“…we are honest men…”Genesis 42:11
Ten of Jacob’s sons were sent to Egypt to purchase food during the famine in the land. As they stood in front of the governor, Zaphnath-Paaneah, they were being accused of being spies. In their defense, they made a claim, “we are honest men.” This, unfortunately, was not the case. Sure, they were hard-working men who put in a full day’s work. They were the “salt of the earth” type, good ‘ole boys, probably. But honest? Nothing was farther from the truth. And the statement they made would be the very words that would bring them to repentance.
These men had past secrets that still needed to confessed. They never admitted or repented. The Bible tells us everything will be brought to light; that is certainly the case in this setting. In their view, they were honest men in most areas of their lives. It is that incorrect view, however, that kept them from turning away from their sin. In light of most people, they were decent enough men, but as the governor examined them, their hearts were exposed and brought to light within themselves. Inside, they began to wake up and realize who they were.
Thirteen years earlier, these brothers had sold Joseph into slavery and lied to their father about it. As they claimed they were honest men, the sin they had buried arose within them, and now it was time to be dealt with.
The beautiful picture in this story is this; these men were put into places that made them begin realizing how their sin made others feel. It separated them from their family. As they began to honestly examine their hearts, they were brought into restoration in love. The past was forgiven and forgotten.
The wrong view of self can keep you from right standing with God. If you have not confessed your sins to God (not to man because it is God alone you have sinned against), it is time to do so. He will not deal harshly with you but restore you in love. Come back to the family of Christ.
“It’s a wonderful thing when we can come through times of trial…, burying past hurts and rejoicing in present blessings, being “forgetful” and “fruitful” at the same time. What a tragedy when people remember the painful things others have done to them, and all their lives carry bitterness that robs them of peace and joy.”Warren Wiersbe