Riding the Roller Coaster
Loving Lord, I want to see You as You really are, and to love You as I really should.
Read Genesis 39:1-23
Scripture taken from the THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION
“The Bible is …a drama. The biblical story is a captivating read that should leave us breathless” (Duffy Robbins). Joseph’s story certainly does that!!
Duffy Robbins’ description of the Bible as a “captivating read” can certainly be applied to the next chapter in Joseph’s story. The text presents Joseph as the embodiment of the Jewish people, and he clearly demonstrates the three characteristics that most mark Jewish history. He is chosen by the Lord, gifted by the Lord in ways that make him stand out in any crowd, and persecuted by those who do not understand the ways of the Lord.
Bought as a slave by Potiphar, Joseph soon rises through the household. God’s favor rests on him, and his wisdom and integrity are noticed by his owner. Just as Daniel will later rise in the ranks of Babylon, Joseph prospers even in slavery. And just as Daniel will arouse the jealousy of others, Joseph draws the unwelcome attentions of Potiphar’s wife. She traps him in her own “lion’s den” and the roller coaster of his fortunes once more takes a dive. The core meaning of the chapter is confirmed by what happens next. Even in prison, Joseph prospers. Like Potiphar before him, the prison warden notices the young man’s wisdom and integrity. Joseph, once again, is the favorite.
Like the chorus of a song repeated for emphasis, we hear the story’s message loud and clear. Because God has chosen Joseph, he will be with him. Because he has gifted him, he will prosper in every circumstance. And because it is God who is working out his purposes, no persecution will stop his plan from playing out.
Joseph was a trusted slave (1-6) and a trusted prisoner (19-23). What truths about God and Joseph can you learn from this incident?
Sovereign God, You are in charge of all things and You will have the last word. Keep me faithful in all circumstances, looking to You for grace and strength.
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