(Hebrews 11:22), “By faith Joseph, when he died, made mention of the departing of the children of Israel; and gave commandment concerning his bones.”
Someone once said: “To have faith is a great tribute to any man. However, to have faith which triumphs in every situation of life is the mark of a great man.” In the above text from Hebrews 11, we learn that Joseph was such a man. Joseph’s had a faith that triumphed in every situation of his life. Notice some things about Joseph’s life, a man with triumphant faith.
- GOD TRUSTED JOSEPH WITH ABILITY
Joseph was a man whom God trusted with remarkable ability. In studying the life of Joseph, we learn that God blessed Joseph with “physical attractiveness” in (Genesis 39:6), “And Joseph was a goodly person, and well favoured.” The word “goodly” means, “handsome, attractive in form and appearance.” God also trusted Joseph with “spiritual awareness” for we read in, (Genesis 37: 5, 8), “And Joseph dreamed a dream, and he told his brethren: and they hated him yet the more. 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.” Joseph’s ability to interpret dreams was a gift that God entrusted him with. Learn this, the things that God has given to you, whether great or small, are gifts that God has entrusted to you for the purpose of magnifying and glorifying Him.
- GOD TESTED JOSEPH WITH ADVERSITIES
Joseph life was filled with tremendous adversities and tests in his walk with and work for the Lord. Joseph faced “abandonment” by his brothers who were envious of him, who threw him into a pit, and then sold him into slavery (Genesis 37:17b-28; 39:1-2a). Joseph was also tested with “allurement” when Potiphar’s wife repeatedly tried to seduce him in an immoral relationship with her. Because of his refusal to be seduced by her, Potiphar’s wife lied and said Joseph tried to seduce her and Joseph was cast into prison (Genesis 39:7, 10, 11-20). A third test that came to Joseph the test of “advancement” when he was released from prison and made ruler over all the land of Egypt. (Genesis 41:41-43). The test of “advancement” was to see if Joseph could resist the temptations which came with this new power, prestige, popularity, prominence and position for it often these things that make a man forger God and makes man dependent upon himself rather than being dependent on God. But in spite of Joseph being tested by “abandonment, allurement, and advancement”, his faith in God remained unshaken and he passed with flying colors.
- GOD TRIUMPHED JOSEPH WITH AUTHORITY
(Genesis 50: 24), “And Joseph said unto his brethren, I die: and God will surely visit you, and bring you out of this land unto the land which he sware to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob.” (Hebrews 11:22), “”By faith Joseph, when he died, made mention of the departing of the children of Israel; and gave commandment concerning his bones.” One of the most interesting things about the life of Joseph is found in the phrase, “brought down or went down.” As we study the life of Joseph, we are told that he was “brought down into the pit”; “he went down to Potiphar’s house”; and “he went down into prison.” But it is also interesting that every time that we read in the life of Joseph, that he was brought down, we also read that, “God brought Joseph up.” God made Joseph prosper in Potiphar’s house; the prison, and the palace.” And in Hebrews 11:22 and Genesis 50:24, Joseph is dying with faith that God is going to bring him up out of Egypt. The reason for Joseph’s confidence is that he believed the promise of God that God gave to Abraham (Genesis 15:13-14), “And he said unto Abram, Know of a surety that thy seed shall be a stranger in a land that is not theirs, and shall serve them; and they shall afflict them four hundred years; And also that nation, whom they shall serve, will I judge: and afterward shall they come out with great substance.” Joseph believed that the promise that God gave to Abraham would be fulfilled. He knew that God would keep His Word. And when he was dying He told the children of Israel to take his bones with them when they left Egypt and entered the land of promise. He wanted to be included, and be a part of the fulfillment of God’s promise to His people. And when the Exodus occurred 200 years later, Moses took the bones of Joseph with them and his bones were carried during the 40 years in the wilderness and finally laid to rest by Joshua, in Shechem, a parcel of land purchased by Jacob. The life of Joseph is one that encourages every child of God to live by faith in the promises of God and be faithful.
Pastor Allen Jackson