THE KINGDOM OF GOD
August 19, 2001
When we compare Joseph with his brothers, it is obvious that Joseph must have had an experience with God in his younger years, and that he must have read the book of Enoch, which teaches about the coming Messiah, redemption and living a holy life. He must have also studied the life of Job who was living at the same time as his great grandfather, Abraham. We do not find holiness in Reuben (incest) or in Judah, who thought nothing about having sexual intercourse with a whore. All of his ten half brothers were liars, thieves and covenant breakers. Genesis 39:2-10
When Potiphar’s wife could not seduce Joseph, she "framed him" and caused him to become a prisoner. Potiphar could have executed Joseph according to the laws of Egypt, and I am sure that Joseph was very well aware of this threat. Verses 11-20
Unless Joseph had experienced a deep personal relationship with God, he would have given up by now, but instead he is accepting his fate and trusting in God. Verses 20-23
In chapter 40 we read about two of the highest officials in Pharaoh’s government, who were sent to prison and Joseph was to take charge of them. At this time, Joseph did not know that this was part of God’s plan to bring him (Joseph) into power some day in Egypt. He simply walked in blind faith with the Lord and lived every day for God. Genesis 40:1-23
Joseph had to wait another full two years in prison before God opened the door and moved Joseph into leadership, second in command from Pharaoh - Genesis 41:1-45
Joseph spent a total of 13 years as a slave and prisoner - Verse 46
Joseph did not question God, he did not get anxious, and in a just a few days he was elevated to become Prime Minister, was given a wife and became the most powerful man in Egypt. Yet, he did not become proud or arrogant. He maintained his relationship with God. Verses 47-57
Now it was time for God to move upon Israel and his other eleven sons: Genesis 42:1-5
The ten brothers now had to deal with Joseph, face to face, but did not know that they were facing Joseph - Verses 6-17
In verse 18, Joseph tells them that he is worshiping the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and it now becomes clear to the ten men that they have sinned and the sin has caught up with them - Verses 19-23
When Joseph heard his half brothers confess their sin against him, he could not take it any more, the emotions were too much. This shows that Joseph was not after justice, he wanted TRUE REPENTANCE AND RECONCILIATION! Verses 24-38
The money that was sent back by Joseph was to test his brothers and see if they were willing to be honest, and stop cheating. As God tightened his grip over Israel and his sons, they had to go back to Egypt and face Joseph and God - Genesis 43:1-14
There was more testing to be done, even if it was painful- Verses 15-34
Now came the final test. Was there true repentance in the ten half brothers? Genesis 44:1-12
As the eleven brothers were facing the possibility of death, or slavery for the rest of their lives in Egypt, we can now see that they had recognized their sins, regretted them and were willing to pay for whatever it was going to cost them. They had been totally broken. -Verses 13-34
Joseph needed no more proof, he could finally, after 13 years, unite again with his family and once again see his father Israel and be able to hug him and talk with him face to face - Genesis 45:1-28
This was the final dealing God had with Israel, and as he started the journey, he began with a meeting with the Lord - Genesis 46:1-5
Know this, every obstacle in your life has been put there by the permission of God.
Instead of fighting against the obstacles and questioning God, bow down and repent of your sins. Ask God what still needs to be done in your life to make you fit for the kingdom of God. Isaiah 45:1-13
God could have chosen not to place the tree of Knowledge in the Garden of Eden.
God could have chosen to send the Messiah the day after Adam and Eve fell into sin.
God could have prevented the sale of Joseph as a slave, but in order to deal with the twelve sons of Israel, God needed a victim (Joseph), a catastrophe to bring repentance, and the nation of Egypt to build up the descendants of Israel from 66 persons (Genesis 46:26) to the approximately three million which left with Moses some 450 years later.
Stop crying and instead ask God this: Show me my sins so that I can repent and become the blessing to others that you have created me to be! Psalm 51:1-13
Do you have an ear with which to hear?
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