Genesis 42:28, 35 NKJV So he said to his brothers, “My money has been restored, and there it is, in my sack!” Then their hearts failed them and they were afraid, saying to one another, “What is this that God has done to us?”
(35) Then it happened as they emptied their sacks, that surprisingly each man’s bundle of money was in his sack; and when they and their father saw the bundles of money, they were afraid.
2 Timothy 1:7 NKJV For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.
Jacob, now called Israel, had sent ten of his sons to Egypt to buy grain during a severe famine. Unknown to them, they purchased the grain from their brother, Joseph, whom they had sold into slavery many years before out of jealousy and anger. Long story short, Joseph was now the second most powerful person in Egypt. He missed his family and longed to see them and his youngest brother again. He also wanted to see if the brothers who had mistreated him had changed. He concocted a grand scenario that included secretly returning the money his brothers bought the grain with. He wanted to “trap” them in his deception and keep one of the brothers to ensure they would return again with his youngest brother, Benjamin.
Notice the words used in verse 28 to describe how the brothers felt when they discovered their money had been mysteriously returned to them. “Then their hearts failed them and they were afraid.” The initial shock of discovering the money caused them to greatly fear. Instantly, they were consumed with panic. Also note the first thing they did was blame God. “What is this that God has done to us?” God didn’t do anything against them… Joseph did, but they didn’t know that.
When circumstances go awry and fear sets in, people generally react one of two ways. They either look to God for help or they look to God to blame. Second Timothy 1:7 tells us that God does not give of fear, cowardice, or dread. Instead, He gives us strength, love, and a sound mind, or moderate controlled thinking. If you have ever been over taken by fear, you know that controlled thinking is something you definitely do not have. God desires that we have peaceful thought and not be tormented by fear. He did not give you the spirit of fear nor cause your fearful situation. If He did, that would be true reason to fear. Instead He has given us strength, power, love, and peaceful sound thinking through Christ Jesus.
Remember the two thieves were faced with the fear of death while being crucified with Jesus. One was embittered against God and ridiculed Christ; the other turned to God, knowing that God was not to blame for his present situation, and instead looked to Jesus for help and mercy in his time of need. That man was comforted and found the peace of God. Remember, when fear comes and rears its dreadful head, God did not author the fear inducing situation in your life. He has not given you the spirit of fear. Instead of blaming God, look to Him for help in anxious times. He will give you strength, love, and a sound mind so you can FEAR NOT.