When the brothers returned to Canaan, they rehearsed to their father all that had taken
place in Egypt. Realizing the trouble they were in, Jacob said to his sons, "Me have ye
bereaved of my children: Joseph is not, and Simeon is not, and ye will take Benjamin
away: all these things are against me" (Gen. 42:36). Jacob later realized that all these
things were really for him in God's sovereign plan.
All he could see was the immediate circumstances and, as far as he was concerned,
there was no hope whatever. The son passed the tests better than the father. Joseph
responded to hopeless situations better than Jacob. Faith had conquered for Joseph,
but Jacob was slow to see that God could bring good out of these circumstances.
Reuben tried to assure his father that Benjamin would be safe when they took him to
Egypt. Reuben said, "Slay my two sons, if I bring him not to thee: deliver him into my
hand, and I will bring him to thee again" (v. 37). But it was impossible for Jacob to see
any possibility of allowing Benjamin to go to Egypt.
Jacob did not think he could stand any more grief, but his sons knew it was hopeless to
return to Egypt without their youngest brother.
Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the Lord (Ps.