Summary: May I suggest that we all live on “Temptation Planet”? We have to deal with the “tempter” whose object it is to get everyone to be unfaithful to God!
A couple of years ago FOX came out with a new reality show called “Temptation Island” and it was a smash hit for two years. Over 16 million people watched it weekly. And if you haven’t noticed reality TV shows are very popular today.
May I suggest that we all live on “Temptation Planet”? We have to deal with the “tempter” whose object it is to get everyone to be unfaithful to God! The Christian life is a love relationship with God and Satan hates this relationship and he is doing everything he can to disrupt and destroy this incredible love we have for God!
Today we go back to Joseph’s early days in Egypt. Here we know very little about where we find Joseph now. We do know he was being used by one of the most powerful men in Egypt – Potiphar!
Potiphar was the “captain of the guards” NIV, an elite position of privilege, power and prestige. Most scholars believe that Potiphar was the “chief executioner”! No matter what position you give him, he was no man to fool around with and you took him very seriously!
We don’t know:
• His age. We have no idea how long he had been in Potiphar’s household when these events began to transpire - he was still a very young man.
• His adjustment. Incredible changes Joseph had to make being in a different country and culture. These people and their way of life were foreign to him. I can only imagine that the adjustments were monumental. It’s amazing how Joseph was able to flourish in his new surroundings! Who likes change!
We do know:
• His attitude. Vs. 2-4
Daniel is a contemporary of Joseph.
Daniel 6:3 “And Daniel distinguished himself above the governors…because an excellent spirit was in him; and the king (Darius) gave thought to setting him over the whole realm.”
“Distinguished” = this is the only time it is used in the O.T. The root verb in Hebrew means to excel, triumph or shine.
Both Joseph and Daniel actually applied James 1:2 to their hearts before it was even written… “Consider it all joy when you fall into various trials (temptations)…”
No matter where God has placed or positioned us in life, as Christians we are commanded to SHINE and not WHINE!
I wonder if the Lord at times would like to leave our presence because of our attitudes in life! Christians stub their toe and they’re casting out a demon. Christians get their feelings hurt and they’re ready to use a nuclear bomb on their enemy! Someone comes along and says – we want you to head up the group, “The Prevention of Cruelty to Gramma’s with Athletes Feet” and they feel so honored and as they forget the work of the Lord!
Americans in this 21st century have become the biggest whiners and grippers on this planet!
Joseph was no whiner, no gripper and no complainer! I believe he saw the greater in life because of the great God he served in a garbage environment! THAT’S LIFE at times!
Here’s a formula that I believe helps us master our attitude…
If you want to be distressed –look within
If you want to be defeated – look back
If you want to be distracted – look around
If you want to dismayed – look ahead
If you want to be delivered – look up!
• His actions. Vs. 7-10
Joseph’s attitude influenced his actions!
There is not a person that has ever lived on this planet that has not faced temptation! Even Jesus Christ was tempted!
Mark 1:12, 13 “Immediately the Spirit drove Him into the wilderness. And He was there for forty days tempted by Satan…and the angels ministered to Him.”
Can you imagine how those angels felt…ministering to the King of kings and Lord of lords?
Hebrews 2:18 “Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.”
Jesus identifies in every way with us in our temptations. In fact the use of this is word in Mark is that Satan continually tempted Jesus. Not just the 3 times mentioned in Mark but possibly more and in other locations.
Satan used temptation as a way to try to defeat Jesus just as he does with Christians. And just as Satan knew that Jesus was Messiah, he also knows who we are…a blood bought, born again child of God - and Satan hates it!
Hebrews 2:16 “For surely it is not angels he helps, but Abraham’s descendants.” NIV
On April 9th, 1945, the Nazis executed Dietrich Bonhoeffer. He was only 39 years old on that cold damp day when he was treated like cattle as he was rushed into the gas chambers, suffocating to death – a horrible death, as you can imagine!