Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil (KJV).
It is easy to see Joseph the son of Jacob as a foreshadow of Messiah. Even classic Judaism presents Joseph as prefiguring the Messiah. Because of the messianic allusions to both Joseph and Judah, Judaism even believes in two Messiahs; first a suffering one: Joseph, and second a ruling one: Judah. We know now that the two ideas are resolved in Yeshua’s first and second coming.
Joseph and Judah were the recognized heads over the families conceived by their respective mothers: Leah and Rachel. Tensions were high between the two brothers, which resulted in the dividing of the country.
From the onstart, Joseph seemed rather unwise. He flaunted his father Jacob’s preferential love strutting around in his princely coat. He also probably didn’t have to pull in as much of a work load as his brothers. He was treated like a first-born. To add insult to injury, Joseph volunteered his seemingly narcistic dreams at which even Jacob was astounded. His brothers even surnamed him, ‘The Master of Dreams’, which proved in fact true, as the story confirms later (Genesis 37).
Joseph was truly the ‘Master’ of dreams’, and he was to be established over his family and the known world of his day for that matter. But in order to fulfill his destiny he still needed the humiliations that only slavery and unjust incarceration could offer. It doesn’t seem to be good enough for Hashem that we fulfill our destiny for Him. This is true of all of us. If we are to represent Him through our life or even verbal messages, we are to represent Him properly by exerting a life of humility and virtue He can be proud of. Before being finally given his God-given destiny, like Joseph, every man needs to go through rejection, slavery and the cruel injustice of man. Only the distress and humiliation of wrong and unjust treatment provides the qualities needed for Godly leadership. Without it, any would-be leader of God’s people is prone to the pitfalls of novices.
Come to think of it, the same was told of Messiah (Hebrews 5:8). Yeshua was not to be given the crown without the cross. As a nation, it is also true of God’s people. For centuries, like Joseph and Messiah, the nation of Israel as a whole was afflicted by the world without as cause, just for being Jews. We are told though that it is God who put ‘blindness’ on Israel for awhile so that the nations could have their time (Romans 11:25). This time of humiliation of Israel serves therefore to prepare him for its priestly destiny in the World to Come (Exodus 19:6).
As we approach the time of the fulfillment of the Messianic era, the true followers of Messiah will all be unjustly treated, just because they are God’s people (Revelations 12:17). May this coming tribulation, as it did with Joseph, heal us from our arrogance, pride, and immaturity that we may be worthy to rule and reign with Him in the World to Come (Revelations 20:4).