Friday, January 16, 2009

For the Glory of God

SOAPSOAP {Scripture, Observation, Application, Prayer}:

Joseph's CoatSCRIPTURE
1-2 Joseph couldn't hold himself in any longer, keeping up a front before all his attendants. He cried out, "Leave! Clear out—everyone leave!" So there was no one with Joseph when he identified himself to his brothers. But his sobbing was so violent that the Egyptians couldn't help but hear him. The news was soon reported to Pharaoh's palace.

3 Joseph spoke to his brothers: "I am Joseph. Is my father really still alive?" But his brothers couldn't say a word. They were speechless—they couldn't believe what they were hearing and seeing.

4-8 "Come closer to me," Joseph said to his brothers. They came closer. "I am Joseph your brother whom you sold into Egypt. But don't feel badly, don't blame yourselves for selling me. God was behind it. God sent me here ahead of you to save lives. There has been a famine in the land now for two years; the famine will continue for five more years—neither plowing nor harvesting. God sent me on ahead to pave the way and make sure there was a remnant in the land, to save your lives in an amazing act of deliverance. So you see, it wasn't you who sent me here but God. He set me in place as a father to Pharaoh, put me in charge of his personal affairs, and made me ruler of all Egypt.

As God uses all things for His glory, those who serve Him will give Him all the glory.

In a fit of jealousy, the son's of Israel (Jacob) sold their brother Joseph into slavery because he was his father's favorite. After several years in captivity, Joseph was elevated to the highest office in all of Egypt, second only to Pharoah, the king.

When Joseph's brothers, who thought he was probably dead, came to him in need of food, they didn't recognize him. When Joseph finally revealed himself to his brothers, he did so with forgiveness. Rather than accusing them of selling him into slavery, he forgave them and gave God the glory for delivering him into such a position of great authority that he could be used to save lives -- even the lives of his own brothers and father.

Joseph had the authority to have his brothers locked up forever for what they had done to him, but instead he was gracious and forgiving and used his experience to glorify God.

Have I been so forgiving in my life that I would do such a thing? Have I used trying events in my life to glorify God?

Father, You have been very gracious to me all of my life. You have provided and protected all of my life. Lord, I am grateful for Your love and mercy. May I do all that I can to bring glory to Your name for all that You've done for me.

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