“God sent me before you”
Today we read of the drama of Joseph whom his brothers sold as a slave into Egypt; he revealed himself to his astonished brothers when they came again to Egypt to buy food because of the continuing severity of the famine. They are overwhelmed by the revelation; remember, they are totally in his power humanly speaking, because of the absolute power of his position.
They would be most conscious of what they did to him in his youth – and therefore fearful. But Joseph makes the vital point,
“do not be distressed or angry with yourselves because you sold me here, for God sent me before you to preserve life. For the famine has been in the land these two years, and there are yet five years in which there will be neither ploughing nor harvest. And God sent me before you to preserve for you a remnant on earth, and to keep alive for you many survivors. So it was not you who sent me here, but God …” (Genesis 45:5-8).
So Joseph sees the ‘big picture’ of God’s oversight!
Let us perceive more clearly how our Creator remarkably foresees the freewill actions of human nature and weaves it into his plan and purpose ! This event is clear evidence of this, let us be spiritually awake to see this in other situations, even in our lives today – as we look back on events.
We are going to read next month how this event laid the foundation for the descendants of the sons of Jacob to become a nation (made up of 12 tribes). And how remarkable today is the action and reaction of the world with the reborn nation of Israel. But the world is blind to its significance, and what it portends.
The world has also become blind to the wonder of the Creator and his creation, a point we see Paul making as we started reading his powerful letter to the Romans. These were people who had worshipped idols, gods of human imagination.
“What can be known about God”
he tells them
“is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse” (1:19,20).
Paul then says,
“Claiming to be wise, they became fools” (verse 22).
They have become greater fools today, but in a different way. What we read from verse 28 fits our situation so aptly,
“since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done. They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness”.
Let us – in contrast – be “filled with all manner of” righteousness, which increases as we feed on God’s word every day.