Judah and His Brothers

Family leadership can be a messy business.

Take the case of Judah who came up with a messy plan to save his brother Joseph from gruesome death at the hands of his brothers:

“And Judah said unto his brothers: What profit is it if we slay our brother and conceal his blood?  Come, and let us sell him to the Ishmaelites, and let not our hand be upon him; for he is our brother and our flesh. And his brothers were content” (Genesis 37:26-27).

A messy solution to a sticky problem, to say the least.

But courage and willingness to sacrifice are often the price for true leadership.

Years later when Judah and the brothers were before the now mature Joseph, unrecognizable in his Egyptian appearance and station, it was Judah who once more delivered a brother from disaster—this time not Joseph but instead Joseph’s beloved brother Benjamin:

“Now therefore, I pray you, let your servant abide instead of the lad a bondman to my lord; and let the lad go up with his brothers. For how shall I go up to my father, and the lad be not with me? Lest peradventure I see the evil that shall come on my father” (Genesis 44:33-34).

Messy problems often require bold solutions. And the best “bold” solution is often the one nobody else can see or that nobody else is willing to pursue.

Fortunately, we have a Brother willing to enact the bold solution—the only solution that could rescue His lost family: Jesus, the second Adam, who has not only been able to see the solution but who has also been willing to take the step that no one else could take. As Judah did for his brother, so Jesus has done for humanity—the bold thing necessary to save the family that bears His Father’s image.

Let us follow our LORD’S example and have the courage to make the sacrifices necessary to work redemption in our own families.

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