JOB & JOSEPH, Part 1d
Faithful in Trials
From Part 1c: Can you imagine what must be going on in Joseph’s young head? His own family has betrayed and abandoned himand now he’s imprisoned for doing what is right. Sounds much like Job, “a blameless and upright man who feared God and shunned evil,” now suffering through many undeserved trials.
So why then are faithful men like Job and Joseph suffering?
To understand God’s sovereignty you must also understand His providence. Providence, in its most simple definition, is foresight or seeing beforehand the things that are to take place. It is the ability of God to see the events of the future and; with wisdom and love; direct, control, or intervene through His limitless power everything within His dominion in order for Him to receive the glory.
This providence also goes hand in hand with the freewill that He gives to us. God has the ability to work through our desires or choices even if they are evil so as to His glory and for good. Any human can mean something for evil but God can mean it for good as Romans 8:28 tells us:
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”
The story of Joseph continues on as Joseph is left in prison; Genesis 39:21-23 says:
“The Lord was with him; He showed him kindness and granted him favor in the eyes of the prison warden. So the warden put Joseph in charge of all those held in prison, and he was made responsible for all that was done there… and the Lord gave him success in whatever he did.”
Gods intervention or providence in both being sold into slavery as well as being placed in jail allowed Joseph to learn the skills that he would later use when he got out of jail. And the Lord allowed Joseph the time necessary to develop these skills as both a slave and a prisoner.
Finally at 30 years of age Joseph is released and enters into the service of Pharaoh the king of Egypt. This happens after interpreting Pharaoh’s dream of seven years of abundance and seven years of famine (Genesis 41:15-32) and wisely advising Pharaoh as to how to handle this (Genesis 41:33-36).
Pharaoh decides in verses 39, 40:
“Since God has made all this known to you, there is no one so discerning and wise as you. You should be held in charge of my palace, and all my people are to submit to your orders. Only with respect to the throne will I be greater than you.”
Throughout all of this Joseph chooses to trust God. He recognizes Gods providence and sovereignty in his situation. Never once does he curse God. Instead he puts his faith and trust in him knowing His ways are best, His ways are higher.
Stay tuned for next week…and Part 1e.