God is Good…All the Time (Genesis 39:19-23) - Part 1
Genesis 39:19-23, And it came to pass, when his master heard the words of his wife, which she spake unto him, saying, After this manner did thy servant to me; that his wrath was kindled. And Joseph's master took him, and put him into the prison, a place where the king's prisoners were bound: and he was there in the prison. But the LORD was with Joseph, and shewed him mercy, and gave him favour in the sight of the keeper of the prison. And the keeper of the prison committed to Joseph's hand all the prisoners that were in the prison; and whatsoever they did there, he was the doer of it. The keeper of the prison looked not to any thing that was under his hand; because the LORD was with him, and that which he did, the LORD made it to prosper.
Joseph had been serving Potiphar faithfully and he had caused Potiphar to prosper. He had been true to God and to his master. Potiphar had seen this. He knew Joseph’s character and his dedication to God. However, his circumstances were about to abruptly change when Potiphar’s wife falsely accused him of attacking her.
Repeatedly Potiphar’s wife asked Joseph to sleep with her, but he refused every time because he was an honorable and faithful man. Even when no one was around, he fled from her temptation, but she held on to his garment and he left it in her hand. Rejected for the last time, Potiphar’s wife used the garment to falsely incriminate Joseph before her husband, so he had Joseph placed in prison.
For the second time, Joseph was wronged, and again, he remained dedicated to the Lord. Once again it involved his garment (Genesis 37). Now Potiphar became enraged because of Joseph’s garment that his wife gave to him, along with her fictitious story. Although Joseph did what was right and fled from the temptation, he was thrown into prison.
At this moment, one might expect Joseph to lash out at God and curse Him and die. But no, there isn’t even a hint of it. Scripture tells us that Joseph continued in full obedience to the will of God. Joseph’s circumstances continued to become more difficult, but his faith in God grew.
Though Joseph was treated unjustly and his conditions worsened, his hope in God did not waver. Joseph knew that the situation he was facing was not good, but God always is. Adversity and injustice seemed to be a continual part of Joseph’s life in Egypt, but so were God’s presence and goodness. Whether in Potiphar’s house, or in prison, Joseph continued serving God, accepting God’s goodness to him and extending it to others, and God made everything Joseph did prosper.
Like Joseph, we should avoid any situation that could invite such temptations. We should avoid people and settings that could lead us to danger. And if we are being tempted to be unfaithful, we should resist. We should tell a trusted friend to keep us accountable. As much as it depends on us, flee also youthful lusts (II Timothy 2:22). As Christians, we need to follow the same example of Joseph. Joseph resisted her advances (Genesis 39:7) and said, “how then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?” (Genesis 39:9)
Since God extends kindness to us even when our circumstance is difficult, we should respond by showing kindness to one another, even to those who wrong us (Matthew 5:44; 7:12). When we are hurting, we tend to want to hurt others. But we need to put this desire to death, and instead, follow the path of Jesus who served others through His suffering. We need the Holy Spirit to work in our hearts, purging the sinful contempt we often have for those who persecute us, and replace it with love.
Point to Ponder:
Questions to Consider:
PRAYER: Father, thank You that You gave me Your Word to instruct me in my daily walk with You. I seek your wisdom that I might avoid the snares of the enemy. Help me abide in You so closely that I depend only on You and not in something that could enslave me. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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Dr. Blackman is passionate about helping others grow in the grace of the Lord. His devotions are centered on how to grow closer to the Lord through a personal relationship.