Let Us Fear and Serve God!

February 16, 2014

Genesis 39 records the remarkable testimony that Joseph had after he had been forcibly brought down to Egypt. From considering several aspects of his testimony, let us aspire to fear and serve God as he did.

Joseph’s Striking Testimony to an Egyptian Officer

In Egypt, Joseph was sold to Potiphar, an Egyptian officer who was the captain of Pharaoh’s guard (Gen. 39:1). Although Joseph was alone in a strange land where he did not know anyone, the Lord was with him and prospered him greatly (Gen. 39:2).

Joseph’s testimony was so remarkable that his unsaved Egyptian master “saw that the Lord was with him” (Gen. 39:3a). His master even saw “that the Lord made all that he did to prosper in his hand” (Gen. 39:3b)!

Moses does not explain what these statements specifically mean or how Potiphar saw these things. He does add that Joseph “found grace in his sight” and was exalted by him to be over all that he had (Gen. 39:4).

From the time that Potiphar exalted Joseph, the Lord blessed everything that Potiphar had in his house and his field (Gen. 39:5). Joseph’s exemplary service to Potiphar and the Lord’s incredible blessing on all that was his was thus a striking testimony to him of the goodness of God to him in spite of his being an unsaved Egyptian.

Joseph’s Sterling Testimony to Potiphar’s Wife

Potiphar’s wife took note of Joseph’s attractiveness and demanded that he commit adultery with her (Gen. 39:6-7). Joseph refused her immoral demand (Gen. 39:8) and testified to her of his fear of God by asking her, “How  . . . can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?” (Gen. 39:9).

Joseph showed that he feared God supremely and wanted to live a sanctified life for Him before others. Although his doing so would cost him greatly (Gen. 39:10-20), Jospeh remained steadfast in refusing her immoral overtures (Gen. 39:10) because he was determined to have a sterling testimony of fearing and serving God regardless of his circumstances.

Joseph’s Sustained Testimony of Excellence to the Keeper of the Prison

Although he was unjustly imprisoned (Gen. 39:20) because Potiphar’s wife falsely accused him of wrongdoing (Gen. 39:14-18), Joseph sustained his testimony of excellence before others because the Lord continued to be with him and bless him (Gen. 39:21). As Potiphar had done earlier, the keeper of the prison exalted Joseph “because the Lord was with him, and that which he did, the Lord made it to prosper (Gen 39:22-23).

Fearing and Serving God Regardless of Our Circumstances

Although Joseph unjustly suffered greatly, he did not allow his circumstances to turn him from fearing and serving God. He did not do so merely in his own strength or by his own determination and discipline—the Lord was with him (Gen. 39:2, 3, 21, 23), granted him favor with people (Gen. 39:21; cf. 39:4), and prospered all that he did (Gen. 39:3, 23)!

Jesus has promised to be with all His disciples always to the end of the world (Matt. 28:20). Because Jesus is with us, let us fear and serve God regardless of our circumstances, even as Joseph did!

Rajesh

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