Genesis 43:11–15 (ESV)
Joseph’s Brothers Return to Egypt
11 Then their father Israel said to them, “If it must be so, then do this: take some of the choice fruits of the land in your bags, and carry a present down to the man, a little balm and a little honey, gum, myrrh,
pistachio nuts, and almonds. 12 Take double the money with you. Carry back with you the money that was returned in the mouth of your sacks. Perhaps it was an oversight. 13 Take also your brother,
and arise, go again to the man. 14 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.”
15 So the men took this present, and they took double the money with them, and Benjamin. They arose and went down to Egypt and stood before Joseph.
The father (Israel) agrees to send his youngest son with them so that they can get needed food. Their concern is that they took money to buy food last time, but when they left to go home, they found out that they had
their food… and their money. They were not aware of who they were dealing… their brother Joseph. Joseph is going to get his wish… to see Benjamin. They are scared to go back because their brother Simeon is in prison
and they are concerned about the money issue. So the father wants to sweeten the deal by taking along “choice fruits of the land in your bags, and carry a present down to the man, a little balm and a little honey, gum, myrrh, pistachio nuts, and
almonds.” Also… they doubled the money that they took. Now they arose and went to Egypt. Are we guilty of trying to sweeten deals with God. Do we often try to makes deals or concessions with God in our prayers and actions?
We often revert to thinking we can buy our way out or deal our way out. With God, he deals with us differently.
I pray: O Lord, we often try to negotiate,
strike deals, or even buy our way with you. Help us to step back and to lean on our faith and to trust you through faith. You don’t need our money or our deals, you simply want our heart. Amen.