Do we truly believe that God never fails? Our view of success and failure ultimately depends on what we believe about God and His sovereignty. If God is sovereign, we can trust the good and bad moments of our lives to Him. Joseph modeled this rock-solid trust in God. He’d suffered and endured much! First, he’d been sold into slavery by his jealous brothers. Then as a slave in Egypt, he’d been falsely accused and imprisoned. Though he interpreted Pharaoh’s dream and gained royal favor, Joseph continued to live in exile, uncertain of how his family was doing or if his father was still alive. These events were difficult and painful.
Throughout all this, though, Joseph held onto his faith in the Lord. When he interpreted the king’s dream, he gave God the glory (Gen. 41:16). In Genesis 50, he summed up his story in terms of God’s sovereignty, love, and saving purposes. He didn’t claim to understand everything, but he did know this: “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives” (v. 20).
Joseph’s brothers thought in human terms. They wondered if perhaps he’d been biding his time out of respect for their father, and now that Jacob was dead Joseph would take his revenge (v. 15). Joseph’s response demonstrated forgiveness, faith, and submission to the Lord. Not only does God’s love never fail (see yesterday’s study), neither does His sovereignty or His power or any of His other attributes. He can and will perfectly accomplish all His perfect plans. There’s no drama or suspense about this. We can stand firm in faith and rest in this truth, assured of the future (Heb. 11:1).
>> What are the key lessons you’ve learned during this study? What have you learned about how God works through failure? How has He done it in your life? How has your idea of success been biblically changed? What will you do differently as a result?