Summary: Are you willing to hand of Free Samples? Joseph had a choice to either forgive or not to forgive. He made the right choice will you?
(Pastor takes tray of food and hands out free samples to the congregation)
A. God’s looking for AN Average JOE to give out FREE SAMPLES
1. But the problem with this PARTICULAR FREE SAMPLE
2. Not every AJ wants to participate
FREE SAMPLES OF FORGIVENESS
ILL: JOEseph – At 17 hated by his brothers, PIT, Sold to Slavery, Wrongly accused, Prison, Palace. All this took 13 years
1. 7 years of PROSPERITY, 2 years of FAMINE, JOE’s 39 years old
2. Brothers come to Egypt wanting food.
AFTER A COURSE OF EVENTS IN TELLS THEM WHO HE IS
Genesis 45:5 (NIV)
And now, do not be distressed and do not be angry with yourselves for selling
me here, because it was to save lives that God sent me ahead of you.
A. The AJ loves to receive CHRIST FORGIVENESS.
1. There’s no greatest thing in the entire world BUT TO BE FORGIVEN.
2. To be released from all guilt and conviction, to be restored by Christ.
WHAT AJ DOESN’T LOVE THAT FEELING
B. Then why is it so hard for AJ to “FREELY HAND OUT FORGIVENESS”?
1. What we do, instead of handing out FREE SAMPLES we do THIS:
ILL: (Go to someone and give sample, but ask for money back)
C. We put a PRICE TAG on it.
1. When we finally hand out FORGIVENESS.
2. We says things like,
“You know you hurt me, RIGHT” SO, you know you’re going to PAY, RIGHT”
“I’ll say I’m SORRY, if you tell me why you did that”
D. Just think if JESUS would have said those things to us.
Put restrictions on it
Hebrews 8:12 (NIV)
For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.
1. Says in MICAH 7 that He throws them into the bottom of a ocean.
2. God wants forgiveness to be free – no strings attached, no demands, etc.
PHYSICAL & EMOTIONAL CONSEQUENCES OF UNFORGIVENESS
Stanford Forgiveness Project -
Trained 260 adults in the act of forgiveness in a 6-week course.
• 70% reported a decrease in their feelings of hurt
• 13% experienced reduced anger
• 27% experienced fewer physical complaints (such as less pain, gastrointestinal upset, dizziness)
-People who learn to forgive seem to have fewer Cardiovascular problems
-Lowers high blood pressure
-Fewer symptoms of depression
-They have a higher SELF-ESTEEM
SPIRITUAL CONSEQUENCES OF UNFORGIVENESS
Matthew 6:14-15 NIV
For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly
Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins,
your Father will not forgive your sins.
1 John 4:20 (NIV)
If anyone says, "I love God," yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For
anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love
God, whom he has not seen.
F. I could stand up here and tell you that you just need to forgive and life will be a “bed of roses”.
1. But there is SO MUCH that goes into forgiving.
2. When I forgive, I’m Not Only Saying I want to make myself a better person, but I want to make you a better person.
TRUST VS. PROTECTION
A. We see in GEN. 42 when JOE first recognized his brothers he was BLINDSIDED.
Genesis 42:9 (NIV)
Then he remembered his dreams about them and said to them, "You are spies! You have come to see where our land is unprotected."
1. It doesn’t say why he “CALLED them SPIES” and put them in PRISON.
2. Can you imagine after 22 years, BEING CONFRONTED with your PAST.
3. WHAT WOULD YOU DO?
B. SATAN LOVES TO BLINDSIDE US.
1. We’re LEANING on our OWN WISDOM when he BLINDSIDES US
C. He needed to get away and spend time with God.
Genesis 42:16-17 (NIV)
Send one of your number to get your brother; the rest of you will be kept
in prison, so that your words may be tested to see if you are telling the
truth. If you are not, then as surely as Pharaoh lives, you are spies!"
And he put them all in custody for three days.
Genesis 42:18-19 (NIV)
On the third day, Joseph said to them, "Do this and you will live, for I fear
God: If you are honest men, let one of your brothers stay here in prison,
while the rest of you go and take grain back for your starving households.
D. JOE’s whole ruling changed after he came back.
1. Instead of having 1 go back, he said 1 had to stay.
2. But before he gave the RULING he said:
Do this and you will live, for I fear God: He had an encounter with GOD
E. During those 3 days, God was giving JOE WISDOM.