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From Prince to Prison – Character Study of Joseph
Joseph was God’s gift to Rachel who was anguished over her barrenness. He was his father’s favorite son. When Joseph’s mom died, Jacob lavished him with so much love that his brother’s began to envy him. To make matters worse Jacob gave Joseph an elegant tunic of many colors.
It came to pass that Joseph being a good son went upon Jacob’s request to visit his brothers who were away with the family flock. Unfortunately this did not fare well for Joseph. His brother’s envy caused them to plot to harm him. (Genesis 42:21) He was stripped of his colorful tunic and sold as a slave.
The Genesis account makes no mention of all that Joseph went through but we do see that this grueling experience did not steal away the one thing that Joseph was accustomed to enjoying; the presence of God. As you read the scriptures you will see Joseph’s desperation to get out of the unjust position he was forced into. However, no passage shows Joseph as an unhappy individual, mourning his state or grumbling about his hard hearted brothers.
Even in his dark hours, Joseph was never far from God’s love. He might have missed his father, his home and familiar surrounding but Joseph never lost God’s presence. He allowed the fear of God to dominate his bleak life. David continued holding to high standards of integrity.
Take Joseph’s response to unjust suffering as a challenge to us to remain encouraged when things might not look like things are working in our favor. Joseph’s trials led him to the King’s palace and being second in command over a kingdom. God gave Joseph wisdom to know how to store harvest for a time when the crops would not grow. This enabled Joseph to be in a position to provide food for his family. When Joseph was put in this position he could have sought revenge and let his family starve but he chose to see the move of God in his life for allowing him to be in a place of provision for his family.
When your family or friends let you down how do you respond? Do you look for revenge or do you seek understanding from God and look to him to supply your needs? Read Joseph’s story in its entirety and let it rest in your heart as an example of God’s grace, mercy and favour.
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