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Stand Alone!
Christian Devotional by Pastor Cecil Thompson


Pastor
Cecil Thompson

Genesis 43:32

"They served him by himself, the brothers by themselves, and the Egyptians who ate with him by themselves, because Egyptians could not eat with Hebrews, for that is detestable to Egyptians"

The pronoun "him" appears twice in this verse. I have taken the liberty of underlining it to allow it to stand out better. In the past year or so, I have been committed to identify who the pronouns in Scripture apply to. In this case, it is Joseph. In our time together today I would like for us to focus our attention on "Standing Alone!"

The concept of solitary confinement is especially harsh and punitive. The threat of being alone for extended periods of time has been one of the tools used by prisons to assure good behavior. Prisoners of war have reported that they were held in solitary confinement for years. They recall this as being one of the harshest forms of punishment, even worse than the beatings they sometimes received.

Now, think about Joseph. As I contemplate the life of Joseph, I see a man that stood alone for most of his life, certainly for the years from childhood to middle age at least. As a boy he was the favored son of his father, Jacob, and was held at a distance by his brothers. Their jealousy was so great that they considered killing him, but decided instead to sell him into slavery so they would not have his blood on their hands.

In Egypt, I am certain that Joseph spent many years alone as he matured and learned the Egyptian language. He had been purchased by Potiphar, who was the Captain of the Guard in the service of Pharaoh. There were other slaves and servants, but since he was known to be a Hebrew, he would have been treated with contempt. Look again at the last phrase of today's Scripture; "- - - Egyptians could not eat with Hebrews, for that is detestable to Egyptians."

It would have been easy for Joseph to become bitter. Instead he became better. The object of his attention was not the circumstances that surrounded him, but the God he served. His devotion to God was his aim and goal. Achieving status in Potiphar's house was not his goal - pleasing the Lord was his goal!

Let me ask you a very personal question. When was the last time you stood alone because of your faith in Jesus Christ? Is the cross of Christ so dear to you that you will stand alone when the Holy Spirit places convictions upon your heart? Are you willing to spend years, if necessary, to be the only believer in a sea of unbelief?

It must have crushed Joseph's heart that his brothers could even think he would cause them harm. His heart was pure before God. I think that this was to a large degree because of his time "standing alone."

His words to his brothers are to be found in Genesis 50:19: “But Joseph said to them, 'Don't be afraid. Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.'" I pray that we will be willing to stand alone and allow the Lord to use us as He sees fit.

Blessings dear hearts. Draw near to God today, trust Him completely and be a blessing!

--- Pastor Cecil

 

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