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May 3 – Jesus, our older brother (I)

“For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn [most important] among many brethren.” – Romans 8:29 

Scripture reading: Romans 8:29 & Genesis 44:18-34

It is wonderful to have a big brother who is strong when you get into a fight on the playground. If you have ever had an older brother, you know that in times of trouble it means protection and privileges. When the Bible speaks about Jesus as our older brother, it means that and more.

I see a group of distraught brothers stand before a stern-looking Pharaoh. This second Pharaoh of Egypt has made it rather difficult for these men. He asked many questions and discovered they had a younger brother. He demanded he come along next time. Now Benjamin is with them and Pharaoh’s cup is found in his sack. The angry king wants to bind Benjamin and keep him in Egypt!

It cuts through their hearts to think what will happen when they return to their father Jacob without Benjamin… Would he die of sadness?! But then Judah, Benjamin’s older brother, stands up. He has become surety for Benjamin. He speaks on behalf of his younger brother; he explains the situation…

Jesus is our older Brother! He is willing and able to stand up for younger siblings in big trouble! He knows that we are bound by sin, Satan, death and hell! He is willing and able to stand in our place, taking the punishment! And that is why He is called older Brother, for all who are born again and part of God’s family. What a blessing it is when we belong to God’s family!

Suggestions for prayer

What kind of trouble or sin do you find yourself in today? Lay it all before the Lord Jesus; He as the Son of God is more than able to deal with them.

Rev. Pieter van der Hoek served the Heritage Reformed Church of Burgessville ON Canada since May 2017. This year he took a call to the Heritage Reformed Church of Hull, Iowa USA. Get this devotional delivered directly to your phone each day via our RP App. It is also available in print, for purchase, at

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