“Then Joseph said to his brothers…‘Now do not be grieved or angry with yourselves, because you sold me here, for God sent me before you to preserve life’” (Genesis 45:4, 5).
Joseph was in a position to demand justice and mete out retribution against those who had sold him into slavery. Even so, he chose to forgive and prosper his brothers. In a culture where justice was maintained by a moral code of an “eye for an eye,” Joseph initiated an unprecedented ethic–turning the other cheek. Even before Jesus would introduce it as a new standard, “You have heard it said…but I say to you,” Joseph was role-modeling the power of forgiveness for the preservation of life.