“Exposing the Exodus”
Israel’s Prosperity (Chapter 1 Verses 6-7)
Joseph and his generation had died. Israel had now grown to such proportions that she was creating a spirit of envy and fear in the hearts of the Egyptians. So the taskmasters are put under orders to treat Israel with utter ruthlessness. It is vital that we understand that all this is part of the struggle between the seed of the woman and the seed of the serpent (Genesis 3:15). Satan is ever arrayed against the Lord, and that through his folk. Pharaoh and many others after him have merely performed God’s will in afflicting the people of God. The principle that the pathway to glory is through suffering is unavoidable, and is always in operation. It was the same principle that operated throughout Messiah’s life too. And it is happening here, in Israel’s pilgrimage in Egypt. But it is ultimately the attack of Satan against Israel’s Messiah. Destroy the woman (Israel), and he destroys her seed (Messiah) too.
This is the fruit of a godly life v6. Joseph’s family survived the rigours of famine, of economic depression, why? Because God brought Jacob and his family into Egypt. Jacob and his company over the years had lapsed spiritually and morally in terms of their obedience to God. It was the influence of alien cultures around and in the midst of them mostly. They never maintained their God-appointed separation. So God had to discipline and refine them. Yet in and through all that discipline he brought them into Egypt. He watched over, he planned and prepared them for this. But it goes back to a young dreamer, a young man God took through the crushing mill and sifted, many times. Joseph must often have asked why? He suffered, not because he was a spiritually arrogant young man, but because he was a spiritual and a godly man. In the midst of the spiritual deadness we see in the church today, a young person might ask the question, is it worth it? Following Jesus and keeping him or herself clean and obeying Lord? Well, take young Joseph, God used him to preserve his work and his people. He’s long gone by this time, but now the fruit of his godly life is coming through, big time. The great God of wonders is about to arise, and with power to strike the kingdom of antichrist and deliver, redeem, his people. Joseph’s life laid foundation for that work. It goes on.
(© James R Hamilton, written Spring, 2015)