Temporal

February 10, 2018

Genesis 37:4… But when his brother saw that their father loved him more than all his brothers, they hated him and could not speak peacefully to him.

            This chapter is about Joseph. His father, Jacob, had 12 sons and Joseph was the 11th one born to him. He had sons by 4 different wives; Joseph being the first son by Rachel. Jacob, according to the other sons, loved Joseph the most. He gave him a coat of many colors. Times have changed. If my dad had given me a coat of many colors, I would have thought that he loved me the least.  The brothers were jealous of him and sought to get rid of him.

            One thing that is made quite clear in this story is that God works with humans in their brokenness and ugly ways. He doesn’t make us perform at optimum levels, in pure righteousness. The big picture unfolds over the next chapters of Genesis. Joseph’s brothers looked for an opportunity to get rid of him… kill him. One brother thought that too drastic and convinced the others to throw him in a pit where he would likely die. He had it in his mind that he would release him from the pit when he got an opportunity. As it turned out, the brothers sold him to a band of non-Jews who took him to Egypt. There, they sold him to the head man in Egypt. Through a bunch of misunderstandings and false accusations, he ended up in prison. Eventually, Pharaoh released him from prison and because God was with him, he put him in charge of the treasury of Egypt. Could there have been an easier way for this to happen? Probably, but God used men who were jealous and men who were mad and a woman who was selfish and made His purpose happen. Never doubt God’s ability to do His plan. He is not stopped by our weaknesses.

            Have you ever felt unqualified to work for God? I do… all the time. And, I am… we are. But, God knows that, and does what He is going to do anyway. The Bible is real.  Miracles do happen; but the people are human and often do things that are less than great. In the story of Joseph, we learn that God uses the worst of people’s emotions to work His purposes. In the big picture, we are in concert with God. He is the eternal power, we are the temporal. That is a word we don’t use very often. I consider it like ‘temporary’. That helps me. We are not God.