More accurately Old Testament stories of boys and girls

Bible Stories of Boys and Girls - Jane Werner Watson

While they refer to this book as containing Bible stories, it really only contains a collection of five stories from the Old Testament. However I suspect that the term Bible Stories suggests that this book is aimed at young Christians (or the children of Christian parents) as opposed to Jews, though since the stories are only Old Testament Stories it could also be targeted towards Jews (and a more appropriate title could be Jewish Stories of Boys and Girls).

This book actually dealt with the story of Joseph really well, and in a way that many Christian teachers seem to neglect. I have heard somebody suggest that there is nothing bad said about Joseph, however I would have to suggest that that is not quite true. Note that when you read through Hebrews 11 that there are a list of people in what is considered the Great Hall of Faith. Sure, Joseph appears in that list, but so do a number of others who were not the best examples of morality (such as King David who had multiple wives, and murdered a friend so that he could marry his friend's wife, as well as covering up the fact that he had committed adultery with her).

The thing with Joseph is that the bible at first paints him as being a rather immature and spoilt brat. Okay, the fact that his father considered him a favourite and lavished him with gifts didn't help, but the fact of the matter is that he would flaunt that around his brothers. Further, when he had a dream that his family would be bowing down and worshipping him, he ran off and told his brothers – who responded as can be expected – they beat him up and threw him down a well, which resulted in him spending the next twenty years as either a slave or a prisoner. Mind you, the dream did end up coming true, but many of us seem to picture Joseph as suffering the indignity of prison through no fault of his own, when in reality that was not the case – he was proud and thought quite highly of himself, and what happened in that period was that God humbled him and in humbling him, and in Joseph no doubt repenting of his proud ways, God in the end exalted him.

Mind you, I am not suggesting that what happened to Joseph is going to happen to all of us, even if we are suffering either through the results of our actions or not – God had a special purpose of Joseph, just as he had a special purpose for many of the other characters in the Old Testament. However, the plan of the Old Testament has come to fruition in Christ, which means that we have entered another stage of human history, a stage where the story has expanded to encompass all of us, and the ultimate goal has changed because humanity has been redeemed, but now it is a patient wait until the time when we will enter glory.