And the famine was sore in the land.…
"Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right." But let parents take heed that they provoke not their children to resist their commands, by enjoining that which is unjust, unreasonable, or impracticable. Judah was justifiable in making conditions with his own venerable father. But to object to the commands of a parent, without an urgent reason, is consistent neither with the law of Christ, nor with the law of nature. The command of Jacob was not simply to go to Egypt, but to go and fetch corn from Egypt. This was impracticable, unless Benjamin went along with his brethren. Every wise man will consider, when he undertakes a journey, or any great work, for what purpose it is designed, and how it may be executed, so as to answer the end. What man would have travelled all the way from the place where Jacob sojourned in Canaan to Egypt, to buy corn in the time of famine, without the prospect of being able to obtain it? What man will plough or sow his land, without the prospect of a crop? What wise man will undertake any religious employment, without the prospect of obtaining the wished advantage to be found in the service of God? If those who call themselves the children of light, were half as wise in their generation as the children of this world, when they wish to have the oil of grace, they would go to those who sell before the door is shut, and would not go without their Elder Brother, without whom no man can come to the Father with acceptance. It is said of the famous Themistocles, that when he fled for refuge to Admetus, king of Thessaly, he took the king's infant son in his arms, and obtained what he requested. He had been told that this was the law of the court of Admetus. And this is the law of God's house, that we cannot come with success to the throne of God's grace, but in the name of Christ, the only mediator between God and sinful men.
(G. Lawson, D. D.)
If it must be so now, do this. —
Parallel VersesKJV: And the famine was sore in the land.