To be used by God

Summary of sermon by Detlef Stegen, 3 May 2015

Gen 37:1-11

How terrible if you get stuck in the wilderness and do not enter the Promised Land. Maybe you want Christ, but under your own conditions. Some come to Christ but they want to make the conditions. But God’s thoughts are far above your thoughts. He wants to mould you into something useful, into His image.

Watch lest you become a Cain, sent away from God’s presence, because you refuse God’s warnings.

God’s punishments is meant to correct us and restore our fellowship with Him. When you are corrected, don’t resent it but renew your fellowship with God; when you accept God’s corrections and allow God to teach you, then when you’re 50 or 60 you will start to understand God’s purpose with your life. God had a plan and purpose for Joseph, and he understood it when he looked back on his life.

Don’t you want to live in the land of promise, being at God’s disposal to do His will and be used by Him? David was just a shepherd boy, but he was faithful there and God raised him up.

Are your brothers and parents happy with your life? Maybe you’re the youngest but the one that give the most problems? It was not so with Joseph.

When you are corrected and you gladly accept the correction your Father will love you. Don’t be influenced by those who say you have a hard Father. Build your life on the truth of God’s Word. There’s only one hope for us to run to the Cross and turn to Christ who can transform our lives. Then even a spoilt life will be blessed.

Jacob made Joseph a multi-coloured robe. It was different to what the other brothers had. Joseph was clothed in royalty. Jesus wants to clothe you in royalty. Do you accept it? Others will notice how you’re chosen by God. Jesus wants to use your life to reach the outermost parts of the world.

Joseph’s brothers were jealous. Why must we be jealous when our brother is blessed? We should rejoice at the blessings of others. Thank God for those that are blessed and are teaching you the right way to go. Don’t be an instrument in satan’s hand and a hindrance in God’s work. If you bless those whom God blesses you will also become an instrument of blessing.

Those who take part in the Olympics train hard, getting rid of everything and anything that would hinder them to win the race.

Maybe you don’t receive any blessing from God because of your jealousy. He won’t bless you until you turn to Him again and restore your fellowship with Him. Seek Him first and He will direct your paths.

But Joseph’s brothers simply designed plans to get rid of Joseph because of their jealousy.

Joseph dreamed, and he told his dream to his brothers, that their sheaves bow to his sheave. They interpreted his dream that he wanted to rule over them. You cannot push God’s truth from your life. You will only hurt yourself. Joseph also brought the bad report of his brothers to their father. It was because they did evil that they resented the report.

When a report is brought about your life, what report will it be? One day there will also be a report on your life from heaven. What will it be? That report can only be altered and erased when you come to the Cross.

Can you keep a spiritual secret? When Joseph dreamed his second dream that the sun, moon and 11 stars bowed before him, his father rebuked him, but he kept it in his heart. And he remembered it again when he and his whole family were nourished by Joseph as the ruler of Egypt and provided for them!

When your heart is still tender at a young age, turn to Christ. Don’t wait until your heart is hardened. Then you will learn the secret of giving instead of wanting to receive, of serving instead of being served etc. Seek to please Christ from a young age, love to live in His presence, love to wait on His promises. Then you will find true life!

God wants you to fill the gap which are left by others, to help and to serve. Broaden your vision to hear what He wants from you. You are here on Sundays to meet with Jesus, that He fills your life, and that you can be a blessing throughout the week that follows. But then you must be in the land of the Lord Jesus. Don’t be stranger, living far from the presence of God. That great God who was with Joseph wants to be with you too.

(Dietmar Joosten added: Who was their mother? Rachel couldn’t have children and was despised. But her great difficulties refined her and brought forth great blessings. Don’t run away from difficulties but let God refine you. Be like Joseph to stand. Don’t be influenced but serve the Lord with all your heart. In this land God has given us, this Gospel, it won’t always be easy, but there’s great blessings. Joseph must have had a blessed mother who could teach her children in such a way. And if you haven’t been a Joseph, God specializes to transform that which is despised and rejected into something special and useful. May this life be seen in us.)