Are you liking this study we’re doing on Joseph? I sure am! My last post ended by saying that the chief use of trial to Joseph, and to us is very often seen in our future lives. While Joseph was tried in prison, God’s ultimate goal was to prepare him for the government position that awaited him.
The first thing God had to do was to tone down his youthful ego – an ego full of self-centered pride. In order for him to have power, he had to be able to bear power; a very rare acquirement. Many people can bear affliction, but there are few who can endure prosperity. Listen to Solomon’s words…
“Fire tests the purity of silver and gold, but a person is tested by being praised.” Proverbs 27: 21
The most perilous thing in the world is to step suddenly from obscurity to power. Haven’t we all seen this before? Someone relatively unknown steps into the spotlight… their heads swell up like a balloon, and before they know it… they’re prudently forgotten, and overthrown by the sudden glitz and glamour.
“Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil.” 1 Timothy 3: 6
Joseph’s feet learned how to stand strong on Egypt’s throne because his feet first stood fast in a dungeon. The gold chain he wore around his neck was worn without pride because he had first worn a chain of iron. He was fit to be the ruler of princes because he had himself been a servant among prisoners. Through his trial God gave him the power to bear power. This is a far rarer gift than the power to endure oppression and contempt. Interpreting dreams was a gift God gave Joseph, but Joseph was also prepared to interpret Pharaoh’s dreams this during his time spent in prison.
Pharaoh saw in his dream lean cows and lean ears of corn devouring fat cows and fat ears of corn, but Joseph alone knew what the dream meant. You see, he saw his “fat cows” when he was in his father’s house eaten up when he was sold as a slave. He saw his “fat ears” when he was in Potiphar’s house devoured by the withered ears when he was thrown in prison, and now Joseph knew that there was nothing here below worth relying on. We must learn from Joseph… it’s foolish to boast of your prosperity, because it can all be eaten up at the drop of a dime.
Joseph was tutored to be a ruler for he had learned the prisoner’s side of politics, and felt the sting of being unjustly condemned without trial. Oh yes, Joseph’s rule would be just and generous… to be continued