As Parsha Vayigash starts, Joseph have not revealed his identity yet to his brothers. Joseph deliberately framed up his younger brother Benjamin for stealing his divining goblet, and consequently declaring that as punishment, Benjamin shall be enslaved in Egypt. Judah, his brother, pleaded Joseph to enslave him instead in lieu of their youngest brother (Gen 44:33). In the course of Judah’s plea, he reminded Joseph that he has an elderly father and narrated why Benjamin did not initially go down to Egypt with them and the reason why he needs return to Canaan lest their father will die (Gen 44:31). Joseph eventually revealed his identity and his brothers were overcame with by shame and remorse but Joseph comforted them instead.
There are several things that we need to observe as we dissect this Parashat with regards to testing, biblical justice, mercy, the repentance, forgiveness, acceptance and the reward of doing the right things. This true story will be read year after year until the end of time and it will good for us to learn from the patriarchs for our own benefit.
Dear friends, don’t regard as strange the fiery ordeal occurring among you to test you, as if something extraordinary were happening to you.Rather, to the extent that you share the fellowship of the Messiah’s sufferings, rejoice; so that you will rejoice even more when his Sh’khinah is revealed.