Summary: Our dishonesty with God is like a veil between us and the light, we can interfere with God’s love (although God’s love is always there)!
A police officer pulls over a speeding car.
The officer says, ‘ I clocked you at 80 miles per hour, sir.’
The driver says, ‘Gee, officer I had it on cruise control at 60; perhaps your radar gun needs calibrating.’
Not looking up from her knitting the wife says, ‘Now don’t be silly dear, you know this car doesn’t have cruise control!
As the officer writes out the ticket, the driver looks over at his wife and growls , ‘Can’t you please keep quiet for once??!!’
The wife smiles demurely and says, ‘You should be thankful your radar detector went off when it did.’
As the officer makes out the second ticket for the illegal radar detector unit, the man looks at his wife again and says through clenched teeth, ‘Woman, can’t you keep quiet?!!!!!!’
The officer frowns and says, ‘And I notice that you’re not wearing your seat belt, sir. That’s an automatic $75 fine.’
The driver says, ‘Yeah, well, you see officer, I had it on, but took it off when you pulled me over so that I could get my license out of my back pocket.’
The wife says, ‘Now, dear, you know very well that you didn’t have your seat belt on. You never wear your seat belt when you’re driving.’
And as the police officer is writing out the third ticket the driver turns to his wife and barks, ‘WILL YOU PLEASE BE QUIET!!!!!’
The officer looks over at the woman and asks, ‘Does your husband always talk to you this way, Ma’am?’ and she said, ‘Only when he’s been drinking’.
You’ve heard the saying, “honesty is the best policy!”
In the story of Joseph in Egypt, God taught this lesson to Joseph’s brothers; and I believe for us as well today.
Please open your Bibles to Genesis 44 (page……….).
Pray along with me our commitment to God’s Word………...
And before reading our text this morning, there are a few important things we need to note:
Remember, the Sons of Israel sold Joseph and told their father that Joseph was killed by a wild animal.
But God was with Joseph and Joseph continued to worship God even as a slave in Egypt.
Because God blessed him, Joseph became Pharaoh’s second hand man.
When his brothers came to Egypt to get food, Joseph recognized his brothers but his brothers didn’t recognize Joseph.
Now, read along with me Genesis 44…..
Joseph planned to trap his brothers with a lie!
Joseph secretly placed his silver cup in Benjamin’s sack and then accused the brothers of stealing.
Why would Joseph do that?? First of all, how did the brothers respond? Look again at v7-9…….
The brothers knew they were innocent and so they were willing pay for the penalty if found guilty.
The brothers thought they were as clean as can be; they were so confident about their innocence almost to the point of arrogance! They were saying, “Bring it on!”
But when they found out that the youngest brother Benjamin had the stolen goods, how did they respond?
Look again at v13………..
And so, they all grieved and tore their clothes and they had no choice but to go back to Egypt. The brothers were found guilty even though they thought they were completely innocent!
Read again what the brothers said to Joseph in v16……
The brothers were willing to pay the penalty but what did Joseph do? V17 tells us that Joseph focused on Benjamin!
Why did Joseph try to “trick” his brothers?
The answer is in v18-34 isn’t it?
Judah, representing all the brothers, honestly confessed everything to Joseph and willingly sacrificed himself!
Was that what Joseph was looking for?
Take a glance at Genesis 45:1-6……………
God used Joseph to reconcile the family of Israel. The reconciliation of Israel’s family was only possible with complete honesty and humility!
The application to our lives is simple isn’t it?
You see, we can be only partially honest with God and think we are alright.
God is looking for complete reconciliation with us! In other words, it is possible to think we are alright when we are actually keeping God out in many areas of our lives!
God’s desire is to be with us always, full-time not part-time!
A shoplifter wrote to a Department Store which said “I’ve just become a Christian and I can’t sleep at night because
I feel guilty. So here’s $100 that I owe you” and signs his name. But he also wrote in the bottom of the letter, “P.S. If I still can’t sleep, I’ll send you the rest.”
Are we completely honest with God or only partially honest?
Joseph had power to do whatever he wanted with his brothers who were guilty of sinning against him.
Does God have the power to do whatever He wants with us sinners?? God has the power to judge us!