Highlights In Today's Reading:
It's hard to put the Bible down as we continue to read the thrilling saga of Joseph's dramatic rise to second ruler of Egypt. Unknown by his brothers, they willingly bow down to him, fulfillng the vision which had angered them years earlier and led to his sale into slavery. After years of suffering, what will Joseph do to those who betrayed him and cruelly sold him to the Ishmaelites?
Although Joseph was innocent of any crime, he endured all the shame and punishment of the dungeon with amazing confidence and peace, believing that the Lord was with him (39:23). Joseph counted all earthly satisfactions as trash and incomparable with the honor of being faithful to his God. It is true that Joseph was afterward highly exalted, but his true reward was unseen by the world.
Joseph's character and self-control were tested over and over again for about 11 years as a slave. He stands as an example that God has a much greater reward to bestow upon His faithful servants than the elusive, soon-vanishing satisfactions of this world.
Just think! God was able to accomplish His purpose through the wrath of Pharaoh against two of his officers (40:2). When they were released Joseph pled with the chief butler to think on me when it shall be well with thee, and shew kindness, I pray thee, unto me, and make mention of me unto Pharaoh, and bring me out of this house (dungeon): For indeed I was stolen away out oj the land of the Hebrews: and here also have I done nothing that they should put me into the dungeon (40:14-15).
And Joseph's release from prison two years later was perfectly timed by the One who worketh all things after the counsel of His own will (Ephesians 1:11). God's timing is always perfect even though it may appear that He is not in a hurry to fulfill His Word or deliver His servants from distress. Instead, He often allows much suffering and years of waiting to prepare the life of the one He has chosen. How foolish to judge the wisdom or love of God by the circumstances which surround us.
For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been His counseller? Or who hath first given to Him, and it shall be recompensed unto Him again? For of Him, and through Him, and to Him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen (Romans 11:34-36).
We shall reap, if we faint not (don't give up) (Galatians 6:9).
Thought for Today:
Some are often looking for someone to blame for their problems and suffering (Psalm 115:11). May we desire to forgive as Joseph did his brothers (Romans 8:28).
By the wisdom of Joseph (Genesis 41:39). Christ; In whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge (Col. 2:2-3).
40:1 butler =upbearer, most highly trusted servant officer; 40:3 in ward =n custody; 40:4 a season in ward =n custody for a while; 41:3 brink =ank; ill favoured =ery skinny, gaunt; 41:5 rank =arge full grain; 41:6 blasted =lighted, shriveled; 41:14 raiment =lothing; 41:18 fat fleshed =ine looking; 41:33 a man discreet =f wisdom and discernment; 41:35 hand =uthority; 41:39 so discreet =s discerning; 41:47 by handfuls =bundantly; 41:54 dearth =amine; 41:56 waxed sore =ecame severe; 42:7 made himself strange unto them =cted as a stranger to them; 42:15 proved =ested; 42:21 besought =egged; 42:34 traffick-do business.
Pray for The English International Shortwave Radio Broadcasts sponsored by Faith Pounds and Mr. & Mrs. Paul Huffstutler • Staff: Al Joslyn Jr. • Government Official: Rep. Michael McCaul (TX) • Country: Angola (11 million) in west-central Africa • Major languages: Portuguese and Bantu dialects • Christianity is gradually being driven underground by communism • 60% Roman Catholic; 20% Protestant; 5% belief in ancestor spirits, witches, and medicine men • Prayer Suggestion: Seek God as more important than food to satisfy your hunger (Proverbs 3:13-18).
Optional Reading: Matthew 14
Memory Verse for the Week: Revelation 22:19