57. Taking of Hostages 5
(sound of horses’ hoofs)
Joseph rode through Egypt on one of the King’s chariots. Everyone waved to him. The Pharaoh named him as his assistant. With his signet ring he gave Joseph his authority. Joseph drove past the ripe fields and palm plantations.
It happened just as God said it would: a huge harvest came.
(Background sound: hammering and knocking)
Joseph built many storage buildings. Huge amounts of grain were stored. Joseph’s plans were perfect. For just as he had said, seven years of famine came after the seven years of plenty. The people became hungry and went to the Pharaoh.
People: "I’m hungry! We’re starving. Give us something to eat for our children."
Pharaoh: "Joseph is responsible to help you. Do whatever he says."
They came from everywhere. Even from foreign lands. Ten men bowed before him. He recognized them immediately. They were his brothers. Joseph thought about his dreams, about their hate for him, and that they had sold him as a slave. But they did not recognize him at all.
Joseph talked sternly to them.
Joseph: "Where did you come from?"
Brother: "We came from the land of Canaan and want to buy grain."
Joseph: "You’re lying. You’re spies!"
Brother: "No, honest! We’re twelve brothers. One is still at home and the other is dead."
Joseph: "I don’t believe a word. But because I love God, I’ll give you grain. But I want you to come again with your other brother. One of you will stay here to make sure you obey me."
Why was Joseph so firm? Did he want to get back at them? No! He just wanted to test his brothers. He wanted to see if they had changed.
They had no idea that Joseph understood them when they talked with each other.
Brother: "This is certainly the punishment for what we did to Joseph."
Joseph began to cry when he heard this. But he still didn’t tell them who he was. With all the grain they needed, the brothers returned home and Simeon stayed back in Egypt.
Father Jacob was horrified when he heard the details of their trip. But when the grain was eaten up, they had to return to Egypt, and this time with Benjamin. The brothers were afraid as they approached Egypt the second time.
And then? The next drama will tell you what happened.
People: Narrator, people, Pharaoh, Joseph, brother
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