The Measure of Faith

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King James Bible Study[Mark 8:34  And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.]

Date: Thursday, January 27, 2022
Chapters: Genesis 43-45
Message: The Measure of Faith

Hello My Friend,

As I read the chapters for today, this passage came to mind, [I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith. Let love be without dissimulation. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good. Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another; Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord; – Romans 12:1-3,9-11]

Part of walk with Christ includes forgiveness and being there as those living sacrifices that care for those who need us, even if they have wronged us. Everything that we go through, even the bad things, are handed to us as a measure of our faith. God knows just how far to take us and how we will handle these situations that come, [There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it. – 1 Corinthians 10:13]

When Joseph was hated by his brothers and sold as a slave, he did not know what would happen to him, yet God was with him the entire time. He kept his faith and that is what God used to prepare him for the role of the governor of Egypt. On the other hand, Joseph’s brothers never got over the fact that they not only sold their brother into slavery, but deceived their father into believing their lie that he had been killed by a wild animal. Now, after twenty-three years, they meet Joseph face to face, only they had no idea who he was, all the while he was testing them fully knowing who they are. Now, as we continue in the reading of Genesis, with one brother in jail and the others being told not to return until they bring Benjamin, Judah convinces their father to let them return to Egypt with Benjamin to get more food.

[And the famine was sore in the land. And it came to pass, when they had eaten up the corn which they had brought out of Egypt, their father said unto them, Go again, buy us a little food. And Judah spake unto him, saying, The man did solemnly protest unto us, saying, Ye shall not see my face, except your brother be with you. And Israel said, Wherefore dealt ye so ill with me, as to tell the man whether ye had yet a brother? And they said, The man asked us straitly of our state, and of our kindred, saying, Is your father yet alive? have ye another brother? and we told him according to the tenor of these words: could we certainly know that he would say, Bring your brother down? And Judah said unto Israel his father, Send the lad with me, and we will arise and go; that we may live, and not die, both we, and thou, and also our little ones. I will be surety for him; of my hand shalt thou require him: if I bring him not unto thee, and set him before thee, then let me bear the blame for ever: For except we had lingered, surely now we had returned this second time. – Genesis 43:1-3,6-10]

[then let me bear the blame for ever:] Judah takes the responsibility of Benjamin, if they do not return with him, then it is all on him. He also makes mention that if they brought him in the first place then they would not even had to deal with this. When we take the focus off ourselves and start thinking of the needs of others, that is when we find the bravery to not only protect them, but take responsibility for their well being. Jacob reluctantly agrees to let them take Benjamin with them. Now, when Joseph’s brothers arrive with Benjamin, they are immediately brought to Joseph’s house. Right away they thought they were in trouble.

[Take also your brother, and arise, go again unto the man: And God Almighty give you mercy before the man, that he may send away your other brother, and Benjamin. If I be bereaved of my children, I am bereaved. And the men took that present, and they took double money in their hand, and Benjamin; and rose up, and went down to Egypt, and stood before Joseph. And when Joseph saw Benjamin with them, he said to the ruler of his house, Bring these men home, and slay, and make ready; for these men shall dine with me at noon. And the man did as Joseph bade; and the man brought the men into Joseph’s house. And the men were afraid, because they were brought into Joseph’s house; and they said, Because of the money that was returned in our sacks at the first time are we brought in; that he may seek occasion against us, and fall upon us, and take us for bondmen, and our asses. – Genesis 43:13-18]

[Because of the money that was returned in our sacks] This scared them to death as they thought they were being brought there because they did not pay for the food they got the last time. Their minds were put to ease a little bit when they were told that their money was handed back to them by their God, and when they brought Simeon.

[And he said, Peace be to you, fear not: your God, and the God of your father, hath given you treasure in your sacks: I had your money. And he brought Simeon out unto them. And the man brought the men into Joseph’s house, and gave them water, and they washed their feet; and he gave their asses provender. And they made ready the present against Joseph came at noon: for they heard that they should eat bread there. And when Joseph came home, they brought him the present which was in their hand into the house, and bowed themselves to him to the earth. And he lifted up his eyes, and saw his brother Benjamin, his mother’s son, and said, Is this your younger brother, of whom ye spake unto me? And he said, God be gracious unto thee, my son. And Joseph made haste; for his bowels did yearn upon his brother: and he sought where to weep; and he entered into his chamber, and wept there. And they sat before him, the firstborn according to his birthright, and the youngest according to his youth: and the men marvelled one at another. – Genesis 43:23-26,29-30,33]

[and the men marvelled one at another.] How often does God bless us with something that we have not earned and we find ourselves questioning it? Now, imagine having a guilty conscious? Even the good things that happen are questionable to those whom have never come to terms with their guilt. Until we confess and repent of our sin, our own conscience will never see any good thing out of the good things, [For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death. For behold this selfsame thing, that ye sorrowed after a godly sort, what carefulness it wrought in you, yea, what clearing of yourselves, yea, what indignation, yea, what fear, yea, what vehement desire, yea, what zeal, yea, what revenge! In all things ye have approved yourselves to be clear in this matter. – 2 Corinthians 7:10-11]

So, here are these men eating with the governor of Egypt after just recently being accused of being spies. They were thinking to themselves, “What is the catch?” And yet, they continued enjoying their feast. Little did they realize that they were eating with their own brother and that Joseph was kind of messing with them. And here came the catch, Joseph commanded that his servant fill their sacks with food and the money they brought, and also place a silver drinking cup in Benjamin’s bag.

[And he commanded the steward of his house, saying, Fill the men’s sacks with food, as much as they can carry, and put every man’s money in his sack’s mouth. And put my cup, the silver cup, in the sack’s mouth of the youngest, and his corn money. And he did according to the word that Joseph had spoken. As soon as the morning was light, the men were sent away, they and their asses. And when they were gone out of the city, and not yet far off, Joseph said unto his steward, Up, follow after the men; and when thou dost overtake them, say unto them, Wherefore have ye rewarded evil for good? Is not this it in which my lord drinketh, and whereby indeed he divineth? ye have done evil in so doing. And he overtook them, and he spake unto them these same words. Then they speedily took down every man his sack to the ground, and opened every man his sack. And he searched, and began at the eldest, and left at the youngest: and the cup was found in Benjamin’s sack. Then they rent their clothes, and laded every man his ass, and returned to the city. – Genesis 44:1-6,11-13]

[Then they rent their clothes,] Can you imagine what they all thought as their bags were being checked? “We were with you? We gave you money, why would we steal from you? Who did this?” And this is what we get for what we did to Joseph” And Benjamin, he must have wondered why he was being framed as he was the innocent one in all of this. What is the saying? “What goes around, comes around” Or as the Bible says, “You reap what you sow.” There will always come a time when we will be forced to come to terms with the fact that we are all sinners and will reap death and hell for our sin unless we come to Christ, [For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.- Romans 6:23]

At this point, they all get down on their knees, ripping of their shirts, and then begging for mercy as they were escorted back to the Joseph’s house. Judah, steps up once again, begging for him to take him instead of Benjamin.

[And Judah said, What shall we say unto my lord? what shall we speak? or how shall we clear ourselves? God hath found out the iniquity of thy servants: behold, we are my lord’s servants, both we, and he also with whom the cup is found. And he said, God forbid that I should do so: but the man in whose hand the cup is found, he shall be my servant; and as for you, get you up in peace unto your father. Then Judah came near unto him, and said, Oh my lord, let thy servant, I pray thee, speak a word in my lord’s ears, and let not thine anger burn against thy servant: for thou art even as Pharaoh. For thy servant became surety for the lad unto my father, saying, If I bring him not unto thee, then I shall bear the blame to my father for ever. Now therefore, I pray thee, let thy servant abide instead of the lad a bondman to my lord; and let the lad go up with his brethren. – Genesis 44:16-18,32-33]

[let thy servant abide instead of the lad a bondman to my lord;] Judah could not bear the thought of standing before his father without Benjamin, he would rather be a servant himself than be the cause of death of his father. This is when we know that others lives are just as important as our own and we do not want them to face the consequences of the punishment that we rightfully deserve. It is also an act of intercession, just like when Jesus makes intercession on our behalf when we come to Him for repentance, [Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. – Romans 8:34]

Judah’s intercession to Benjamin was also recognized long afterwards by the tribe of Benjamin when they stuck close to Judah once they got into the promised land, [Joshua 18]. So, here is Joseph watching them down on their knees and pleading with him and then he was reminded of those dreams her had, and they did not seem so much fun as in his dream and finally reveals to them who he is.

[Then Joseph could not refrain himself before all them that stood by him; and he cried, Cause every man to go out from me. And there stood no man with him, while Joseph made himself known unto his brethren. And Joseph said unto his brethren, Come near to me, I pray you. And they came near. And he said, I am Joseph your brother, whom ye sold into Egypt. Now therefore be not grieved, nor angry with yourselves, that ye sold me hither: for God did send me before you to preserve life. For these two years hath the famine been in the land: and yet there are five years, in the which there shall neither be earing nor harvest. And God sent me before you to preserve you a posterity in the earth, and to save your lives by a great deliverance. So now it was not you that sent me hither, but God: and he hath made me a father to Pharaoh, and lord of all his house, and a ruler throughout all the land of Egypt. Haste ye, and go up to my father, and say unto him, Thus saith thy son Joseph, God hath made me lord of all Egypt: come down unto me, tarry not: – Genesis 45:1,4-9]

[Now therefore be not grieved, nor angry with yourselves,] This reminds me of my ex-boyfriend, he went and got himself into some trouble, but the second I found out I wanted to be there to help him. This is the love of Christ that teaches us to love one another, if they get into trouble, they will face the consequences of their actions, but we can still be there for them, as long as there are repentant, [Take heed to yourselves: If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him. And if he trespass against thee seven times in a day, and seven times in a day turn again to thee, saying, I repent; thou shalt forgive him. – Luke 17:3-4]

[for God did send me before you to preserve life.] People are going to deceive us, loved ones are going to deceive us, we can find forgiveness through the grace of God. In fact, it is imperative that we forgive them if we want peace within ourselves. By our forgiving them, we actually may lead some to Christ, in fact, forgiveness always brings people to Christ, [For whether we be beside ourselves, it is to God: or whether we be sober, it is for your cause. For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead: And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again. Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we him no more. Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. – 2 Corinthians 5:13-17]

Today’s Prayer: God, Thank You for forgiving and forgetting all my sins when I accepted Your Son as my Saviour. You have also taught me the importance of forgiveness, I may never forget what they have done, but I have overcome and am a witness and testimony of how blessed I am through the situations You placed or allowed in my life. Lord, Lead me and guide me, walk with me, and give me Your mercies and grace to endure every situation You place me in, teach me how to love like You love, to forgive like You forgive, and to use every situation as a guide to the good that You have yet to show me. Let every person that I come to know see Your Son in me, and may it bring them to accept Him as their Saviour too. I ask these things in Your name, Jesus. Amen.

God Bless You, I am praying for you,

Christina

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