Underlying Insights from the Life of Joseph

Joseph’s story really begins with a prophetic dream which he tells his brothers. As we know this did not appear to be a good move. Some have suggested this is an example of why we should not always let others in on our visions. However Joseph was likely excited about hearing from God, just as our passion should be in looking at our lives according to God’s Word and plan. Further, we must never believe that God’s word is for private contemplation only, or accept the rule of a culture that shuns it from public discourse. Joseph’s dreams helped him to walk by faith and to not deviate form him character despite his circumstances. The Bible says, “The LORD was with Joseph, and he was a successful man; and he was in the house of his master the Egyptian” (Genesis 39:2). “True prosperity is not wealth itself but God’s favor, anointing, and power that work in your life to obtain it” (Wommack). Joseph consistently demonstrated his complete dependency on the Lord. No matter whose dream his was interrupting, Joseph never took the credit for himself but stated it was his God who had the power. After seeing the character of Joseph Pharaoh knew that he could trust him and exalted him. The Pharaoh said to Joseph, “Inasmuch as God has shown you all this, there is no one as discerning and wise as you. You shall be over my house, and all my people shall be ruled according to your word; only in regard to the throne will I be greater than you” (Genesis 41:39-40).
Also while in Egypt Joseph has the following encounter, “And it came to pass after these things that his master’s wife cast longing eyes on Joseph, and she said, “Lie
with me.” But he refused and said to his master’s wife, “Look, my master does not know
what is with me in the house, and he has committed all that he has to my hand. There is no one greater in this house than I, nor has he kept back anything from me but you, because you are his wife. How then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?” (Genesis 39: 7-9). From the youth in high schools to the professionals wearing thousand dollar suits, we are lacking the spiritual integrity and fortitude to say no to our carnal, earthy desires. Joseph stood strong in the face of worldly comprise lest he offend God. Notice his primary concern had nothing to do with himself, nor did he angrily accuse his seducer, but rather he pointed to God. In this passage we can almost hear the sorrow in his voice as he conveys his confusion to Potiphar’s wife as to how she can make a request so void of any reverence toward God. Image the evangelistic potential that exists if this is how we dealt with similar requests from others. This may spark a thought process within others to consider their heart before the Lord. Similar instances throughout the Bible, such as David and Bathsheba, show us that such conscious, deliberate sins can have wide-ranging and long-lasting psychological effects. Joseph would later become one of the most powerful man on the planet. What would have been Joseph’s destiny had he given in to one night of sin? Again, true and lasting happiness is found in saying no to sin. Pastor John Hagee stated this, “Adam may have been able to name every animal in creation, but he lost his home and his place with God because he did not say no” (Hagee, p. 55).
It has been suggested that Joseph was the Old Testament type of Jesus, and indeed the similarities are many. Joseph was greatly favored by his father, but was not received and betrayed by his own who sold him for 20 pieces of silver. Some have stated this was equivalent in value to the 30 pieces of silver Jesus was sold for during that time. Joseph’s prophetic voice was ridiculed and hated because it foretold of his rule, yet like Jesus, he was a master servant and provider. Joseph was falsely accused and imprisoned, but then exalted the highest position of power at the right hand of Pharaoh. Once his destiny was fulfilled Joseph forgave his bothers was able to save both Jew and Gentile from perishing as depicted the following verse, “And 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). Going further, Joseph’s brothers entered Egypt three times before they were able to see and recognize Joseph. The Jewish people entered Israel with Abraham, then with Joshua, and finally in 1948 for the third time. Joseph orders the Gentiles out of the room and then reveals himself to his Jewish brothers. This may be a prelude to a time when the Lord will reveal himself to the Jewish people after taking the Gentile Church out during the rapture. Also, just as Joseph then brings the house of Israel to live with him in the palace, many interpret that 144,000 Jewish tribulation saints will be brought into the Kingdom (*ideas in this paragraph taken from source 4).
Joseph demonstrated tremendous trust in the Lord throughout his journey and
shows us that we can choose to sit with the scornful and the flesh or live in God’s Word and Spirit. Joseph had to endure many trails to go from a pit to a place. He remained a portrait of humbleness, obedience and steadfastness. Joseph could have complained, blamed, or made countless excuses based on his situation and surrounds. Not only did he not do these things, but he continued to serve and help those that mistreated him. No one seems too interested in dieing to the self. How many of us would have harbored hate or resentment toward Joseph’s brothers or the Egyptian authority? What an example to the church today that will complain about someone taking their parking space or seat. Joseph is proof that absolute power will not absolutely corrupt when one stays true to God and exudes his character. Pastor Rod Parsley adds, “If Joseph had success to temptation, bitterness, or fear, he would have lost credibility as a prophet, and his voice would have never been sought” (Parsley p. 41).

References
1.) Hagee, John, General Editor. (2004). The Life Plan Study Bible, New King James Version. Nashville, Tennessee: Thomas Nelson Inc.
2.) Wommack, Andrew. (n.d.) Lessons from Joseph. Retrieved March 28, 2007, from http://www.awmi.org/extra/article/lessons.
3.) Parsley, Rod. Editor. (n.d). Breakthrough Reformation Bible, King James Version . Fort Lauderdale Florida: International Christian Publishers.
4.) Hagee, John (2007). The Edge of Time. Sermon retrieved March 29, 2007, from TBN Network. Cornerstone Church. San Antonio, Texas.

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