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With New Testament Eyes: 9 - Joseph Opens the Storehouses

By Henry Mahan


      Genesis 41

      Joseph had been sold into slavery by his jealous brothers, who resented Jacob's great love for Joseph (Gen. 37:3-4) and the dreams Joseph had in which God revealed that his brethren would one day bow to and serve Joseph (Gen. 37: 5-8). Due to several acts of God's providence, Joseph wound up in prison in Egypt, where he met the chief butler of Pharaoh's court and interpreted his dream. Later, when Pharaoh had a dream which no one could interpret, the chief butler remembered the young Hebrew, Joseph (Gen. 41:9-14); and he was called before Pharaoh to interpret his dream. God revealed to Joseph that there would be seven years of plenty in the land followed by seven years of great famine (Gen. 41:28-32). Pharaoh appointed Joseph to be the ruler over all Egypt, second only to himself (Gen. 41:39-44).

      There are so many lessons to be learned from this story.

      1. The sovereign providence and divine purpose of God in the life of Joseph, bringing him from a Hebrew shepherd boy to the throne of Egypt. God ruled and overruled all events, all creatures, and all their actions to accomplish his will and purpose toward Joseph (Gen. 45:5; Gen. 50:20; Isa. 46:9-11; Acts 4:26-28; John 6:37- 39).

      2. The sovereignty of God not only over men, but over the weather, crops, heathen nations, and even over men's dreams.

      3. The faithfulness of God's servant, Joseph. In the greatest trials, adversity, and surroundings Joseph walked with God and maintained a strong testimony to truth and grace. Even in a heathen nation, Joseph glorified God and God blessed him.

      But this entire story, as all scripture, is given to praise, exalt, and reveal our Lord Jesus Christ in his redemptive work (Luke 24:27, 44-45).

      During the seven years of famine, Joseph supervised the crops and filled the storehouses; and when the famine was over the land, Joseph opened the storehouses and sold unto all who had need (Gen. 41:56).

      1. Joseph opened the storehouses by royal authority Pharaoh gave all things (all authority and all the food) into the hands of Joseph (vv. 41, 44-45). When people came to Pharaoh, he sent them to Joseph. By God's royal decree and design, all things pertaining to life, salvation, mercy, and heaven have been given into the hands of the Lord Jesus Christ (John 3:35-36; John 17:2-3; Col. 1:14-19; Col. 2:9-10).

      What? all spiritual blessings, all fullness.

      Where? in Christ Jesus (Eph. 1:3-4).

      Why? 'It pleased God' (Acts 2:36).

      2. Joseph was the only fit person to open the storehouses Joseph prophesied the famine; no one else knew about it.

      Joseph planned the crops and the storehouses (v. 35). Joseph gathered the corn and stored it up (v. 49).

      Our Lord Jesus is the only fit and qualified one to open the storehouse of mercy to sinners.

      He foreknew the fall and famine of human nature (Rom. 5:12, 19).

      He purposed and planned the everlasting covenant of mercy whereby a people would be saved from Adam's race (Heb. 13:20-21).

      He came to earth in the likeness of human flesh and obeyed the law in order that his people might have a perfect righteousness before God's law, and he died on the cross that they might all be justified in God's sight. He filled the storehouse with grace and mercy for all who would come to eat; as the disciples replied, 'Lord, to whom shall we go? Thou hast the words of eternal life.'

      He is the only one who has the capacity to contain all the fullness of God, the only one who has the wisdom to distribute the fullness of God, and the only one who has the eternality to continue to be our fullness (2 Tim. 1:12; Phil. 3:20-21).

      3. Joseph opened the storehouses! That is why Joseph filled the storehouses, in order that the people might eat. That is why Christ became our surety and our sin-offering, in order that sinners might be saved (Matt. 1:21; 1 Tim. 1:15; Luke 19:10).

      To have kept the storehouses closed would have brought no glory to Joseph nor good to the people. He had plenty and was delighted to distribute it. Our Lord is plenteous in mercy, and he delights to show mercy. His chief glory is his goodness (Exo. 33:18-19). He says, 'Ho, everyone that thirsteth, come to the waters' (John 7:37-38).

      Joseph opened the storehouses at a fit time. 'When the people cried for bread, Joseph opened the storehouses.' All who are hungry will be fed (Rom. 10:13; Gal. 1:15).

      Joseph opened the storehouses to all who came (v. 57). Not the Egyptians only, but all nations came to Joseph. Our Lord Jesus opens the storehouses of grace to Jew and Gentile, male and female, bond and free. 'Whosoever will, let him take the water of life' (Matt. 11:28; Rev. 22:17). As the famine is universal, the command to repent and come to Christ is universal. 'He is able to save to the uttermost all who come to God by him' (Heb. 7:25).

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See Also:
   Foreward & Acknowledgements
   1 - The Fall
   2 - Abel's Offering
   3 - The Ark Of Noah
   4 - Sarah and Hagar; Law and Grace
   5 - The Lord Will Provide
   6 - A Bride for the Heir
   7 - Bethel - The House of God
   8 - Peniel - The Face of God
   9 - Joseph Opens the Storehouses
   10 - Joseph and His Brothers
   11 - Shiloh
   12 - The Passover
   13 - The Manna
   14 - Water from the rock
   15 - The Blood Before the Lord
   16 - The Ram of Consecration
   17 - The Day of Atonement
   18 - Caleb - The Faithful Dog
   19 - The High Priest Intercedes
   20 - The Brazen Serpent
   21 - A Prophet Like Moses
   22 - The Cities of Refuge
   23 - Joshua
   24 - The Scarlet Line in the Window
   25 - The birth of Samson
   26 - The Kinsman Redeemer
   27 - The Song of Hannah
   28 - Give us a King
   29 - Saul's Great Sin
   30 - David and Mephibosheth
   31 - Why God Permitted David to Fall
   32 - Comfort from God's Covenant
   33 - I Will Not Offer to God that which Cost me Nothing
   34 - The Queen of Sheba Comes to Solomon
   35 - Three Examples of Faith
   36 - Where is the Lord God of Elijah?
   37 - Empty Vessels Filled
   38 - Naaman, the Leper
   39 - Open his Eyes that He may See
   40 - Four Lepers Teach us a Lesson
   41 - Nehushtan--A Piece of Brass
   42 - Bringing Back the Ark
   43 - Uzziah's Great Transgression
   44 - Four Things Learned in Trouble
   45 - How Can Man be Just With God?
   46 - Three Vital Questions
   47 - I Know that my Redeemer Liveth
   48 - Now Mine Eye Seeth Thee
   49 - The Psalm of Messiah the King
   50 - God's two great books
   51 - The Psalm of the Cross
   52 - The Lord is my Shepherd
   53 - True God - True Israel - True Redeemer
   54 - Eight Great Precepts
   55 - My Hope is in Thee
   56 - Many, O Lord, Are Thy Wonderful Works
   57 - A Song of Love
   58 - The Sinner's Prayer
   59 - My Rock and my Salvation
   60 - Our Lord's Sufferings for Our Sins
   61 - Mercy and Truth are Met Together
   62 - The Victory of the Messiah
   63 - Bless the Lord, O my Soul
   64 - Let the Redeemed of the Lord Say So
   65 - The King-Priest
   66 - The Chief Cornerstone
   67 - The Observer and the Observed
   68 - Praise the Lord O my Soul
   69 - Wisdom in Christ
   70 - The Conclusion of the Whole Matter
   71 - Remember Now Thy Creator
   72 - My Beloved is Mine and I am His
   73 - What is Thy Beloved more than Another Beloved?
   74 - The Lord Our Righteousness
   75 - The Believers Hope
   76 - From Nothing to Everything
   77 - Lost, Driven Away, Broken, Sick
   78 - Can These Bones Live?
   79 - Four Things God Taught Nebuchadnezzar
   80 - Thy God Will Deliver Thee
   81 - Hosea--Type of Christ
   82 - A Famine to be Feared
   83 - Salvation is of the Lord
   84 - A Fountain Opened for Mourners
   85 - The Messenger of the Covenant

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