Joseph and Jesus #7

Thursday, January 26, 2023

“These are the generations of Jacob. Joseph, being seventeen years old, was feeding the flock with his brethren; and the lad was with the sons of Bilhah, and with the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives: and Joseph brought unto his father their evil report” (Genesis 37:2 KJV).

Let us search the Scriptures to see how Joseph is a type of the antitype Jesus….

Pharaoh, impressed by Joseph’s wisdom, promotes him to become the second in command in Egypt: “Thou shalt be over my house, and according unto thy word shall all my people be ruled: only in the throne will I be greater than thou. And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, See, I have set thee over all the land of Egypt. And Pharaoh took off his ring from his hand, and put it upon Joseph’s hand, and arrayed him in vestures of fine linen, and put a gold chain about his neck; And he made him to ride in the second chariot which he had; and they cried before him, Bow the knee: and he made him ruler over all the land of Egypt” (Genesis 41:40-43).

Similarly, the Lord Jesus Christ, as the Second Member of the Godhead, plays a subservient role to Father God: “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Philippians 2:5-11).

Joseph suffered pitifully then reigned magnificently. Also, Jesus’ horrific suffering precedes His glorious exaltation to a throne (see 1 Peter 1:10,11). However, they merge even more fully….

Joseph and Jesus #6

Wednesday, January 25, 2023

“These are the generations of Jacob. Joseph, being seventeen years old, was feeding the flock with his brethren; and the lad was with the sons of Bilhah, and with the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives: and Joseph brought unto his father their evil report” (Genesis 37:2 KJV).

Let us search the Scriptures to see how Joseph is a type of the antitype Jesus….

Joseph was arrested, shackled and imprisoned (Genesis 39:20). Nearly 17 centuries later, the Lord Jesus was also detained and chained as a convict (Matthew 27:2; Mark 15:1; John 18:12).

Ponder Genesis 40:1-4: “And it came to pass after these things, that the butler of the king of Egypt and his baker had offended their lord the king of Egypt. And Pharaoh was wroth against two of his officers, against the chief of the butlers, and against the chief of the bakers. And he put them in ward [jail] in the house of the captain of the guard, into the prison, the place where Joseph was bound. And the captain of the guard charged Joseph with them, and he served them: and they continued a season in ward.” While incarcerated, Joseph met two criminals. Likewise, the Bible says of Jesus: “Then were there two thieves crucified with him, one on the right hand, and another on the left” (Matthew 27:38; cf. Mark 15:27; Luke 23:32,33; John 19:18).

Once the chief butler and the chief baker have their respective dreams, the LORD God enables Joseph to interpret them (see Genesis 40:5-23). The butler is redeemed, restored to fellowship with Pharaoh (verses 9-15,20,21)—but the baker is condemned and hanged (verses 16-19,22)!

Likewise, one thief crucified with Jesus was saved, and the other was lost: “And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on him, saying, If thou be Christ, save thyself and us. But the other answering rebuked him, saying, Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation? And we indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds: but this man hath done nothing amiss. And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise” (Luke 23:39-43).

The resemblances continue still….

Joseph and Jesus #5

Tuesday, January 24, 2023

“These are the generations of Jacob. Joseph, being seventeen years old, was feeding the flock with his brethren; and the lad was with the sons of Bilhah, and with the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives: and Joseph brought unto his father their evil report” (Genesis 37:2 KJV).

Let us search the Scriptures to see how Joseph is a type of the antitype Jesus….

Read Genesis chapter 39. Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh, purchased Joseph as a slave; Joseph began serving and prospering in Potiphar’s house down in Egypt. Unfortunately, Potiphar’s wife tried to seduce Joseph. When Joseph refused her sexual advances, she falsely accused him of rape, so Potiphar had Joseph imprisoned! Suffice it to say, Joseph was tempted (tried, tested) and was proven faithful to his master (Potiphar) and his God (the LORD).

Observe Matthew 4:1 now: “Then was Jesus led up of the spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.” Also, Luke 4:1,2: “And Jesus being full of the Holy Ghost returned from Jordan, and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, Being forty days tempted of the devil….” In Matthew 4:1-11 and Luke 4:1-13, we learn how Satan himself tempted (tested, tried) Jesus using the lust of the flesh (satisfying physical hunger with bread), the lust of the eye (gaining power over the earthly kingdoms), and the pride of life (angelic deliverance causing a spectacle) (see 1 John 2:15-17). The Devil was unsuccessful in distracting the Lord Jesus from His Heavenly Father’s plan for Him! As Joseph was dedicated to his master’s work, so Jesus was wholly devoted to Father God’s will.

Nevertheless, honorable Joseph was wrongly accused of misconduct (noted earlier). Likewise, false witnesses charged sinless Jesus with evil: “Now the chief priests, and elders, and all the council, sought false witness against Jesus, to put him to death; But found none: yea, though many false witnesses came, yet found they none. At the last came two false witnesses, And said, This fellow said, I am able to destroy the temple of God, and to build it in three days” (Matthew 26:59-61). Christ was also labeled a “blasphemer,” another baseless allegation (verses 63-65).

In their immense pain, Joseph and Jesus are even further united….

Joseph and Jesus #4

Monday, January 23, 2023

“These are the generations of Jacob. Joseph, being seventeen years old, was feeding the flock with his brethren; and the lad was with the sons of Bilhah, and with the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives: and Joseph brought unto his father their evil report” (Genesis 37:2 KJV).

Let us search the Scriptures to see how Joseph is a type of the antitype Jesus….

After scheming to kill him, Joseph’s brethren change their minds. They realize they can make a profit by selling him alive as a slave to the Gentiles! “Come, and let us sell him to the Ishmeelites, and let not our hand be upon him; for he is our brother and our flesh. And his brethren were content. Then there passed by Midianites merchantmen; and they drew and lifted up Joseph out of the pit, and sold Joseph to the Ishmeelites for twenty pieces of silver: and they brought Joseph into Egypt(verses 27,28, that which follows today’s Scripture).

In striking similarities, the nation Israel betrayed Jesus, turning Him over to the Gentiles after His “friend” Judas Iscariot “sold” Him for pieces of silver (the value of a slave)! “…The Son of man shall be betrayed unto the chief priests and unto the scribes, and they shall condemn him to death, And shall deliver [hand over, betray!] him to the Gentiles to mock, and to scourge, and to crucify him: and the third day he shall rise again” (Matthew 20:18,19). “Then one of the twelve, called Judas Iscariot, went unto the chief priests, And said unto them, What will ye give me, and I will deliver him unto you? And they covenanted with him for thirty pieces of silver. And from that time he sought opportunity to betray him (Matthew 26:14-16). Check also John 18:28-35.

After Joseph was traded off to the Gentiles, he was removed from the land of Canaan and taken down into Egypt (as noted earlier in this study). In like manner, little boy Jesus had left the land of Israel to inhabit Egypt (Matthew 2:13-15). Both Joseph and Jesus suffered at the hands of sinful, unbelieving men, but Father God was still working mightily in each life….

Joseph and Jesus #3

Sunday, January 22, 2023

“These are the generations of Jacob. Joseph, being seventeen years old, was feeding the flock with his brethren; and the lad was with the sons of Bilhah, and with the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives: and Joseph brought unto his father their evil report” (Genesis 37:2 KJV).

Let us search the Scriptures to see how Joseph is a type of the antitype Jesus….

Jacob sent his son Joseph to check on his (Joseph’s) brothers. Joseph went willingly. “And Israel said unto Joseph, Do not thy brethren feed the flock in Shechem? come, and I will send thee unto them. And he said to him, Here am I. And he said to him, Go, I pray thee, see whether it be well with thy brethren, and well with the flocks; and bring me word again. So he sent him out of the vale of Hebron, and he came to Shechem” (verses 13,14, that which follows today’s Scripture). Likewise, when Father God sent Jesus Christ to minister to His (Christ’s) brethren, He conducted His earthly ministry to Israel. “But last of all he sent unto them his son, saying, They will reverence my son” (Matthew 21:37; cf. Mark 12:6; Luke 20:13). “For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me(John 6:38).

Alas, Joseph’s brethren plotted to take his life: “And when they saw him afar off, even before he came near unto them, they conspired against him to slay him(verses 18-20, that which follows today’s Scripture). Equally, concerning Jesus, several centuries later: “But when the husbandmen [farmers] saw the son, they said among themselves, This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and let us seize on his inheritance. And they caught him, and cast him out of the vineyard, and slew him” (Matthew 21:38,39; cf. Mark 12:7,8; Luke 20:14,15).

Joseph’s “coat of many colours” (Genesis 37:3) was taken from him, and he was thrown into a pit without water, a picture of death (verses 23,24). Likewise, Jesus was stripped of His seamless coat before He was crucified and died on Calvary’s cruel cross (John 19:23,24,30). Yet, the similarities do not stop there….

Joseph and Jesus #2

Saturday, January 21, 2023

“These are the generations of Jacob. Joseph, being seventeen years old, was feeding the flock with his brethren; and the lad was with the sons of Bilhah, and with the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives: and Joseph brought unto his father their evil report” (Genesis 37:2 KJV).

Let us search the Scriptures to see how Joseph is a type of the antitype Jesus….

Joseph owned an exceptional garment: “Now Israel [Jacob] loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age: and he made him a coat of many colours(verse 3, that which follows today’s Scripture). Likewise, the Lord Jesus wore a unique, seamless garment: “Then the soldiers, when they had crucified Jesus, took his garments, and made four parts, to every soldier a part; and also his coat: now the coat was without seam, woven from the top throughout (John 19:23).

Moreover, the Bible tells us how Joseph’s brothers despised him: “And when his brethren saw that their father loved him more than all his brethren, they hated him, and could not speak peaceably [kindly, gently] unto him” (verse 4, that which follows today’s Scripture). Similarly, Jesus, when He took on human flesh and became biologically united with other Jews, they hated Him just as passionately as Joseph’s brethren loathed him! “But this cometh to pass, that the word might be fulfilled that is written in their law, They hated me without a cause(John 15:25).

God gave Joseph a dream, which Joseph relays to his brethren (verses 5-7, that which follows today’s Scripture). Basically, Joseph will be superior to them, and they cannot stand the possibility that they will one day be subservient to him. Outraged, they inquire, “Shalt thou indeed reign over us? or shalt thou indeed have dominion over us?” It is fascinating that, when Jesus came to present Himself as Israel’s ruler, His Jewish brethren refused Him, answering, “We have no king but Caesar!” (John 19:15).

“And [Joseph’s] brethren envied him” (verse 11, that which follows today’s Scripture). “For he [Pilate] knew that the chief priests had delivered him [Jesus] for [because of] envy” (Mark 15:10; cf. Matthew 27:18). Joseph and Jesus both had bitter, cruel adversaries (their own family!) who actively sought their destruction….

Joseph and Jesus #1

Friday, January 20, 2023

“These are the generations of Jacob. Joseph, being seventeen years old, was feeding the flock with his brethren; and the lad was with the sons of Bilhah, and with the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives: and Joseph brought unto his father their evil report” (Genesis 37:2 KJV).

Let us search the Scriptures to see how Joseph is a type of the antitype Jesus….

In Bible study, a “type” is someone or something that foreshadows, previews, or indicates someone or something similar that will arise later (the “antitype”). Think of it as a prophecy, God announcing the future in advance. That is to say, the Holy Spirit will present a person or event early in the Bible canon, whose traits a subsequent person or event will share. What was true of the former will, in whole or in part, be descriptive of the latter. Over the course of the next several studies we will use Joseph and Jesus to illustrate this principle.

For example, if we look at today’s Scripture, we observe how Joseph is a son of Jacob. Jacob, remember, is a son of Isaac, and Isaac is a son of Abraham. If we turn to Luke chapter 3, Jesus’ human and biological genealogy through Mary His mother, we see His ancestors are “Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob” (see verses 23,34). Therefore, Joseph and Jesus (assuming human flesh 17 centuries later) are both sons of Jacob.

Being more specific, we will note how Joseph is a shepherd, feeding the flock with his brethren” (today’s Scripture). Likewise, Jesus, serving Father God and ministering to Israel, is “the good shepherd (John 10:11,14), asserting, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture [be fed] (verse 9). Both Joseph and Jesus are shepherds of their fathers’ sheep.

To take it a step further, “Now Israel [Jacob] loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age” (Genesis 37:3). Father God announced concerning Jesus, “And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3:17). Both Joseph and Jesus are dearly beloved of their fathers.

Here are just a few shared characteristics….

Spiritual Supercentenarians

Wednesday, January 18, 2023

“And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent” (John 17:3 KJV).

“Eternal life” is more than living forever; it is sharing in God’s life forever through Jesus Christ the Mediator.

Recently, a distant cousin of mine died… just a few days shy of her 112th birthday! To put that age into perspective, she had already celebrated her first birthday when the Titanic sank! She was a supercentenarian, someone significantly older than 100 (technically, one who is 110-plus). Roughly one person in 1,000 who reach age 100 will see 110 because several beneficial factors must converge—genetics, lifestyle, environment, will to live, to name a few.

I met the dear lady for the first and only time some months before her 104th birthday, and was thoroughly shocked to see her astonishing condition. Though residing in an assisted-living home, she strolled independently (no cane, walker, or wheelchair), answering her front door to greet my parents and me. Her mind was still quite sharp, for she recounted ancient family history for us. Curious, I asked her about her health. Her only medication was half a blood-pressure pill and an occasional baby aspirin to prevent heart attack and/or stroke. And, to think, people half her age are in worse physical and mental shape! When I inquired about her “key to longevity”—what did she do to live so long?!—she really had no idea.

When she turned 108, she was featured on a local news broadcast. Since we had visited her, her health had declined. Now, she was wheelchair-bound and living in her daughter’s home, but she had excellent memory and could still play her triangle (a Cajun-French musical instrument). Over the course of the next four years, her physical wellbeing became even more fragile, so she began celebrating half-birthdays (never knowing if she would reach the next full birthday). She did not reach 112, but she came extremely close!

Saints, though 112 years of earthly life is a long time, they cannot and do not compare to the endless eons we in Christ will have communing with Father God, whether this sojourn here on Earth now or the glories of eternity future in Heaven!

Whom We Have Believed

Tuesday, January 17, 2023

“For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day” (2 Timothy 1:12 KJV).

It is not so much what we have believed, but whom we have believed!

When asked about his religious persuasion, a prominent individual readily admitted total confusion. He actually confessed that he did not know what he believed, though he did sense a “higher power” (a vague comment on which he could not elaborate because he was at a loss for words). This man is quite ill-fated, particularly because he lives in a nation with “Christian” church buildings on nearly every street corner and Bibles in almost every home (or, at least, internet access to a Bible!). God the Holy Spirit revealed, inspired, preserved, and translated His Book—the Holy Bible—so we would not be ignorant (uninformed, untaught) unless we chose to be!

Indeed, Satan, “the god of this world,” hides our gospel from them who are lost, for he “hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them” (2 Corinthians 4:3,4). Yet, as Almighty God enabled us to overcome that darkness so we could learn His will for us (see John 7:17), if they are willing to step into the light, He will give them the same spiritual awareness He has given us. The problem lies in their lack of readiness to see what He has already furnished.

Yet, Christianity is much more than believing something. As we gather from today’s Scripture, it is about believing Someone, the Lord Jesus Christ, to whom we have entrusted our soul’s eternal wellbeing. After all, if the God-Man shedding His sinless blood and rising from the dead cannot save us from our sins, then we are truly doomed forever. However, unlike those who “do not know what to believe,” separate from those who “do not know who to believe,” “[we] know whom [we] have believed, and [are] persuaded that he is able to keep [guard, protect] that which [we] have committed unto him [our souls and spirits] against that day!” 🙂

A Life That Will Please

Wednesday, January 4, 2023

“I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20 KJV).

Today’s Scripture tells us who alone can live a life pleasing in God’s sight!

Everyone does “good” deeds. Yet, doing “good” is not necessarily good. For instance, people often do “good” just to receive praise/reward, make up for their wrongs, feel good, et cetera. Furthermore, despite our “good” deeds, we have plenty more bad ones! Pride, lying, evil thoughts, being a false witness, and being contentious are some of the things the LORD hates (Proverbs 6:16-19).

Mankind cannot even keep 10 simple rules from God. However, religion continues to urge us to keep seven sacraments, utter various prayers, give assorted offerings and “tithes,” attend numerous feasts and festivals, and perform sundry other tasks to “hopefully” please God and avoid hellfire. Whether we attempt to keep a church’s laws, our laws, or God’s laws, our flesh is far too weak to ever measure up. Just look at what God’s religion did to Israel—how much worse some man-made religion does to us!

As Saul of Tarsus, the Apostle Paul was a Pharisee, a religious leader of Israel. He was a nitpicker concerning Law-keeping, and yet, after his soul salvation, he admitted that all of his religion was “but dung” compared to Jesus Christ’s righteousness (Philippians 3:3-11). Even for the Christian, to live a perfect life is impossible (read of Paul’s miserable existence in Romans chapter 7). Paul had to forsake his vain religion and learn today’s Scripture: the Christian life is NOT the performance of the Christian, but the Lord Jesus Christ living and working in the Christian, as the Christian walks in an intelligent understanding of God’s Word to him or her!

If we trust a Saviour who will save—the Lord Jesus Christ—and trust a Book that will teach—the King James Bible—we can redeem the year for the great God and our Saviour, “who loved [us], and gave himself for [us]!” 🙂