Today's Devotions

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3

All About the Cross

  • St. John of the Cross: Dark Night of the Soul +

    St.John of the Cross--Dark Night of the Soul, mp3 file. http://www.ccel.org/ccel/john_cross/dark_night/mp3/01_Book%20I%20Chapter%201.mp3 Below is the link for the entire listing of Read More
  • The Mill & the Cross-a film by Lech Majewski +

    What does it mean to be committed to belief in a reformed relationship with Christ, when death by brutal torture Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3

Don  CarsonTHE LAST CHAPTER OF GENESIS

includes a section that is both pathetic and glorious (Gen. 50:15-21).

 

 http://www.esvbible.org/search/Gen.+50/

http://www.esvbible.org/search/Luke+3/

http://www.biblestudytools.com/rsv/job/passage.aspx?q=job+16;job+17

http://www.esvbible.org/search/1+Cor.+4/

Everything that is sad and flawed in this family resurfaces when Jacob dies. Joseph's brothers fear that their illustrious sibling may have suppressed vengeful resentment only until the death of the old man. Why did they think like this? Was it because they were still lashed with guilt feelings? Were they merely projecting onto Joseph what they would have done had they been in his place?
Their strategy involves them in fresh sin: they lie about what their father said, in the hope that an appeal from Jacob would at least tug at Joseph's heartstrings. In this light, their abject submission ("We are your slaves," 50:18) sounds less like loyal homage than desperate manipulation.

By contrast, Joseph weeps (50:17). He cannot help but see that these groveling lies betray how little he is loved or trusted, even after seventeen years (47:28) of nominal reconciliation. His verbal response displays not only pastoral gentleness – "he reassured them and spoke kindly to them," promising to provide for them and their families (50:21) – it also reflects a man who has thought deeply about the mysteries of providence, about God's sovereignty and human responsibility. "Don't be afraid," he tells them. "Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives" (50:19-20).

The profundity of this reasoning comes into focus as we reflect on what Joseph does not say. He does not say that during a momentary lapse on God's part, Joseph's brothers sold him into slavery, but that God, being a superb chess player, turned the game around and in due course made Joseph prime minister of Egypt. Still less does he say that God's intention had been to send Joseph down to Egypt in a well-appointed chariot, but unfortunately Joseph's brothers rather mucked up the divine plan, forcing God to respond with clever countermoves to bring about his own good purposes. Rather, in the one event – the selling of Joseph into slavery – there were two parties, and two quite different intentions. On the one hand, Joseph's brothers acted, and their intentions were evil; on the other, God acted, and his intentions were good. Both acted to bring about this event, but while the evil in it must be traced back to the brothers and no farther, the good in it must be traced to God.

This is a common stance in Scripture. It generates many complex philosophical discussions. But the basic notion is simple. God is sovereign, and invariably good; we are morally responsible, and frequently evil.

Genesis 50; Luke 3; Job 16 – 17; 1 Corinthians 4

Reflections to Consider

  • 1

Publications

  • 1

Music

  • 1

Audio & Video

  • 1

The Hit List

  • November 29th-Henri Nouwen-Waiting with the Word - First Sunday of Advent +

    Be on guard so that your hearts are not weighed down with . . . the worries of this life. Luke 21:34 Read More
  • First Sunday of Lent Devotional +

    First Sunday of Lent - March 13, 2011 A pure heart create for me, O God, put a steadfast spirit within Read More
  • Fourth Sunday in Lent - The Man Born Blind by David Hyman +

    Spiritual blindness is the driving theme in this passage from John 9:1-41. But the man born blind is the one Read More
  • Between Good Friday and Easter Sunday by John Ortberg +

    John Ortberg's address during the January 9 morning session of National Staff Conference 2014. It is John Ortberg talking to InterVarsity's Read More
  • 1

Gems

  • Total Forgiveness, RT Kendall +

    This was a valuable resource for me in a time of hurt from a brother in Christ. I could not Read More
  • Forgiveness: Desmond Tutu +

    Nobel Peace Prize Winner Desmond Tutu explains how love and forgiveness kept post-apartheid South Africa from tumbling into anarchy. Read More
  • Reconciliation and Forgiveness +

    From the poem Invictus, Latin for unconquered, by Victorian poet William Ernest Henley and a favorite of Nelson Mandela’s, this Read More
  • The Power of Forgiveness: a movie review of The Straight Story +

    Alvin's story reminds us of the importance of family relationships, the need for unconditional love, and the power of forgiveness. Read More
  • 1