January 13 Today’s Reading: Genesis 38-40
“Joseph was brought down to Egypt.”
We saw Joseph as a type of Christ yesterday. As Joseph was brought down to Egypt to save his people, so the Son of God, our Lord Jesus Christ, was brought down to this earth as a man to save his people. In Genesis 39 the Holy Spirit continues with the history of this eminent type of our Savior, giving us several more typical aspects of his life.
Joseph was made a servant (Genesis 39:1). He who was the beloved son of his father’s house was brought down to Egypt as a lowly servant. Here Joseph portrays Jehovah’s righteous Servant, the Lord Jesus Christ (Isaiah 42:1-4; Exodus 21:5-6; Isaiah 50:5-7; Psalm 40:6-10; Hebrews 10:5-14; Philippians 2:5-11). The Lord Jesus Christ voluntarily became his Father’s Servant to redeem and save his people (Isaiah 50:5-7). He is that One to whom the law of God referred in Exodus 21:5-6. The bond slave who refused his freedom because he loved his master, his wife, and his children was typical of our Savior. In the covenant of grace, before the world began, the Son of God voluntarily made himself his Father’s Servant, because he loved his Father, and his chosen family.
It was in this capacity that he spoke in Psalms 40:5-10. Hebrews 10:5-14 explains that the words of our Lord in Psalm 40 referred to his obedience unto death as our Substitute, by which the Lord of glory obtained the everlasting salvation of his chosen. Our great Savior came into the world in the fullness of time to fulfill his covenant engagements as Jehovah’s Servant. And when he had fulfilled those covenant engagements, his people were redeemed, sanctified, and perfected forever by his finished work. This is the basis of our Lord’s exaltation and glory, the means by which he obtained the monarchy of the universe as the God-man, our Mediator (Psalm 2:8; John 17:1-5; Romans 14:9; Philippians 2:5-11).
God with Him
“The Lord was with Joseph” (Genesis 39:2). Behold, a greater than Joseph is here. Our Lord Jesus Christ is that man who is himself God almighty, Immanuel, the incarnate God, one with the Father, full of grace and truth (John 1:1-3, 10-11, 14, 16-17). Not only was God with him and he with God, the incarnate Christ is God with us.
“The Lord made all that he did to prosper in his hand” (Genesis 39:3). Again, Joseph portrayed and typified our Lord Jesus Christ. Christ, as Jehovah’s Servant is that truly blessed Man, — that Man who walked not in the counsel of the ungodly, — that Man who stood not in the way of sinners, — that Man who sat not in the seat of the scornful, — that Man whose delight was in the law of the Lord. What does the Lord God tell us about that blessed Man? — “Whatsoever he doeth shall prosper…And the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hand.”
A Trusted Servant
Potiphar trusted Joseph with everything he had and put everything into his hands (Genesis 39:4). Our Savior is that Servant whom the Father has trusted with everything, into whose hands he has put everything he has. The Father trusted the Son as his Servant, putting his glory, his people, the world, and all things in it into his hands (Ephesians 1:12; John 17:2).
“The Lord blessed the Egyptian’s house for Joseph’s sake” (Genesis 39:5). Egypt was altogether insignificant, except for the fact that Joseph was there, his people must sojourn there, and redemption must be accomplished there. Therefore, for Joseph’s sake, God blessed the Egyptians in providence. So, too, this world, all its nations and all its people, are altogether insignificant, except for the fact that Christ has his people here. Here redemption and grace must be performed. Therefore, God blesses the world and preserves it for Christ’s sake (Isaiah 65:8-9; 2 Peter 3:9); but his object is the salvation of his people. He does not hesitate to sacrifice men and nations for the people of his love (Isaiah 43:3-4).
A Faithful Servant
Joseph was a faithful servant. When he was tempted to sin, Joseph proved himself a faithful man, true to his master in all things (Genesis 39:6-12). The Lord Jesus Christ, our Savior, the Son of God, was tempted in all points like as we are, yet without sin. He who was made to be sin for us, that we might be made the righteousness of God in him, knew no sin. He was holy, harmless, undefiled, and separate from sinners.
A Slandered Servant
Joseph was falsely accused of evil (Genesis 39:16-18). Joseph was accused of crimes he did not commit. When the chief priests, elders, and all the Jewish council did their best to find some charge against our Savior, they found none. At last, they hired two false witnesses to perjure themselves by bringing false charges against him, and accused the Lamb of God of insurrection (Matthew 26:59-61).
Numbered with Transgressors
Joseph was numbered with transgressors (Genesis 39:19-23). It is obvious that Potiphar did not believe his wife’s accusations. Had he believed her, he would probably have had Joseph executed for attempting to rape his wife. Yet, to save face before men, he delivered Joseph to prison. That is exactly what happened in the case of our Lord Jesus Christ. Pilate knew that our Master was totally innocent of the charges trumped up against him. He knew that the Jews wanted him crucified simply because of their spiteful envy. Yet, to save face with men, he delivered the Son of God over to the hands of the soldiers to crucify him as a common criminal. Not only was our Lord Jesus Christ numbered with transgressors, he died in the transgressors’ place, as our Substitute (Isaiah 53:7-12).
Our reading today has been more lengthy than normal. I trust every word has been blessed of God, to set our hearts upon our great Savior, to love, adore, and praise him. In all these things, Joseph was a type of our Savior, the Man whom the Lord God sent to save us, whom he has made Lord of his house and Ruler of all his Substance. “He sent a man before them, even Joseph, who was sold for a servant: Whose feet they hurt with fetters: he was laid in iron: Until the time that his word came: the word of the LORD tried him. The king sent and loosed him; even the ruler of the people, and let him go free. He made him lord of his house, and ruler of all his substance” (Psalm 105:17-21).
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