January 28 – Joseph the Brat

Luke 20:27-47; Genesis 37; Psalm 28

Some people are just not fun to be around. Joseph was one of them. Oh, sure, we all know the end of the story about Joseph saving his father and his brothers, but let’s face it: there’s a reason why his brothers sold him into slavery. He was a tattle-tale: “This is the history of Jacob. Joseph, being seventeen years old, was feeding the flock with his brothers. And the lad was with the sons of Bilhah and the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives; and Joseph brought a bad report of them to his father.” (Genesis 37:2) As we read along we see that he was daddy’s pet. He was a dreamer who bragged about his dreams so much that even his father who favored him rebuked him. It’s always a dangerous game to play “what-if” but I wonder how God might have worked if Joseph hadn’t destroyed all of his family relationships with his attitudes and actions. What if Joseph, instead of bringing back a bad report, helped his brothers deal with the issue that caused the bad report? What if Joseph, instead of making a big production about his dreams, had talked quietly with his father about them? God can work through any circumstances we may create but it would be better to stay in His will at all times. I could be wrong here, but I’m thinking that God had a better plan for Joseph than having him go through all that misery. If we develop our relationship with God and if we then develop our relationship with those around us we will find that when trouble comes, we’ll have more support to deal with the trouble. It won’t be the ones who should support us who sell us to the Ishmaelites.

God, remind me of Your presence and love today. Remind me to work at building better relationships with my family and friends and help me to be the man you’ve called me to be.

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About rockyfort

I am a Middle School Teacher who uses Technology to teach kids in a Pre-Engineering course. I share each day what God is teaching me hoping that people can benefit from reading what God has taught me.
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4 Responses to January 28 – Joseph the Brat

  1. And what if Joseph hadn’t been the way he was, would God still have used him the way he did? Would Joseph been up to the task that God gave him? As Joseph told his brothers, “You meant it for evil, BUT GOD meant it for good!” ;)

    I don’t think it does much good to second guess the people God uses and his designs for them. Perhaps we would do better to consider instead how the brothers were changed and what effect it had on them and their progeny. Just a thought.

  2. ADDENDUM: If I had not been the person I was (rebellious, addict/alcoholic, womanizer), would my testimony carry as much weight as it does today? Would my gratitude for God’s hand upon my heart and my life be as great as it is if I had not been a brat myself? I doubt it. I can’t say for sure, but I strongly doubt it.

  3. rockyfort says:

    It is an interesting conundrum you raise, Karl! Was Joseph guilty of sin for his attitudes or was it merely naivete? Did the brothers sin when they sold Joseph into captivity? If they did, and God couldn’t have worked without the sin, then we are left with the conclusion that God needs sin to use people. That would be true in Joseph’s case and in yours (and in mine). Shall we sin that grace may abound? Should we tell people it’s ok to sin before they come to Christ so that their testimony will be that much greater? Even still…the story of deliverance from sin is an exciting story….and thus the conundrum.

    I tried to focus on Joseph here because most of the story of Joseph is after he’s changed. And he sometimes gets the “always perfect” label at least in people’s minds. Joseph had to be changed to be used by God…and people don’t always get that. Great thought provoking comments!

  4. While researching something in Romans, I ran across a passage in Psalms that -I feel- brings home the point I was attempting to make, That Joseph was the way he was so God could/would use him the way he did. I do not believe in coincidences. I believe their is a God ordained purpose for EVERYTHING that happens here on earth. That purpose being to give/bring glory to God.

    Here is the passage: Psalm 105: 16-22 (NKJ)

    Psalm 105:16-22 (NKJV)
    16 Moreover He called for a famine in the land; He destroyed all the provision of bread.
    17 He sent a man before them– Joseph–who was sold as a slave.
    18 They hurt his feet with fetters, He was laid in irons.
    19 Until the time that his word came to pass, The word of the LORD tested him.
    20 The king sent and released him, The ruler of the people let him go free.
    21 He made him lord of his house, And ruler of all his possessions,
    22 To bind his princes at his pleasure, And teach his elders wisdom.

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