When Jacob learns that Joseph is alive, he moves from Canaan to Egypt with his entire family.
So Jacob set out for Egypt with all his possessions. And when he came to Beersheba, he offered sacrifices to the God of his father, Isaac. During the night God spoke to him in a vision. “Jacob! Jacob!” he called.
“Here I am,” Jacob replied.
“I am God, the God of your father,” the voice said. “Do not be afraid to go down to Egypt, for there I will make your family into a great nation. I will go with you down to Egypt, and I will bring you back again. You will die in Egypt, but Joseph will be with you to close your eyes.”
God told Jacob to leave his home and travel to a strange and faraway land. But God reassured him by promising to go with him and take care of him.
God reminded Jacob of the covenant promise he had made to Abraham: He would be the father of a great nation (Genesis 15:1-6). While in Egypt, the Israelites did become a great nation, and Jacob’s descendants eventually returned to Canaan. Jacob himself never returned to Canaan, but God promised that his descendants would return. That Jacob would die in Egypt with Joseph at his side was God’s promise to Jacob that he would never know the pain of being lonely again. The book of Exodus recounts the story of Israel’s slavery in Egypt for 400 years (fulfilling God’s words to Abram in Genesis 15:13-16), and the book of Joshua gives an exciting account of the Israelites entering and conquering Canaan, the Promised Land.
God made several promises to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and he fulfilled them all, even though these men wavered in their faith from time to time and did not always live as they should. Fortunately, God’s actions in the world will be fulfilled with or without our cooperation. He has plans and will accomplish them—and God always keeps his promises.
Thank God for his love and guidance and ask him for faith to trust him more and for strength to do his will.