Wednesday 1-18-17, Modesto, California
Today we read Gen 44 – 46 and Luke 18
S = Scripture O = Observation A = Application P = Prayer SOAP for the soul.
S. Gen 45:1-4 Joseph could stand it no longer. "Out, all of you!" he cried out to his attendants. He wanted to be alone with his brothers when he told them who he was. Then he broke down and wept aloud. His sobs could be heard throughout the palace, and the news was quickly carried to Pharaoh's palace. "I am Joseph!" he said to his brothers. "Is my father still alive?" But his brothers were speechless! They were stunned to realize that Joseph was standing there in front of them. NLT
O. Joseph was 17 when his brothers had sold him into slavery. For 20 years he had been speaking only in Egyptian. Now, in a position as top advisor to Pharoah, he dressed in regal attire and was attended by many servants. He had devised a clever plan to discover if his evil brothers had changed into decent men after all these years. When Judah pled for the life of Benjamin and offered to serve the rest of life as a slave to rescue his younger brother, Joseph could not hide his identity any longer. In Egyptian he ordered all his servants to leave the room. He burst into tears. The 11 brothers were terrified. Until now he had only spoken to his brothers through an interpreter, but now he spoke his first words in Hebrew in 20 years. “I am Joseph!”
A. I place myself among the 10 evil brothers and I know that I deserve the worse possible punishment. The tables are turned and I am caught and condemned. My future is torture, slavery and death. My only hope is the wonderful word: “forgiveness”. I place myself in the shoes of Benjamin and I am staring wide-eyed at my own brother. I place myself in the regal clothing of Joseph and I am caught between vengeance and mercy. I want to have a heart like Joseph, who surprised 10 guilty men with “forgiveness”.
P. Father God, You preserved this marvelous story for 3,800 years. You are trying to teach me something. Judah offered himself to save Benjamin, and You sent your Son, born of a virgin, a descendant of Judah, to offer Himself to rescue me. I rejoice! I am forgiven, not because I am guiltless, but because of Your great love. Please give me a forgiving heart like Joseph’s and like Yours. Amen.