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WOFCF Bible Explosion - 2/8/17


                                                                                                                          Feb 8, 2017

                                                                                                                                                                WOFCF Bible Explosion

 

Dealing with Adversity Series (Lessons from Joseph)    

(Gen 50:20) “But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.”

 

There are many lessons that can be learned from looking at the lives of various biblical characters. Let’s look again and learn a lesson of how to deal with adversity. When we think of a biblical character that was faced with adversity, we often think of Job. He definitely was hit with much adversity, but for our study tonight, we resume from last week’s lesson considering Joseph. Again, adversity is a general term that includes trouble, affliction, opposition, pressure, chastening, anguish, testing, or tribulation that is greater than our ability to resolve. When adversity comes to us we often think, "What have I done wrong?" "Why is God punishing me?" But this is wrong thinking! Adversity can be our greatest motivation for spiritual growth or our deadliest means of discouragement. The difference depends upon our understanding of God's purposes through adversity.

 

Point #3 Make the Best of the Situation

 

A. What did Joseph do?

1. He didn't sit around and mope all day long.

2. Rather he sought to learn through this experience.

3. He chose to be industrious (productive), diligent, obedient, reliable, and conscientious.

4. As a result, he found success as a servant to Potiphar, as a prisoner incarcerated, and as Pharaoh's prime minister.

 

B. Refuse to focus on the outward circumstances.

1. Often our first response to adversity is to try to remove it.

2. But we need to understand that God is at work in our lives.

3. It may be that God is…

a. Trying to get our attention.

(1 Pet 1:7) That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:

b. Assuring us of His love.

(Heb 12:6) For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.

(Heb 12:11) Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby.

c. Calling us to self-examination.

(1 Cor 11:31-32) For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged. {32} But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world.

 

C. We may miss God's purpose in the adversity if our focus is only on what is happening to us, and not on what God wants to happen within us.

(Heb 13:20-21) Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, {21} Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is well-pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

 

D. Maintain integrity.

(Job 13:15) Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him: but I will maintain mine own ways before him.

1. Let's not forget who we are, or Who God is!

2. What kind of testimony do we have if we lose our faith and confidence in Him in the midst of adversity?

3. Jesus spoke of the two foundations in Matthew 7.

(Mat 7:24-25) Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: {25} And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.

4. Note that the foundation didn't keep the rain from falling or the flood from coming up.

5. But it kept the house from falling apart!

 

How to we respond to adversity when it comes? Do we resist and fight against it or do we allow God to have His way in our lives?


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