This Week's Story

Judah, Joseph's brother, slams the door on his conscience and moves to a new town.

This Week’s Story relives American history and the Bible through brief inspiring stories presented on mp3 audio recordings and text for reading.

Attempted Escape part one

Judah could not block his memories. “I want to destroy the pictures in my mind… yank them out by their roots. Over and over I see myself and my nine brothers throwing our brother Joseph into a pit.  I watch as we sell him to foreign traders.  Jealousy has poisoned us.  I listen to Joseph pleading with us, “Please don’t get rid of me.  I’m your brother.”

Judah’s thoughts were interrupted by the accusing voice of his conscience.  He protested, “Stop!  I told my brothers, ‘Sell Joseph, but don’t kill him.  If we do, we will have guilty consciences.’”

Swiftly his conscience answered, “That didn’t work.  You still hear me. You didn’t murder Joseph, but you sold him—sold your brother, your blood, to Egyptian salesmen.  Where is he? Is he alive?”

“I don’t know, but at least I tried to keep him alive.  That must count for something.”

“Yes, but man-up. What else are you responsible for?  What are you going to do about lying to your father?  He thinks Joseph was killed by a wild animal.”

“I don’t know.  I see Father’s sadness, but I’m trapped.  I don’t dare tell him what happened to Joseph.  If I did, what would my brothers do to me?  What would Father do to me? ”

“You’re asking the wrong questions.  What’s going to happen to you, if you do not admit what you did?   Are you going to try to find your brother?”

“No, I’m leaving home!  I deserve a happy life.”

Judah slammed the door on his conscience and moved to a new town.  He married a Canaanite woman and had three sons.  And then, new battles started with his conscience

“Judah, do you believe there is only one true god?”

“Yes!  He spoke with my great-grandfather Abraham, my grandfather Isaac, and my father Jacob.”

“Then why did you marry a woman who believes there are many gods?  What do you think she is teaching your sons?   El, the head of the gods she believes in, is the hero of crime.  He took the throne from his father, murdered his favorite son, and decapitated his daughter.  You let your wife take your sons to temples of these gods.  What’s the matter with you?"

“I don’t want to think about it.  Leave me alone.”

Judah arranged for his oldest son, Er, to marry Tamar.  Er was a cruel man.  When he died, Judah said to his second son, “Onan, you must marry Tamar according to our Jewish laws.  Your first son will then inherit Er’s land.  Your second son will be your heir.”

Onan exclaimed, “What if I don’t have a second son?  I will marry Tamar as you want, but she will not get pregnant.”  Judah listened with  dismay.  Within a few years Onan died.

Judah knew that his third son should marry Tamar.  He instructed her, “Go home to your father.  When my youngest son is grown, I will arrange for him to marry you.”

He wondered, “Was Tamar the cause of Er and Onan dying?”  Privately he decided, “I’ll keep Shelah, my third son, away from her.”

He succeeded.  Tamar was cut from the family and forced to live with her parents as a poor widow.  She then plotted to have a child by Judah, the father of her two dead husbands.  She would disguise herself as a prostitute and tempt Judah.

Her plot worked, but she and Judah did not realize what was yet to happen. God was not finished with Judah’s family.  Promises had been made by Him to the family and Judah still had choices to make.

This is Barbara Steiner, glad that there is another chapter to Judah’s life, which is recorded in the book of Genesis of the Bible.  Please check out

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