“Then Joseph said to Pharaoh, “The dreams of Pharaoh are one; God has revealed to Pharaoh what he is about to do.” Genesis 41:25 ESV
Through the Bible: Genesis 41-43
Have you ever wondered, while reading the Joseph account, what Moses thought about all this?
Moses wrote Genesis; which means he wrote this knowing that Egypt, which God delivered from famine through Joseph, will one day enslave his people for 400 years.
I wonder if, when Moses was writing down the story of Joseph rising so high in Egypt, he ever asked, “God, couldn’t Joseph have just stayed in Canaan, and warned his own people about the coming famine?”
“Couldn’t You have just bypassed the whole ‘400 years of bondage’ thing; and the ‘40 years of wandering in the wilderness before getting to the Promised Land’ thing; and worked it out so that Israel never had to leave Canaan in the first place?”
God could have done that, sure. But if He had, we never would have had the picture of God’s redemption of His people out of bondage. We never would have had the picture of God always preserving a remnant of His people. We would never have learned to trust God’s timing, because we never would have had to.
And we wouldn’t have had the fulfillment of God’s promise to Abraham. God told Abraham that all nations would be blessed through Abraham’s offspring (Genesis 12:2-3). And now, in 41:57:
“Moreover, all the earth came to Egypt to Joseph to buy grain, because the famine was severe over all the earth.”
Genesis 41:57 ESV*
*File this away for later: many prophecies have multiple layers of fulfillment. There can be an immediate fulfillment, a near future fulfillment, and an ultimate fulfillment. The ultimate fulfillment of God’s promise to Abraham is, of course, Jesus. But here we see an intermediate fulfillment in Joseph.
I am not a musician by any stretch, but I’ve been in marching band rehearsals where the conductor would say, “Okay, just the woodwinds,” or “I want to hear the percussion on this section.” And when you take any one part of the band in isolation from the others, it doesn’t sound right. But when all the parts come together, you hear the symphony. You recognize the intent of the composer. And you say, “Oh… NOW I get it.”
God’s plan is a sovereign symphony. Wait for all the parts to come together.
Lord, today, don’t let me question Your sovereign timeline. Whether it is the thirteen years of Joseph’s slavery or the seven years of famine or the 400 years of Israel’s bondage let me trust you.
Whether it is three months of lockdown, or three years of pandemic, or a four year presidential term, let me trust you. Your timing is perfect. Your plan is magnificent, and your sovereignty is undisputed.
Allow me to appreciate all the instruments in Your sovereign symphony.