Genesis 45, and 50
DATE: 9 June, 2002
PLACE: BBC Blarney
Introduction (2Cor 1:3,4)
A. Truly, GOD is the God of ALL comfort
B. That means that in times of adversity, there is comfort – there is marvellous comfort – all the comfort you will ever need
C. We started this thought last Sunday evening as we looked at 2Corinthians 1
D. The key to grasping this truth is the fact that comfort ONLY appears when needed – that’s why GRACE is so special to SINNERS. People who think they are fine, and are not sinners (even though they are if only they were honest), they don’t need God’s great grace, and can’t appreciate it!
E. I want to change your view of adversity
1. Not to where you love trouble in your life
2. But that you love what God does for you IN the trouble
A. A young man, named Joseph, ends up sold for profit to some slave owners
B. Carried away in chains and crying, Joseph has no idea what depths of trouble lay ahead
C. But through it all, young Joseph finds out that truly GOD is the God of all comfort, and that trouble was not that bad if Jesus is in command
D. Look at how Joseph instructs his naughty brothers (Gen 45:1-8)
Message – Finding Comfort in Adversity
Adversity Is Inevitable (Gen 45:6) – the famine was in the land
decreed distresses for His children
wilderness, is still the road to Canaan. Gethsemane and the cross were the only
route to the resurrection.
to suffer (Luke 24:26).
chosen by God to suffer
apostle Paul was set forth by the Lord Jesus Christ as the great example of the
Church (1 Tim 1:16) .
apostle Paul, the Lord Jesus portrays as a pattern for future believers His
longsuffering to the greatest of sinners and all longsuffering in the greatest
of saints (Acts 9:16).
going through troubles it is a good thing to read the account of Paul 's
testings listed in 2 Corinthians 11:23-28. Our hardships are only a pinprick in
all suffer troubles (Philp 1:29; 1Thes 3:3,4)
LIFE is not heavenly, and until Jesus comes back, troubles are part of life
let it discourage you though
Adversity is Invaluable (Gen 45:5-8). The troubles had actually had a good
effect on God’s people
came out of Joseph being troubled and hated?
famine had moulded a strong family – Jacob’s family
troubles had made a great king out of Joseph
think that troubles are only destructive – they are:
of what we really are – very thin skinned
capable of driving us to God –
more in a moment
God allow Adversity to happen?
work for God is opposed. Satan does not lose easily!
there is no better way to transform us (1Pet 2:21). The best things of life come
out of suffering.
the flowers can adorn our gardens, the soil must be broken and the weeds pulled.
orchestra can send forth harmony, the instruments must pass through a process of
tuning and adjustments.
the body can enjoy healing, the bitter medicine must be applied.
graduation, years of study must he passed.
is Trouble Good For?
Adversity is invaluable to our character.
drives us to the heart of the Word and the Word into our heart. (Psa. 119:71)
not only causes us to learn God 's Word but also to keep it. (Psa. 119:67). It
is one thing to know the Bible and another thing to keep and obey it.
is the school of obedience (Heb. 5:8).
Lord must permit us to get into trouble in order to draw us back to Himself.
(Psa. 138:7). It is in the center of disaster that He revives us, not fails us.
shows us some of the remarkable results of suffering. (1 Pet. 5:10). We are made
perfect, mature, fully equipped as a soldier for useful duty. Suffering
establishes and strengthens us to be firm and powerful to resist attack. It
settles us, giving us as a tree a firm rooting and grounding so that we shall
not be moved.
character-building value of trouble is expressed in Romans 5:3, 4.
natural man, tribulation worketh impatience which sours into hopelessness, while
in the new man, however, tribulation worketh patience which soars to the heights
of rejoicing " in hope of the glory of God."
character is beautified when we have the closest fellowship with the Lord Jesus.
Those who know Him in the fellowship of His sufferings are those who he become
conformed to His likeness (1Pet 4:12-13)
went through so much anguish of body and mind, gives us a beautiful illustration
of the character-transforming power of suffering. (Job 23: 10).
In the town of Baguio (Bog-yo), which is located north of Manila in the
mountains of the Philippines, there are a number of gold mines. Small cars on
tracks are loaded from within the mountain with rock, emerging from an opening
on the hillside. This rock is crushed, pulverized, and submitted to various
chemicals. Minute particles of gold were thus separated from the useless shale
and then submitted to fierce fires in the refining furnace. Later, the molten
shining gold was poured into bricks which were worth around $25,000 each. What
is most amazing though is that this was not yet pure gold, but it would yet have
to endure six more refining fires before it emerged as pure gold.
that those stones in the mountains could think and speak. Perhaps they would
reason something like this: Why do I have to be removed from my place in the
hills to be pounded, pulverized, by biting chemicals, and finally submitted to
seven fiery furnaces? We would reply to the speaking grey rocks, What use are
you buried there beneath the tons of useless debris? You have within you that
which is exceedingly valuable, useful and beautiful. Through the process of
seeming destruction alone can you be separated from the impurities that keep you
from the usefulness, beauty and purity that you were designed with.
often would rather lie dormant and useless as the dull grey stones in the
mountain just because it takes suffering to polish and reveal the value that
should be ours. Should we not rather praise God that He has blasted us with the
gospel, which is the dynamite of God unto salvation, from our lost estate, and
has begun the process of purification and refining so that we may come forth as
too, adversity is invaluable to our conduct.
is the preparation for the service of sympathy. The training is costly. Job's
friends were miserable comforters because they had never experienced adversity
such as Job was passing through, and their words were powerless to help. The
world is full of comfortless hearts.
will not only prepare us for a service of sympathy, but it will also make us
fruitful in the service of the salvation of sinners. "Every
branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that
beareth fruit, he purgeth [pruneth] it, that it may bring forth more fruit"
(Jn. 15:2). The knife of adversity is often used to cut away DEAD leaves and
branches that prevent the life-giving sap from producing precious fruit.
apostle Paul tells how valuable was his experience of imprisonment. "But
I would ye should understand, brethren, that the things which happened unto me
have fallen out rather unto the furtherance of the gospel; So that my
bonds in Christ are manifest in all the palace, and in all other places; And
many of the brethren in the Lord, waxing confident by my bonds, are much more
bold to speak the word without fear" (Phil. 1:12-14).
Philippians looked on Paul's imprisonment as a calamity, but he showed them it
was a means of blessing.
finally reached his long prayed-for desire of preaching Christ in Rome, even
though he had not anticipated going there as a prisoner.
is not only invaluable to us in this life for our character and conduct,
but also in the life to come for our capacity for glory (2 Cor.
only realized the work which our daily tribulations perform for us in storing up
a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory for future enjoyment, we would
not shun and despise them, but rather welcome all that God permits.
8:17, 18 indicates that there is a definite quantitative and qualitative
relation between our sufferings with Christ here and our participation with
Christ in glory.
compare the value of trials in this life in relation to their reward in the next
life (l Pet 1 7).
often, however, we show a perverted sense of values, for we act as savages
bartering away gold for trinkets. Our Lord counsels us to buy of Him gold tried
in the fire that we may be rich.
afflicted Hebrew Christians were commended for the manner in which they suffered
the loss of material things in this life because they valued the things of the
next life. "For ye had compassion of me in my bonds, and took joyfully
the spoiling of your goods, knowing in yourselves that ye have in heaven a
better and an enduring substance" (Heb. 10:34).
Adversity Is Not Invincible (Gen 50:15-21).
The troubles did not conquer Joseph, nor his brothers! They were more than
and battles of this world may be won, but usually at a great loss to the
conqueror. In life's fight against adversities, Christians suffer the loss of no
essential thing, and thus we can be said to he more than conquerors. "Who
shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or
persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?....Nay, in all these
things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us"
loses only the useless chaff by being beaten with the sifter, so Christians lose
only their hindrances and impurities by the refining processes of adversity.
Faith is strengthened, love is expanded, experience is deepened, and knowledge
have a secret weapon against adversity, a weapon that is put into our hands by
Christ Himself. It is not a death-dealing atomic bomb reigning terror and horror
on mankind, but our secret weapon in this unceasing fight against the troubles
of life is found in one word that is so often coupled with victory over
suffering in the Scriptures . That secret weapon is rejoicing!
"The joy of the LORD is your strength"
(Neh. 8:10). But notice that this joy is not mere pumped-up exuberance that the
world calls joy. It is the joy of the Lord; a joy from God! because of God and
in God! (l Pet. 4:l3; Jas. 1:2). Do we know the secret of extracting joy
from the jolts of life? Do we experience all joy in all trials? Do we count it
all joy, pure joy, the highest joy, when we are tried?
always on the winning side with Christ (Jn. 16:33) and we cannot lose! for "all
things work together for good to them that love God" (Rom. 8:28). Thus
we are more than conquerors, for we have full assurance of victory all through
the battle. "And they departed from the presence of the council,
rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name"
able to rejoice in suffering for Christ's sake because it is by Christ's
appointment and with Christ's support.
"Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and
shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be
exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the
prophets which were before you" (Mt 5:11-12)
glory in tribulations .." (Rom. 5:3).
"Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that
the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities,
in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake:
for when I am weak, then am I strong"
emphasis on rejoicing by the Old Testament prophet in trial. "Although
the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour
of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be
cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls: Yet I will
rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation" (Hab.
do we look for when in times of adversity?
Joseph's imprisonment came the preservation of a nation.
John's imprisonment emerged the book of Revelation.
Paul's imprisonment flowed the highest revelation of the Scriptures - the prison
John Bunyan's imprisonment came Pilgrim's Progress.
they were more than conquerors, even though captives. So, likewise, if we simply
possess our possessions, we shall find that although adversity is inevitable, it
is invaluable, and that it is not invincible because we are, literally,… "more
than conquerors through him that loved us" (Rom. 8:37).
things you MUST remember about troubles in your life
is Inevitable – trouble comes – the world expects it, why don’t we?
is Invaluable – it helps change our
– what we are on the inside
– it tempers how we act
to enjoy the future
is Not Invincible – it can be conquered, through Jesus our Lord
stare at a problem in your life the same from now on
Jesus, and let Him do wondrous things