By TIMOTHY L. MELTON, PASTOR
(Transcribed by Myra D. Colgate)
Cherokee Pentecostal Holiness Church
Read Genesis 50; Acts 13:32-46
The Old Testament has taught many of us that God was actually introducing us to His Plan from the very beginning in the book of Genesis. Joseph was given to us, to everyone, Jews and Gentiles alike, as an example of how much God cares for mankind. He began to show all of us God’s way of rescuing mankind.
With Joseph, He was making a Way where there was no visible way for any of us, as Joseph was to be a type of mankind’s redeemer, sent first to the Jews. They were then to go to the rest of the nations and tell them, what they had learned from what Joseph did for his whole family and tribes and for the rest of the surviving world. Joseph understood his mission, evidenced by what he did for each of them and everyone else going through that awful famine.
Joseph forgave all of his family and showed them his forgiveness by how he cared for them and for the whole world of that day. Joseph told them of God’s way. By what they had meant for evil, God was able to still bring much good to pass. Through what happened to Joseph. What Joseph had demonstrated, in spite of all that they did to him, in providing for and saving them all from famine, was the Way God was showing everyone, if they would only see it. There was no other way to be offered them unless they received it and ate of God, through Joseph had provided them.
They obviously could not have refused so great a provision, and so, they did receive it—possibly not quite wholeheartedly. Knowing within themselves, what they had done wrong, it was something that none of them could really see for themselves, yet. They were still being blinded by their own sinfulness, unable to really enjoy their reunion. Joseph had wept over their not really understanding God’s total plan, that it was enough for their acceptance of God’s providing a win/win situation, God’s Plan. (Gen. 50:14-26.). Imagine how God must have felt.
All they had to do was accept it as such, a gift, and move forward, enjoying all of what they were to receive. That is always the price one pays whenever one sins—it steals one’s full enjoyment of the rest of their lives, if they allow it. Receive God’s provision and forget the sinning, by promising never to do so again—if one can choose to do so. Looking forward, will show them how much better choosing God’s Plan and provision, can really be, especially without sinning having gotten in between.
It is always best to walk with the God, Who loves you forever and always. He chooses to offer it, because He is Good. He can help one be good, too, in making the right choices from now on, which is the best way.
“And now we are here to bring you this Good News,” (proclaimed Paul and Barnabas in Acts 13:32 NLT.)
Through Jesus’ death and resurrection, the fulfillment of God’s provision had come. The disciple, Luke wrote in Acts 13 of the fulfilling of the promise, made to the Jewish ancestors, which also had told them of a redeemer.
Spoken of prophetically in Psalm 2, it was considered to be about their coming Messiah, “You are my Son. Today I have become your Father. For God had promised to raise him from the dead, not leaving him to ‘rot in the grave.’”
Paul and Barnabas, after Jesus’ own resurrection from the dead, proclaimed, that through Jesus there is now forgiveness for sins, for Jews and for the Gentile nations alike. “Everyone who believes in him is made right in God’s sight—something the law of Moses could never do.” (Acts 13:39 NLT).
Luke writes that the real reason for Jewish hostility there at the time, was because they were jealous, so, they slandered Paul and Barnabas, arguing against whatever they were saying. God had planned for Israel to be this light (See Isaiah 49:6). Through Israel had come Jesus, the light of/for all nations according to (Luke 2:32).
This was a disturbing truth to Jewish leaders there, and, they turned away and refused to even listen. When God’s Holy Spirit points out needed changes in our lives we must listen to Him. When faithfully presented by a believer, to Jews or Gentiles, all should understand, God holds only the hearer as responsible (for their decision.)