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Summary: Kicking off the Christmas season we examine what steals joy the fastest for a believer by examining the life of Joseph in the Old Testament. This examination takes us through the trials of gossip, as well as the believer's appropriate response to accusati

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Joy Series, Part 1

Genesis 37-41

** We will be continuing our study of Genesis during Sunday night this month **

Introduction

- Last time, we looked at 1 Thess 5:16-18 and really focused on Christian living

- The primary focus or theme, if we remember, was on “rejoicing always”

- To live expectantly and to be completely thankful for what we have

-- Even in the dark times; even in the bad times; we have a Savior to worship

- One of our applications from the Thanksgiving message was a challenge:

- APP: Christianity is either the genuine article or it’s a spiritual fake

-- It is not something man can make up, and we must be totally sold out to this

-- The first proof of the gospel’s power for most people will be what they see in us

- When we consider the Christmas season, it is because of JOY that we celebrate

- There is a joy that each of us is given; and there is a joy that we are to display

- In this 4-part series on joy we are going to look at several avenues of JOY

1. “What steals JOY fastest?”

2. “How do you get JOY?”

3. “A JOYous Prediction”

4. “JOY to the World”

- In order to fully appreciate the joy we have been given; we have to look at it all

- I will say that for some this series may be a bit of a challenge

- For others it may be a bit of a renewal for your walk with Christ

- And for some, it might even reveal some deeper issues that God wants to press on

- APP: Every time we encounter the word of God it must cause a change

- If there is no change, it could be b/c your heart is hardened in that area

- I believe that God wants to reach even that hardened place and break things apart

-- John 12:48, “The one who rejects me and does not receive my words has a judge; the word that I have spoken will judge him on the last day.”

- The application of God’s Word here is simple, to the point, and without doubt:

-- Hebrews 3:7-9, “So, as the Holy Spirit says: “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as you did in the rebellion, during the time of testing in the wilderness, where your ancestors tested and tried me, though for forty years they saw what I did.”

- We’re in rebellion before we were saved; if saved now, the rebellion is a choice

- If we hear what the Spirit is saying, we MUST obey and transform our thinking

- If we do, the Bible tells us that joy will be ours; joy unspeakable from Christ

- Joy from Christ can only be ours is if CHOOSE to obey and to submit to Him

-- John 15:11, “These things I have spoken to you that my joy may be in you”

- So this morning, let’s look first at what can steal your joy; what takes it away

- Turn in your Bibles to Genesis 37 and will begin our study there with Joseph

- Lots of scripture to examine this morning, so we are going to pray and dive in

- Pray

Point 1 – What steals joy fastest?

Background of our story:

- In Genesis 37:2-36; 39:1-20 we read an incredible story about Joseph. Joseph was the youngest son of Israel, a Hebrew shepherd boy sold into slavery by his brothers, who were motivated by jealousy, to the Ishmaelites. In turn the Ishmaelites sold Joseph to Potiphar, a captain of the guard for Pharaoh.

- Potiphar saw potential made Joseph his personal attendant

- He put Joseph in charge of the entire household and everything he owned.

- Because of Joseph, the Lord blessed everything … Potiphar was blessed!

- In Genesis 39 we see this story unfold much like a soap opera would today

- However, Mrs Potiphar had other intentions for young Joseph

- She chose to try to steal him away and to convince him to sleep with her

- She tries to sleep with him, he rejects her, she cries foul and Joseph is arrested

- Consider: Can you imagine the gossip being spread throughout the household servants, being well rooted by a vindictive woman?

- Potipher’s wife devised a malicious lie, fueled by anger for one purpose only:

- APP: To get what she wanted and to put others under her; she tried to ruin him

- Potiphar’s wife devised a plan and executed it with the most deadliest weapon

- She used her tongue to speak curses and lies, and it ruined a man’s reputation

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