Suffering is never the goal - but for God to "educate" us, and get his way both with us, and show "the world" and the environment who he is and what he can do!
It was in the prison and the humiliations that Joseph's character and strength were formed and emerged.
Without suffering and humiliation, we will never be able to cope with and endure the good times that we can and will be a blessing, help and strength to others.
2 Cor. 1 3 Blessed be God, who is the Father of the Lord Jesus Christ; he who is also the Father of mercy and the God of all comfort.
4 He comforts us in all our afflictions, so that we may comfort all who are in affliction with the same comfort with which we have been comforted by God.
5 For as the sufferings of Christ abounded, so our consolation also in Christ abounds.
6 If you are in trouble, it is for your comfort and salvation. It works for endurance in one's own ailments; the same as we too must suffer. And when we are comforted, it is for our own comfort and salvation.
7 Our hope for you is firm, for we know that as you share in our sufferings, so you will share in our comfort.
One of the finest examples and not the finest example of who God is besides
Jesus. It must be Joseph we find in the Old Testament!
We do not really know what lives in us until we face challenges, adversity and trials!
Word. 24. 10 If you are discouraged in the day of trouble, your strength is weak.
If we go into the story of Joseph, it started very well. Dad's "boy", but God's revelations and dreams.
Everything looked promising, but there were some snags to it all!
His brothers disliked both that Jacob, his Father put him before all others.
As well, he had dreams that no one else even had in his imagination.
This was really the boy without worries, it was all open to him!
In many ways, one could say that Joseph was the boy with the "golden trousers."
Or the boy with the cloak from Dad, who said he was above everyone!
Genesis 37. And Jacob dwelt in the land where his father had sojourned, in the land of Canaan. 2 This is the story of the seed of Jacob. When Joseph was seventeen years old, he tended the flock with his brothers; young as he was, he accompanied the sons of Bilhah and Zilpah, his father's wives; all the evil that was said of them he went to their father with. 3 But Israel loved Joseph more than all his sons, because he was the son of his old age; and he had a silk coat made for him. 4 And when his brethren saw that their father loved him more than all his brethren, they hated him, and could not speak kindly unto him. 5 Joseph once had a dream, which he told his brothers; then they hated him even more. 6 And he said unto them, Hear now that I have dreamed. 8 And his brethren said unto him, Shall thou perhaps be our king, and rule over us? Since then, they hated him even more for his dreams and for his words. 9 And he had yet another dream, and told it to his brethren; he said: I had another dream, and behold, the sun and the moon and eleven stars bowed to me. 10 And when he had told it unto his father, and to his brethren, his father rebuked him, and said unto him, What is this dream that thou hast dreamed? Shall I and your mother and your brothers come and bow down to the ground before you? 11 And his brethren envied him; but his father hid it in his memory.
In order not to go into all the details with Josef, most people probably know his story.
For those who do not know it, it is only to read about him first and foremost here Genesis, and he is also mentioned in many other places.
If not so detailed, then Joseph is one of the most prominent figures in the Bible.
As I said, we meet Joseph as the one who is most "loved" by his Father Jacob
Joseph is the firstborn of Jacob's favorite wife, Rachel.
It was her he wanted, but he also got Lea, and two concubines.
Bilhah and Zilpah were his concubines, but Rachel was his favorite wife with whom he had Joseph and Benjamin.
Twelve sons and one daughter were mentioned in the scriptures.
From this family and these family relationships came Joseph, this was a small family. But from the twelve sons of Jacob comes the carnal Israel.
Joseph is one of Jacob's 12 sons, and the great-grandson of Abraham.
Because Joseph is favored by his father, the brothers become jealous.
They sell him as a slave to Egypt, and tell his father that he was killed by wild beasts.
Then Joseph is sold as a slave
In Egypt, Joseph first came to the house of Potiphar, one of Pharaoh's men. After an argument with Potiphar's wife, in which Joseph was wrongfully accused of trying to sleep with her, he was put in prison.
Genesis 39. 6 And he left all that he had in the hands of Joseph: and he looked not unto him for anything, save that he did eat. And Joseph was beautiful in nature and beautiful to look at. 7 And it came to pass after some time, that his master's wife cast her eyes upon Joseph, and said, Come and lie with me. 8 But he would not, and said to his lord's wife, My lord hath not looked upon me in all his house, and all that he hath he hath put into my hands; 9 he has no more to say in this house than I, and he has not denied me anything without you, because you are his wife. How then shall I do this great wickedness, and sin against God? 10 And as she spake unto Joseph day after day, and he brought her not to lie with her, and to be with her. was inside. 12 And she took hold of his robe, and said, Lie with me. But he left his cloak behind in her hand and fled out of the house. 13 And when she saw that he had left his garment in her hand, and had fled out of the house, 14 she cried unto her household, and said unto them, Behold, he hath brought a Hebrew man unto us, to bring shame. above us; he came in to me to lie with me, but I cried as loud as I could, 15 and when he heard that I kept shouting, he left his cloak with me and fled out of the house. 16 And she left his garment with her, until his lord came home. 17 And she spake unto him likewise, saying, The Hebrew servant, whom thou hast brought hither to us, came in unto me, to bring me to shame; 18 But when I began to cry, he left his cloak with me and fled out of the house.
Joseph has here received the ultimate humiliation - being imprisoned for false accusations for 11 years!
It is strange to think of, Norway's "eldest son," Hans Nielsen Hauge also spent a total of 11 years in prison.
For something he had done that was bad in the eyes of the sheriff and the priests.
There was a break in the convent poster. Of course, this was not a crime or an offense.
This was obviously a persecution of the Evil One through the authorities.
Joseph's years in prison - it both shaped and tested him
Genesis 39. 19 And when his master heard what his wife had said, how did she say, Thus did thy servant against me, when his anger was kindled. 20 And Joseph's master took him, and put him in the prison, where the king's prisoners were kept. and he was sitting there in prison. 21 But the Lord was with Joseph, and made him win the hearts of all, and gave him favor with the overseer of the prison. 22 And the overseer of the prison set Joseph to look after all the prisoners who were in the prison; and all that was to be done there, he did. 23 The keeper of the prison did not look for anything he had in his hand, because the Lord was with him; and what he did, the Lord blessed.
Joseph also succeeds in prison, and was obviously well-liked. So it is with all men and women of God, they are industrious, trustworthy, and well-liked.
We read that Joseph faced a great challenge, where he again had the opportunity with God's help to interpret dreams.
Genesis 40. Some time later, the mouthpiece and baker of the king of Egypt rebelled against their master, the king of Egypt. 2 And Pharaoh was wroth with his two officers, the chief butler and the chief baker, 3 and put them in charge of the captain of the guard, in the prison where Joseph was imprisoned. 4 And the captain of the guard charged Joseph with them, and he delivered them; and they spent some time in prison. 5 Once upon a time, they both dreamed their dream in the same night and each dream with its own meaning - the mouthpiece and the baker of the king of Egypt, those who were imprisoned. 6 When Joseph came to them in the morning, he saw that they were repulsed. 7 Then he asked Pharaoh's courtiers, who were imprisoned with him in his master's: Why do you look so sad today? 8 They answered, We have dreamed, and there is no one who can interpret it. And Joseph said unto them, Interpreting dreams, is it not the business of God? Tell me what you dreamed! 9 And the chief butler told Joseph his dream, and said unto him, I saw in a dream a winter which was before me; 10 And upon the vine were three branches, and buds, and blossoms; and the clusters ripened into grapes. 11 And I took Pharaoh's cup in my hand, and I took the grapes, and spread them in Pharaoh's cup, and I gave unto Pharaoh the cup. 12 And Joseph said unto him, This is the interpretation thereof: The three branches are three days. 13 In three days Pharaoh will exalt you and put you in your office again, and you will reach Pharaoh's cup, as you did before when you were his mouthpiece. 14 But remember me, when it is well with you, and show me mercy, that you may speak of me to Pharaoh, and help me out of this house. 15 For they have stolen me from the land of the Hebrews, and here also I have done nothing that they could put me in jail for. 16 When the chief baker saw that Joseph had given such a good interpretation, he said to him: I also had a dream, and I thought I saw three baskets of wheat bread on my head. 17 And in the uppermost basket there were cakes of all kinds, such as Pharaoh used to eat, and the birds ate from the basket on my head. 18 And Joseph answered and said, This is the interpretation of it: The three baskets are three days. 19 In three days Pharaoh will exalt you, cut off your head and hang you on a tree, and the birds will eat your flesh. 20 On the third day, which was Pharaoh's birthday, he made a feast to all his servants; and he exalted the chief butler and the chief baker among his servants. 21 And he put the crown of his mouth upon his head again, and put the cup in Pharaoh's; 22 And he hanged the chief baker, as Joseph had interpreted to them. 23 But the chief cupbearer did not remember Joseph, he forgot him.
What we read about Joseph is reminiscent of the prophet Daniel
Daniel 2. 3 And the king said unto them, I have had a dream, and my mind is troubled; I long to know the dream. 4 Then the Chaldeans spoke to the king in Aramaic, 'The king lives forever!' Tell your servants the dream! Then we will announce to you its interpretation. 5 And the king said unto the Chaldeans, This is my saying, If ye will not make known unto me the dream, and the interpretation thereof, ye shall be broken in pieces, and your houses shall be made a dunghill. 6 But if you make known to me the dream and its interpretation, you will receive rich gifts and great honor from me. Therefore, tell me the dream and its interpretation! 7 And they answered the second time, Will not the king tell his servants the dream? Then we have to say what it means. 8 The king answered, "I know for a fact that you will only gain time, because you see that the word I said is true. 9 If you do not tell me the dream, then the judgment on you is unchangeable. But you have agreed to tell me a shameful lie, in the hope that times will change, therefore, tell me the dream, so that I may know that you can also tell me its interpretation! 10 And the Chaldeans answered the king, There is not a man upon the earth that can shew the king what he will; for no king, however great and mighty he was, has ever demanded such a thing from any signer or spirit-man or chaldean. 11 For what the king demands is far too difficult, and there is no one who can tell the king what he wants to know but the gods, who have no abode among men. 12 And the king was wroth, and very wroth, and commanded that all the wise men of Babylon should be put to death. 13 When this order was given, and they were about to kill the wise men, they also searched for Daniel and his brothers to kill them. 14 And Daniel spake wise and prudent words unto Arioch the captain of the king's bodyguard, which went forth to slay the wise men of Babylon. 15 And he answered and said to Arioch the king's captain, Why hath the king given this commandment? Then Arjok told Daniel how it was. 16 And Daniel went in, and desired of the king that he would give him time, and that he would shew the king the interpretation. 17 And Daniel went home, and told Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, his brethren, that which was done. The other sages of Babel. 19 Then was the secret revealed unto Daniel in a night vision; and Daniel praised the God of heaven. 20 Daniel answered and said, Blessed be the name of God for ever and ever. For wisdom and strength belong unto him: 21 And he changeth the times and the seasons, removes kings, and setteth kings; he gives the wise wisdom and the wise understanding; 22 he reveals the deep and hidden; he knows what is in the darkness, and the light dwells with him. 23 I thank thee, and praise the God of my fathers, because thou hast given me wisdom and strength, and hast now made known unto me what we asked of thee; for what the king wanted to know you have announced to us.
Daniel and his friends Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah were in dire straits!
Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had a dream that made him very troubled. He would not tell the dream. But his interpreter, spirit man, or others at court had to tell the King both the dream and its interpretation. If they did, the rewards would be great.
If they could not tell both the dream and the interpretation, then they all had to pay with their lives!
Daniel and his friends were also among the sages of Babylon. Therefore, both the opportunity to be able to come up with an answer to the King applied.
If not, then death also awaited Daniel and Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah.
So what did Daniel and his friends do? Scripture says the following:
"Pray to the God of heaven that he in his mercy will reveal this secret."
God did, and Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon was very pleased.
This was probably also what Joseph did, he prayed to God. What God revealed and had revealed to him, he took care of and this was guiding for him. Not the circumstance e, but God, his word and indictment.
Psalm 1. Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of scorners:
Psalm 27. 8 My heart is set before you [your word]: seek my face! Lord, I seek your face.
Psalm 119. 148 With my eyes open I go into every night watch to ponder your word.
Daniel and Joseph lived in silence and in prayer before God, and this preserved, led and made them win victory in their lives and in their service. Seeking in God separated from the world and other people, is the only sure and passable to sure victory, leadership and certainty. We all need this, otherwise we will lose the battle too!
We are talking about great services and great gifts etc.
The truth is that we all have an "anonymous" service, it is in silence and when no one sees us. How are we then? We have so much or little service. This shows both with Joseph, Daniel and all the men and women of the Bible.
What did Joseph think of the 11 years in prison that kept him going?
Personally, I think it was his revelations and he simply "enjoyed" God alone, not just in the public eye with God.
We read of the Apostle Paul who mentions the same thing, that by revelation his life was changed and transformed.
Ap.gj. 26. 19 Wherefore, O king Agrippa, I have not obeyed the heavenly vision.
Joseph had dreams, Daniel's revelation and Paul's vision, none of them were disobedient to the revelation they had received from and by God.
But I also believe that Joseph in prison was walking with God as Enoch, as he loved God above all on this earth.
Genesis 5. 22 And Enoch walked with God three hundred years after he became the father of Methuselah; and he had sons and daughters. 23 And all the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty-five years. 24 And Enoch walked with God; then he disappeared, for God took him.
There is no doubt that a daily walk with God is really "greater" than all the visions and revelations we can get
Joseph was a man who cared for God as Enoch. Therefore, when he stood before Pharaoh, he was a man without bitterness and resentment.
When he also stood before his brothers, it was the same.
He was full of love and Blessed his brothers and family.
Genesis 50. 14 And it came to pass, when Joseph had buried his father, that he returned into Egypt, he, and his brethren, and all that went up with him to bury his father. 15 And when Joseph's brethren saw that their father was dead, they said, Joseph alone will not hate us, neither will he requite us all the evil that we did unto him. 16 And they sent messengers to Joseph, saying, Your father gave us this commandment before his death. So now forgive us, who also serve the God of your father, our iniquity! And Joseph wept when they spoke thus to him. 18 And his brethren also came and worshiped him, saying, Behold, we are thy servants. 19 And Joseph said unto them, Fear not; am I in the place of God? 20 You have thought evil against me; but God thought it good to do what he has now done, and to keep many people alive. 21 So do not be afraid, for I will provide for you and your children. And he comforted them and spoke kindly to them. 22 And Joseph dwelt in Egypt, both he and his father's house; and Joseph was an hundred and ten years old.
Notice that Joseph saw God's finger and guidance, not suffering and humiliation
Joseph says the following "God thought it good!"
The fact that God is in control is the whole difference!
If we do not see this, then we go quickly uphill.
If we see God's finger, guidance and direction, it's victory!
Joseph's life and ministry were in stark contrast, but Joseph walked and lived with God.
To others, things might look different, but not to Joseph.
He saw that God had the overview, full control and there was a Divine purpose for everything that happened in His life. He did not see this the first day, but it matured and became apparent to him as life with God progressed.
Psalm 139. 5 You surround me from the front and the front, and you lay your hand on me. 6 To understand this is too strange to me, it is too high, I can not. 7 Where shall I go from your Spirit, and where shall I flee from your presence? 8 If I ascend to heaven, you are there, and I will prepare my bed in the realm of the dead, behold, you are there. 9 I will take the wings of the dawn, and I will dwell in the uttermost part of the sea. 10 Your hand also leads me, and your right hand holds me fast. 11 And I say, The darkness covereth me, and the light around me becomes night - 12 neither doth the darkness make it dark for thee, and the night shineth like the day; the darkness is as the light.
In many ways, our lives and ministry are tried through the "lonely" moments.
Scripture says the following:
Col. 3. 1 If so, you will be resurrected with Christ, then seek the heights where Christ sits at the right hand of God.
2 Let your thoughts be on the things which are on the high places, and not on the things which are on the earth.
3 For after you have died d, their lives are hidden in Christ with God.
4 When Christ is revealed, who is your life, then you also will be revealed with him in his glory.
We are dead, and our lives are hidden in Christ. It's not us, but he.
We will slow down, and he will grow. Our lives are in many ways like a tree where it is the root that is bare that carries the water into the tree. What cannot be seen is really the most important thing, the root.
Joseph's life and work speak of Jesus more strongly than any other example in Scripture.
He had a "perfect" life in harmony with God's will and God's word.
Some events in Joseph's life
He was 17 years old when he was sold to Egypt.
He was 30 years old when he was made second to Pharaoh, as ruler and ruler over all the land of Egypt.
He was 39 years old when his brothers first came to Egypt (second year of the famine, or nine years after he was made overseer).
He was probably 41 years or so when the brothers came for the second time and Jacob comes to Egypt.
He was 110 years old when he died. And his remnant were brought to Israel, when they came out of Egypt. He is buried in Israel.
Genesis 50. 22 And Joseph dwelt in Egypt, both he and his father's house; and Joseph was an hundred and ten years old. 23 And Joseph saw the children of Ephraim in the third part; and the children of Machir the son of Manasseh were born on Joseph's knees. / 24 And Joseph said unto his brethren, I die; but God will surely see you, and bring you up out of this land unto the land which he sware unto Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob. 25 And Joseph took an oath of the children of Israel, saying, God will surely visit you, and ye shall carry up my bones from hence. 26 And Joseph died, being an hundred and ten years old; and they embalmed him, and laid him in a coffin in Egypt.
Exodus 13:19: “Moses took Joseph's bones with him; for Joseph made the children of Israel swear, saying, God will visit you, and you will carry my bones with you from here. "
Joshua 24:32: “The bones of Joseph, which the children of Israel had brought back from Egypt, were buried in Shechem, in the portion of the field which Jacob had bought from the sons of Hamor, Shechem's father, for a hundred kesitahs, which belonged to Joseph's inheritance. sons. "