Transforming Ordinary People into Extraordinary Followers of Christ

Joseph, A Portrait of Character and Grace – Part 8 of 8: The Greatest Family Reunion Ever

Sermon Summary

In Genesis 45:14–15 we have a beautiful picture of reconciliation—tearful apologies, expressions of deep repentance, and the assurance of God’s forgiveness. Soon, God’s blessing flowed (v. 16–20 cf. 12:1-2). And we live at a point in history where we are the beneficiaries of those blessings which flowed from the Jewish people (Galatians 3:8). Joseph’s father learns he still lives—and now is Prime Minister of Egypt (45:25–28).

God assured him of his provision and protection (46:1-4). God promised Jacob that (1) his family would become a great nation, (2) that God would be with Jacob and his family in Egypt and they need not fear, (3) that God would bring the nation of Israel back out of Egypt and into the Promised Land (it would happen 400 years later, under Moses’ leadership), and (4) that Jacob would die in Egypt, under the watchful care of his beloved son Joseph.

Have you ever felt like Jacob? You are facing big changes in life and are filled with uncertainty. When facing big decisions our first concern should be, “Do I see God in this? How does it impact what I know to be God’s will for my life?” I am going to be honest with you: I have no interest in pursuing things that God may not be in. So before you take on some new course of direction—do what Jacob did—go to God about it. Ask Him for wisdom, and He will give it.

Meanwhile Joseph waited. When he got news that his family was close, he wasted no time. “Joseph prepared his chariot and went up to Goshen to meet his father Israel; as soon as he appeared before him, he fell on his neck and wept on his neck a long time” (v. 29). Jacob was a fulfilled man: “Now let me die, since I have seen your face, that you are still alive” (v. 30). When his time came, he knew that he could die in peace. Jacob died at the ripe old age of 147. He enjoyed 17 more years with Joseph, which, by the way, equaled exactly the time he had spent with Joseph before his son was sold into slavery in Egypt.

Not long after Jacob’s burial, Joseph’s brother’s became fearful that Joseph may exact revenge (50:15–17). But Joseph carried no grudge (v. 19-21). What an incredible man Joseph was. Let me ask you a question. What kind of mark are you leaving? What kind of legacy will you leave behind when one day God calls you home?

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