The Big Feast
by Linda Sue Pochodzay Edwards
Text Version | Afrikaans
Kari was quite worried. She and her family were going on a trip to visit her aunt, uncle, and cousin. The last time she had been with her cousin, they had gotten into a big argument. Lauren had found that one of her CDs had gotten broken and she had blamed Kari. Even though Kari didn't break the CD, there was nothing she could say that would convince Lauren that she was telling the truth. The two girls didn't speak to each other for the next two days.
"I hope this isn't going to be a horrible trip," Kari thought, remembering the previous incident. "I wonder if Lauren still hates me?"
When they finally arrived at Lauren's house, Kari was almost overcome with fear. She inched her way slowly up the steps and rang the doorbell. Kari could hardly believe it when Lauren threw open the door and gave her a big bear hug. When Kari asked if she was still mad at her about the CD, Lauren was surprised that she still remembered it. "Oh, that," she said."I got over that a long time ago. I know you didn't do it. I probably stepped on it myself, and besides, I was able to buy another one that I like better. Come on! Let's play!"
Kari realized that all her worry was for nothing. She was glad that her friendship with her cousin had been restored and they had a wonderful, fun-filled week together.
Some time had passed since Joseph's brothers went on their l-o-n-g shopping trip to Egypt. The famine was still great in all the land and they knew the food wasn't going to last much longer. Finally the day came when their father, Jacob, told them they had to go back to Egypt to buy more food. OH, MY! That was one trip they were certainly hoping not to have to repeat!
Judah spoke to his father: "The man in charge told us we are not allowed to go back unless we take Benjamin. There's just no way around it. If you allow us to take Benjamin, we will go, but if you don't, there is no point in us even going. He will turn us away. . . or worse. He might throw us all in jail or even have us killed. No!" Judah exclaimed adamantly. "We just can't go back without Benjamin."
"Why are you doing this to me?" Jacob asked in much distress. "Why did you even tell the man that you had another brother?"
"We had no choice," Judah replied. "The man asked all about us. He asked if our father was alive and he asked if we had another brother. We had to tell him. How could we know that he was going to tell us to bring our other brother?"
Judah continued pleading with his father: "I promise that he will come back home safely. If not, put the blame totally on me and do whatever you want to me in return. If we hadn't spent so long arguing with you about this, we could have been to Egypt and back already."
Jacob saw that there was no way he was going to win this argument. There was hardly any food left and they would all starve if the brothers didn't go to Egypt and quickly return. He finally conceded and allowed Benjamin to go with his brothers.
"This is what you need to do," Jacob instructed. "Put together a nice present for the man in charge. Take the best dried fruit we have and add a little honey, spices, and nuts to the package. Take double the amount of money needed to purchase the food, and also take the money that was left in your sack the last time. Take your brother Benjamin, and I pray that God will give you mercy in the sight of the man and he will allow both Simeon and Benjamin to return home."
The ten brothers began preparing for the second, l-o-n-g shopping trip. Reuben read the list as Levi checked the items:
After making sure the supplies were securely tied to the donkeys, they put together the gift package for the man in charge, took double the money that was needed to purchase the food, plus the money that had been left in their sacks the previous time, and started on their journey.
This trip was just as long and miserable as the first.
The heat was nearly unbearable. . .
The ground was dry and dusty. . .
The breezes were hot. . .
They had to sleep on the ground. . .
and . . .
they were hungry.
The difference between this trip and the previous one was that this time they were nervous . . . and worried . . . and fearful. They had several conversations along the way, but there were a few questions they just couldn't get out of their minds:
"What if the man in charge still thinks we are spies?"
"What if he won't release Simeon from prison?"
"What if he throws us all in jail?"
But the most worrisome "what if" questions of them all were:
"What if something happens to Benjamin? How could we ever face our father if we have to go home without Benjamin?"
After several days of travel, the warehouse was in sight. They were growing more and more worried and fearful. They found a good place to tie the donkeys and cleaned themselves up. They wanted to be as presentable as possible so the man in charge would not think they were just dirty spies.
They gathered up the gift package and all the money and timidly made their way to the warehouse to buy food. The man in charge had seen them coming and had one of his servants waiting for them. He told the servant to take the brothers to his house and have a feast prepared for them.
The brothers were terribly frightened.
"What does this mean? Why were we brought to the man's house?" they wondered.
"What is he going to do to us?"
"Is he going to keep us all as slaves?"
They began nervously talking to one of the servants. "Sir, we came here the first time to buy food. On our way home when we opened our sack, we found that the money we gave you was still in the sack. We don't know how it got there. . . honestly! To prove that we are honest men, we brought all that money back, plus more. We didn't do anything wrong! Really, we didn't!"
The servant noticed the fear on their faces and in their voices. "Calm down," he said. "There is no reason to be afraid," he continued. "I have the money that you gave me for the food. The God of your father must have put that money in your sacks." Then the servant walked away.
When the servant returned, the brothers couldn't believe their eyes. Standing right in front of them was their brother Simeon. They had expected him to have been locked away in prison or possibly even dead. They didn't know if they would ever see him again, and yet, here he was, in that very room with them! What a joyous reunion that was!
After they finished hugging and greeting Simeon, the servant gave them water to wash their feet, which was a sign of welcome and hospitality in those days. Then he went outside and gave their donkeys food and water.
The brothers didn't understand why they were being treated so well. They had heard they were going to eat at that house with the man in charge and they were very confused about the whole matter. This was the same person who had been mean to them and called them spies. Now this man, the second most important man in all Egypt, wanted to have his dinner with them. They were very puzzled and didn't quite know what to think.
When Joseph, the man in charge, walked into the house, they all stooped to the floor and bowed down to him. Joseph asked, "Is your father still alive?"
"Yes, he is alive and in good health, Sir," they replied, as they were still bowing.
Joseph recognized his brother Benjamin in the crowd. "Is this your youngest brother?" he asked.
"Yes, Sir. This is our youngest brother," they replied, as they were still bowing.
Joseph was having a hard time controlling his emotions. He went into another room and wept cries of joy at having seen his youngest brother whom he hadn't seen since they were children. He composed himself, washed his face, and prepared to eat with his brothers.
It was the custom in those days that the Egyptians did not eat with foreigners. Joseph, who had been accepted by the Eyptians, given an Egyptian name, and who held a place of authority in Egypt, was considered by all to be an Egyptian, even though he had originally come as a slave. So he had a small table set for himself and a larger table set for his brothers.
He told his servants how to arrange the seating at the table.
The brothers were quite amazed that this man had seated them all in order, according to their age. "How could he know this?" they questioned among themselves.
Then Joseph had the platters of food served. Each man received a large platter with plenty of food, but Benjamin's platter was piled high. His had FIVE times more food than the others.
Joseph wanted Benjamin to have more than the others for two reasons: First, Benjamin was his only full brother and he loved him very much; the others were his half brothers. Second, Joseph wanted to test the other brothers to see if they would be jealous that Benjamin received more than they did.
Happily, the brothers passed this test. They did not become jealous or angry. They talked and laughed and they all enjoyed their big feast, which was fit for a king.
However, they still didn't know that the
man in charge was their own brother,
Why did the brothers go to Egypt?
Why did Jacob not want Benjamin to go?
What did the brothers take as a gift for the man in charge?
Who was the man in charge?
Was Simeon ever released from prison?
Why was Benjamin given more than the others?
Did the brothers pass the test?
Even though we may not always know why things happen
as they do, God does, and He is always in control.
A VERSE TO LEARN
"Peace be to you, fear not" (Genesis 43:23).
Dear God, thank You for always being in control
and knowing what is best for us. Help us to
always trust You. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
CAN YOU FIND THIS STORY IN THE BIBLE?
Joseph and His Brothers
Every Man's Money Was in His Sack
Joseph's Brothers Bowed Before Him
Egypt Coloring Pages
Joseph Colouring Book (Bible Heroes)
Bible Colour and Learn 7: Joseph
Bible Story Cards Coloring Book - Old Testament
Bible Story Coloring Pages (Reproducible)
Children's Coloring Books
My Bible Coloring Book (Shirley Dobson)
Old Testament Scenes Stained Glass Coloring Book
Beginner's Bible: Joseph & His Brothers (I Can Read)
Benjamin Goes To Egypt With His Brothers
Joseph and the Hidden Sacks of Silver
Joseph Forgives His Brothers (Arch Books)
(Discover 4 Yourself Inductive Bible Studies for Kids)
Joseph Saves His People
Joseph's Ten Brothers Go to Egypt
The Birth of a Nation: Abraham to Joseph (listen and read online)
The Great Famine
100 Bible Stories 100 Bible Songs w/2 CD
Baby's First Bible
Bible in Pictures For Toddlers
Early Reader's Bible
Five Minute Devotions for Children (ages 4-8)
The Children's Illustrated Bible
Pilgrim's Progress illustrated for children
Spanish Children's Books
The Picture Bible (Spanish)
God's Secret Agent: Joseph (King of Clubs) (TNT Ministries)
Creation by Design Activity Book 1: Joseph & His Brothers
Joseph Saves His Family (Pack of 10) (Pencil Fun Book)
Joseph's Journal (Newsbox Series)
Encyclopedia Of Bible Games For Children's Ministry
The Humongous Book of Games for Children's Ministry
Amazing Bible Mazes
Memory Verse Games for Kids (Take Me Through the Bible Series)
Big Book Of Bible Puzzles (Reproducible)
Bible Puzzles: Word Search
Big Book Of Bible Story Activity Pages V1 (Gospel Light Big Books)
Christian and educational toys
Children's Activity Books
Bible Word Search
Fear Not Memory Verse Activity
Joseph Word Search
The Big Feast Multiple Choice Worksheet
Joseph Tests His Brothers (Requires Adobe Acrobat Reader)
Joseph Activities and Games
Make Your Own Bible Game
Puppet Crafts For Kids
Craft Ideas For Any Story
Bible Crafts & More (Ages 6-8)
Bible Crafts On A Shoestring Budget (Ages 5-10)
Big Book of Bible Crafts (Ages 3-12)
Encyclopedia Of Bible Crafts For Preschoolers
Praise God With...Craft Series
Praise God with a Paper Plate (PreK-Grade 2)
Really Big Book Of Cool Crafts For Kids w/CD-Ages 4-12 (Reproducible)
Children's Crafts & Hobbies
Joseph DVD (Bible Collection)
Heroes of the Bible (Veggie Tales)
Joseph DVD by Sight & Sound
Joseph & the Coat of Many Colors (Greatest Heroes & Legends)
Joseph King of Dreams
Joseph Y Su Abrigo De Muchos (EMI-CMG)
The Story of Jacob and Joseph
Veggie Tales: Heroes of the Bible
What's in the Bible DVD 1: In the Beginning—Genesis
Amazing Bible Stories
Read and Share Ultimate Bible Storybook with 2 DVDs
The Bible Collection 6 DVD Set
Bible story DVDs
Romans 8:28 - Sheet Music (Requires Adobe Acrobat Reader)
In His Dreams - Sheet Music (Requires Adobe Acrobat Reader)
RESOURCES FOR PARENTS AND TEACHERS
God's Secret Agent: Joseph (King of Clubs) (TNT Ministries)
Joseph (Jewish Virtual Library)
Joseph: A Story
Joseph Bible Story Series
Joseph by F B Meyer
801 Questions Kids Ask About God (Focus on the Family)
African American Resources
Almost Every Answer for Practically Any Teacher (Bruce Wilkinson)
Bible Crafts and Activities for Any Story
Big Book of Bible Games (Gospel Light)
Bulletin Board helps
Chicken Soup for the Teacher's Soul
Children's Church Resources
Church Nanny Sos: Teaching Discipline Essentials for Preschool Ministry Volunteers
52 Games That Teach The Bible
Free educational videos
God's Servants Teach Me (Instant Bible Lessons)
God's Wisdom for Little Boys: Character-Building Fun from Proverbs
Help! I'm a Sunday School Teacher (Focus on the Family)
How To Lead a Child To Christ
King James Version Award Bibles
Leading Little Ones to God: A Child's Book of Bible Teachings
Lord Teach Me To Pray For Kids (Kay Arthur)
Making Children Mind Without Losing Yours
Memory Verse Ideas
Memory Verse Resources
Pray & Play Bible for Young Children
Resources for Teachers
Seven Laws of the Learner (Bruce Wilkinson)
Sunday School Attendance Boosters: 165 Fresh Ideas
Sunday school resources
Talking to God (Instant Bible Lessons)
Teachers' Reproducible Classroom Pages
Teaching Children Memory Verses Ages 4-5
Teaching Children To Pray Ages 4-5
Teaching to Change Lives (by Howard Hendrickss)
The Big Book of Bible Skits
Things To Make Craft Activities
Vacation Bible School
What Every Sunday School Teacher Should Know
(by Elmer Towns)
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Last updated November 7, 2016.
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