Kid's Good News
Vol 1-issue 36             Oct/ 24 /2002


Bible Story
Story time
This Week's Riddle #34
Answer of Riddle #33 and Winner
Change of Email Addresses

Bible Story:

Famine and Joseph's brothers in Egypt 
Joseph was thirty years old when he stood before Pharaoh king of Egypt. And Joseph went out from the presence of Pharaoh, and went throughout all the land of Egypt.  Now in the seven plentiful years the ground brought forth abundantly.  So he gathered up all the food of the seven years which were in the land of Egypt, and laid up the food in the cities; he laid up in every city the food of the fields which surrounded them.  Joseph gathered very much grain, as the sand of the sea, until he stopped counting, for it was immeasurable. 

And to Joseph were born two sons before the years of famine came, whom Asenath, the daughter of Poti-Pherah priest of On, bore to him.   Joseph called the name of the firstborn Manasseh: "For God has made me forget all my toil and all my father's house."  And the name of the second he called Ephraim: "For God has caused me to be fruitful in the land of my affliction."  Then the seven years of plenty which were in the land of Egypt ended, and the seven years of famine began to come, as Joseph had said. The famine was in all lands, but in all the land of Egypt there was bread.  So when all the land of Egypt was famished, the people cried to Pharaoh for bread. Then Pharaoh said to all the Egyptians, "Go to Joseph; whatever he says to you, do."  The famine was over all the face of the earth, and Joseph opened all the storehouses and sold to the Egyptians. And the famine became severe in the land of Egypt.  So all countries came to Joseph in Egypt to buy grain, because the famine was severe in all lands.

When Jacob saw that there was grain in Egypt, Jacob said to his sons, "Why do you look at one another?"  And he said, "Indeed I have heard that there is grain in Egypt; go down to that place and buy for us there, that we may live and not die."  So Joseph's ten brothers went down to buy grain in Egypt.  But Jacob did not send Joseph's brother Benjamin with his brothers, for he said, "Lest some calamity befall him."  And the sons of Israel went to buy grain among those who journeyed, for the famine was in the land of Canaan.

Now Joseph was governor over the land; and it was he who sold to all the people of the land. And Joseph's brothers came and bowed down before him with their faces to the earth.  Joseph saw his brothers and recognized them, but he acted as a stranger to them and spoke roughly to them. Then he said to them, "Where do you come from?" And they said, "From the land of Canaan to buy food." 

So Joseph recognized his brothers, but they did not recognize him.  Then Joseph remembered the dreams which he had dreamed about them, and said to them, "You are spies! You have come to see the nakedness of the land!"  And they said to him, "No, my lord, but your servants have come to buy food.  We are all one man's sons; we are honest men; your servants are not spies."  But he said to them, "No, but you have come to see the nakedness of the land."  And they said, "Your servants are twelve brothers, the sons of one man in the land of Canaan; and in fact, the youngest is with our father today, and one is no more."  But Joseph said to them, "It is as I spoke to you, saying, 'You are spies!  In this manner you shall be tested: By the life of Pharaoh, you shall not leave this place unless your youngest brother comes here.  Send one of you, and let him bring your brother; and you shall be kept in prison, that your words may be tested to see whether there is any truth in you; or else, by the life of Pharaoh, surely you are spies!"

So he put them all together in prison three days.  Then Joseph said to them the third day, "Do this and live, for I fear God:  If you are honest men, let one of your brothers be confined to your prison house; but you, go and carry grain for the famine of your houses.  And bring your youngest brother to me; so your words will be verified, and you shall not die." And they did so.  Then they said to one another, "We are truly guilty concerning our brother, for we saw the anguish of his soul when he pleaded with us, and we would not hear; therefore this distress has come upon us."  And Reuben answered them, saying, "Did I not speak to you, saying, 'Do not sin against the boy'; and you would not listen? Therefore behold, his blood is now required of us."  But they did not know that Joseph understood them, for he spoke to them through an interpreter.  And he turned himself away from them and wept. Then he returned to them again, and talked with them. And he took Simeon from them and bound him before their eyes.

Then Joseph gave a command to fill their sacks with grain, to restore every man's money to his sack, and to give them provisions for the journey. Thus he did for them. So they loaded their donkeys with the grain and departed from there.  But as one of them opened his sack to give his donkey feed at the encampment, he saw his money; and there it was, in the mouth of his sack.  So he said to his brothers, "My money has been restored, and there it is, in my sack!" Then their hearts failed them and they were afraid, saying to one another, "What is this that God has done to us?"  Then they went to Jacob their father in the land of Canaan and told him all that had happened to them, saying: "The man who is lord of the land spoke roughly to us, and took us for spies of the country.  But we said to him, 'We are honest men; we are not spies.  We are twelve brothers, sons of our father; one is no more, and the youngest is with our father this day in the land of Canaan.  Then the man, the lord of the country, said to us, 'By this I will know that you are honest men: Leave one of your brothers here with me, take food for the famine of your households, and be gone.  And bring your youngest brother to me; so I shall know that you are not spies, but that you are honest men. I will grant your brother to you, and you may trade in the land.'"

Then it happened as they emptied their sacks, that surprisingly each man's bundle of money was in his sack; and when they and their father saw the bundles of money, they were afraid.  And Jacob their father said to them, "You have bereaved me: Joseph is no more, Simeon is no more, and you want to take Benjamin. All these things are against me."  Then Reuben spoke to his father, saying, "Kill my two sons if I do not bring him back to you; put him in my hands, and I will bring him back to you."  But he said, "My son shall not go down with you, for his brother is dead, and he is left alone. If any calamity should befall him along the way in which you go, then you would bring down my gray hair with sorrow to the grave."


Story time....

O Jesus, Son of Maryam, heal me - 10

Till this time you have read that, Gulshan Fatima was paralyzed at her left side when she was only 6 months old. Her mother died when she was an infant. Her father loved her so much that he took her to England for treatment but when they heard the disappointing words of doctor, "it has no cure", their hearts broke down. Her father encouraged her and said, "We will go to Mecca and knock the door of Allah, and he will heal you." So they went to Mecca and visited Ka'aba - the house of Allah. Even she kissed the cubical shape of ka'aba but to their utter despair nothing happened. To avoid her father's troubled look, she kept her face down. Then they visited Safa and Marva from where they bought Zamzam water. She bathed with that water but nothing happened. She and her father returned home heart broken. Next blow for her was, her beloved father's death!! But while she was so disturbed, she heard a low, gentle voice telling her to read about Jesus in Quran Sura Maryam. She started reading Urdu Quran and started praying, "O Jesus, Son of Maryam, heal me!! Three years later her prayers were answered with a marvelous vision of Jesus. Jesus personally came and healed her. From the very first day, she realized the growing opposition from her relatives and acquaintance. Three weeks after she got a Bible.

She came back home after getting a New Testament. At night she opened her New Testament and started reading. She was excited thinking, what it would be like? As she started reading, she discovered the verse and words spoken by Jesus,
"I am the Way, the Truth and the Life." She saw twelve figures with Jesus in her vision and as she read the Bible she realized that Jesus had twelve disciples also she found meaning of the word Immanuel - God with us in the New Testament. The more amazing part was, she found the Lord's prayer word by word as spoken by Jesus in vision.

She could realize that Jesus is the Lord of life and that's why He could heal her and that He is no ordinary prophet but God Himself. He has power over everything. She also read about Baptism in Mark 1:9-11 where Jesus was baptized and in
Romans 6:4, "Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life." She felt the newness and new life flowing in her body as if someone had merged her in refreshing spring. She recalled the day when she visited Mecca and sat on a stool as a sad person expecting a miracle when Zamzam water (water of life) was poured on her. But nothing happened that day.

She said to herself, "I have obeyed the words of Jesus and witnessed. So now I have to take baptism. After taking baptism I can come and live in this house itself. Can't I?" She had no answer for her question but her father's face came before her eyes and she felt a great pain in her heart. She loudly said, "Sorry father, please forgive me but I have to follow Jesus." In those distressing moments she felt a great peace in her heart and she felt that this is the right way to go.

By March 12 she read the whole New Testament and Martyrs book of Carthage. In that she read about the believers of early Church who were tortured for their faith in Christ and finally thrown before lions or put into fires or killed but remained faithful. These stories gave her an indication how her life would be in future but it did not change her mind.

Next day she called Razia and from there she went to Major's house. This time Major's wife was also there. Gulshan pulled her Bible and showed the verse saying, "It says you must be baptized, will you baptize me?" Major told her about the dangers of taking baptism. He said, "If you take baptism, you may never be able to return home. Your family members may try to kill you no matter how loving they are at present." There was silence for a few moments. Her brothers cruel faces in family council flashed before her eyes. She also thought about her father's last words, "Take care of Gulshan" "They would at least follow his last sacred command, if not still I will follow Jesus who gave me life." So she told firmly, "Jesus Immanuel has told me to be His witness and the next step is Baptism. I would like to die rather than leaving Jesus and His peace which I have right now."

Major looked at his wife then Mrs. Major said, "If Jesus has spoken to you so clearly then it is good to obey Him." And it was discussed how she can go to Lahore for baptism. She made her plans emotionally as she knew that because of her, Major and his family may be in danger. While thinking of taking baptism, she never thought about completely leaving her home forever but she thought that after taking baptism she will return and live in the same home where she grew up. Major told her not to bring any money or jewels as otherwise someone can sue Christians. Major's word made her think, "do I have to leave everything for Jesus' sake, money, jewellery, land, home, love and support of my family?"

She asked Razia whether she could come and meet her within two days? Razia agreed. So Gulshan told her uncle and aunty that she will be staying with Razia for two days and then they will go to Lahore. She also told about giving a signed check of 75,000 Rupees so that they could pay all the bills while she would be away. Aunty did not like her plans and asked, "where would you stay in Lahore." She replied carefully, "I will stay in my brother or sister's home."

Next day she visited her father's grave with her aunty. Her heart was heavy thinking about her father who taught her about the material heaven which was far beyond the truth. On her last evening in that home, she went to the garden where she used to sit in her wheelchair in the days of her disability. She looked around all the flowers and fruits. She stood at the place where her father's coffin was kept and her heart was filled with grief thinking about her father. She walked among the roses and thought, "Oh, do I have to leave all these things to be a follower of Jesus?" Suddenly she remembered the verses from the Bible in
Matthew 10:38, "And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me." She spoke to her thought, "No matter what, I will always carry this place in my heart."

She returned to her room to pack. Next morning she signed two checks, one for an amount of 75,000 Rupees to uncle for the expenses of home and the other for Razia for 40,000 Rupees. On 15th March she left her home after kissing Aunty and her two maids Salima and Sema. She gave the check to Razia and said, "if anybody comes looking for me, let your mother talk to them telling that Gulshan and Razia have gone to Lahore." Razia was looking at her in doubt but she said, "I will do as you say to help you, we know each other well and we trust on each other." Gulshan then went to Major's house and on the same day traveled to Lahore by car. She was taken to one of the minister's house where Rev. and Mrs. Aslam Khan became her father and mother. The stay in that house was not very pleasant as she never did any work because of her disability. She had a few sleepless nights and she felt as if someone is saying, "its not too late, why don't you go back to your home. Your brother and sisters are crying..." Her uncle and aunt's sad faces flashed before her eyes

She cried out to Jesus, "I surrendered all to you then why these taunting faces are coming before me?" She heard a soft voice saying, "I am always with you. They cannot harm you." She got a great peace and then after a week her troubles started vanishing and she became more active than ever. Five weeks after her stay in Rev. Aslam Khan's house, she was baptized. She was told that it was delayed because they wanted to make sure that her commitment was real. She wrote a letter to Razia about her delay but did not disclose the real reason for her stay in Lahore and asked her not to tell her family members where she is. Later on she found out that Razia and her mother kept her word faithfully and never told anybody about her whereabouts though it put Razia and her family in great trouble. Razia got married later.

Gulshan attended Methodist Church there with Mr. and Mrs. Aslam Khan. She was impressed by the freedom of worship which was totally different from the ways of Islamic worship where only men go to mosques, but in Church the whole family attends and worships God. Quran says that women are inferior to men though they emphasize greatly about equality of both gender. She thought, how different are both religions regarding worship methods. In Christianity God deals with every soul through Christ who died for every person. She was warned by her host about telling much about herself. But she shared her experience with some of the Christians in Churches and they were amazed on hearing the rare experience of hers.

At last the day of her baptism came on April 23rd. Major's and family, a few friends of theirs and hers gathered in a home where there was a tank for this type of events. As she was immersed inside the water, she felt as if she was leaving her old self and her old life and a new person is emerging. After baptism they gave her new name Gulshan Esther.

To be continued....

  This week's Riddle #34

They were twelve but one of them was thief. Who was he?

Kids, who will be able to answer correctly, their names will be published
here.  While answering please do not forget to write your
"name" and "age"  To send your answers click here

Answer of Riddle #33 and Winner

They spoke lie and lost their lives instantaneously. Who they were and to whom they lied?

Answer: Ananias and Sapphira spoke lie and lost their lives. They lied to Holy Spirit.
Riddle was taken from: Acts 5:1-11

Bincy A Thomas, 13 yrs, Kuwait. 
Bevin A. Thomas, 12 yrs, Kuwait, 
Bryan A. Thomas, 8 yrs, Kuwait.
were successful in sending the correct answer.

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