A Comparison between Joseph and Jesus (2022)

Many Old Testament accounts of people and events tell of things that are still to come. For example, Moses told the Israelites of another prophet like him, who would come later and who would require the people’s obedience. The Psalms describe the experiences of David, yet they also speak of David's son to come, the Messiah.

There are over one hundred fascinating parallels between Joseph and Jesus.

Perhaps one of the best-known and loved Bible accounts is the story of Joseph and his coat of many colors. Joseph's story offers valuable lessons and applications, yet there is also a prophetic aspect to this account that foreshadows the Messiah. There are many (over one hundred) fascinating parallels between Joseph, the beloved son of Jacob, and Jesus, who would arrive on the stage of human history centuries later.

Relationship with their father

Joseph is adored by his father, and it caused strife between him and his brothers:

Now Israel [Jacob] loved Joseph more than any other of his sons, because he was the son of his old age. And he made him a robe of many colors. But when his brothers saw that their father loved him more than all his brothers, they hated him and could not speak peacefully to him (Genesis 37:3-4).

(Video) 60+ Similarities Between Joseph & Jesus

When Jesus is baptized by John, he received a similar message of fatherly approval:

Behold, a voice from heaven said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3:17)

Joseph is like a root out of dry ground, a symbol of new life in his father’s old age. Later in the Old Testament, it is prophesied that the Messiah shall grow up “like a root out of dry ground,” also a symbol of new life during a time of spiritual depravity (Isaiah 53:2).

Hated, despised, and humiliated

Because Joseph’s father showed him favoritism, his brothers treated him with hatred, remorse, and violence. They stole the coat off his back, threw him into a pit, and then sold him off to strangers (Genesis 37:23-27).

Jesus, having done nothing wrong, was delivered into the hands of Pilate and then was beaten, mocked, and crucified. He too was stripped of his clothing (Matthew 27:28). He would also be thrown into a tomb, a “pit” of sorts (Matthew 12:40). Jesus said, “But the word that is written in their Law must be fulfilled: ‘They hated me without a cause’” (John 15:25).

(Video) The Joseph-Jesus Pattern: Amazing Similarities Between Joseph and Jesus

The promise of authority and accusation of delusion

In Joseph’s dream, he sees himself and his brothers binding sheaves in the field. His sheaf arose and stood upright, and his brothers’ sheaves bowed down to his (Genesis 37:7). His brothers felt threatened by his supposed authority and accused him of being deluded.

Jesus proclaimed his divine status and authority. Even prior to his crucifixion, before the council, the high priest said to him “I adjure you by the living God, tell us if you are the Christ, the Son of God.” Jesus said to him, “You have said so. But I tell you, from now on you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of Power and coming on the clouds of heaven” (Matthew 26:63-64). Jesus was continually told that he was out of his mind (Mark 3:21), and “they mocked him, saying, “Hail, King of the Jews!” (Matthew 27:29).

Jesus and Joseph were treated as commodities and discarded by people

Sold for money

Joseph’s brothers sold him to the Ishmaelites for “twenty shekels of silver,” and Joseph was taken to Egypt (Genesis 37:28). Similarly, Judas asked the chief priests what he will receive if he delivers Jesus to them, “and they paid him thirty pieces of silver” (Matthew 26:15). Both Jesus and Joseph were treated as commodities and discarded by people that were supposed to care for them.

Raised from the pit

After Joseph’s brothers throw him into the pit, Judah suggested that they sell him to the Ishmaelites. So, “they drew Joseph up and lifted him out of the pit” (Genesis 37:28). After his crucifixion, Jesus “was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures” (1 Corinthians 15:4). They were both brought low but were delivered by God from the “pit.” God used their situations for a greater good—not just for physical deliverance.

A life of servanthood

Both Jesus and Joseph lived a life of servitude and selflessness. Joseph was brought down to Egypt and became a servant “in the house of his master” (Genesis 39:1-2).

(Video) A Comparison Between Joseph & Jesus 09-10-2017

Jesus’ ministry was characterized by service, “For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45). He “emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant” (Philippians 2:7).

Resisted temptation but falsely accused

Potiphar’s wife tempted Joseph to sleep with her, but he continually refused (Genesis 39:7-12). Jesus lived in a human body that experienced hunger, anger, and a range of other feelings and emotions. He was even tempted in the wilderness by Satan with promises of glory and satisfaction (Matthew 4:1-11). Yet in all the ways he was tempted, he did not sin (Hebrews 4:15).

But unlike Jesus, Joseph was prone to sin. Although he resisted temptation, we cannot say that Joseph led a blameless life as Jesus did.

Potiphar’s wife accused Joseph of harming and mocking her (Genesis 39:17-18), and Potiphar put him in prison though he did nothing wrong (Genesis 39:20) Jesus died on account of things he did not do (Matthew 26:60) and was crucified between two criminals (Luke 23:33).

Foretold the future

When Pharoah cannot find anyone to interpret his dreams, his chief cupbearer remembered that Joseph accurately interpreted his dreams (Genesis 41:9-13). Joseph was summoned to the Pharoah and he correctly interpreted his dream that seven years of plenty would be followed by seven years of famine.

(Video) Joseph and Jesus: Parallels

Jesus also knew the future and often told his disciples what was to come, although they did not understand. He told his disciples, “I am telling you this now, before it takes place, that when it does take place you may believe that I am he” (John 13:19).

A great counselor promoted to honor

Joseph was esteemed in the land of Egypt as a wise and discerning man, and Pharaoh established him over his house as second in command over Egypt (Genesis 41:39-40).

Isaiah prophesied that the Messiah will be called a wonderful counselor (Isaiah 9:6). The book of Philippians tells us that “God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name” (Philippians 2:9).

Provided for people in need

Because Joseph discerned Pharaoh’s dream, he was able to prepare the people and the land for the upcoming famine. As such, when the famine struck, nations came to Egypt, and he provided grain and cared for them (Genesis 41:57).

Jesus both physically and spiritually provided for people’s needs.

After feeding the 5,000, Jesus said that he is “the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst.” (John 6:35). Jesus both physically and spiritually provided for people’s needs.

(Video) Joseph As A Type of Christ - Chuck MIssler

Was not recognized

When Joseph’s brothers come to Egypt to collect grain during the famine, he recognized them, but they did not know him (Genesis 42:8). Joseph eventually revealed his identity to his brothers. “And he said, ‘I am your brother, Joseph, whom you sold into Egypt. And now do not be distressed or angry with yourselves because you sold me here, for God sent me before you to preserve life’” (Gen. 45:4-5).

Jesus told one of his disciples, “Have I been with you so long, and you still do not know me?” (John 14:9). Many people did not know who he actually was or understand his purpose, although Jesus told them. But after his death and resurrection, Jesus appeared to many and revealed himself. While Joseph reconciled with his brothers who sold him into slavery, Jesus’s death reconciled all to God.


How is Joseph similar to Jesus? ›

Joseph serves as a type of the work of Christ because he saved his people and brought them into unity with one another. Throughout the entire narrative of the patriarchs, beginning with Abraham in Genesis 12, the family from whom would come the Messiah were never in complete harmony with one another.

What does more than enough mean in the Bible? ›

Genesis 17:1-2 NIV. The Hebrew word for God Almighty is El Shaddai – the God who is more than enough – more than sufficient. It means that He has the power to complete promises of blessings and prosperity.

Why was Joseph special to God? ›

Joseph became the overseer of a vast amount of grain that would deliver Egypt and many other people from a future famine. This was the main purpose that God had for Joseph's life. He had absolute control over who would receive any grain that was stored up in Egypt.

What does Joseph symbolize? ›

Origin. Word/name. Hebrew. Meaning. God will add, taken away or praise, fame taken away.

What lessons can we learn from Joseph the father of Jesus? ›

  • WHO IS JESUS' FATHER? Joseph, father of Jesus, has a great deal to teach us all about obedience and unconditional love. ...
22 Jul 2022

Why was Joseph so faithful to God? ›

In Genesis 45, Joseph was able to lavish forgiveness and mercy and “the best of the land of Egypt” (verse 18) to the same brothers who had betrayed him. Trusting the Lord was with him, Joseph stewarded the gifts, opportunities, and assets God gave him with excellence and faithfulness.

What is the message of Joseph? ›

His main concern was what God would think. He understood that he was accountable to God and that the fulfillment of his dream was completely dependent upon God. Joseph lived a God-dependent life, and he lived it in the midst of great adversity. He knew his future rested in the hands of the Lord.

What two qualities did Joseph demonstrate throughout his life? ›

Instead he forgave them, recognizing God's sovereignty. Joseph showed true compassion and true forgiveness. Take advantage of opportunities given us by God- Joseph had a prime opportunity when he met Pharaoh and he fulfilled what God wanted him to do with it.

What is the purpose of Joseph's story? ›

At the beginning of Joseph's story, his life seems ideal. However, Joseph's life would quickly turn tragic. Through it all, Joseph remained faithful to God, and God never abandoned him. Joseph's story teaches us a profound lesson: No matter our circumstances or others' actions, God will accomplish His purpose.

What does the story of Joseph teach us about forgiveness? ›

Forgiveness enabled Joseph not to seek revenge or become bitter and angry (Genesis 50:19-21). Forgiveness caused Joseph to become a loving and caring person. This was a special blessing from God. Loving forgiveness will prevent a person from seeking revenge that will hurt people.

What name of God means he is enough? ›

El Shaddai is one of seven covenant names through which God revealed Himself to Israel. In Hebrew, El Shaddai means “the All-Sufficient One,” or “the God Who is more than enough.” He is the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

What does the Bible say about you are enough? ›

For all those who are in Christ Jesus, YOU ARE good, righteous, and enough because you are covered in the blood of Jesus, WHO MAKES YOU good, righteous, and enough. You are enough because God has arranged a salvation plan to make you enough.

What does God's grace is enough mean? ›

Grace means that you can quit feeling inadequate. You're not perfect, and you'll never be in this life. You need God's grace to think of your life, your circumstances, everything around you as God does.

What was Joseph's special gift from God? ›

On his ancient father, he bestows life by inviting him to a new home. The old man, once brokenhearted by his loss, experiences resurrection because his son still lives. Yes, the Joseph who reveals himself to his brothers is a man who gives the gift of life.

What are the 3 dreams of Joseph? ›

Joseph: In the first he learns the miraculous nature of Mary's pregnancy and is told 'not to be afraid' to take her as his wife. In the second, he is warned to leave Bethlehem and flee to Egypt. While in Egypt, he has a third dream where he learns that it is safe to return to Israel.

Why does Joseph mean God will increase? ›

The Hebrew version of Joseph, Yosef (יוֹסֵף), translates as meaning "Yahweh will/shall increase/add," or "He will add." This name in turn originates from the Hebrew verb yasap (יסף), which means "to add, increase, or repeat." Thus, the name Increase, originated in England and was a literal translation of the Hebrew ...

What was Joseph's real name? ›

Why did Joseph father love him so much? ›

Now Israel loved Joseph more than any of his other sons, because he had been born to him in his old age; and he made a richly ornamented robe for him. When his brothers saw that their father loved him more than any of them, they hated him and could not speak a kind word to him.

What is the most important lesson Jesus taught? ›

When asked which commandment was the most important, Jesus said, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself” (Matthew 22:37–39).

How did Joseph obey God? ›

But instead he purposed in his heart to do what had to be done quietly. He was willing to take a hard, uncelebrated step that showed his costly loyalty to God's direction. He was ready to obey, at great cost to himself, in the best way he knew how.

How did God protect Joseph? ›

So, the brothers had a sinful plan of 1) killing him 2) throwing his body into a pit and 2) lying about his death (saying that an animal ate him). By God's sovereignty, He protected Joseph and kept him alive! The brothers didn't kill Joseph but just threw him into the pit alive.

What was the purpose of Joseph's suffering? ›

Just as Joseph's suffering led to the physical preservation of many people, so also Jesus' suffering leads to the spiritual salvation of all who put their trust in Him.

What is the personality of Joseph in the Bible? ›

Not only is Joseph strong and powerful, but he controls and rules over his brothers, who are submissive to him. in the fateful episode that leads to his being sold as a slave.

What are the five qualities of Joseph? ›

Gracious: Joseph was gracious to his brothers who betrayed him. He showed compassion and mercy in their time of greatest need. He gave them food and forgave them during the time of severe famine.
Other qualities of Joseph includes:
  • Hardworking.
  • Fear of the Lord.
  • Interpreter of Dreams.
  • Merciful and Compassionate.
  • Patience.
11 Feb 2019

What is the attitude of Joseph? ›

Joseph's attitude – Godly fear!

Joseph's attitude of mind was to hate sin and live in Godly fear. This meant that his life was blest by God.

What are the 3 importance of forgiveness? ›

Forgiving helps you move forward on your spiritual path.

Forgiveness encourages compassion. You are able to relate to others as part of the human experience. You feel for others as you do for yourself. Emotionally and psychologically unencumbered, you can begin to put the past behind you.

Why did Jacob loved Joseph the most? ›

Jacob loved Joseph more than all his other sons, because he had been born to him when he was old. He made a long robe with full sleeves for him. But Joseph said to [his brothers], “Don't be afraid; I can't put myself in the place of God.

Why does God introduce himself as El Shaddai? ›

But in verse 19 God said, “Yes, but your wife Sarah will bear you a son.” So, in the face of a natural impossibility, God declares that Abraham and Sarah will have descendants. 'I am El Shaddai. It will be so because I have said so and I am Almighty.

What name means more than enough? ›

Some common synonyms of plentiful are abundant, ample, and copious. While all these words mean "more than sufficient without being excessive," plentiful implies a great or rich supply.

What is the true meaning of El Shaddai? ›

El Shaddai is conventionally translated into English as God Almighty (Deus Omnipotens in Latin), but its original meaning is unclear. The translation of El as "God" or "Lord" in the Ugaritic/Canaanite language is straightforward, as El was the supreme god of the ancient Canaanite religion.

What is Jesus enough for? ›

Jesus is enough for you. You shall not want. And he is the one who is caring for your life. Colossians 1 says he is all-sufficient, the one who created the world and holds it all together, the one in whom wisdom and knowledge and the “hope of glory” are stored and in whom the fullness of deity dwells.

When God says enough is enough? ›

Peter goes on to say: 'But the day of the Lord will come …' [verse 10]. There is a point at which God says 'Enough is enough! ' A point where the sin, the evil, the suffering, has reached saturation point. A point where the judgement must and will fall.

How much is enough in the Bible? ›

What's enough? According to Exodus, enough is an omer—a little more than two liters—per person when it comes to manna.

Is God's grace enough in your life? ›

Reflections: God's grace is sufficient

Sufficient, as is “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” That was what God said to Paul after Paul asked Him three times to remove his thorn in the flesh.

What are the 3 means of grace? ›

Among the principal means of grace are the sacraments (especially the Eucharist), prayers and good works.

Where in the Bible is His grace is sufficient? ›

But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me.

What names are similar to Joseph? ›

Similar Names
  • Joshua.
  • Jonah.
  • Joel.
  • Josiah.
  • Jonathan.

What is the female name for Joseph? ›

Josephine is a female given name. It is the English version of the French name Joséphine. In Greece, the female name Josephine is Io̱si̱fína and used mainly on the island of Crete. The feminine form of the name Joseph, which is taken from the Hebrew name Yosef, meaning "(YHWH) shall grow."

Is Joseph a powerful name? ›

Joseph is no doubt strong, remaining mighty despite years of solid use. A little Joseph won't be weighed down with heavy expectation, as the name is relatively free from associations and connotations. Joseph could be a world-famous pilot or painter, whatever he chooses.

What kind of person was Joseph? ›

His story is told in Genesis (37–50). Joseph, most beloved of Jacob's sons, is hated by his envious brothers. Angry and jealous of Jacob's gift to Joseph, a resplendent “coat of many colours,” the brothers seize him and sell him to a party of Ishmaelites, or Midianites, who carry him to Egypt.

What abilities did Joseph have? ›

Joseph's Real Skill

The Egyptians believed that everybody had prophetic dreams. The real skill was in interpreting those dreams, and that was Joseph's skill. Joseph was not special because he was prophetic but because he knew how to interpret the dreams.

Why was Joseph loved most by his father? ›

Now Israel loved Joseph more than any of his other sons, because he had been born to him in his old age; and he made a richly ornamented robe for him. When his brothers saw that their father loved him more than any of them, they hated him and could not speak a kind word to him.


1. BIBLE STUDY ON GENESIS: Comparison between Jesus and Joseph - Fr Joseph Edattu VC
(Divine UK)
2. Parallels Between Joseph and Jesus
(Lion 'n Lamb 777)
3. A Comparison of Joseph and Jesus Christ | Genesis 39 | Brother Eric Cohan
(Madison Baptist Church - WI)
4. Parallels between Joseph and Jesus, part 1: their fathers loved them dearly
(A Faithful Dad)
5. Today's Word -- Comparing Joseph and Jesus
(Rick Piña)
6. Similarities between JOSEPH and JESUS || யோசேப்பு மற்றும் இயேசு ஒற்றுமைகள்
(Tamil Bible Library | Enlightening Paths)

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