NB: Joseph the All-Comely, a type of Christ

Holy Week Services: Holy Monday Matins






Monday of Holy Week commemorates the blessed and Noble Joseph the All-Comely and the fig tree which was cursed and withered by the Lord.


Joseph is a type of Christ.  Cliff Notes Version about Joseph: [1]



Kontakion and Ikos Holy Monday Matins.


Tone 8:  Jacob lamented the loss of Joseph, /

but his righteous son was seated in a chariot and honored as a king.  /

For he was not enslaved to the pleasures of Egypt, /

but he was glorified by God who sees the hearts of men //

and bestows on them a crown incorruptible.


Ikos:   Let us now add our lamentation to the lamentation of Jacob, and let us weep with him for Joseph, his wise and glorious son who was enslaved in body but kept his soul free from bondage, and became lord over all Egypt.  For God grants unto his servants a crown incorruptible.



There are many parallels between Joseph and our Lord Jesus Christ.


Joseph was a slave “in body”, and our Lord took on the form of a slave – humanity.


Joseph was sold into slavery because of the envy of his brothers for 20 pieces of silver –

Jesus the Savior was sold for thirty pieces of silver by his close confederate, the unworthy Apostle Judas, because of the envy of the Jewish rulers.


Joseph was cast in to a pit and later thrown into prison – our Lord Jesus Christ went into the gloomy pit of Hell to save imprisoned humanity.


Joseph did not complain about his lot, our Lord was silent in the face of His accusers.


Joseph was chaste when tempted by Potiphar’s wife, unlike the First Adam, who gave into temptation, and the Second Adam was perfectly sinless and showed us the way to perfect chastity.


Joseph became Lord over Egypt (which represents sin), and Jesus Christ is Lord over all of His human nature, making us capable of becoming Lords over our Egypt – our human nature.


Joseph was immersed in a land with many temptations (especially since he became the second greatest man in Egypt), an yet he remained chaste and good, and eventually saved all his people, and our Lord was immersed in many temptations, and did not sin once, and eventually made us capable of perfection.


He saved his people by feeding them bread in a time of famine. Jesus the Savior saves mankind, and feeds them with the bread of heaven – His body and blood.




“NB” is shorthand for “nota bene” ,which is Latin for “Note well”. These shorter posts are meant to be “noted well” more often because they are briefer than the usual blog posts. I have “noted well”  that many of my flock does do not read the longer posts. I have a lot of stuff to tell you, so there will still be longer posts, but I also plan to post shorter “snippets” which will have “NB:” in the title.

Priest Seraphim Holland 2010.     St Nicholas Russian Orthodox Church, McKinney, Texas


This article is at: http://www.orthodox.net/journal/dailylent/holy-week-day-01_2010_03-29+joseph-the-all-comely-type-of-christ+holy-week-services-holy-monday-matins.doc


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[1] The ”Cliff Notes” version of the story of Joseph. His story is told in Genesis. He was the penultimate of  Patriarch Jacob’s 12 sons, and his favorite. His father fashioned a “coat of many colors” for Joseph. This, in addition to Joseph telling his brothers about dreams that were not flattering to the brothers made them very envious.


One day, when out in the field, all the brothers  save Rueben (the eldest) and Benjamin, who was yet to be born, conspired to kill Joseph. Rueben suggested that instead they throw him into a pit, and wait to see what happened. He intended to come back later and rescue Joseph, in the meantime, Joseph was sold into slavery in Egypt by some traders. The brothers killed a sheep, and put its blood on Joseph’s coat, which they had taken from him previously, and told their father that Joseph had been torn to pieces by a wild animal


He was in the employ of Potiphar, an important man in Egypt. Potiphar’s wife made many passes at Joseph, but he was chaste. One day, when Joseph was alone in the house, his wife grabbed him, and he fled away naked. She made up a story about his advances, and Joseph was thrown in prison. In prison, he interpreted the dream Pharaoh’s butler and baker, and his interpretation came true to the letter. The butler was restored to Pharaoh’s service, and the baker was executed. The butler had promised to bring Joseph’s case before Pharaoh, but forgot until Pharaoh  had a dream that none of his wise men could interpret. The butler then remembered Joseph, and he correctly interpreted the dream as prophesying seven years of plenty, followed by seven years of famine.


Pharaoh put Joseph over all of Egypt, in order to prepare for the famine. When the famine struck, Jacob sent his sons to get food in Egypt. Joseph recognized his brothers, but they did not know him. After Benjamin also came to Egypt, much to the consternation of Jacob, Joseph made himself known to his brothers in an incredibly emotional scene. Soon thereafter, all of Jacob’s family moved to Egypt.


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