Joseph is the twelfth child of Jacob and the first son of Rachel; he was the last child born in Paddan Aram. The NIV bible says the name means “may He add” Rachel was believing to have another son. He is the first-born son of the “loved” wife and it showed when he met Esau; Rachel and Joseph were in the back far away from the first attack (Genesis 33:2).
Deuteronomy 33: 13 About Joseph he said: “May the Lord bless his land with the precious dew from heaven above and with the deep waters that lie below; 14 with the best the sun brings forth and the finest the moon can yield; 15 with the choicest gifts of the ancient mountains and the fruitfulness of the everlasting hills; 16 with the best gifts of the earth and its fullness and the favor of him who dwelt in the burning bush. Let all these rest on the head of Joseph, on the brow of the prince among his brothers. 17 In majesty he is like a firstborn bull; his horns are the horns of a wild ox. With them he will gore the nations, even those at the ends of the earth. Such are the ten thousands of Ephraim; such are the thousands of Manasseh.” (NIV)
Genesis 49:22 “Joseph is a fruitful vine, a fruitful vine near a spring,
whose branches climb over a wall. 23 With bitterness archers attacked him; they shot at him with hostility. 24 But his bow remained steady, his strong arms stayed limber, because of the hand of the Mighty One of Jacob, because of the Shepherd, the Rock of Israel, 25 because of your father’s God, who helps you, because of the Almighty, who blesses you with blessings of the heavens above, blessings of the deep that lies below, blessings of the breast and womb. 26 Your father’s blessings are greater than the blessings of the ancient mountains, than the bounty of the age-old hills. Let all these rest on the head of Joseph, on the brow of the prince among his brothers. (NIV)
Jacob and Moses in their blessings pretty much gave it all to Joseph and his children. I really don’t have a lot to say about Joseph because I think every pastor has at least two Joseph sermons. He has all kind of types and shadows from being a type of Jesus to a picture of blessing and faithfulness in hard times.
In Genesis 47 Joseph does his job and gives all of the land of Egypt to Pharaoh. Oh, we are supposed to do as excellent job for a heathen boss. This is done in the last five years of the famine after his family has joined him.
It is interesting that Jacob continues the “second son” being first in Genesis 48; he was a second son, Joseph is the “second son” and was placed before even Judah as noted in Genesis 48:22 and 1 Chronicles 5:2. Ephraim’s children do live up to all the predictions and play important roles in Israel’s history. In Amos and Obadiah the children are grouped again under the name of Joseph and in Revelation 7 Manasseh is mentioned by name but Ephraim is not and instead it is the “tribe of Joseph.”
Pictures from: http://www.freebibleimages.org/photos/joseph-dreams/