January 17, 2017

January 17, 2017

GENESIS 48-50

Focus Verse: “When Joseph’s brothers saw that their father was dead, they said, ‘What if Joseph holds a grudge against us and pays us back for all the wrongs we did to him?’”

Genesis 50:15

Sometimes you just can’t get it through people’s heads. After everything Joseph had been through, after everything Joseph had put his brothers through to teach them what he had been through, after everything Joseph had given them, they still didn’t know him at all. They still looked at everything and thought, “He had to have been doing all of that because Dad was watching. Now that Dad’s gone he’ll go back to that cocky, little, self-righteous jerk he was before we sold him.”

But they missed something that Joseph got – the Gospel. Joseph had gone through Gospel change, and that’s not something that can be reversed. Somewhere in the midst of being owned by other human beings, being purchased and sold like a household good, being told that your humanity can be valued by a monetary price, Joseph broke. He realized what an awful person he was, and that there was nothing he could do in his own power to fix that.

God could fix Joseph though. And He did! So Joseph became dependent on God for everything. There were never any lines being blurred between what Joseph was doing and what God was doing through Joseph, because God was doing it all. Every step, every breath, belonged to God. Joseph’s was a life completely surrendered to God. Joseph knew what it meant to walk in the Spirit.

And that meant complete forgiveness.

His brothers hadn’t gone through that change yet. Until you experience Gospel change in yourself, it is impossible to understand it in anyone else. That’s why it’s so easy to criticize instead of love. “I can’t believe the people he hangs out with”, “Well she’s just doing that because she wants to look good for everyone else”, “I’d probably spend all my time serving too if I had done half the things he’s done.” The list goes on and on.

But the heart that has been changed by the Gospel message of Jesus Christ isn’t concerned with anyone but God. It’s purpose is singular, to do the will of God. Who is the wise man that builds his house upon the rock in Matthew 7? The person who listens to God and does what He says.

I’ll keep driving it home. That’s walking in the Spirit.

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