Joseph and Jesus #1

Friday, January 20, 2023

“These are the generations of Jacob. Joseph, being seventeen years old, was feeding the flock with his brethren; and the lad was with the sons of Bilhah, and with the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives: and Joseph brought unto his father their evil report” (Genesis 37:2 KJV).

Let us search the Scriptures to see how Joseph is a type of the antitype Jesus….

In Bible study, a “type” is someone or something that foreshadows, previews, or indicates someone or something similar that will arise later (the “antitype”). Think of it as a prophecy, God announcing the future in advance. That is to say, the Holy Spirit will present a person or event early in the Bible canon, whose traits a subsequent person or event will share. What was true of the former will, in whole or in part, be descriptive of the latter. Over the course of the next several studies we will use Joseph and Jesus to illustrate this principle.

For example, if we look at today’s Scripture, we observe how Joseph is a son of Jacob. Jacob, remember, is a son of Isaac, and Isaac is a son of Abraham. If we turn to Luke chapter 3, Jesus’ human and biological genealogy through Mary His mother, we see His ancestors are “Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob” (see verses 23,34). Therefore, Joseph and Jesus (assuming human flesh 17 centuries later) are both sons of Jacob.

Being more specific, we will note how Joseph is a shepherd, feeding the flock with his brethren” (today’s Scripture). Likewise, Jesus, serving Father God and ministering to Israel, is “the good shepherd (John 10:11,14), asserting, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture [be fed] (verse 9). Both Joseph and Jesus are shepherds of their fathers’ sheep.

To take it a step further, “Now Israel [Jacob] loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age” (Genesis 37:3). Father God announced concerning Jesus, “And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3:17). Both Joseph and Jesus are dearly beloved of their fathers.

Here are just a few shared characteristics….