top of page
  • Writer's picturePastor Hans Fiene

Matins Devotion: March 14, 2024

Everybody loves a great story, but even more than this, everybody loves a great true story. If you’re a fiction writer and you come up with a great tale about love and triumph, people will like it. But they’ll like it much more if it’s something that actually happened. That’s why movies generally do well when advertisers can say “based on the incredible true story.”

Now, the story of Joseph would certainly be among the greatest stories ever told even if it were a work of fiction. But there’s something even greater than this. The story of Joseph isn’t just great. And the story of Joseph isn’t just true. The story of Joseph is yours. It belongs to you. It’s a story that you are part of because the heart of the story is Christ.

Why does Joseph break down in tears in our reading today? Why does he choose this moment and the moment to reveal who he is to his brothers? It’s because Judah has just stood before him and essentially said, “my brother Benjamin is guilty of stealing from you. But don’t punish him. Punish me instead. Condemn me, the innocent one. Let me bear the condemnation and set him free.” 

In other words, Judah stands before Joseph and confesses the substitutionary atonement. He echoes the promise of the Messiah, God’s promise to send a sinless Savior into the world who will die for the condemned. Judah shows Joseph that he still believes the promise God gave to their grandfather Isaac atop Mount Moriah when God provided a ram at the last moment to die in the place of the one condemned. 

That’s what drives Joseph to tears. For the first time in about 20 years, he hears the preaching of the Gospel. He hears the promise of Jesus Christ. That’s what makes it possible for Joseph to have peace with his brothers.

And that’s what makes it possible for you to have peace with yours. In Christ, all of your sins have been forgiven. In Christ, all sins committed against you have been equally erased from existence. In the blood of the Lamb, your condemnation has been taken away and so has the condemnation of those who sinned against you. What your brothers meant for evil against you, God can and will use for your good, strengthening you and conforming you to the image of his son. So forgive like Joseph. Show mercy like Joseph. Heal the divide like Joseph. Be like Joseph because, through the blood of Jesus Christ, Joseph’s story is your own.

Recent Posts

See All

Matins Devotion: April 18, 2024

Luke 8:1-21 If I were to give advice to seminarians or young pastors about the parable of the sower and the seed, I would humbly suggest that preaching on this text is like walking on a solid, firm ro

Matins Devotion: April 15, 2024

Luke 7:1-17 Jesus Christ is Lord of heaven and earth. He has authority over every atom of the sea and the dry land. He owns the very air we breathe and is master of the vibrations that pierce through

Matins Devotion: April 8, 2024

Luke 4:16–30 In politics, you’ll rarely hear a politician say “don’t vote for me for the wrong reasons.” Most of the time, they don’t care if you vote for them because you misunderstand their position


bottom of page