2011-10-01 - Patience ~ Joseph
Patience Series ~ Part 4
Joseph was one of twelve sons of Jacob, and Genesis 37:3 tells us that his father "loved Joseph more than any of his other sons " (NIV) Joseph had dreams that he shared with his eleven brothers. And when his brothers heard Joseph's dreams, "they hated him all the more." Jacob gave Joseph a multi-colored robe that stirred further resentment from his brothers. Eventually, they plotted to kill Joseph. Instead, they sold to him to a travelling caravan.
The next time we find Joseph is Egypt. Potiphar, one of the Pharaoh's officials purchased Joseph from the merchants. Joseph was put in charge of Potiphar's household, and it prospered. However, Potiphar's wife made false accusations against Joseph, and he was thrown into prison.
While Joseph was in prison, "the Lord was with him: he showed him kindness and granted him favor in the eyes of the prison warden." (Genesis 39:21) Again, Joseph was placed in a position of authority. Joseph spent two years in prison.
Joseph must have wondered what God's purpose was for him. Joseph had dreams which told him that he would be in a position of authority. Joseph also saw that God brought prosperity to whatever Joseph was in charge of at the time. Yet Joseph was in prison in a foreign land. I wonder how patient Joseph was with his circumstances.
Joseph was next called to interpret dreams for the Pharaoh, who listened and acted on Joseph's interpretations of an upcoming famine. Joseph's actions resulted in Egypt becoming a prosperous nation during the famine. Eventually, Joseph's brothers came to Egypt to seek food. Joseph forgave them for their actions and they came to live in Egypt.
Joseph must have been a patient man, to have been sold into slavery and taken to a foreign land. There he was falsely accused and sent to prison. Yet God had a plan for him. Joseph was to provide food which would save his family and Israel. Joseph's patience and endurance, under stress, saved his nation