Sunday, September 20th, 2015
Deliverance (Part 42)
Starring Roles: Joseph
God sent me before you to preserve a posterity for you in the earth, and to save your lives by a great deliverance.
Genesis 45:7 (NKJV)
Joseph was the first Bible hero to achieve a starring role in government. And not just any government, but Egypt: the most powerful nation on earth. It wasn't an easy part to play, so Joseph worked thirteen years to win the role.
Actors, models and talent for Christ: God has called you to a starring role. If government is about control, management and directing people, then you're called into government, too. Because media directs culture.
Among many godly attributes, consider these lessons from Joseph:
1) He was obedient to his father, Jacob. Joseph was trustworthy, truthful and dutiful. Perhaps he displayed early gifts in management. So Isaac said to him: 'Please go and see if it is well with your brothers and well with the flocks, and bring back word to me' (Genesis 37:14).
2) He was a dreamer with visions of leadership, but his family did not understand his dreams. 'His brothers hated him and could not speak peaceably to him... 'Look this dreamer is coming! Come therefore, let us now kill him' ' (Genesis 37:4,19). Even Isaac rebuked Joseph.
3) He was betrayed, stripped and cast into a dry pit. He went from prosperity to desperation. Basically, Joseph lost everything he loved. Then he was sold 'To the Ishmaelites for twenty shekels of silver. And they took Joseph to Egypt' (Genesis 37:28). His brothers lied and told Isaac his son had died.
4) He was industrious in two imprisonments. He refused to mope, sulk or become resentful. He stayed hopeful and helpful toward his bosses. Potiphar 'Made him overseer of his house... And the keeper of the prison committed to Joseph's hand all the prisoners' (Genesis 39:4,22).
5) He was virtuous and resisted temptation. When Potiphar's wife advanced on the handsome youth, Joseph refused to violate his master's trust. Even more, he refused to violate God's Laws. 'How then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?' (Genesis 39:9).
6) He was patient and continued to seek success, so 'The Lord was with Joseph and showed him mercy' (Genesis 39:21). 'And whatever he did, the Lord made it prosper' (Genesis 39:23). Because of his positive actions and outlook, Joseph was favored. Hard times became bearable.
7) He was forgiving of everyone who harmed him. When Joseph was appointed Egypt's governor, when his betraying brothers came begging for food, vengeance seemed a completely justified response. Perhaps, but his heart won out, 'And he wept aloud' (Genesis 45:2).
To Be Continued...
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Deliverance series.