“Take also your brother, and arise, go again to the man. May God Almighty grant you mercy before the man, and may he send back your other brother and Benjamin. And as for me, if I am bereaved of my children, I am bereaved.” (Genesis 42:13-14)
When Joseph puts his brothers to the test, he forces them to bring their brother Benjamin to Egypt. But father Jacob is not at all ready to let him go: “My son shall not go down with you, for his brother is dead, and he is the only one left. If harm should happen to him on the journey that you are to make, you would bring down my gray hairs with sorrow to Sheol” (Genesis 42:38). We see that father Jacob has not changed much; he still doesn’t treat all his sons equally. He even says that Benjamin, the son of his favorite wife Rachel, is “the only one left” after Joseph’s supposed death, as if the others don’t count. That must have been extremely painful for his ten other sons! But when they run out of food, there is no other choice. Father Jacob must let his beloved son go to Egypt.
Jacob feared that he would lose his favorite son — once more. But the unbelievable happens: instead of losing Benjamin, Jacob learns that Joseph is still alive and is even doing very well! He can hardly believe it, but in the end travels to Egypt and meets his son Joseph, about whom he had grieved so long. Jacob had tried to protect his favorite sons with all his might, but he couldn’t prevent losing them. Only when he had let go of Benjamin, he miraculously got all his sons back.
Is there something you really don’t want to give up, even though your attitude might hurt others?