The worth principally attracting attention in this chapter are those connected with the name of Reuben. Here the ultimate light flames on the record: "the Prince," toward whose advent everything moves, is named.
Yet He does not come through the line of birthright. The birthright was given to Joseph, while the Prince came through Judah. In this connection also the principle of divine selection flames out. The actual firstborn of the sons of Israel was Reuben, but he, through sin, forfeited the birthright, which, as we have seen, passed to Joseph.
In these occasional gleams of light on the progress of events, nothing is clearer than the revelation of the all- seeing God, whose selections are based on His own infinite justice. Such light is at once the occasion of joy and fear in the heart. Confidence is born of the certainty of the divine method. This very assurance must have the effect of solemnizing the heart as it makes clear that no supposed right obtains for one moment in the economy of God if its conditions be violated by the disobedience of men.
the Second Week after Epiphany