45:1 Joseph was no longer able to control himself before all his attendants, 1 so he cried out, “Make everyone go out from my presence!” No one remained 2 with Joseph when he made himself known to his brothers. 45:2 He wept loudly; 3 the Egyptians heard it and Pharaoh’s household heard about it. 4
45:3 Joseph said to his brothers, “I am Joseph! Is my father still alive?” His brothers could not answer him because they were dumbfounded before him. 45:4 Joseph said to his brothers, “Come closer to me,” so they came near. Then he said, “I am Joseph your brother, whom you sold into Egypt. 45:5 Now, do not be upset and do not be angry with yourselves because you sold me here, 5 for God sent me 6 ahead of you to preserve life! 45:6 For these past two years there has been famine in 7 the land and for five more years there will be neither plowing nor harvesting. 45:7 God sent me 8 ahead of you to preserve you 9 on the earth and to save your lives 10 by a great deliverance. 45:8 So now, it is not you who sent me here, but God. He has made me an adviser 11 to Pharaoh, lord over all his household, and ruler over all the land of Egypt. 45:9 Now go up to my father quickly 12 and tell him, ‘This is what your son Joseph says: “God has made me lord of all Egypt. Come down to me; do not delay! 45:10 You will live 13 in the land of Goshen, and you will be near me – you, your children, your grandchildren, your flocks, your herds, and everything you have. 45:11 I will provide you with food 14 there because there will be five more years of famine. Otherwise you would become poor – you, your household, and everyone who belongs to you.”’ 45:12 You and my brother Benjamin can certainly see with your own eyes that I really am the one who speaks to you. 15 45:13 So tell 16 my father about all my honor in Egypt and about everything you have seen. But bring my father down here quickly!” 17
[45:5] 6 sn You sold me here, for God sent me. The tension remains as to how the brothers’ wickedness and God’s intentions work together. Clearly God is able to transform the actions of wickedness to bring about some gracious end. But this is saying more than that; it is saying that from the beginning it was God who sent Joseph here. Although harmonization of these ideas remains humanly impossible, the divine intention is what should be the focus. Only that will enable reconciliation.