John Hagee - Joseph and Jesus
Turn to Genesis 37:2, as today we begin a new and exciting series of sermons titled "Joseph's Journey: From The Pit To The Palace". Joseph's journey is your journey. In every one of these sermons, you are going to find yourself. What he experienced going from the pit to the palace, you are going to experience some time in your life. You will encounter rejection, betrayal, false accusations, sexual temptation, bitterness, resentment. You will also discover the favor of God and the path to God's unlimited prosperity. In this sermon series, I'm going to show you how to move beyond your crisis to your divine destiny. I want you to hear what I'm about to say. You can only conquer your past by focusing on your future. Don't let the mistakes of yesterday control the destiny of today. You must move beyond your heartaches to achieve your impossible dream. You must move beyond bitterness to receive the favor of God. You must move beyond your accusers to move from the pit to the palace.
Read with me the text of the morning in Genesis 37:2. Ready? "This is the history of Jacob. Joseph, being seventeen years of age was feeding the flock with his brothers. And the lad was the sons of Bilhah, the sons of Zilpah, his father's wives: and Joseph brought a bad report of them to his father". Little brother went to daddy and told daddy that his other brothers had misbehaved, not a good way to have brotherly unity in the house. "Now Israel," that would be Jacob. "Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age. And he made him a tunic of many colors. And when his brothers saw that their father loved him more than all his brothers, they hated him and could not speak peaceably to him". When all eleven of your brothers hate you, you've got a family problem. Let's pray.
Father, God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob: the God who calls the stars by name and holds the seven seas in the palms of his hand, lead us in paths of righteousness today: that our steps may be ordered of the Lord: and that we will dream and achieve the impossible dream. In your name, we pray and ask these things. Amen.
You may be seated. The story of Joseph's life proves that you can know what's going to happen in the future by knowing what has happened in the past. The Old Testament is God's will concealed. The New Testament is God's will revealed. There's nothing that's in the New Testament that does not have its roots in the Old Testament. There are 106 exact Bible comparisons of the lives of Joseph and Jesus. Let's examine the past to discover the future. First, consider the Bible fact that both Joseph and Jesus were shepherds. Joseph was a shepherd, as Genesis 37:2 states. Jesus was the good shepherd. He said, "My sheep know my voice". Listen. The ability of the shepherd determines the quality of life of the sheep. Who are you following?
David captures the portrait of Jesus Christ in the 23rd Psalm. "The Lord is my shepherd: I shall not want". So the first question is, "Is Jesus Christ your shepherd"? And if he's not, who are you following? There are only two choices: Jesus, the light of the world: and Satan, the prince of darkness. You are either a servant of Jesus Christ or a slave to sin and Satan. There is no middle ground. Joseph and Jesus were both Saviors. The Hebrew word for Jesus is. "Yeshua," which means salvation. Jesus saved the world from sin and Satan. And oh, what a wonderful Savior he is. Joseph physically saved the Egyptians and the Jewish people from starvation by his supernatural gift to interpret Pharaoh's dream of seven years of abundance of wheat, minus seven years of famine, because that famine drove the Jewish people into Egypt.
You've got to get this thought in your mind. This whole melodrama is about the Jewish people. Why? Because Egypt is the strongest nation on the face of the earth. God has a group of 70 people living here under Jacob. He needs to make them a nation. He needs to bring them in an environment where they can develop. And so he gets this boy, Joseph. And through his marvelous grace, brings him into Egypt. And at the end of the story, he's the second most powerful man in the world. Why? So these 70 people can grow to produce the prophets, can grow to produce Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ could die on the cross for your redemption. That's what this is about! Give the Lord praise in the house!
Jesus spiritually saved the world by the shedding of his precious blood on the battlefield of Calvary. The Bible says, "Without the shedding of blood, there is no remission of sin". We have victory over the world, the flesh, and the devil. Thank you, Lord, for the power of Jesus' name, the power of the blood, and the power of the Word of God. Give him praise in this house. Joseph had a coat of many colors that was, according to the Old Testament, fit for royalty. Jesus had a seamless robe, because he was royalty. He was and he is King of kings and Lord of lords. He is the Prince of Peace. He is Emmanuel, God with us, the hope of glory. Joseph's coat was soaked in the blood of animals by his brothers to prove to their father, Jacob, that Joseph was dead. Jesus had a robe soaked in his precious blood at the cross to bring forgiveness of sin and eternal life to all who would believe. What can wash away my sin? Nothing but the blood of Jesus. What can make me whole again? Nothing but the blood of Jesus. Oh precious is the flow that makes me white as snow. No other fount I know, nothing, nothing, nothing but the blood of Jesus! Give him praise in this house!
Joseph was sent by his father to his brothers in the field with bread. Jesus was sent by God the Father to this earth as the bread of life. John 6:48 says, "I am the bread of life". Say that with me. "I am the bread of life". "Anyone who eats of this bread shall live forever". This is the bread of life. This is the bread of life. Read this. Obey this. Prosper in knowing this. Quit listening to the fake news and start reading this good news. This is the answer for America. This is the answer for Christianity. This is the answer for the world. Hallelujah for the Word of God!
Joseph was rejected by his brothers in the field when he arrived. Jesus was rejected by his people. The Bible says, "Jesus came into his own, and his own received him not". Joseph was sold into slavery by his brothers to the Ishmaelites for the price of a slave. Jesus was sold by Judas to the Roman Empire for 30 pieces of silver, which was the price of a slave. Joseph was sold a second time to Potiphar, the head of security for Pharaoh. Potiphar had a desperate housewife. Whew. She wanted to have a sexual relationship with beautiful Joseph. "Come lay with me". I mean, how suggestive can you get? When Joseph refused, she screamed, "Rape"! And Joseph was sent to prison. Listen. He came out of prison on a day certain to stand before Pharaoh, the most powerful man on the face of the earth. Jesus Christ, the Son of God was in the prison of the grave. And on a certain day, the third day, he came out to stand at the right hand of God Almighty, the most powerful force in the universe.
There's power in his name. There's power in his blood. There's power in his word. There's power, wonder-working power. Joseph took a gentile bride given to him by Pharaoh. Jesus was given a gentile bride at the cross. It was the New Testament church. It was you, and you, and you, and i. At the cross, Jesus took our sin and gave us total forgiveness. He took our poverty and gave us the wealth of Abraham. And let me tell you something. Abraham was a very wealthy guy. He took our rejection and made us sons and daughters. He made us royalty. Listen. Listen to what Paul says about us as gentiles. "We were outside the covenants of Israel, without God, without hope," of all men most miserable. And on the battlefield of Calvary, Jesus came and went to war for you and you and you. And he paid the price for our redemption. We are now royalty. We are sons and daughters of the Most High God. The royal blood of heaven is flowing through your veins. Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah for the goodness of the cross!
Consider Joseph's family reunion. After seven years of abundance, the silos of Egypt are bulging with wheat. Then came the worldwide famine. You need to know that that worldwide famine affected other nations. Joseph's brothers came into Egypt, not once, but twice searching for food. When they were brought to stand before Pharaoh, they did not recognize Joseph. Why? Because he was dressed in the royal attire. Secondly, he spoke to his brothers through an interpreter. The last time they saw him, he was a terrified 17-year-old. Now he's a 30-year-old man. He's the second most powerful man on the face of the earth. How could this possibly be Joseph? Listen closely. On the second time into the land, Joseph decided to reveal himself to his brothers. Joseph was on the verge of tears, wanting to hold them and to express his love for them. The answer is, before Joseph revealed himself to his brothers, he sent the gentiles out of the house. Why? Because nothing in the Bible is there accidentally. Why? Because it's the message that God is going to take the gentiles out of the earth before he reveals himself to the Jewish people.
Well, that will happen before Jesus reveals himself. Jesus will reveal himself as Messiah to the Jewish people at the second coming in Jerusalem, which is seven years after the rapture. Let me stop right there. I asked the rabbi: I said, "Look: these brothers, they come in, they look at this guy on the stage. He says, 'I'm Joseph'. I would have said, 'prove it'. How can you prove it"? Rabbi said, "That's easy. Egyptians did not circumcise their sons. Jews circumcised their sons. He proved it through his circumcision. He proved who he was by the scars in his body". How is Jesus going to prove he is the Messiah? When they see the scars in his side he received at the cross, they will see him as the Messiah, their king, and their redeemer. Hallelujah to the Lamb of God.
What did Joseph's brothers do? They wept. What are the Jewish people going to do? They're going to weep for days, as a nation, that they failed to see the identity of Messiah. What did Joseph's brothers do? When Joseph confessed, "I am Joseph," he proved who he was, and they fell on his neck. In Genesis 45:15, it says, "He kissed all of his brothers and he wept upon them". The story of Joseph dramatically illustrates how the hand of God orchestrates every detail of a Christian's life. I want you to listen to this very quickly. How many times have you heard someone say, when someone was going through a difficult time, "Well, we know that all things work together for the good of them who are called according to the purposes of God, and da, da, da, da"?
Many of you've heard that. Listen to how God orchestrated the life of Joseph. The morning that Joseph was sent by his father to his brothers, his coat of many colors flashing in the morning sun, his brothers saw him afar off. And the text that I have read said, "And they hated him". One of them, standing near the campfire, saw something moving, shimmering in the morning. It was the coat of many colors. And his brothers said, "Behold, the dreamer comes... Let us slay him, and cast him into the pit... And let's see what becomes of his dreams". And when they had cast him into the pit, the hard-hearted brothers sat down to eat, as if nothing had happened. And Reuben, who wanted to save Joseph, went off to take care of his own sheep. But while Reuben was absent, the caravan of Ishmaelites came into sight. And Judah said, "Let's sell him".
Joseph was sold to the Ishmaelites. Listen. The caravan was hardly out of sight before Reuben returned only to find that Joseph was gone. If Reuben had come back a half hour sooner, or if the caravan had come one half hour later, you would never have heard of Joseph. If the caravan had been bound northward instead of south going toward Egypt, Joseph would not have been carried down to Egypt, and world history would have been forgotten. Or if Joseph had been sold into Egypt as a slave to anyone other than Potiphar's house (Potiphar was an officer in Pharaoh's household) you would never have heard of Joseph. Or if Joseph was assigned to work in the fields when he got to Potiphar's house. But he was made master of all of Potiphar's affairs, and he worked in the house. He had to be in the house so his hot-blooded wife could see this beautiful boy. That was all orchestrated of God.
Hmmm. That's quite a story. Or again, if he had been cast into prison a month earlier or a month later, he would not have met the chief butler whose dream he interpreted, because it was the chief butler that told Pharaoh, "Hey, there's a Jewish boy over in the jailhouse that can interpret your dream". Boom! God did all of those things to get him into the presence of Pharaoh. When Joseph looked back on all of that melodrama that had happened since he was 17 years of age, he looked at his brothers, and said, "You did not send me here, but God put me here". The next time you feel like you're in a bottomless pit, just recognize that you are God's anointed. And while you may not see where you're going, God is leading you to a destiny that's greater than anything than you can possibly imagine. Don't give up on your dream! God is moving people around to bless you beyond measure! Give the Lord praise in the house!
When your brothers rip the coat of many colors off your back, you say, "Where is God"? When they throw you in the pit in this dark, depressing situation, and your brothers are talking about killing you. Brother, where is God? When they drag you out of the pit and sell you into slavery, where is God? When you're sold a second time and the desperate housewife gets you sent to prison, where is God? And when you are forgotten by the chief butler, and you are totally forsaken, totally alone, where is God? Let me tell you where God is. The unseen hand of God is leading you toward the palace. Yes, you're in the pit today. But God is leading you to the palace tomorrow. He's leading you to the premise for which he sent you.
Listen. It's not what you're going through: it's what you're going to that matters. Remember, in the darkest day you live, your destiny is not the pit you're in. It's the palace God has promised. Your destiny is in the hands of God, not your accusers. Your destiny is not controlled by men who will forget you. It's in the hands of a God who will never leave you, nor forsake you even to the ends of the earth.
When you're in the pit, lift your voice and say, "This is not my destiny". When the skies are dark, lift your voice and say, "This is not my destiny". When your dreams are shattered, "This is not my destiny". When your business goes bust, lift your voice and shout, "This is not my destiny". When your marriage disintegrates, lift your voice and say, "This is not our destiny". When your health fails, lift your voice and shout, "This is not my destiny". Hello, America! Releasing criminals and producing a national crime wave is not our destiny. Open the borders, is not our destiny. Socialism is not our destiny. Our destiny is one nation under God with life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness! Give the Lord praise in the house!
The story of Joseph's journey begins in Genesis 37 when Joseph was 17. Why did the Bible record that fact? Because every word in the Bible text has a divine reason. Why did God make an issue that this boy was 17? Because God is always looking for a teenager that has a dream.
I preached my first sermon when I was 17 years of age. Joseph was 17 when he began his journey through the pit, through sexual harassment, the hell of slander. David was 17 when he dipped his hand in the rippling waters of the brook, looking for five smooth stones to fight Goliath. I've heard pastors preach that there were four stones. Just in case he missed with this one, he could try again. Wrong. Goliath had four brothers. He intended to kill all of them, if necessary to get the victory. Teenagers who are here and those of you that are watching, this book says you are the greatest generation. You are America's future. I want you to dream the impossible dream, and then believe God that you can get it done, because he can use you to change the world. God bless you, as you bless America.
Notice that Joseph had two names. When he was born, he was called Joseph. And then he was given a name by Pharaoh. That was Zaphnathpaaneah, and that means "The revealer of secrets", the revealer of secrets. Jesus has a new name. Jesus has a new name. It is the revealer of secrets. Saint Paul writes in Romans 2, "In the Day of Judgment, when God will judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel". The revealer of secrets is coming. Here's what it means: to the righteous, Jesus, the revealer of secrets, will tell you, mom, why your darling child died in the bloom of youth. It's something that only God can answer, but the revealer of secrets will bring it to you. Jesus, the revealer of secrets, will tell you, father, why tragedy struck your family like job while you were living a godly life.
There are things that have happened to you, that are happening to you, and will happen to you that you will never understand in this life. But there's going to come a day when you can stand before the revealer of secrets, and he'll explain it all to you in his providential grace. You'll ask the reasons. He'll tell you why. But to the ungodly, listen up. The revealer of secrets is coming. Every liar is going to be caught and exposed. Every person living in adultery will be exposed. You will be sent to the Chambers of hell. Every gossip will be publicly shamed. Every murderer will be exposed. Every corrupt judge, who allowed justice to be corrupted by bribes, every politician who prostituted himself for political gain will be exposed and stripped naked by the revealer of secrets.
Every church member who sat in church and heard the gospel, your secret sin will be exposed. The solution is to confess your sin. God will forgive it and forget it. Listen. If you try to bluff your way into heaven, you are going to walk in the fires of hell forever, because God has made it possible for you to go to heaven through the blood of his son. And for you to ignore that, he will never allow you one moment inside the gates of heaven. I challenge you today to get ready: for the revealer of secrets is coming soon. Are you ready for the coming of Jesus Christ?