“When Pharaoh calls you in and asks, ‘What is your occupation?’ you should answer, ‘Your servants have tended livestock from our boyhood on, just as our fathers did.’ Then you will be allowed to s settle in the region of Goshen, for all shepherds are detestable to the Egyptians.”
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Goshen must have been pretty far removed from the general population. They were not assimilated into the citizenship of Egypt because they were detestable.
But I guess that was also the reason, after the time of Joseph, when no one remembered him anymore, they were enslaved. They were seen as other, different, unclean, country hicks, uneducated.
And it does make me wonder about how, in the Law of Moses, shepherds were declared unclean.
Were they viewed the same way as lepers? They could not participate in worship or bring sacrifices without ceremonial cleansing.
If a son was born to a shepherd and he chose to be something else; a baker, a carpenter, etc…., could he break out of his “caste” and do that, and then be welcomed into the temple courts?
Wouldn’t it be neat if that was Joseph, Mary’s husband’s story!” After all, he shepherdeded the Lamb of God, who became the greatest of Shepherds, who became the most unclean man in all of history so that we could enter in the courts of the temple and dwell in the most holy place!
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Jesus, my constant companion and dearest friend.
Lord Jesus, thank you for coming as the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.
Thank you bearing my sins on the cross.
Thank you for making a way for me to enter into the Holy of Holies and stand face to face with Abba.