Monday, May 31, 2010

God Uses Moses to Lead Out His People From Egypt

By faith he forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king: for he endured, as seeing him who is invisible. Through faith he kept the passover, and the sprinkling of blood, lest he that destroyed the firstborn should touch them. Hebrews 11:27-28

Steps: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 10, 11, 12

God takes Moses, and Israel, through many experiences to deliver them. He takes them through the loss of straw to make bricks to develop their desire to leave Egypt. He then confronts Pharaoh with a series of increasingly harsh plagues to reveal that the power of the God of Israel is greater than all of the god’s of Egypt. God grants everyone the opportunity of testifying of their faith in God by instituting the Passover – the slaying of a lamb, symbolizing the death of Jesus, and then putting the blood of this lamb on the two side posts of the door way and the upper door post. Every family who puts this blood on their door, their first born children and their first born animals will be safe. Every family who refuses to put the blood on their door posts will lose their first born child and their first born animals. This putting the blood on the door is a visible testament of their belief that God is able, and willing, to do exactly as He said He would do. Many people were delivered that night and many people lost their children. What a way to learn about God.

Prayer for Today: Everyday God warns us about things through His Bible. If we are willing to follow His instructions many of us will be saved. If not many of us will die in our addictions, whatever those addictions might be. We pray today that You will help us to know what You want of us, and then grant us courage and power to follow Your instructions. We know if we do this many people, including our children, will be saved.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

God Assures Moses that Pharaoh Will Not Let Israel Go

And I am sure that the king of Egypt will not let you go, no, not by a mighty hand. And I will stretch out my hand, and smite Egypt with all my wonders which I will do in the midst thereof: and after that he will let you go. And I will give this people favour in the sight of the Egyptians: and it shall come to pass, that, when ye go, ye shall not go empty. But every woman shall borrow of her neighbour, and of her that sojourneth in her house, jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and raiment: and ye shall put them upon your sons, and upon your daughters; and ye shall spoil the Egyptians. Exodus 3:19-22

Steps: 4, 5, 6, 11, 12

God tells Moses what Pharaoh will do before it happens so that when it does happen Moses will gain confidence that God knows how to take care of business. God assures Moses that when the time comes He will reveal His signs and wonders until Pharaoh will let them go. God also assures Moses that when Egypt lets Israel go they will go out with plenty of money and possessions for their new land. God has everything under control.

Prayer for Today: Help us to gain courage from how You took care of Egypt so long ago. We know that You revealed Your power to deliver Your people back then, but we want to know that You will reveal Your power to deliver us from our difficulties today. Thank You for he opportunity to work with You so that we can have the assurance that You can take care of us now. We pray for Your faith to accept Your promises.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Jesus Claims to Be the I Am of Exodus 3

"Surely You are not greater than our father Abraham, who died? The prophets died too; whom do You make Yourself out to be?" Jesus answered, "If I glorify Myself, My glory is nothing; it is My Father who glorifies Me, of whom you say, ‘He is our God’; and you have not come to know Him, but I know Him; and if I say that I do not know Him, I shall be a liar like you, but I do know Him, and keep His word. "Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day, and he saw it and was glad." The Jews therefore said to Him, "You are not yet fifty years old, and have You seen Abraham?" Jesus said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was born, I am." Therefore they picked up stones to throw at Him; but Jesus hid Himself, and went out of the temple. John 8:53-59

Steps: 4, 5, 11, 12

Jesus claims to have been alive before Abraham and that when Abraham saw the days of Jesus he rejoiced. When the Jews, of Jesus time heard this, they were appalled because to claim this one would have to be God, and here they were looking and interacting with a man. Then Jesus claimed that before Abraham was born He existed as the I Am, the same name the God applied to Himself in the time of Moses. The Jews reacted to this statement by picking up stones to stone Jesus for claiming to be God, when in fact, He was God.

Prayer for Today: It is difficult for us as well to believe that You came to Earth as a man. This idea is staggering all by itself. Now You claim to want to help us, another staggering idea. We pray that You will grant us the faith necessary to accept some of the ideas You have presented in Your Bible. These are pretty big concepts and we pray for Your help to be able to accept these ideas. Thank You for revealing these truths to us.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Moses Talks to God

And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush: and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed. And Moses said, I will now turn aside, and see this great sight, why the bush is not burnt. And when the LORD saw that he turned aside to see, God called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said, Moses, Moses. And he said, Here am I. And he said, Draw not nigh hither: put off thy shoes from off thy feet, for the place whereon thou standest is holy ground. Moreover he said, I am the God of thy father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. And Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon God. Exodus 3:2-6

Steps: 1, 2, 3, 11, 12

Moses meets the I Am, the God of his fathers Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. God met him in a burning bush to get Moses’ attention. Moses had heard about God but when he met with him it changed his life. God gave Moses instructions as to how to deliver God’s people from Egypt. Moses, after much discussion became ready to do the will of God.

Prayer for Today: God, today we want to have our own personal experience with You. We want to see as much of You as we can take, and we want the assurance that You will be with us to guide and keep us as You assign us our work in life. Help us to trust You and by experience believe in Your power and grace. Thank You for Your love for us.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Moses Chooses God Over All the Riches of Egypt

By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter; Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season; Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompence of the reward. Hebrews 11:24-26
Steps: 4, 5, 10, 11, 12

Moses grew up in Egypt under the care of his mother, hired by the princess to nurse him, and then under the care of the Egyptian Princess. When old enough he was educated in the ways of Egyptian royalty. But when he was old enough he saw the inequities of how his people were treated and he chose to serve God in accordance with his understanding of God. He decided to lead Israel out of Egypt by martial arts and he killed one whole Egyptian and then had to flee for his life. For the next 40 years of his life he had to unlearn much of what he was taught in Egypt and had to learn about God in the quietness of the life of a shepherd.

Prayer for Today: God, take us, train us, and get our thinking straightened out, so that we can serve You and follow Your instructions. Help us to recognize that the world had little to offer us that is healthy but in You all is wisdom and power. Grant us victory over our thinking and help us to see You and to follow You. Thank You for Your love.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010


And the daughter of Pharaoh came down to wash herself at the river; and her maidens walked along by the river’s side; and when she saw the ark among the flags, she sent her maid to fetch it. And when she had opened it, she saw the child: and, behold, the babe wept. And she had compassion on him, and said, This is one of the Hebrews’ children. Then said his sister to Pharaoh’s daughter, Shall I go and call to thee a nurse of the Hebrew women, that she may nurse the child for thee? And Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, Go. And the maid went and called the child’s mother. And Pharaoh’s daughter said unto her, Take this child away, and nurse it for me, and I will give thee thy wages. And the woman took the child, and nursed it. And the child grew, and she brought him unto Pharaoh’s daughter, and he became her son. And she called his name Moses: and she said, Because I drew him out of the water. Exodus 2:5-10

Steps: 11, 12

In God’s providence a child is born to an Israelite couple living in Egypt. The King, who chose not to believe in Joseph, has made a decree to kill all of the first born sons of Israel. He has been instructed by the priests that a deliverer is to be born and he is trying to do the same thing that Joseph’s brothers tried, to frustrate the will of God. God instructs the child’s family to make an ark out of bulrushes and place the child in the river. The Egyptian princess is bathing and she sees the ark and looks into it and there is a child. She believes that the Nile River God has answered her prayers for a child and she names the child Moses – one drawn out of the water. She does not know that she is being used by God to accomplish the deliverance of Israel by saving the Saviour.

Prayer for Today: God, we have seen how You used Joseph to accomplish Your holy will, we will see how You do the same through Moses. We ask today that You will use us as well. Thank You for Your love.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Egypt Rejects the God of Israel

Now there arose up a new king over Egypt, which knew not Joseph. And he said unto his people, Behold, the people of the children of Israel are more and mightier than we: Come on, let us deal wisely with them; lest they multiply, and it come to pass, that, when there falleth out any war, they join also unto our enemies, and fight against us, and so get them up out of the land. Therefore they did set over them taskmasters to afflict them with their burdens. And they built for Pharaoh treasure cities, Pithom and Raamses. But the more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and grew. And they were grieved because of the children of Israel. And the Egyptians made the children of Israel to serve with rigour: And they made their lives bitter with hard bondage, in morter, and in brick, and in all manner of service in the field: all their service, wherein they made them serve, was with rigour. Exodus 1:8-14

Steps: 1

Egypt developed a King/Pharaoh who chose to deny the history of what Joseph did for Egypt. This King did not want to acknowledge what God had done for them through Joseph. This King chose to believe that Egypt’s national history was not dependent upon an outsider for help. They chose to believe a tradition over the truth and thus shut God out of their memories and chose to persecute the very people of the man that had been so instrumental in saving them as a nation. Thus they rejected God in the person of His saints, the Israelites. Egypt did not want God to reign over them.

Prayer for Today: Help us to remember that when You choose to deliver us by people that it is not the people so much as Your power that saves. Help us to remember that behind any good thing is the God who sent for, or arranged for, the good gift. Help us not to forget You or the person You have chosen to send to help us. Thank You for Your tender mercies to us. We pray today that we will not forget Your tender love for us.

Monday, May 24, 2010

The Death of Joseph

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. And Joseph took an oath of the children of Israel, saying, God will surely visit you, and ye shall carry up my bones from hence. So Joseph died, being an hundred and ten years old: and they embalmed him, and he was put in a coffin in Egypt. Genesis 50:24-26

Steps: 11, 12

Joseph has lived a good life, with many problems, but still good. Jacob has died, and now it is Joseph’s turn. He asks his brothers to take His bones with them when the Lord brings them out of Egypt as He promised to their father Abraham many years before. Genesis 15:13-18 God has promised to deliver Israel from Egypt and return them to the land He has promised. Joseph knows that everything God has promised that it will be done. No matter what happens, just like Joseph being sold as a slave, all things will work out for God’s people. Romans 8:28

Prayer for Today: We thank You God that You already know everything before it comes to pass. Help us to stay steady with You and to trust fully in Your plans for us. Thank You for Your watch care over us.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Jacob Blesses His Children

Judah, thou art he whom thy brethren shall praise: thy hand shall be in the neck of thine enemies; thy father’s children shall bow down before thee. Judah is a lion’s whelp: from the prey, my son, thou art gone up: he stooped down, he couched as a lion, and as an old lion; who shall rouse him up? The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be. Binding his foal unto the vine, and his ass’s colt unto the choice vine; he washed his garments in wine, and his clothes in the blood of grapes: His eyes shall be red with wine, and his teeth white with milk. Genesis 49:8-12

Steps: 11, 12

Before Jacob dies he wants to bless his children. In Genesis 49 he goes through each son and tells them about their spiritual experience, now and in the future. The most beautiful of all of these statements is the prophecy of the coming of the Messiah in the blessing on Judah. Judah is the tribe through which the Messiah would come and this blessing is also a prophecy stating that there will be a leader of Judah on the throne all the way to the time of the coming of the Messiah. When there is no longer a king of Judah ruling over Israel then Messiah would have come.

Prayer for Today: God help us to receive Your counsel on us and not run from You. Help us to receive Your gifts, including that of truth, and help us not to press forward on our own. Help us to rest in Your care, Your foreknowledge, and Your willingness to watch over us.

Joseph and Jacob Meet

Late Entry for 5/23/10

And he sent Judah before him unto Joseph, to direct his face unto Goshen; and they came into the land of Goshen. And Joseph made ready his chariot, and went up to meet Israel his father, to Goshen, and presented himself unto him; and he fell on his neck, and wept on his neck a good while. And Israel said unto Joseph, Now let me die, since I have seen thy face, because thou art yet alive. Genesis 46:28-30

Steps: 1, 2, 3, 11, 12

Now that Jacob knows the will of God, he sets out to implement it before he can talk himself out of it. He meets Joseph and the two of them fell on each others’ necks and weep a good while. Jacob’s prayers have been answered in a way that he could not have known and he is blessed by the prosperity of his son Joseph. Jacob is content in the hands of God.

Prayer for Today: Help us to trust You oh God. You know the end from the beginning and all Your ways are blessings to us. Help us not to leave You and go on our own. Help us to trust You and obey You as well. Thank You Lord.

Friday, May 21, 2010

God Tells Jacob to Go Into Egypt

And Israel took his journey with all that he had, and came to Beersheba, and offered sacrifices unto the God of his father Isaac. And God spake unto Israel in the visions of the night, and said, Jacob, Jacob. And he said, Here am I. And he said, I am God, the God of thy father: fear not to go down into Egypt; for I will there make of thee a great nation: I will go down with thee into Egypt; and I will also surely bring thee up again: and Joseph shall put his hand upon thine eyes. Genesis 46:1-4

Steps: 11, 12

Jacob has learned his lessons well. Even though it seems obvious to go to Egypt to meet with his long lost son, the first thing Jacob does is seek out the will of God. He has been through enough to know that his judgment is always poor and that his only point of safety is to follow the will of God. He asks for God’s thinking and God tells him to go to Egypt and that God will bless him, and his family, there. Jacob’s family will become great nation. God also promises to bring them out again and return them to Canaan. With these assurances Jacob is ready to go.

Prayer for Today: Help us again to learn from Jacob that no matter how self-evident something appears, the safest way to go is to check it out with God through prayer and meditation. Help us to come to You for Your guidance and Your blessings. Help us to learn finally that our only hope is in You.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Now Comes the Difficult Part – Amends to Jacob

And they went up out of Egypt, and came into the land of Canaan unto Jacob their father, And told him, saying, Joseph is yet alive, and he is governor over all the land of Egypt. And Jacob’s heart fainted, for he believed them not. And they told him all the words of Joseph, which he had said unto them: and when he saw the wagons which Joseph had sent to carry him, the spirit of Jacob their father revived: And Israel said, It is enough; Joseph my son is yet alive: I will go and see him before I die. Genesis 45:25-28

Steps: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

Now comes the hard part. If the brothers are honest, true, and if they have had a spiritual awakening, they now must tell their father the whole truth about their behaviors. What a day that must have been for both the brothers and the father. To know the depths of addictive behaviors that they had, and to go to the extent that they went to to try to stop God’s plan must have been amazing to Jacob. Yet, since Jacob was into recovery he would have to grant his sons the freedom to grow as well as he had wanted freedom to grow in grace and truth. Jacob was ready to go and see his son.

Prayer for Today: We pray God that when it is our turn to confess and make amends that we will not fear and stop. We pray that we may press forward in confidence that we will do what needs to be done. Help us not to hold back out of distrust of You. Help us to trust Your plans that confession of our sins to the people we have harmed opens the door to forgiveness and freedom. We won’t have to carry the heavy burden of guilt and sin any more. Thank You for our new found freedom.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

God Moves Upon Pharaoh To Give Egypt to Joseph’s Family

And the fame thereof was heard in Pharaoh’s house, saying, Joseph’s brethren are come: and it pleased Pharaoh well, and his servants. And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, Say unto thy brethren, This do ye; lade your beasts, and go, get you unto the land of Canaan; And take your father and your households, and come unto me: and I will give you the good of the land of Egypt, and ye shall eat the fat of the land. Now thou art commanded, this do ye; take you wagons out of the land of Egypt for your little ones, and for your wives, and bring your father, and come. Also regard not your stuff; for the good of all the land of Egypt is yours. Genesis 45:16-20

Steps: 11, 12

God continues to reveal His control of the situation in Egypt. He moves upon Pharaoh’s heart to give the good land of Egypt to Joseph’s family. He wants them to come to the land and receive the blessings of living in Egypt where there is food. There are still several years of the famine left and Pharaoh wants to be sure that his leader Joseph, and his family, are well taken care of. Joseph is the deliverer of Egypt and Pharaoh recognizes this. Joseph is a type of Jesus the Saviour.

Prayer for Today: It is difficult for us to recognize how many times and in how many ways You have delivered us from our own actions and mistakes. Please help us to acknowledge You today. You are taking care of us just as You took care of Joseph and his family. Help us to believe that this story was recorded just for us. I Corinthians 10:11 Help us to learn the lessons You have prepared for us that we will trust You in all things.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

God Reveals His Theology Through Joseph

Now therefore be not grieved, nor angry with yourselves, that ye sold me hither: for God did send me before you to preserve life. For these two years hath the famine been in the land: and yet there are five years, in the which there shall neither be earing nor harvest. And God sent me before you to preserve you a posterity in the earth, and to save your lives by a great deliverance. So now it was not you that sent me hither, but God: and he hath made me a father to Pharaoh, and lord of all his house, and a ruler throughout all the land of Egypt. Genesis 45:5-8

Steps: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 11, 12

Now that Joseph has revealed himself to his brothers he recognizes that they are afraid as to whether Joseph will take this opportunity to kill them as they at one time wanted to kill him. But Joseph tells them the truth about God that He wanted to send Joseph ahead of his brothers to save them, not to harm them. This is how God wins hearts and minds, by revealing to people not only how much He loves them but to reveal all the things He has done to preserve them even though they have mistreated Him. God is love.

Prayer for Today: God, we know that we have mistreated You and Your children. Again we ask for forgiveness. Please help us to respond positively to Your love and not try to take advantage of You in any way. Help us to believe that You would go through all of the work that You did with Joseph to win the hearts of his brothers, and You would do that

Monday, May 17, 2010

Joseph Reveals Himself to His Brothers

Then Joseph could not refrain himself before all them that stood by him; and he cried, Cause every man to go out from me. And there stood no man with him, while Joseph made himself known unto his brethren. And he wept aloud: and the Egyptians and the house of Pharaoh heard. And Joseph said unto his brethren, I am Joseph; doth my father yet live? And his brethren could not answer him; for they were troubled at his presence. And Joseph said unto his brethren, Come near to me, I pray you. And they came near. And he said, I am Joseph your brother, whom ye sold into Egypt. Genesis 45:1-4

Steps: 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

Joseph can not take it any more and reveals himself to his brothers. Joseph is weeping in joy but his brothers are totally shocked. They can hardly believe their ears that the brother they hated and tried to kill would end up being their judge and benefactor in Egypt. The brothers are afraid that they will be killed but Joseph loves them and wants to help them.

Prayer for Today: God, Your ways are so shocking to us that they are hard to believe. Help us to believe that what You have done in the past is a testimony of what You can do for us, and what You will do for Your holy plan sake.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Judah Intercedes for Benjamin

And our father said, Go again, and buy us a little food. And we said, We cannot go down: if our youngest brother be with us, then will we go down: for we may not see the man’s face, except our youngest brother be with us. And thy servant my father said unto us, Ye know that my wife bare me two sons: And the one went out from me, and I said, Surely he is torn in pieces; and I saw him not since: And if ye take this also from me, and mischief befall him, ye shall bring down my gray hairs with sorrow to the grave. Now therefore when I come to thy servant my father, and the lad be not with us; seeing that his life is bound up in the lad’s life; It shall come to pass, when he seeth that the lad is not with us, that he will die: and thy servants shall bring down the gray hairs of thy servant our father with sorrow to the grave. For thy servant became surety for the lad unto my father, saying, If I bring him not unto thee, then I shall bear the blame to my father for ever. Now therefore, I pray thee, let thy servant abide instead of the lad a bondman to my lord; and let the lad go up with his brethren. For how shall I go up to my father, and the lad be not with me? lest peradventure I see the evil that shall come on my father. Genesis 44:25-34

Steps 10

Joseph sets up the final test for the brothers. When Benjamin is taken as the “thief” the brothers are tested to the core. They know that if Benjamin does not come back all of the suffering that they have brought upon their father will kill him. Judah, the prophesied leader of Israel’s family, steps forward and asks Joseph to take him for a slave and send Benjamin home to care for their father. Judah is ready to “die” for Benjamin.

Prayer for Today: God help us to have so much victory in our lives that we will follow in Your footsteps. You were willing to die for us, help us to be willing to change for You.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Joseph Meets His Youngest Brother

And he asked them of their welfare, and said, Is your father well, the old man of whom ye spake? Is he yet alive? And they answered, Thy servant our father is in good health, he is yet alive. And they bowed down their heads, and made obeisance. And he lifted up his eyes, and saw his brother Benjamin, his mother’s son, and said, Is this your younger brother, of whom ye spake unto me? And he said, God be gracious unto thee, my son. And Joseph made haste; for his bowels did yearn upon his brother: and he sought where to weep; and he entered into his chamber, and wept there. And he washed his face, and went out, and refrained himself, and said, Set on bread. And they set on for him by himself, and for them by themselves, and for the Egyptians, which did eat with him, by themselves: because the Egyptians might not eat bread with the Hebrews; for that is an abomination unto the Egyptians. And they sat before him, the firstborn according to his birthright, and the youngest according to his youth: and the men marvelled one at another. And he took and sent messes unto them from before him: but Benjamin’s mess was five times so much as any of theirs. And they drank, and were merry with him. Genesis 43:27-34

Steps: 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10

Joseph gets to see his youngest brother. He also checks to see if his father is alive. The test is not yet finished and Joseph wants to check to see if his brothers are jealous of Benjamin getting five times as much food as the rest of the brothers. Joseph also sets them in birth order at the table. The brothers see all of these things and do not know what to do, but they are trying to keep it all together to get Simeon back, get some food, and protect Benjamin.

Prayer for Today: God, when everything seems strange and impossible, help us to remember that You are running the show and we can trust everything into Your hands and trust that all will work out properly. Thank You for Your mercies to us.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Simeon is Imprisoned

And they said one to another, We are verily guilty concerning our brother, in that we saw the anguish of his soul, when he besought us, and we would not hear; therefore is this distress come upon us. And Reuben answered them, saying, Spake I not unto you, saying, Do not sin against the child; and ye would not hear? therefore, behold, also his blood is required. And they knew not that Joseph understood them; for he spake unto them by an interpreter. And he turned himself about from them, and wept; and returned to them again, and communed with them, and took from them Simeon, and bound him before their eyes. Genesis 41:21-24

Steps 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10

Joseph is able to listen to the speech of his brothers and recognizes their guilt. Joseph takes Simeon, the ring leader of the slaughter of Shechemites and probably the one who wanted to kill Joseph originally, and puts him into jail as a hostage to bring the brothers back to Egypt after he sends them home with food. Simeon is starting to make his amends. The brothers are feeling their guilt as well.

Prayer for Today: O God, we fear that our sins from our past will find us out. Help us to be willing to make the amends necessary so that our punishment will not overwhelm us. Thank You for Your great mercies in not giving us what we deserve. Thank You for giving us what You deserve, and that You took what we deserved. Help us to trust in Your plans.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Joseph’s Dream is Fulfilled

And Joseph’s ten brethren went down to buy corn in Egypt. But Benjamin, Joseph’s brother, Jacob sent not with his brethren; for he said, Lest peradventure mischief befall him. And the sons of Israel came to buy corn among those that came: for the famine was in the land of Canaan. And Joseph was the governor over the land, and he it was that sold to all the people of the land: and Joseph’s brethren came, and bowed down themselves before him with their faces to the earth. And Joseph saw his brethren, and he knew them, but made himself strange unto them, and spake roughly unto them; and he said unto them, Whence come ye? And they said, From the land of Canaan to buy food. And Joseph knew his brethren, but they knew not him. And Joseph remembered the dreams which he dreamed of them…Genesis 42:3-9

Steps: 4, 5
In the process of time the famine drives Joseph’s brothers to come to Egypt to get food. Joseph recognizes his brothers but they do not recognize their brother as the leader of Egypt. In their minds Joseph is dead, or is a slave somewhere, but not the leader of Egypt. Joseph decides to take them through an experience, similar to an inventory, to see if they have changed. The dream God had given Joseph has been fulfilled. All of the workings of the brothers could not stop the prophecy.

Prayer for Today: What a turn of events. It is amazing to think of the ways You work things out. We would not have thought such a change of events would be possible but all things are possible to You. Help us to learn Your ways as we read and react to this wonderful story. Help us to trust Your amazing power and wisdom.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

God Exalts Joseph

Now therefore let Pharaoh look out a man discreet and wise, and set him over the land of Egypt. Let Pharaoh do this, and let him appoint officers over the land, and take up the fifth part of the land of Egypt in the seven plenteous years. And let them gather all the food of those good years that come, and lay up corn under the hand of Pharaoh, and let them keep food in the cities. And that food shall be for store to the land against the seven years of famine, which shall be in the land of Egypt; that the land perish not through the famine. And the thing was good in the eyes of Pharaoh, and in the eyes of all his servants. And Pharaoh said unto his servants, Can we find such a one as this is, a man in whom the Spirit of God is? And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, Forasmuch as God hath shewed thee all this, there is none so discreet and wise as thou art: Thou shalt be over my house, and according unto thy word shall all my people be ruled: only in the throne will I be greater than thou. And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, See, I have set thee over all the land of Egypt. And Pharaoh took off his ring from his hand, and put it upon Joseph’s hand, and arrayed him in vestures of fine linen, and put a gold chain about his neck; And he made him to ride in the second chariot which he had; and they cried before him, Bow the knee: and he made him ruler over all the land of Egypt. Genesis 41:32-43

Steps: 11, 12

God gave Pharaoh two dreams and Joseph interprets the dreams and then gives the Pharaoh counsel as to how to solve the problem that the dream is speaking to - 7 years of famine that will come on the land of Egypt. Pharaoh is so stricken by the counsel that he immediately puts it into effect and exalts Joseph from prisoner to second in command of the whole nation. That is how God works, in His own unique manner.

Prayer for Today: God, it is almost impossible for us to think that You could and would take us from a rags to riches story in one day. You did it for Joseph but could You do it for us? It is strange for us to think that a move from totally ignoring God to accepting Him is our rags to riches story but it is true. Thank You for remembering us and accepting us into Your family.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Joseph Receives a Call to Interpret the Pharaoh’s Dream

And it came to pass in the morning that his spirit was troubled; and he sent and called for all the magicians of Egypt, and all the wise men thereof: and Pharaoh told them his dream; but there was none that could interpret them unto Pharaoh. Then spake the chief butler unto Pharaoh, saying, I do remember my faults this day: Pharaoh was wroth with his servants, and put me in ward in the captain of the guard’s house, both me and the chief baker: And we dreamed a dream in one night, I and he; we dreamed each man according to the interpretation of his dream. And there was there with us a young man, an Hebrew, servant to the captain of the guard; and we told him, and he interpreted to us our dreams; to each man according to his dream he did interpret. And it came to pass, as he interpreted to us, so it was; me he restored unto mine office, and him he hanged. Then Pharaoh sent and called Joseph, and they brought him hastily out of the dungeon: and he shaved himself, and changed his raiment, and came in unto Pharaoh. And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, I have dreamed a dream, and there is none that can interpret it: and I have heard say of thee, that thou canst understand a dream to interpret it. And Joseph answered Pharaoh, saying, It is not in me: God shall give Pharaoh an answer of peace. Genesis 41:8-16

Steps: 4, 5, 11, 12

In God’s time and providence the Pharaoh has a dream that is so disturbing that he asks help from his wise men and they can not help. The Butler, who had been helped by Joseph two years before, remembers and tells the Pharaoh about Joseph and the Pharaoh calls for Joseph, a prisoner, and a foreigner, to help him. Joseph praises God for this gift, for Joseph, the representative of God will help the king.

Prayer for Today: We thank You God for Your willingness to help us to help others. Even when things do not go at our speed, we thank You that You are still working things out to honor Your holy name. Help us to be willing to work with You at Your speed.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Joseph Interprets the King’s Officers Dreams

And Joseph answered and said, This is the interpretation thereof: The three baskets are three days: Yet within three days shall Pharaoh lift up thy head from off thee, and shall hang thee on a tree; and the birds shall eat thy flesh from off thee. And it came to pass the third day, which was Pharaoh’s birthday, that he made a feast unto all his servants: and he lifted up the head of the chief butler and of the chief baker among his servants. And he restored the chief butler unto his butlership again; and he gave the cup into Pharaoh’s hand: But he hanged the chief baker: as Joseph had interpreted to them. Yet did not the chief butler remember Joseph, but forgat him. Genesis 40:19-23

Steps: 11, 12

Joseph was in the prison for a period of time and the King of Egypt – Pharaoh sent two officers to prison for offending him. In the time that they were in prison they each had a dream and Joseph interpreted each officer’s dream. Each dream was fulfilled exactly because God sees and knows the future. The Butler was excited to be alive and promised to remember Joseph but he forgot him for two years after returning to the king’s service. But the seeds were planted and soon the harvest would occur.

Prayer for Today: God, even though innocent of wrong doing, we pray that even if treated poorly, or even illegally, help us to remember that You are in control, and You know the future, and that we can trust You, Your judgment, and Your plans for us. Help us to rest secure in Your love for us.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Joseph is Thrown Into Prison – Even Though Innocent

And it came to pass, when his master heard the words of his wife, which she spake unto him, saying, After this manner did thy servant to me; that his wrath was kindled. And Joseph’s master took him, and put him into the prison, a place where the king’s prisoners were bound: and he was there in the prison. But the LORD was with Joseph, and shewed him mercy, and gave him favour in the sight of the keeper of the prison. And the keeper of the prison committed to Joseph’s hand all the prisoners that were in the prison; and whatsoever they did there, he was the doer of it. The keeper of the prison looked not to any thing that was under his hand; because the LORD was with him, and that which he did, the LORD made it to prosper. Genesis 39:19-23

Steps: 4, 5, 11, 12

Joseph, by staying true to God, is delivered from Potipher, and from his wife. He was thrown into the prison where the king’s prisoners were sent, not to the common prison. Joseph, in the providence of God was sent to the right place to accomplish God’s plans. God blessed Joseph and all things were given to Joseph because he was a natural leader, and organizer, as well as an interpreter of dreams. God had him set up to be ready for the next part of the plan.

Prayer for Today: Thank You God that You would allow Joseph to be sent to a special place to accomplish Your plans with Him. Help us to gain faith that as You would watch over Joseph You are implying that You would watch over us as well. No matter what the problem, help us to trust You that You have a plan for us and that Your plans will always be a blessing to us no matter what happens to us.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Potipher’s Wife Hits on Joseph

And it came to pass after these things, that his master’s wife cast her eyes upon Joseph; and she said, Lie with me. But he refused, and said unto his master’s wife, Behold, my master wotteth not what is with me in the house, and he hath committed all that he hath to my hand; There is none greater in this house than I; neither hath he kept back any thing from me but thee, because thou art his wife: how then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God? And it came to pass, as she spake to Joseph day by day, that he hearkened not unto her, to lie by her, or to be with her. And it came to pass about this time, that Joseph went into the house to do his business; and there was none of the men of the house there within. And she caught him by his garment, saying, Lie with me: and he left his garment in her hand, and fled, and got him out. And it came to pass, when she saw that he had left his garment in her hand, and was fled forth, That she called unto the men of her house, and spake unto them, saying, See, he hath brought in an Hebrew unto us to mock us; he came in unto me to lie with me, and I cried with a loud voice: And it came to pass, when he heard that I lifted up my voice and cried, that he left his garment with me, and fled, and got him out. Genesis 39:7-15

Steps: 4, 5, 11, 12

Joseph recognized what happened. He lived in a society where sexual gratification was done all the time by anyone with anyone. Leviticus 18. Joseph knew from the laws of God, Genesis 26:5 that he was not to get involved with adultery, or any other sexual activity, outside of marriage. He refused to sleep with his master’s wife regardless of the consequences, even if falsely represented. He would stay true to God.

Prayer for Today: God, no matter what the cost help me to stay true to You. We don’t want to turn against You and we recognize that we need Your help to stay true. Thank You for Your mercies to us.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Joseph and Potipher

And Joseph was brought down to Egypt; and Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh, captain of the guard, an Egyptian, bought him of the hands of the Ishmeelites, which had brought him down thither. And the LORD was with Joseph, and he was a prosperous man; and he was in the house of his master the Egyptian. And his master saw that the LORD was with him, and that the LORD made all that he did to prosper in his hand. And Joseph found grace in his sight, and he served him: and he made him overseer over his house, and all that he had he put into his hand. And it came to pass from the time that he had made him overseer in his house, and over all that he had, that the LORD blessed the Egyptian’s house for Joseph’s sake; and the blessing of the LORD was upon all that he had in the house, and in the field. And he left all that he had in Joseph’s hand; and he knew not ought he had, save the bread which he did eat. And Joseph was a goodly person, and well favoured. Genesis 39:1-6

Steps: 4, 5

Joseph has been sold into the house of an Egyptian governmental leader. He grows up and is a blessing to the home of his “owner”. Potipher turns over everything that he has, except his wife, to be watched over by Joseph because Potipher can see that God is blessing him through Joseph. He was wise enough to recognize the blessing that was his.

Prayer for Today: Help us God to recognize the good things around us and recognize that it is You who are giving us these things. Help us to receive Your blessings and recognize and obey You as a result.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

The Brothers Tell A Lie

And they took Joseph’s coat, and killed a kid of the goats, and dipped the coat in the blood; And they sent the coat of many colours, and they brought it to their father; and said, This have we found: know now whether it be thy son’s coat or no. And he knew it, and said, It is my son’s coat; an evil beast hath devoured him; Joseph is without doubt rent in pieces. And Jacob rent his clothes, and put sackcloth upon his loins, and mourned for his son many days. And all his sons and all his daughters rose up to comfort him; but he refused to be comforted; and he said, For I will go down into the grave unto my son mourning. Thus his father wept for him. Genesis 37:31-35

Steps: 1, 4, 5

Joseph’s brothers have sold him to the Ishmeelites who sell Joseph to a rich man in Egypt. Now they have to cover their tracks and lie to their father. They kill a goat and dip Joseph’s coat into the blood to deceive their father about their addictive behaviors. They feel bad but not bad enough to confess and repent. But God still has His plans and they will continue to unfold.

Prayer for Today: God, even when everything blows up, help us to remember that You still are in control. You know what You are doing and Your plans ever unfold in accordance with Your will. Help us today to be willing to surrender to Your plans and to cooperate with You. Thank You for not giving up on us and thank You for Your special care for us, even when we are in rebellion. Help us to allow You to bring us out of the captivity of rebellion into the freedom of surrender.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Joseph’s Brothers Try to Stop God’s Plans

And when they saw him afar off, even before he came near unto them, they conspired against him to slay him. And they said one to another, Behold, this dreamer cometh. Come now therefore, and let us slay him, and cast him into some pit, and we will say, Some evil beast hath devoured him: and we shall see what will become of his dreams. Genesis 37:18-20

Steps: 1, 2, 4, 5

Joseph’s brothers see him coming because they recognize his coat of many colors. The brothers think that they can frustrate the plans of God by deciding to kill Joseph. In the end they change their minds and sell him as a slave to the Egyptians, but God’s plans continue day by day to accomplish His holy will. Even the murderous thoughts of Joseph’s own brothers can not stop God.

Prayer for Today: God, we want to confess today that we often have murderous thoughts in our hearts, even against those whom we love, and those whom we should love. Please forgive us for our addictive thinking. Today we pray that you will not only forgive us but change us and give us victory over our addictions, and our addictive thinking. Thank You.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Joseph’s Dreams

And Joseph dreamed a dream, and he told it his brethren: and they hated him yet the more. And he said unto them, Hear, I pray you, this dream which I have dreamed: For, behold, we were binding sheaves in the field, and, lo, my sheaf arose, and also stood upright; and, behold, your sheaves stood round about, and made obeisance to my sheaf. And his brethren said to him, Shalt thou indeed reign over us? or shalt thou indeed have dominion over us? And they hated him yet the more for his dreams, and for his words. Genesis 37:5-8

Steps: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 11, 12

God reveals to the family that Joseph has been granted the gift of having prophetic dreams. The problem is that rather than praising God for this gift, the brothers hate Joseph even more. They focus on the part of the dream where they are predicted to bow down to Joseph and the pride in their hearts will not allow them to open their minds to the testimony of God Himself. They start to plan a way to make the prophecy not come to pass, not realizing that to do this they will be fighting God Himself.

Prayer for Today: God, You know how limited our understanding of life is. We pray that we may learn the lessons You are trying to communicate to us today. We accept that we can not fight against You, yet we know our history of trying to fight You off. Help us to surrender to You today, by faith, believing that You know what is best for us and Your ways are safer for us than our ways. Help us to choose You again for today.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Joseph the Son of Israel

These are the generations of Jacob. Joseph, being seventeen years old, was feeding the flock with his brethren; and the lad was with the sons of Bilhah, and with the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives: and Joseph brought unto his father their evil report. Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age: and he made him a coat of many colours. And when his brethren saw that their father loved him more than all his brethren, they hated him, and could not speak peaceably unto him. Genesis 37:2-4

Steps: 1, 2, 3, 4

Israel’s eleventh son is Joseph. Joseph is the first son of Israel’s beloved, but now deceased, wife Rachel. He is the second to the last of Israel’s twelve sons, the last being Benjamin. Israel loved Joseph more than all of his sons and he used Joseph to get reports on the behaviors of all of his other sons, including the “murderers” Simeon and Levi. Israel even gives Joseph a special garment symbolizing the rainbow covenant between God and man. As a result of this preferential treatment Israel inadvertently sets in motion many years of sorrow and loss.

Prayer for Today: God You know how easily we can get sidetracked and get involved with issues we did not intend to get into. We thank You that even then You know what is happening and You know how to use even these events to bring us closer to You. Help us to stay as close as possible to You and to not allow these events to interfere with Your plans of blessing for us and for those around us. Thank You for Your love and care.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

God Reaffirms Jacob as Israel

And God appeared unto Jacob again, when he came out of Padanaram, and blessed him. And God said unto him, Thy name is Jacob: thy name shall not be called any more Jacob, but Israel shall be thy name: and he called his name Israel. And God said unto him, I am God Almighty: be fruitful and multiply; a nation and a company of nations shall be of thee, and kings shall come out of thy loins; And the land which I gave Abraham and Isaac, to thee I will give it, and to thy seed after thee will I give the land. And God went up from him in the place where he talked with him. And Jacob set up a pillar in the place where he talked with him, even a pillar of stone: and he poured a drink offering thereon, and he poured oil thereon. And Jacob called the name of the place where God spake with him, Bethel. Genesis 35:9-15

Steps: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 12

Israel had been so discouraged by his son’s behaviors that he had prayed to God for help. God told him to go to the place where he had met God when fleeing from Esau. Jacob obeys and God comes to him and reassures him that He is with him and that his family will turn into a great nation. God also reassures him that his name really is Israel, and no longer Jacob. God affirms that even though his sons are acting the fool today God’s plans will turn out well.

Prayer for Today: God, we thank you that even when events around us go bad, we still have our relationship with You. We pray today, that no matter what happens we will not give up on You, for You are only hope. Thank You for Your great patience with us.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Israel’s Sons Kill A Whole City

And it came to pass on the third day, when they were sore, that two of the sons of Jacob, Simeon and Levi, Dinah’s brethren, took each man his sword, and came upon the city boldly, and slew all the males. And they slew Hamor and Shechem his son with the edge of the sword, and took Dinah out of Shechem’s house, and went out. The sons of Jacob came upon the slain, and spoiled the city, because they had defiled their sister. They took their sheep, and their oxen, and their asses, and that which was in the city, and that which was in the field, And all their wealth, and all their little ones, and their wives took they captive, and spoiled even all that was in the house. And Jacob said to Simeon and Levi, Ye have troubled me to make me to stink among the inhabitants of the land, among the Canaanites and the Perizzites: and I being few in number, they shall gather themselves together against me, and slay me; and I shall be destroyed, I and my house. And they said, Should he deal with our sister as with an harlot? Genesis 34:25-31

Steps – 1, 4, 5

Jacob’s sons decide that their sister was unfair and in their anger they come up with a way to deceive the whole city. They say that they will allow their sister to marry the man who raped her if all of the men will become circumcised. While the men are still in pain the brothers go through the city and kill all the men and take all of the treasure of the city. Jacob is appalled by the anger and vengeance of his sons Simeon and Levi and is afraid that all of the other cities will gather against him and destroy him and his family.

Prayer for Today: God, sometimes we can see our own defects of character in our children. We pray today that we may give you our defects before they get to our children. Help us to allow recovery to start in us today. Thank You for Your love.