Read Genesis 46
Jacob's vision at Beersheba; journey to Egypt; best land given to Jacob; Joseph and the famine; Joseph's sons blessed. Read the stirring details of how God used Joseph to dramatically save the small Israelite family from extinction.
Jacob knew that God had planned for his people to live in Canaan (the Promised Land), not in Egypt (a symbol of worldly and sinful living). Were Jacob's sons telling the truth this time? Jacob did not rush to Egypt for a grand reunion with his precious son Joseph. Since the will of God was uppermost in Jacob's heart, he prayed to God concerning his journey to Egypt. Jacob left Hebron, journeyed about 25 miles to Beersheba, and offered sacrifices unto the God of his father Isaac. And God spake unto . . . Jacob . . . fear not to go down into Egypt; for I will there make of thee a great nation . . . I will also surely bring thee up again (Gen. 46:1-4). For many years, Jacob's family enjoyed Egypt's prosperity, but they eventually became involved in its sin of idol worship and lost sight of the covenant promise of God. God said He would bless them, if they would live in obedience to Him. Eventually, the nation that had once welcomed Jacob and his sons, enslaved them.
Egypt was symbolic of the world with its many "good things" that often keep us from doing the will of God. Satan directs all his deceptive efforts to capture our hearts' interest and keep us from being devoted to the Lord. Jesus said: Seek ye first the Kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you (Matt. 6:33)
The Holy Spirit led the Apostle John to warn us: Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world (I John 2:15-16). It is of utmost importance that we not become sidetracked by materialism, but live to serve the Lord.
The whole world lieth in wickedness. . . . Little children, keep yourselves from idols (5:19,21); but godliness with contentment is great gain. . . . And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith. . . . But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness (I Tim. 6:6-11).
Thought for Today:
Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things wherewith one may edify another (Rom. 14:19).
By Joseph, who was placed by God, second only to Pharaoh (Gen. 41:39-40) in order to sustain life and give provision (47:15-17). Jesus said: The Bread of God is He which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world (John 6:33).
46:4 shall put his hand upon thine eyes will close your eyes when you die; 47:4 sore severe; 47:6 of activity skillfull at their craft; 47:13 fainted suffered, were exhausted; 47:18 not ought; 47:20 prevailed over them continued to be severe; 47:21 removed them coved them as servants; 48:6 issue, which thou begettest four children; 48:10 were dim became blind; 48:14 guiding his hands wittingly crossing his hands intentionally.
Pray for Country: Russia (146.5 million) northeastern Europe and northern Asia • Major language: Russian • Religious freedom • 55% Russian Orthodox; 9% Muslim; 1% Protestant (Baptist, Pentecostal); .8% Shamanist/Animist; .6% Buddhist; .5% Roman Catholic; .5% New Religions (e.g., Hare Krishna); .4% Jewish; .1% Old Believers; 32.1% Agnostics/Atheists/Others • Prayer Suggestion: Ask the Lord to lead you in all that you do (Matt. 6:13).
Optional Reading: Matthew 16
Memory Verse for the Week: Proverbs 28:9