Last time we were able to see four major lessons from the lives two Bible Giants, namely Jacob and Joseph. Today there are four other lessons that we can also learn from their lives. Let’s quickly review our first four points:
- God Knows Who You Are
- God Doesn’t Need Your Help
- God Has Not Forgotten You
- God Has a Plan for You
5. God Wants You to Seek His Face
The Bible tells us in Genesis 32:24-30, that Jacob wrestled with God. As he wrestled with God, God tells Jacob it is time for him to go, but Jacob will not allow the LORD to go until he receives his blessing. God wants us to come to a point in our lives where our relationship with Him is more important than anything else. He will allow us to go through times of struggle, so that we will seek His face. Joseph was allowed to go through one trial after another. Every time he got up, it seemed he was knocked down again, yet Joseph sought God. In Genesis 41, Joseph is so committed to God that when he was brought before Pharoah and commended for being able to interpret dreams, he gives all the credit to our God. The lesson that we learn here is that God wants you to seek His face.
6. God Wants You to be Obedient to Him no Matter What the Circumstances
This is obvious from the life of Jacob and the life of Joseph. Jacob has been visited by God and is told to return to his homeland. Of course, that is exactly what Jacob wants to do. Once Jacob determines to do what is right, he heads home. He sends some of his men to let Esau know that he is returning. The last thing he knew about his brother was that he was out to kill him. When the messengers come back from seeing Esau, they return with this message, “Your brother is heading back with 400 men.” Jacob could have determined to run, but instead, he determined to obey God and face Esau and his 400 men. Joseph was tempted by Potiphar’s wife to do the wrong thing. Though tempted, he did not submit to the temptation, but rather, refused. Because of his refusal, he was thrown in prison and lost his position. His obedience later led to his deliverance from prison and being exalted to the number two position in Egypt.
7. God Will Bless You for Your Obedience
The Bible tells us in Genesis 5 that everyone is going to die. The Bible also tells us that Jacob died at a good old age. He lived to be over 130 years old. He got to see Joseph again, and he got to meet his grandchildren. What a blessing! Jacob was disobedient in many things, but because of areas of obedience, God blessed him. Joseph was promoted to the number two position in the kingdom, as already mentioned. He also lived to be an old man. He was very respected and given a great opportunity and position of authority. He recognized that what he had came from God, and though his brothers tried to do evil to him, God used it for good. God will bless you if you continue to be obedient to Him in the midst of your circumstances.
8. God Will Allow You to Reap What You Sow
In Galatians 6:7 we learn the lesson of reaping and sowing. We can see this in the life of Jacob. Jacob had a hard life – twenty years serving Laban. He was fearful of Esau all of his life, and his children dishonored him because of his disobedience. It is true that God is merciful and that, at the end of his life, Jacob received the blessings of God. He also reaped a lot of negative things in his life because he sowed deceit and discord. Joseph also went through hard times, but because of his attitude of obedience, he earned the respect and honor of his father. He earned the respect and honor of Potiphar. He earned the respect and honor of the captain of the guard, even in prison. He then earned the respect and honor of Pharaoh and the entire world at the time. The principle of sowing and reaping is true in every aspect of our lives. It is important that we remember we will reap what we sow.
Father, Lord Jesus, we pray that you’ll help us to be obedient to you no matter what the circumstances or the consequences that we might reap. We pray that in our lives we will bring glory to your name. Amen.