A Study in the Life of Joseph : Lesson #1 Joseph hated by his brethren.

A Study in the Life of Joseph : Lesson  #1 Joseph Hated by his Brethren

(Genesis 37:2-19)

In this series we are going to be studying the life of Joseph. Joseph is one of the greatest types of Jesus Christ in the word of God, and we will point these things out as we go through these lessons. Also in the life of Joseph we see how God works behind the scenes to accomplish great things. Therefore as we study the life of Joseph we will see many spiritual applications that we can use in our own lives today.

Who was Joseph?

Joseph was the 11th son of Jacob who was also named Israel. Israel would have another son, Benjamin, but it was Joseph who was the son of his old age. Israel had 4 wives. There was Leah and Rachel who were sisters, and then each one of them gave a handmaid to him to marry and have children by. Rachel could not have children at first but eventually the Lord blessed here and allowed her to have a son. Joseph was her firstborn. This automatically made Joseph special to Israel because he loved Rachel more than Leah from the start. (Genesis 29-30)

Why was Joseph hated by his brethren?

Joseph was hated by his brethren because he was the favorite of their father, Jacob. Jacob showed this love for Joseph by making him a coat of many colors. When we look at garments of many colors in the word of God they are usually connected with leadership or royalty. In Judges 5:30 we see that Sisera’s mother said that he as a great warrior should have garments of many colors. In 2 Samuel 13:18 we see that the virgin daughters of David had garments of many colors representing royalty. It is possible that by giving Joseph this coat of many colors Jacob was showing the boys that Joseph would be the main heir.

Joseph was also hated by his brethren because of the dreams that he had. These dreams spoke of him one day ruling over them. This coupled with the coat of many colors was just too much for them and their hatred grew to the point that they conspired to kill him.

How was Joseph a type of Jesus Christ in this passage?

1)  He brought an evil report of his brethren (verse 2) – see John 7:7 for Jesus.

2)  He was loved by his father (verse 3) – see Matthew 17:5 for Jesus.

3)  He was hated by his brethren (verse 4) – see John 15:24-25 for Jesus.

4)  They asked if he would reign over them (verse 8) – see Luke 19:14 for Jesus.

5)  His brethren envied him (verse 11) – see Mark 15:10 for Jesus.

6)  He was sent by his father (verse 13) – see John 20:21 for Jesus.

7)  He said I seek my brethren (verse 16) – see Luke 19:10 for Jesus.

8)  They conspired against him to kill him (verse 18) – see Luke 20:13,14 for Jesus.


What are the spiritual lessons for us from the passage?

The first thing to note is that the world will hate us because it hated Jesus Christ (John 17:14).Remember that people will tolerate you as long as you do not try to show them that they are wrong or need Jesus, but has soon has you make a stand for the word of God and Jesus Christ you will see them turn on you.

The second thing for us to learn is that envy is one of the main things at the root of hatred. Joseph brothers envied him because of the love, gifts, and positions that his father gave him. Note that Jesus said in John 17:14 that the world will hate you because he has given you his word. Envy is a very dangerous thing and it is the reason that they delivered Jesus to Pilate. That is why Proverbs 27:4 says who is able to stand before envy.

Last of all we can see the progression of hatred and how it grows. In verse 4 they could not speak peaceably with Joseph. When you cannot speak peaceably with someone you are on the road to hating them. Then they hated him more in verse 5 because of his dreams and his words verse 8. When you find yourself hating someone’s success you are in a dangerous place. Next they envied him in verse 11. Hate leads to envy and vice versa. Last of all they conspired to kill him in verse 18. This can be the result of hatred and envy if we are not careful.


A Study in the Life of Joseph : Lesson  #1 Joseph Hated by his Brethren

(Genesis 37:2-19)



1)  Who was Joseph?


2)  Why was Joseph hated by his brethren?


3)  How is Joseph a type of Jesus Christ in this passage?


4)  What is the spiritual application for us in this passage?