Imatges de pÓgina
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conduct of his brethren. He was vexed with their evil words and evil deeds, there fore he left them, could not bear to stay with them any longer. He had seen and heard such things as he knew were sinful. – What these things were we are not told. Jacob's sons did those things when absent from their father's presence, which they dare not do when at home. The mind of pious Joseph was hurt, for he appeared to have walked in the fear of God and to have remembered his Creator in the days of his youth. His father would naturally inquire the reason of his having his brethren and returning home. He told his father what he had seen and heard and it was an evil report, not a good one. How much must Jacob feel when he had heard what Joseph had to say.!

II. JACOB'S great PARTIALITY for JOSEPH.

"Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children; because he was the Son of his old age: and he made him a coat of many colours. This was very wrong in Jacob to love Joseph more than all his other children: and he was still more to be blamed for showing his partiality

ity in such a manner as to give Joseph a finer coat than the rest of his brethren. Joseph might be more obedient, more affectionate and dutiful to him than the rest of his children, on that account he might love him more, but it was because he was the son of his old age. In this respect Benjamin ought to have had the largest share of Jacob's love, but Benjamin was but an infant child, scarcely twelve months old. Joseph was the only son that had any love to God in his heart, and that made him dutiful to his father. This coat of many colours was afterward the cause of great grief and pain to Jacob. It might be of small value in itself, but as a work of superior regard it only excited the envy and i will of his brethren.

IV. The HATRED of JOSEPH'S BRETHREN. "And when his brethren saw that their father loved him more than all his brethren, they hated him and could not speak peaceably unto him. This was the consequence of Jacob's partiality and his giving Joseph a coat of many colours. Joseph might be called his father's favorite son, his darling boy. He loved him for the sake of his mother. Joseph

seph was probably the image of his mother "beautiful and well favored." It was the resemblance that he bore to his mother that gave him such a lovely appearance in the eyes of his father. He saw the living picture of his beloved Rachel in Joseph's face. His father did not keep him at home while his brethren were abroad in the field. No, he shared their labours and fatigues, and fed the flock of his father. Joseph did not bring the evil report of

their conduct as a tále bearer desirous of making mischief and raising himself in his father's favor at their expence. No, it was either told in answer to his father's inquiries, or that his father might suitably reprove and admonish his brethren. When his brethren came home Jacob no doubt reproved them for their evil deeds, they knew who it was that told their father. Joseph's prudent, pious and dutiful conduct was a continual reproach to them, and they hated him. When they saw what Jacob gave to Joseph, their hatred was so much in. creased that they could not speak peaceably unto him. Conscious of his superior excel lency they considered Jacob's approbation of bis conduct as a silent but continual reproof to

to them. When a parent feels and disco vers a partiality for one child above another he himself is the cause of all the evil that shall arise to wound his own peace. The object of his affection may become a spoiled child, a wicked youth and an abandoned chaFacter. Let the favorite child remember that he is laying the foundation of much unhappiness to himself, as well as the rest of the family."

V. CATECHETICAL QUESTIONS.

1. What is said of Jacob in the first verse of the chapter from whence the words of the Text are taken? And Jacob dwelt in the land wherein his father was a stranger,

2. How old was Joseph when he fed his fa. ther's flock? Seventeen years old.

3. With whom did he feed his father's flock? With his brethren.

4. He had many brethren, was he with any of them in particular or all of them? And the lad was with the sons of Bilhah and with the sons of Zilpah.

5. What account did Joseph bring to his fa

ther

ther of their conduct? And he brought unto his father their evil3 report.

6. Why did Jacob love Joseph more than all his children? Because lie was the son of his ld age.

7. How did Jacob shew his love for Joseph ? And he made him a coat of many colours.

8. When his brethren saw that their father loved him more than all his brethren, what effect had it on their mind's? They hated him and could not speak paccably unto him.

V. PRACTICAL ADDRESS,

Joseph was seventeen years old when he hated sin and loved God, when he would not be partaker with the crimes of his brethren. Sin is sin, when committed by a brother, and we must hate sin wherever we see it. He would not join in their wickedness. He was deaf to their persuasions, unmindful of their proaches, and determined to fear God, to hate sin, and leve holiness. His conduct and manner at that age was more prü, dent and dignified than the rest of Jacob's children. Though he was but a lad, he had

the

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