Sunday, April 25, 2010

Joseph - Do not sleep

By Odon Bulamba (19 July 2002)

Genesis 39 - 40

The battle doesn’t belong to us but our God, and when you are in a different situation or at war don’t hesitate to call on Him and He will come, even if you are alone call upon His name. Amen.

Joseph was Jacob’s son sold by his own brothers. He became a servant in Potiphar’s house and Potiphar’s wife betrayed him and then he was arrested. We are going to look at when Joseph was a servant in Potiphar’s house. Potiphar’s wife had a lot of servants and wouldn’t work, she was there just to observe and control. Because she didn’t work the authority to check on the servants fell onto Joseph. The Bible says that the one who doesn’t work shall not be entitled to eat.

Christians that don’t work will not inherit what God has promised. Jesus gave a few cents to His servants. One of the servants said, my master is wicked so I won’t use the money He gave me but I will save it. While doing this the other servants made their money fruitful. When the master came back he was happy to see that his servants had worked and earned more money except one servant. So the master said ok, now give me back what I gave you so I can give it to someone else, and on top of this you will be punished. What was the punishment?

Matthew 25:30 throw that worthless servant outside into the darkness where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

He had to be cast out into the darkness where there is weeping and gnashing of teeth, for this is what the Bible means when talking about hell. A person who won’t work or produce will be thrown out of the house. In the book of Revelation it says that the one who is thrown out will be neither hot nor cold. These are Christians who receive the Word of God and they receive advice but they don’t produce anything from it.

Example: A hen had eggs and had to sit on them for 21 days. A disease killed the hen while it had been sitting on them for 15 days and I found it was a good opportunity to take them, but my mother wanted to throw them away because she said they were rotten. So I ask my mum, how can I make these eggs produce? And she said they need heat. So every morning I would bring them near the fire, my motive wasn’t to bring them to hatch but eat them one by one. After a few days I broke an egg and the smell was rotten, I tried to clean it up but had no success. When my mother came back she asked me what the smell was, she already knew it was the eggs and told me, remember I told you not to keep them. So as a punishment she told me to eat them and then I started crying. This was a lesson.

We can learn that when we have something we are compared to hens laying on eggs, if we don’t stay on the eggs long enough they’ll be destroyed and give off a bad smell. We receive the Word of God that is precious in our hands, but if we don’t stay on this Word by the power (heat) of the Holy Spirit it will be destroyed and be a bad example for the world.

Potiphar’s wife didn’t work; she was there to observe, to judge, and tried to take control but didn’t know how, and that is why Joseph was given full control. How many women are not able to control their houses? How many women aren’t able to control their kitchen? Sometimes their kitchen is the state a man would leave it. When a woman visits a man’s house and sees the kitchen they always say, you need a woman. So why do women say this? Why do you say that his house needs a woman?

If a woman is not lazy she is able to make things better than what a lonesome man can do. As soon as a woman enters the house of a man she will find that things aren’t in order, although men try to make things good, a woman will say this must be here and this must be there and so on.

Joseph was in charge with Potiphar’s house while his wife just sat around, but what if Joseph didn’t have the gift of keeping the house tidy? In Africa you can have servants doing your cleaning, cooking, dusting etc, but often the wife will always do her husband’s washing and the preparation of his meal, so why is this? Because she wants to serve her husband and make things perfect for him. When her husband comes home and he asks who cooked the meal, the wife will say the servant cooked it, then he will say give it to the dogs, but if it was prepared by his wife he will eat it with joy.

In my country whenever the husband doesn’t eat his wife’s cooking there is a big fight and the wife demands him to eat. If he had eaten in a restaurant before coming home the wife would tell him to vomit up the food he ate and eat her food. It is the same thing with our Lord Jesus, He gives everything necessary for us to prepare a meal and He is ready to eat what we have prepared, it means our good deeds, our faith, our love, our joy and everything we know about the fruit of the Spirit. But if He finds out that we haven’t prepared anything or that other servants have prepared for us, He will say, I don’t live in houses made with human hands because the will of man is in this house.

When the husband comes home from work and finds his wife still sleeping what will he think? When we were babies we slept a lot, so aren’t we tired of sleeping? Why aren’t Christians allowed to rest? When Jesus wakes us up we turn on the other side and cover ourselves with the blankets and we go back to sleep. So what do we gain by sleeping a lot? When I (Odon) sleep too much I get headaches but some people can sleep for 14 hours without any problem, so what do you think about sleep? If you sleep a lot you won’t work and we risk becoming lazy.

Spiritual sleep for Christians is when you don’t read the Word or pray. If you don’t read or pray for 2 days it will be hard for you to get back into that mode and you will risk becoming like Potiphar’s wife. She had nothing to do except give opinions on matters, even if a fly was on the wall she would talk about it.

When we face difficult situations as Joseph did, God is always there for us. If our families are sick and God is close to us we have all authority to control the problem, because if God is for us who can be against us? When Joseph was in prison God was with him, even though Joseph was a prisoner himself he was in charge of other inmates and supervised them while they worked.

There were two servants who made a mistake in Potiphar’s house and were thrown into jail, the cupbearer and chief baker. There are two examples in the Bible that Jesus gave us: the bread represented His body and the wine represented His blood. These two servants were in jail with Joseph when they both had dreams, dreams that disturbed them a lot because they didn’t understand the meaning. What did they dream? Read Genesis 40.

Joseph asked the cupbearer not to forget about him and when God gives us a solution we completely forget about God when our problems are solved. We must be careful before making a vow to God, God if you do this for me I’ll praise you, but when it comes to pass we forget to praise him. God waits for His acknowledgement but we don’t do it. It is true that man does forget about his promises, but as brothers and sisters we must help each other. If you promised someone something ask him or her to remind you, and it will help you both spiritually and physically because for God, yes is yes.

We now find the cupbearer working again but the chief baker is hung, why? The wine is represented as Jesus blood, and the cup of Jesus that is grace helps people. Pharaoh always represents the devil and people who are controlled by him, this cup of grace was poured out for them as well. Jesus gives His hand to help them take this cup of grace, and for us Christians who are prisoners of Christ, we must help people drink from this cup.

As Jesus found resurrection after three days we also will find resurrection with the Lord, and our second resurrection will be with Jesus in the air when He comes back. The physical body that we have will be hung and eaten by the birds, and if we put our hope in this body be sure that one day it will be eaten up. When you become older difficult things start happening to your body, diseases are common, your immune system shuts down and your body becomes tired, but if your soul is well prepared you will live forever (spiritually) stronger than ever.

When Pharaoh invited his ministers to have a feast he gave life to the one who served the wine because it represented Jesus blood, but hung the chief baker that represents our flesh. The devil will hang your body and soul if you’re not careful because he doesn’t fear you when you are far from God. How many Christians have been destroyed spiritually? As Christians we must refer to people who lived before us, so how many Christians have lost their faith? Isn’t it a lesson for us? We must open our eyes to see where we are going.

When we give our lives to the devil it is like taking poison, we have more chances of dying then making our lives better because sometimes it is hard to find someone to treat us. However we can go to God and ask God to forgive us, but we destroy the confidence God had in us and to rebuild this trust we need lots of time and practice. So we must make all the effort to walk together with God and not to give the devil any room. Read Ephesians 4:27

Do not give the devil a foothold
Do not give the devil an opportunity. God will not protect the devil; God won’t tell the devil not to touch Oscar because God gave us the power not to give him any room, all we have to do is decide what we want. If Kelly wants to speak to Odon about the truth, it is her decision to tell lies or the truth because we don’t know what is in her heart, so the last decision belongs to her. That is what happens with the devil, he only presents ideas to us but it is up to us to decide what to do with these ideals. The body cannot do what the heart doesn’t allow it to do. When you fast and pray and food is around you, tell your body to be quiet because we must be masters of ourselves first and then we will be able to help others. We must not live as Potiphar’s wife, we must not be like the servant who received from Joseph but forgot to acknowledge him, and we must not live like the chief baker who had to be hung. We must behave like Joseph who lived with God all the time and God will lift us up. Pray for those who don’t come to the meetings anymore, pray that God will meet them as Joseph met the two prisoners that God might reveal to them their spiritual situation to see if they have life or death. Amen

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