Bringing the Text to Life

The Frenemy Factor Genesis 37:1-4, 12-28

The Frenemy Factor

Joseph and his brothers should be friendly, but their relationship is marked by envy, violence and hatred. Sound familiar?

At a Glance

This material is based on a relatively new buzz word, a made up word, frenemy. The word combines two words with oppositional meanings to create one word and thereby suggest that the two meanings might not only be embedded in a word but in a person. You could have a frenemy, or be a frenemy. This leads us quickly into the OT text and a discussion of how the frenemies of Joseph were restored to a purely friendly relationship as the "enemy" part dropped away.

Editors' Pick

For material based on the gospel reading for today, see "Day-timers and Begging Bowls" August 11, 1996, at

Friends. Enemies.

Put them together and you get ...


A frenemy can be an enemy disguised as a friend. It can also be a close acquaintance who is a competitor or rival.

Think of Batman and Catwoman in DC Comics.

Susan Mayer and Edie Britt in Desperate Housewives.

Dwight Schrute and Jim Halpert in The Office.

Will Schuester and Sue Sylvester in Glee.


These relationships...

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