The Truth Will Set You Free
The story of Joseph
Many Pastors, Ministers or Priests shy away from the "ugly" truth of Christianity,
preferring to repeat the good news or blessings without showing the responsibility
that comes with it. For example they preach "Jesus loves you and will save
you", without adding "if you accept Him as Lord and obey His wishes out
of love for Him."
If we look at the following passages of Scripture we will see something
For thou art an holy people unto the LORD thy God: the LORD thy
God hath chosen thee to be a special people unto himself, above all people
that are upon the face of the earth. The LORD did not set his love
upon you, nor choose you, because ye were more in number than any people;
for ye were the fewest of all people: But because the LORD loved
you, and because he would keep the oath which he had sworn unto your fathers,
hath the LORD brought you out with a mighty hand, and redeemed you out
of the house of bondmen, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt. Know therefore
that the LORD thy God, he is God, the faithful God, which keepeth
covenant and mercy with them that love him and keep his commandments to
a thousand generations; And repayeth them that hate him to their face,
to destroy them: he will not be slack to him that hateth him, he will repay
him to his face.
Hear this word that the LORD hath spoken against you, O children of Israel,
against the whole family which I brought up from the land of Egypt, saying,
You only have I known of all the families of the earth: therefore I will
punish you for all your iniquities. Can two walk together, except they
That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth
of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope,
and without God in the world:
Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh
the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience.
For which things' sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience:
And say to Archippus, Take heed to the ministry which thou hast received
in the Lord, that thou fulfil it.
This important truth is that God is only interested in the children of
Abraham; those that are born Jews, and those that are reborn.
God can use us, His servants, if we firstly listen for His voice - and
then do what He says. We will then be blessed by His rewards.
His lord said unto him, Well done, good and faithful
servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler
over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.
What we do might not be popular with worldly people; in fact, if this is
the case we can feel blessed because Jesus Himself said:
Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you,
and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you
falsely, for my sake.
Let us see an example in the Bible of someone that told it like it was,
despite worldly reviling by his family, and how the LORD of hosts could
The story of Joseph.
Going back one generation we can read in Genesis 29:18 that Jacob (Israel),
Joseph's father, loved Rachel and worked seven years to be able to marry
her, only to be tricked, requiring him to work another seven years for
her. He really loved her and that is also probably why he favoured Joseph,
who was Rachel's first-born. Anyway, we read in Genesis 37 that Jacob loved
Joseph, made him a coat of many colours, and that his brothers hated him
out of jealousy and could not speak peacably to him.
Now Joseph dreamed and told:
For, behold, we were binding sheaves in the field, and, lo, my sheaf
arose, and also stood upright; and, behold, your sheaves stood round about,
and made obeisance to my sheaf. And his brethren said to him, Shalt thou
indeed reign over us? or shalt thou indeed have dominion over us? And they
hated him yet the more for his dreams, and for his words. And he dreamed
yet another dream, and told it his brethren, and said, Behold, I have dreamed
a dream more; and, behold, the sun and the moon and the eleven stars made
obeisance to me. And he told it to his father, and to his brethren:
and his father rebuked him, and said unto him, What is this dream
that thou hast dreamed? Shall I and thy mother and thy brethren indeed
come to bow down ourselves to thee to the earth? And his brethren envied
him; but his father observed the saying.
It is important to realise that he told the two dreams in truth. And I
would like to suppose that he had some knowledge from God, otherwise what
purpose had he to antagonise the whole family? We all know the story of
Joseph, of how further dreams brought him into favour with Pharaoh, of
the famine and how his brothers came looking for food from him.
When he made himself known to his brothers, look at his words:
And Joseph said unto his brethren, Come near to me, I pray you. And they
came near. And he said, I am Joseph your brother, whom ye sold into
Egypt. Now therefore be not grieved, nor angry with yourselves, that ye
sold me hither: for God did send me before you to preserve life. For these
two years hath the famine been in the land: and yet there
are five years, in the which there shall neither be earing
nor harvest. And God sent me before you to preserve you a posterity in
the earth, and to save your lives by a great deliverance. So now it
was not you that sent me hither, but God: and he hath made me
a father to Pharaoh, and lord of all his house, and a ruler throughout
all the land of Egypt.
After Jacob his father died and was buried in Canaan, they all came back
to Egypt. Look what happened now:
And Joseph returned into Egypt, he, and his brethren, and all that went
up with him to bury his father, after he had buried his father. And when
Joseph's brethren saw that their father was dead, they said, Joseph will
peradventure hate us, and will certainly requite us all the evil which
we did unto him. And they sent a messenger unto Joseph, saying, Thy father
did command before he died, saying, So shall ye say unto Joseph, Forgive,
I pray thee now, the trespass of thy brethren, and their sin; for they
did unto thee evil: and now, we pray thee, forgive the trespass of the
servants of the God of thy father. And Joseph wept when they spake unto
him. And his brethren also went and fell down before his face; and they
said, Behold, we be thy servants. And Joseph said unto them, Fear
not: for am I in the place of God? But as for you, ye thought evil
against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it
is this day, to save much people alive. Now therefore fear ye not:
I will nourish you, and your little ones. And he comforted them, and spake
kindly unto them.
This faithfulness of Joseph to God's will meant, that when they came to
live in Egypt, the children of Israel were separated from the land promised
to Abraham until God could show them His power and mercy for forty years
without interference from outside worldly influences. Without Joseph being
faithful to God no matter the consequences, where would we be today?
Still without Christ?
The teaching of this Old Covenant story is repeated in the New Covenant
that Jesus made with His Father on our behalf:
If ye love me, keep my commandments.
He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he
it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father,
and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him. Judas saith
unto him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself
unto us, and not unto the world? Jesus answered and said unto him, If
a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and
we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. He that loveth me not
keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the
Father's which sent me.
O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the
truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified
Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.
Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children
So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.
For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many
of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither
Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor
female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. And if ye be Christ's,
then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.
I am afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you labour in vain.
Brethren, I beseech you, be as I am; for I am as ye are:
ye have not injured me at all. Ye know how through infirmity of the flesh
I preached the gospel unto you at the first. And my temptation which was
in my flesh ye despised not, nor rejected; but received me as an angel
of God, even as Christ Jesus. Where is then the blessedness ye spake
of? for I bear you record, that, if it had been possible, ye would
have plucked out your own eyes, and have given them to me. Am I therefore
become your enemy, because I tell you the truth?
This is the third time I am coming to you. In the mouth of
two or three witnesses shall every word be established. I told you before,
and foretell you, as if I were present, the second time; and being absent
now I write to them which heretofore have sinned, and to all other, that,
if I come again, I will not spare: Since ye seek a proof of Christ speaking
in me, which to you-ward is not weak, but is mighty in you. For though
he was crucified through weakness, yet he liveth by the power of God. For
we also are weak in him, but we shall live with him by the power of God
toward you. Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your
own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you,
except ye be reprobates? But I trust that ye shall know that we are not
reprobates. Now I pray to God that ye do no evil; not that we should appear
approved, but that ye should do that which is honest, though we be as reprobates.
For we can do nothing against the truth, but for the truth.
(2 Corinthians 13:1-8)
Going back to the example of Joseph, let's see the end result, the spiritual
reward that he received:
And Jacob called unto his sons, and said, Gather yourselves together, that
I may tell you that which shall befall you in the last days.
Joseph is a fruitful bough, even a fruitful bough by
a well; whose branches run over the wall: The archers have sorely
grieved him, and shot at him, and hated him: But his bow abode in
strength, and the arms of his hands were made strong by the hands of the
mighty God of Jacob; (from thence is the shepherd, the stone
of Israel:) Even by the God of thy father, who shall help thee;
and by the Almighty, who shall bless thee with blessings of heaven above,
blessings of the deep that lieth under, blessings of the breasts, and of
the womb: The blessings of thy father have prevailed above the blessings
of my progenitors unto the utmost bound of the everlasting hills: they
shall be on the head of Joseph, and on the crown of the head of him that
was separate from his brethren.
And what about the apostle Paul, who wrote to the Corinthians and Galatians:
I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept
the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness,
which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not
to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.
(2 Timothy 4:7-8)
Are you prepared to stand up for the Lord, no matter what the cost is?
May He bless you and keep you as you search His word and are obedient
to His will.