SUBJ: The providence of God as
seen in the life of Joseph and the developing picture of redemption and
forgiveness seen in his life.
AIM: That we might recognize the mighty hand of God in all our
lives, even when we do not understand, and that we might truly
experience Romans 8:28.
INTR: There is real danger in
missing the real picture in a biblical account as we get bogged down in
the details. It is not that the details are unimportant; it is just that
they are not all.
1. At first read of this account we might be drawn
to the moral character of Joseph which is not to go unnoticed.
is evident at the outset of the narrative of the life of Joseph that he
was to play a prominent role in the display of divine purpose which
would culminate in a mighty display of the power of God in the years to
3. A key observation here is that "The Lord was with Joseph."
And we remember from Matthew 28:20 "lo, I am with you alway, even unto
the end of the world. Amen."
We must be aware that God operates in His creation in such a way as to
cause the actions of men and nature to serve His purpose in redemption;
men do as they desire and God directs their way to serve the needs of
the redeemed and His glory.
I. Joseph in the house of Potiphar
1. Joseph has gone from being the favorite son of Jacob to
being a slave in Egypt and that precipitated by the treachery of his
2. The difference maker here is that "The Lord was with
Joseph" and he was made prosperous in all he did.
3. Joseph did not
become a champion for social justice, he served the Lord where he was
and manifested the presence of the Lord in such a way that Potiphar was
aware of something unique and special about this young man.
was a man of integrity, honesty, faithfulness, and industry and these
are the things to be emulated by all.
5. Noting these things Joseph
was made the overseer of the household and it was that the Lord blessed
the house of the Egyptian for Joseph's sake.
6. It was all in
Joseph's hand and the scripture observes that he was "a goodly person."
II. Joseph wrongly accused (vv. 7-19)
1. It has been an oft
recurring scene that men have been falsely accused and have suffered
unjustly because of the wickedness of others.
2. I will not dwell
long with this portion in that we can read and assess the lies and react
and think of the injustice registered here:
1) The wickedness of this
woman is such that she would ruin an innocent life and so
2) Lied to
hide her own immorality.
3. We would rather look to the higher
purpose of God in taking Joseph from tending sheep to the courts of
4. We are here reminded of another who was falsely accused
and put to death because of the exposure of the sins of the accusers - again all in the purpose of God.
III. Joseph in prison (vv.
1. It was no accident that Joseph was put in a particular
1) It was a place where high ranking prisoners were placed.
2) It may have been that Potiphar suspected that Joseph had done no
wrong and simply had him imprisoned to avoid dishonor.
2. Again, we
read (v. 21) that the Lord was with him and he is raised to a position
of trust in recognition of his virtue and godliness.
3. As before all
things are made to prosper in his hand and all things were under his
hand and the Lord made it all to prosper.
4. The keeper knew of the
Lord's presence with him (v. 23).
IV. Joseph interprets some
dreams (chapter 40)
1. We note first the position of the butler and
the baker as being close to the king
2. Their dreams were interpreted
with different results
1) The butler was given good news and was
returned to the service of the king
2) The baker was given bad news
and was hanged
3. Joseph had requested that the baker remember him to
4. The butler forgot about Joseph and did not remember him
for two more years
1) All in the matter of God's timing when
would interpret the dreams of Pharaoh and be elevated to a position from
which he would be able to deliver his family and to forgive his