Despite Our Circumstances - 6 of 12
August 11, 2019
Today we’ll look at a question that strikes at the heart as to whether God is actually worth diligently seeking. It is a question about faith and about God, one that people often answer within a worldly context and not a scriptural one. It is a question that if gotten wrong discourages the seeker and even ruins the faith of the believer.
Because of this we’re going to ask this question within the context of scripture. We’ll then look at a great example of one with ever deepening faith and what this means to us.
The scriptural context is this: all scripture leads to the foot of the cross, where the dearest and best commended His Spirit unto our Heavenly Father. All of scripture leads to the foot of the cross because the sole intention of God is to restore each individual who has an ear for the Gospel, to a right relationship with Him.
Here’s the question: “Is there/was there a purpose or a reason for the pain and the hardship experienced?”
If we look at this question through any other lens than that of God restoring us to a right relationship with Him, or from any other place than at the foot of the cross, we will get this answer wrong. The consequences of this are deep and they are dire; if we get it wrong our faith will suffer.
Joseph was rebuked by his father, betrayed by his brothers, sold into slavery, falsely accused of a crime and then put in prison for an extended period of time. These events in Joseph’s life were the low lights in the eyes of a dreamer who was obviously cast aside for suffering and personal trial.
But God knew who Joseph was, and He used the pain and the hardship of Joseph’s life to temper and to refine him, from a young snot-nosed-brat who didn’t know when to keep his mouth shut, into a man of faith who would respond to the harshest circumstances with love and compassion to those around him.
Joseph, for his part, allowed himself to be tempered, as he did not squelch the work God was performing in and through his life. In faith Joseph looked at his pain, suffering and estrangement within the context of God’s promises and faithfulness. When asking himself the question, “Why me?” Joseph framed the question and the answer within the context of the nature of who God is and his personal relationship with God.
Joseph was sent to Egypt, and God was with Joseph throughout his trials (trials designed to mature his faith) so that he could preserve the lives of his family - most importantly, the lives of his eleven brothers. With twelves sons in all, their descendants would make up the Nation of Israel and deliver to you, to me and to all the world, a Savior.