Tuesday - The Pitfall Of Betrayal

Lesson Scriptures: Genesis 37:1-5, 19-24, 26-27

Key Lesson Theme: “The Pitfall Of Betrayal”

Today's Lesson: Tuesday, January 18

For The Podcast Version: Subscribe on Soundcloud or iTunes

Genesis 37:1-5

1 Jacob lived in the land where his father had stayed, the land of Canaan.

2 These are the family records of Jacob. At seventeen years of age, Joseph tended sheep with his brothers. The young man was working with the sons of Bilhah and Zilpah, his father’s wives, and he brought a bad report about them to their father.

3 Now Israel loved Joseph more than his other sons because Joseph was a son born to him in his old age, and he made a long-sleeved robe for him.

4 When his brothers saw that their father loved him more than all his brothers, they hated him and could not bring themselves to speak peaceably to him.

5 Then Joseph had a dream. When he told it to his brothers, they hated him even more.


Someone has noted that every family is dysfunctional to some degree in some way. Just as no person is perfect, no family is perfect because families are made up of imperfect people. Some of the struggle results from having made poor choices; some is a by-product of life circumstances over which they had little or no control. This was true in the family of the patriarch Jacob. Even families who have a relationship with the Lord are not perfect.

The sons, including Joseph, were out feeding the flock, no small or easy task. Given Jacob’s wealth, he probably had many flocks and herds. Joseph did not endear himself to his brothers when he brought a bad report about them to their father. We are not told what was the content of the report, but apparently the brothers were guilty of doing some things that conflicted with Joseph’s sense of right and wrong or that he knew would be displeasing to their father. We are left to make up our own minds whether Joseph was a tattletale younger brother or truly had the best interest of his father and his flocks in mind. Even if Joseph’s intent was right, his brother’s perception of what he was doing angered them and set the stage for conflict.

Because Israel loved Joseph more than all his children, … he made him a coat of many colors. Apparently, this special coat was fabricated of variant colors of cloth that made it more ornate than the garments most people would wear, especially working people.

If the special robe weren’t enough to agitate his brothers, consider the dreams Joseph claimed to have. Driven either by his immaturity, ego, naiveté, or youthful brashness, Joseph told it to his brothers. It was one thing to have the dreams; yet another to tell them. Whatever response he expected, here is what he got: they hated him even more.

What are some lasting truths from Genesis 37:1-5?

  • Favoritism, envy, and resentment among members of a group can lead to hatred that limits the ability of the group to function effectively, purposefully, and cooperatively.

  • Individuals who perceive themselves to be in a favored position need to evaluate their attitudes to avoid being perceived as self-righteous or egotistical.

  • Dreamers can expect some people to misunderstand their dreams, even when those dreams come from the Lord.

Until tomorrow Saints...

Every day is Sunday