Day 29, January 29, 2021
Day 29, January 29, 2021
Scripture: Genesis 50, Exodus 1, Matthew 23
Matthew 23:23 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices—mint, dill and cumin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law--justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without nseglecting the former.
The end Joseph’s life is a picture of the righteousness God desires. One of the best Old Testament stories, comes to a close, with the incredible understanding of God and difficult circumstances, “But Joseph said to them, “Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. So then, don’t be afraid. I will provide for you and your children.” And he reassured them and spoke kindly to them. (Genesis 50:19-21)
Micah 6:8, asks of what is required of people. It isn’t more sacrifice, rather it is “To act justly, love mercy and to walk humbly with the Lord.”
Joseph displays a true understanding of justice, “Am I in the place of God?” Rhetorical question as it is, certainly, he is not God. It’s God’s role to bring about justice. Joseph has lived long enough to know that God is at work, even in difficult circumstances. He can think of multiple occasions in his own life, where he perhaps wanted to exact revenge and bring harm to others. Yet he chose mercy. To give control and justice making/keeping to God, who knows all. Joseph became one who understood walking humbly with the Lord.
The pressure will come on the people of God. Joseph will pass away. His story will be forgotten, and the Israelites will become a threat to the power and reign of Egypt. They look to suppress them through slavery and the killing of their firstborn boys. What Pharaoh intends for harm, will become the ingredients used by God to miraculously deliver His people. What people intend for harm, God can use to strengthen and accomplish His purposes.
The connection to today’s world is an important one. As we navigate our faith in the world today, it is just as important that we not neglect the important matters of the law, justice, mercy and faithfulness. Though it may become increasingly difficult, and the pressures we face may become more and more difficult, God will use it for His glory.
So, Love the lowly, forgive as God has forgiven you, and walk humbly with the Lord.
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Jordan Ickes, Minister of Etna Green Church of Christ.