If you consider yourself pretty handy with a screwdriver and pair of pliers you no doubt have had the opportunity to assemble something you have purchased or even made yourself.  I remember the first gas grill I purchased.  Not knowing any better or perhaps over-estimating my abilities, I bought one that needed assembly.  After three days and several disassembly and reassembly processes it was finally ready for use.  By the way, I have purchased two others since, both already assembled!  What caused my problems was failing to understand or not following the plans that came with it.  Whether we realize it or not, plans do have a purpose and this past week we looked at the plans of God and how Joseph fit into them.

In Genesis, chapter 50 we find the brothers of Joseph extremely distraught after the death of their father. Not because of his death so much as it was their fear of what Joseph might do in retaliation to their treatment of him in the land of Canaan.  Their first response was to plead for his forgiveness, even telling him his father’s last wish was for them to ask for this. 

The compassion of Joseph was immediately apparent in that he wept upon hearing their plea.  He also made it clear to them that he was not in God’s place; he would not be their judge.  And then he repeated to them what he told them in Genesis 45:4-8.  First, what they meant for evil, God meant for good.  Second, God sent him before them to preserve God’s people in the earth.  And, lastly, it was not them who sent him into Egypt, but God Himself.  It was all part of the plan, God’s plan to reconcile man to Him.

Now think of the cross of Calvary.  What men did as a means of evil, God meant for good.  The redemption we so desperately need came about by what men meant for evil, but our gracious and loving God used for the good of all men.  We need to realize just how much God desires that none be lost!  Have you accepted what God offers you?  Don’t wait until it’s too late!

  Copyright © 2003, Nolan P. Rutter

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