Daily Devotional

Joseph: Everything Belongs to God

by Simon Whitton

14 Joseph collected all the money that was to be found in Egypt and Canaan in payment for the grain they were buying, and he brought it to Pharaoh's palace.

19 Why should we perish before your eyes-- we and our land as well? Buy us and our land in exchange for food, and we with our land will be in bondage to Pharaoh. Give us seed so that we may live and not die, and that the land may not become desolate."
20 So Joseph bought all the land in Egypt for Pharaoh. The Egyptians, one and all, sold their fields, because the famine was too severe for them. The land became Pharaoh's,
21 and Joseph reduced the people to servitude, from one end of Egypt to the other.

25 "You have saved our lives," they said. "May we find favor in the eyes of our lord; we will be in bondage to Pharaoh."

Genesis 47:14,19-21,25 (NIV)

Joseph has been known as a foreshadowing of Jesus.  They have much in common.  Both were highly esteemed by their fathers, the envy of their brothers, sold for silver, falsely accused, sentenced to death, stripped and beaten, but drawn out of the pit, their robes dipped in blood, exalted to the right hand of the King, not recognized by their brothers.  But all this was meant for good, for the salvation of many.

After Joseph was given power in Egypt and the predicted famine started to take effect, he systematically took everyone's money, then their livestock, then finally their land and even the people themselves in exchange for food, in exchange for life.  And they willingly gave themselves over in bondage to Pharaoh.  All this wealth was presented to Pharaoh.

It required special circumstances and the wisdom of Joseph to incrementally bring this about, in such a way that people willingly gave themselves over to servitude.

Jesus has saved us from death, not physical but an eternal death.  In exchange He requires everything we have, including our servitude.  It now all belongs to Him, and He presents it all to His Father, for His Father's glory.  Not a worldly king, but a God who loves us so much He would even die for us.  Therefore, how much more should we willingly offer all that we have and are over to Him who redeemed our lives.

Surely it is in the light of all this that Jesus could have radical encounters like this:

Jesus looked at him and loved him. "One thing you lack," he said. "Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven.
Then come, follow me."

Mark 10:21 (NIV)

(When you give to the poor you are giving to God.)

Won't you offer yourself and all that you have to God?  Prayers like this require courage, but if you can, pray that Jesus with careful wisdom, would reduce you to servitude before God.  That everything you have may be given over to Him, for His glory and purposes.

You have saved our lives, may we find favor in the eyes of our Lord;
we will be in bondage to our King.

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See Also: Joseph: The Storehouses of God