Intro. / prayer
Recall Genesis 32:3-33:17
Review Story of Joseph
Read Genesis 37:1-35 Page 65-66
150 years ago there was a German family who where Jews.
For all of the families life they had been faithful followers at a local synagogue.
One evening the father announced they would no longer attend the local synagogue
Instead he told his son and wife they would got to a Lutheran church.
The boy asked why, but the father stated it was important.
Still the boy insisted as to why and his father frankly stated it was important because his business contacts where Lutheran.
The son became upset because he was torn from his religious roots and practices.
As a result the never forgot his bitterness.
Years after this happened they young man went to England and toiled in London. He worked on his writings in the British Museums and he wrote this line his book DAS KAPITAL
“Religion is the opiate of the people”
His name was Karal Marx, founder of Marxism!
The Emotional Part I
¨ Just as Karal Marx had bitterness so did the bothers of Joseph. In one word the
brothers of Joseph were BITTER.
¨ A few adjectives include: bitterness, anger, jealousy, betrayal, and being mad.
¨ In verse 4 there is a sign of a dysfunctional family.
¨ Favoritism and anger
POINT: my point in this lesson is not to debate family relationships, I believe CNN is doing that right now. Anyhow we could talk for hours on family relationships and I don’t have the required background to debate such a topic. However I can debate the dynamics of a relationship.
One relationship was the family who I worked with when there brother died of a bee sting in Harrisburg ICU.
¨ Joseph was only 17 at the time of this encounter with harm. It was said in one of my developmental psychology classes that a child will rebel as a teen but become 80% of what the parents are.
¨ Based on what Jacob did in the Genesis 32:3-33:17 I’d say Joseph is much like his father!
¨ So Joseph had an unmistakable ability to say the wrong thing at the wrong time. Not a politician. His bothers tried to squelch his talk like Marx tried to kill religion.
Anger what do we do with it?
I was reading a book on relations no to long ago. What I read in this book applies to the story about Joseph.
¨ I think the Joseph’s brothers are thinking: He is a snot and he should have suffering rain down on him for days, mouths, even years!
¨ The brothers are you and me in this story! Humans are reluctant to give forgiveness.
POINT: How many times have we realized that forgiveness doesn’t come easy? Why should we forgive easily then?
¨ As Ephesians 4:32 says we are to forgive:
“Be kind and compassionate to one another , forgiving each other just as in Christ God forgave you.”
We use forgiveness as a weapon. We enjoy their volunarblity! Don’t you? I have!
1. Nursing a Grudge is on way Joseph’s brothers came to the conclusion he should die.
Look at John the Baptist. He told Herod to stop the incest and a grudge was nursed by Herodius which lead to the death of John.
MARK 6:19 reads:
“So Herodias nursed a grudge against John and wanted to kill him.”
Herodias nursed a grudge. To nurse means to keep alive.
Such was the case of Joseph brothers. They were upset and held a grudge for a long time.
2. Bearing a Grudge is another way to use unforgivness as a weapon. Bear means to hold up or carry.
Think of the women who held pots above their heads. Bitter drink.
Leviticus 19:8 says:
“Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against one of your people”
3. Harboring Anger
Psalm 103:9 says:
“He will not always accuse, nor will he harbor his anger forever”
We harbor anger don’t we. Think of a a harbor like Inner Harbor in MD. It protects and makes sure the sea dosen’t come and destroy. So that is what we do.
Unfortanly love is not able to be in this harbor. There is not enough room.
4. James 5:9 says:
“Don’t grumble against each other.”
Picture that same storm on the outside of the harbor with thunder. The thunder is the grumbleing.
POINT: you can hear it, you can feel it, you know it is coming.
There is garagled communication but only enough to let people know you are ticked.
The game played is “watch out - I’m upset and the rules of the game are “If you don’t figure it out in three guesses, YOU LOSE!
So many times we as a church or as friends would rather not forgive and instead use that power to have others sumit to us.
POINT: anger is a action so forgiveness must be an action too. A Hug!