Scripture Reading: Genesis 50:22-26
“And Joseph said to his brothers, ‘I am about to die, but God will visit you and bring you up out of this land to the land that He swore to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob.’ Then Joseph made the sons of Israel swear, saying, ‘God will surely visit you, and your shall carry up my bones from here.'” (Genesis 50:24,25)
As we know families are a blessing from God. Joseph bore witness of God’s faithfulness to his family. Joseph had fewer spiritual advantages than his brothers, but he had the strongest faith of them all. Joseph had been away from his family for many years. His brothers had the advantage of being in a covenant family.
Joseph did not conform himself to the Egyptian culture. He operated successfully in it and bore faithful witness of his God to the pagans around him. He did not adopt Egypt’s pagan practices and religions. He was in the world, but not of the world.
As we have seen Joseph’s faith grew stronger through times of adversity. He saw God’s hand at work in his life and he knew that God is sovereign over all — over both the good and the evil he experienced. Joseph assured his family that God would take care of them. He had a powerful spiritual influence on his family.
Joseph believed the promises of God (vs. 24,25). In the faith chapter of Hebrews, we read — “By faith Joseph, when he was dying, made mention of the exodus of the sons of Israel, and gave orders concerning his bones” (Hebrews 11:22). Joseph knew that one day God would fulfill the promises He made to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
Joseph knew that dark days were coming and that God would one day rescue His people from their oppression. He also knew that God would give the Promised Land back to his descendants. Thus he ordered that his bones were to be carried out of Egypt to Canaan. Joseph’s bones remained in Egypt for 400 years. When the Israelites left Egypt, the bones of Joseph accompanied them through the exodus and wanderings (Exodus 13:19). The book of Joshua tells us that Joseph’s bones were eventually buried in the tract of land that Jacob had bought from the sons of Hamor, the father of Shechem (Joshua 24:32).
The book of Genesis ends with Joseph’s coffin in Egypt. Joseph’s coffin was a reminder to God’s people of Joseph’s dying words — “God will surely come to your aid.” We don’t have a coffin of bones; we have an empty tomb that testifies to us. Jesus is alive and He will come to our aid and take care of us!
Lord Jesus, the empty tomb is a reminder that You are alive and that You will come to my aid. You are with me, and will be with me all the days of my life. Enable me to be a strong witness of Your faithfulness to my family. You have never let me down. You have blessed me beyond all measure. I desire for my children and grandchildren to know You and to experience Your presence and blessings in their lives. May they see in me the realities of the gospel of grace.
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