them during their next trip into Egypt (42:14; 43:15).
Then, when Benjamin was brought down with his brothers on their second trip into Egypt, Joseph had all eleven brothers brought to his house to dine with him. He had his servants seat each brother before him, according to his birthright (which confounded the brothers, for they had no idea how Joseph possessed such knowledge about them); and Benjamin was given an amount of food that was five times greater than servings given to any of his brothers. And after they had dined together, Joseph then commanded the steward of his house to have their sacks filled and to place his silver cup in Benjamin’s sack (Genesis 43:33-44:2).
Then after Joseph’s brethren had left for home, not knowing that the silver cup was in their possession, Joseph sent his steward to overtake them, retrieve his cup, bring his brethren back, and place them before him. After the brothers had been overtaken and the search conducted, the cup was found in Benjamin’s sack (where Joseph had previously instructed that it be placed). Joseph’s brethren rent their clothes (an outward expression of great grief); and, after they had returned, Judah stood before Joseph and confessed “the iniquity of your servants [referring to all eleven brothers].” Judah was forced, through circumstances, to relate that which had occurred years before, when Joseph had been sold into the hands of the Gentiles by his brethren (Genesis 44:3ff).
Benjamin and Judah represent the entire nation of Israel during that future time of trouble when the Israelites go to Jesus for help. Just as Benjamin’s serving of food had been five times greater than servings given to his brothers, Israel, will be blessed above measure (“five” is the number of grace — that which God is able to do totally apart from human intervention). And just as the silver cup was found in Benjamin’s possession, that to which the cup points will be found in Israel’s possession in that coming day, among those who do not realize that they possess the cup.
“Silver” in Scripture speaks of the price of redemption. There is no redemption apart from the shedding of blood. The tabernacle, for example — the house of blood — rested entirely on a foundation of pure silver. This silver had been collected from the children of Israel and was called “atonement money” (Exodus 30:11-16; 38:25-27). The One to whom the tabernacle in every detail points — the Lord Jesus Christ — was betrayed for thirty pieces of silver. He is the One who has paid the price for our redemption with His own blood.
The silver cup — found in Benjamin’s possession, to be found in Israel’s possession — sets forth the fact once and for all that this nation is guilty of blood, and this blood is none other than the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ. It matters little that large religious bodies — Catholic and Protestant alike — as well as others, have sought to absolve Israel of guilt in the death of Christ. The cup was found in Benjamin’s possession in the type, and in that future day when Jesus deals with His brethren, the cup will be found in Israel’s possession in the antitype.
(Note that the Passover lamb was given to Israel, and only Israel could slay this lamb [Exodus 11, 12].
Jesus was the Passover Lamb [1 Corinthians 5:7], only Israel could slay this Lamb, and the Word of God clearly attributes this act to Israel [Acts 2:23, 36; 3:12-15; 4:8-10; 7:51, 52; cf. Luke 13:33].)
After Joseph’s brethren realized that the cup was in their possession, they rent their clothes; and then Judah stood before Joseph and confessed the iniquity of not only himself but that of his brothers as well.
In the antitype, after Jesus’ brethren realize that the cup is in their possession, there will be a great mourning, not only in Jerusalem, but throughout all the land (Zechariah 12:10-14). Then, in the antitype of Judah’s confession in Joseph’s presence (in the presence of the one who had been offended), the Jewish people will confess their iniquity in Jesus’ presence (in the presence of the One who has been offended).
This will occur at the apex of the darkest hour in Israeli history. When it seemed that all was lost and Benjamin was about to become a slave forever, Judah confessed their guilt to Joseph.
During the Great Tribulation when it will seem that all is lost and the Israelites are about to be faced with slavery forever at the hands of the Gentiles, they will cry out to Jesus, acknowledge their offense, and He will hear (cf. Leviticus 5:5, 6; 26:40-42; Deuteronomy 30:1-3; Hosea 5:15-6:2; Joel 3:6-8).
The Revelation of Joseph to His Brethren (Genesis 45:1ff)
Then Joseph could not restrain himself before all those who stood by him, and he cried out, “Make everyone go out from me!” So no one stood with him while Joseph made himself known to his brothers.
And he wept aloud, and the Egyptians and the house of Pharaoh heard it.
Then Joseph said to his brothers, “I am Joseph; does my father still live?” But his brothers could not answer him, for they were dismayed [lit., terrified] in his presence.
And Joseph said to his brothers, “Please come near to me.” So they came near. Then he said: “I am Joseph your brother, whom you sold into Egypt.” (45:1-4)
This, of course, is a type of that future day when Jesus reveals Himself to His brethren, the nation of Israel. To illustrate how any one type is incomplete in itself and must be studied in conjunction with other types and the antitype to obtain the complete picture, note a corresponding type in Acts 9:3-6 and the antitype of both types in Zechariah 12:10-12; 13:6.
In Acts 9:1-7, the one later known as the Apostle Paul was leading a great persecution against Christians when Jesus appeared to Paul, personally, in His body of flesh and bones, a body enswathed in Glory. Others were with Paul, but they neither saw Jesus nor entered into His dealings with Paul. Paul asked the question, “Who are You, Lord?” And the reply was, “I am Jesus . . . (v. 5). Immediately following this revelation, Paul was troubled (lit., “terrified”) by the Lord’s presence (v. 6), just as the brethren of Joseph had been troubled (lit., terrified) by his presence (Genesis 45:3).
In 1 Timothy 1:15, 16, we are told that Paul was not saved just to obtain mercy, but he was saved as a “pattern (Greek: hupotuposis, ‘a prototype’) to those who are going to believe on Him for everlasting life.” According to 1 Corinthians 15:8, Paul was “born out of due time” when Christ appeared to him on the Damascus road. The words “born out of due time” are a translation of a Greek word that literally means, “born before it was time to be born,” or “abortion.” The manner of Paul’s conversion was a premature birth to establish a prototype. Paul’s salvation experience constitutes a type of Israel’s future salvation experience.
(There is some question about the textual authenticity of the opening words in Acts 9:6, as they appear in the KJV — “And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?” Most of the better Greek manuscripts do not include these words.
However, whether the words are genuine or not, since Paul forms another type of the same thing previously seen in Genesis 45:1-3, it would matter little how the authenticity of the words beginning Acts 9:6 in the KJV is considered. That which is described in this verse in the KJV, previously seen in the reaction of Joseph’s brethren in Genesis 45:3, is evidently what subsequently occurred in Paul’s reaction as well [whether recorded or not]. This is one case where comparing Scripture with Scripture might lend aid to what is called “textual criticism.”)
Drawing from the types in Genesis 45:1-4; Acts 9:1-7 and the antitype in Zechariah 12:10-12; 13:6, note what one finds concerning that future day when Jesus will reveal Himself to Israel.
1) Jesus will be alone in His dealings with Israel (Genesis 45:1; Acts 9:7).
2) Jesus will weep once again because of Israel, but this time tears of joy will be shed (Genesis 45:2; cf. Luke 19:41; John 11:35).
3) Israel is going to ask, “What are those wounds in Your hands?” And Jesus will reply, “Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends” (Zechariah 13:6). It would appear that this question may very well come first, with Israel almost afraid to ask the next question, fearing the answer that the nation will hear. But, nevertheless, Israel is going to ask, “Who are You, Lord?” (Acts 9:5) And the reply will be, “I am Jesus” (Genesis 45:3; Acts 9:5).
4) Israel will then stand terrified and astonished in the presence of their Messiah as they gaze upon the One whom they crucified 2,000 years earlier (Genesis 45:3; Acts 9:6; Zechariah 12:10).
After the national conversion of Israel, set forth in type by Paul’s conversion, Israel will then, as Paul, be told what to do (Acts 9:6). After Paul’s conversion, the good news that he had been called to proclaim was carried to the four points of the compass, and individuals throughout the entire Gentile world heard the message (Romans 10:18; Colossians 1:23).
After the conversion of Israel, the nation will carry the message of the one true and living God to the ends of the earth. Joseph’s brethren went forth proclaiming, “Joseph is still alive, and he is governor over all the land of Egypt” (Genesis 45:13, 26). Israel in that day, like the brethren of Joseph, will go forth proclaiming, “Jesus is still alive, and He is the Governor over the entire earth.”
Israel in that day will occupy her rightful place in relation to her calling (Isaiah 43:9-12). Israel will then carry the message of salvation through Jesus Christ and the message of the glory of the kingdom to the ends of the earth.
God’s Three Firstborn Sons Exalted Together
God presently has two firstborn Sons — Christ, and Israel. “Christ” is God’s only begotten firstborn Son (John 3:16), and “Israel” is presently God’s only adopted firstborn son (cf. Exodus 4:22, 23; Romans 9:4).
In that coming day following Christ’s return, God will have another adopted firstborn son. Following the adoption of Christians (Romans 8:14-23), which will occur following this present dispensation, God will have a third firstborn son (Hebrews 12:23).
“Sonship” implies rulership. Sons of God presently rule the earth. Satan and his angels presently rule — sons of God through creation, (as Adam, created to rule and to reign in Satan’s stead, was a son of God, in both his unfallen and fallen states [cf. Genesis 1:26-28; Luke 3:38]).
But, though sons of God presently rule, God is about to replace these sons with a new order of Sons (Romans 8:19). Satan and his angels are about to be put down, and a new order of Sons will then be elevated to the throne. And the entire creation — brought under the bondage of sin because of Adam’s sin — presently groans and travails in pain, awaiting that day (Romans 8:20-22).
Within the framework of God’s orderly arrangement of the earth’s government, disorder presently prevails, with everything out of place:
1) Satan is out of place; his rightful place is in the abyss, to be followed by the lake of fire.
2) Christ is out of place; His rightful place is seated on His own throne, ruling the earth in the stead of Satan.
3) The Church is out of place; the Church’s rightful place is to be seated on the throne with Christ, ruling in the stead of angels.
4) Israel is out of place; Israel’s rightful place is to be positioned at the head of the nations on the earth.
5) The Gentile nations are out of place; the nations’ rightful place, rather than being ruled by Satan and his angels (completely apart from blessings), is to be ruled by and blessed through God’s firstborn Sons — Christ, Israel, and the Church (following the adoption).
A major change in the earth’s government and conditions on earth is in the offing. God’s restorative work — lasting six days, 6,000 years (in complete keeping with the established pattern in Genesis 1:1-2:3) — is almost over. The work of the Spirit in the world during the present dispensation — that of procuring a bride for God’s Son, a part of God’s restorative work — is almost over. And the past dispensation, with only seven years remaining, in which God will complete His dealings with Israel, is almost over as well.
The six days, the 6,000 years, are almost over. God’s restorative work is almost finished, and the new order of Sons is about to be manifested for the entire creation to behold. That day is almost upon us. Man’s Day is about to end, and the Lord’s Day is about to begin.
And in that coming day, during the earth’s coming Sabbath, that which is presently out of place will then be in place. In that day, following Satan and his angels having been put down, God’s three firstborn Sons will be exalted together. Only then will order be restored, with perfection once again existing in God’s ordered structure of the earth’s government.