Sermons

Summary: This is a sermon in response to the anxiety and panic revolving around the economic crisis of 2009

HE’S STILL GOT THE WHOLE WORLD IN HIS HANDS—PART 2

Top Ten Oddest Country Songs

10. How Can I Miss You When You Won’t Go Away

9. If the Phone Doesn’t Ring, You’ll Know It’s Me

8. When You Leave Walk Out Backwards, So I’ll Think You’re Coming In

7. If I’d Shot You When I Wanted I’d Be Out By Now.

6. If You Won’t Leave Me Alone, I’ll Find Someone Who Will

5. I’m So Miserable Without You It’s Almost Like You’re Here

4. Sorry I Made You Cry, But At Least Your Face Is Cleaner

3. Take Me To The Cornfield Darlin’ And I’ll Kiss You Between The Ears

2. If My Nose Was Runnin’ Money I’d Blow It All On You

1. All The Oil’s In Texas, But the Dipsticks Are in DC.

LIVING A LIFE OF PRIVILEGE AND FAVOR

From the time of Joseph’s birth he was his father’s favorite. He was the firstborn of Jacob’s favorite wife, Rachel, whom he dearly loved. This was the Rachel for whom he had worked 14 years. Not only did he love him most, he unwisely showed him great favoritism

Now Israel loved Joseph more than any of his other sons,… and he made a richly ornamented robe for him. Genesis 37:3 (NIV)

Some scholars believe that this robe was really a long sleeved tunic which extended to the ankles. You can’t work very well in a garment that has sleeves and extends to the ankles, especially if it’s expensive and ornamented. It would be like a construction worker showing up in an Armani suit. In Joseph’s day the working garb was a short sleeveless tunic. This left the arms and legs free to move about. By giving Joseph this elaborate garment (which was also a sign of nobility) his father was implying “You won’t have to work hard like your brothers.”

Unfortunately, as favored as Joseph was, his family was more dysfunctional. The home in which Joseph was raised was comprised of a family filled with angry jealous and deceitful people. Within that toxic environment Joseph’s brothers had watched their father play favorites with Joseph. Their jealousy had turned into resentment and hatred.

Adding insult to injury, Joseph was a dreamer.

Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brothers, they hated him all the more. Genesis 37:5 (NIV)

BLINDSIDED BY ADVERSITY—BETRAYED BY FAMILY AND ENSLAVED

With so much animosity towards Joseph, one wonders what Jacob was thinking when he sent Joseph on a journey to meet his brothers by himself. Was he totally oblivious to the seething hatred brewing in his own household? Had he no concept of the danger into which he was sending his favorite son?

Talk about hostility. As soon as they saw Joseph coming in the distance the brothers immediately reacted with “Let’s kill him.” And they weren’t kidding! The firstborn, Reuben, intervenes and suggests that they not kill him, but rather throw him into a pit.

So they did exactly that. Then they sat down to eat lunch.

What happens next is just chilling.

Judah said to his brothers, "What will we gain if we kill our brother and cover up his blood? [27] Come, let’s sell him to the Ishmaelites Genesis 37:26-27(NIV)

They sold Joseph for 20 pieces of silver.

It must have been bewildering for Joseph as he was put in chains and led away for the long journey south to Egypt. At one point in the journey he would have looked off the east to catch a glimpse of Mt Hebron near his home.

Joseph eventually found himself in a country and culture he didn’t know, surrounded by a language he didn’t understand. The favored son of Jacob was now a common slave, and forced into a situation that seemed even worse than the pit into which his brothers had thrown him.

Joseph had to adjust quickly. He had come from a rural culture, and unsophisticated people, and a home where he was the pride and joy of his father and mother. Now he was bought and sold like a cheap piece of merchandise.

Potiphar, an Egyptian who was one of Pharaoh’s officials, the captain of the guard, bought him from the Ishmaelites Genesis 39:1

Potiphar was nobody to fool around with; he was a man of seasoned military experience with power over life and death. Yet Joseph not only adjusted to his new surroundings he flourished in it.

Joseph’s Response—He Prepared His Horse For Battle

There is no wisdom, no insight, no plan that can succeed against the Lord. [31] The horse is made ready for the day of battle, but victory rests with the Lord. Proverbs 21:30-31 (NIV)

Many of you are facing adversity today. No one can predict the outcome, but that’s not our responsibility. According to the ancient wisdom of the Proverbs our job is to make our horse ready for the battle.

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