Forgiveness Frees


Joseph (OT) Devotional


Read the biblical text: Genesis 45:1-15



Bring a coffee filter. Ask your children to name things they do that hurt others. Write these things (lightly) on the coffee filter. Then place the filter in a bowl and put red dye and explain that forgiveness covers all our faults (the filter turns red), as the blood of Jesus covers our faults.



Joseph was part of a family of 12 children and was his father Jacob’s favorite. He was the favorite because his father loved Rachel, also his favorite wife, who had died while giving birth.

When Joseph was 17, his father offered him a beautiful multicolored coat. His brothers became very jealous and began to hate him. They hated him even more when Joseph told them two dreams he had made. In the first dream, Joseph dreamed of 11 sheaves from the fields (11 brothers) who prostrated themselves before his sheaf. In the second dream, 11 stars, the sun and the moon prostrate themselves before him.

It was too much! Joseph’s brothers sold Joseph as a slave and made their father believe he was dead. After being sold by his brothers, Joseph went to prison. After many years of hardship, Joseph became a high leader of Egypt and it was at this time that his brothers showed up for food because there was famine in their country. A great opportunity for Joseph to take revenge and make them pay for what they had done to him. But despite all that Joseph had suffered, did not give evil for evil.

Joseph ended up saving his brothers from starvation – the same brothers who sold him into slavery!



  • Can you imagine what you would have done in Joseph’s place when he recognized his brothers after all these years?
  • Why do you think Joseph chose to forgive and save his brothers?
  • What are the times in your life when you had trouble forgiving?



Thank you, God, you forgive me. You sent your son Jesus to forgive me. In return, help me forgive those who hurt me.


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