Saturday, November 22, 2014

Joseph's Faith: In Christ

"By faith Joseph, when he died, made mention of the departing of the children of Israel; and gave commandment concerning his bones." (Hebrews 11: 22)

Joseph believed in the LORD, and overcame many challenges. From the dreams in his youth, the his ascendancy through the grace of God from slave to master of an officer's home, to the ruler in a jail, to second in command of the most powerful nation in the world.

He trusted in the LORD for all things.

Yet when it comes to faith, the writer of Hebrews did not focus on all that he had overcome. Instead, the writer focused on Joseph's trust in God's promise, i. e. the Promised Land:

"And Joseph said unto his brethren, I die: and God will surely visit you, and bring you out of this land unto the land which he sware to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob. 25And Joseph took an oath of the children of Israel, saying, God will surely visit you, and ye shall carry up my bones from hence." (Genesis 50: 24-25)

Not only did Joseph tell his family to prepare his bones, but that they would carry his bones when they left Egypt and claimed the Promised Land for themselves.

"And Moses took the bones of Joseph with him: for he had straitly sworn the children of Israel, saying, God will surely visit you; and ye shall carry up my bones away hence with you." (Exodus 13: 19)

Yet this Promised Land was more than a physical place, but a picture of Jesus and His Work on our behalf:

"1Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it. 2For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it." (Hebrews 4: 1-2)


"9There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God. 10For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his. 11Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief." (Hebrews 4: 9-11)

For all the things that Joseph did, his faith was recognized only for his belief in God's Promise to Abraham, about the Promised Land, and that through Abraham's seed (Jesus!) all the world would be blessed (Genesis 12: 1-3); Romans 4: 13)

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