19So it was, when his master heard the words which his wife spoke to him, saying, “Your servant did to me after this manner,” that his anger was aroused. 20Then Joseph’s master took him and put him into the prison, a place where the king’s prisoners were confined. And he was there in the prison. 21But the Lord was with Joseph and showed him mercy, and He gave him favor in the sight of the keeper of the prison. 22And the keeper of the prison committed to Joseph’s hand all the prisoners who were in the prison; whatever they did there, it was his doing. 23The keeper of the prison did not look into anything that was under Joseph’s authority, because the Lord was with him; and whatever he did, the Lord made it prosper.
This week we have found that each and every person is born with a purpose from God. We call this purpose destiny. We understanding that it is God who brings this destiny to pass in our lives as we follow him and do his will. We are studying this force at work in the life of Joseph the son of Jacob.
God had shown Joseph his destiny in dream, but the 17 year old did not understand nor handle this knowledge well. He angered his brothers and they threw him into a pit. In that pit he had no options but one. He had to trust that God would do something to get him out. God did get him out. Unfortunately it was to be sold into slavery.
Joseph was taken to the home of a captain in the king’s guard named Potiphar. In Potiphar’s house Joseph did not complain about what he could not control. Instead he applied himself and became head of the household in all but name. God was with him and blessed him.
None of what has happened to Joseph to this point in the story seems like it was bringing him to his Godly destiny. In reality everything that happened to him was by the hand of God. To fulfill his destiny he had to be in Egypt. He was now in Egypt. To fulfill his destiny he had to know how to manage resources. He was learning that in Potiphar’s house. Now another step in his destiny is coming to pass.
When Potiphar was away on a trip, his wife decides to seduce the handsome young slave. He refuses citing his loyalty to her husband and God. She takes his garment as he leaves her and she accuses him of trying to seduce her. Potiphar believes his wife and Joseph is thrown into prison. It would seem that no matter what Joseph does things go wrong for him. Or do they?
He was arrogant toward his brothers and they threw him into the pit. Now he is faithful and loyal and he is wrongly accused and sent to prison with no indication of trial or sentence. However we have already seen that the pit lead him to Egypt. He had to be in Egypt. Slavery led him to Potiphar’s house where he began to learn administration. He had to know that. But how could prison be the plan of God.
It is important to note something here. Potiphar was a captain of the king’s guard. Look at verse 20. Joseph was going to where the king’s prisoners were held. This is significant. Destiny is once again at work in his life.
In the prison Joseph chooses to look past the disappointment and apply himself to what he has control over. He cannot get out of prison. That is out of his control. He can put to work what he learned at Potiphar’s house. Soon he is in charge of all the prisoners and the warden doesn’t even check into what has placed under Joseph’s authority. This is very interesting.
Before long we see the hand of Destiny at work again. Two new prisoners are sent to the king’s prison. Joseph is in charge of the prisoners. If any of them has a problem they come to Joseph not the warden. If Joseph had come to Egypt as a free man he would never have been in Potiphar’s house. If he had been in someone else’s house and was thrown into prison he would not have been sent to the king’s prison. If he had not been in the king’s prison he would not have met these two men.
Destiny saw to it that he was right where he needed to be at precisely the right time. It could not have seemed like Destiny at work when Joseph was falsely accused and rewarded for his integrity with prison. However it was. He had to meet these two men. One was the king’s cup bearer, the one who oversaw his wine. The other was the king’s baker. The one who oversaw the king’s bread.
One day he notices they are troubled. He asks why and he finds out they have each had a dream. Joseph began this journey as an arrogant dreamer. However much has happened to him in the years since then. He is not longer the person he was. Destiny has been working on him as well as his circumstances. He is about to become an interpreter of dreams instead of the dreamer. This is very important.
Tomorrow we will continue the story, but let me encourage you today. Destiny is at work in your life as well. His name is the Lord Jesus Christ. Trust that he is leading you where you need to go. Many things happen to us and we can’t imagine how they can work for us, but they will if we trust God. Many of them are the hand of Destiny molding us into the people we need to be to fulfill the purpose of God. Other things are maneuvering us into position so we can be in the right place at the right time.
Some things may simply be our own bad choices or the attacks of the enemy. Trust in God. Trust in his destiny for your life. If God is working for you, who can ever be successful against you. The only one that can keep you from the destiny God has for your life is you. Yield to God even when you don’t understand.
Remember all the things that Joseph went through. Some of it was difficult, but in it all God was with him and blessed him. In the end Destiny was moving and shaping Joseph to fulfill something wonderful. He is doing the same in your life.