Genesis #36 – What Are the 5 Signs of the Spirit in a Person?

At the age of 17, Joseph was betrayed by his jealous brothers. Sold into slavery, he was taken to Egypt where he did not know the language and they did not know his God. There, he served faithfully and was wrongly convicted of sexual assault, even though he was an innocent virgin who had repeatedly rejected the advances of the woman who destroyed him. In prison, Joseph rose up to lead the prison in which he was a prisoner. Joseph did not have the Bible as we do, his father was far away and thought his son was dead, and no other believers were in his life. Yet, Joseph, remained faithful to God and fulfilled his destiny. How did he do it? By the power of the Holy Spirit (Genesis 41:38-48). In this sermon we will look at 5 signs of the Spirit in the life of Joseph that God wants us to also experience in our life.

Trusting God in Troubled Times 

Sermon #36 – What Are the 5 Signs of the Spirit in a Person?

Genesis 41:38-43

Sign #1 – Good stewardship at work and at home 

  • The hard thing to do is be humble when you are successful 
  • Stewardship: we are managers of God’s resources. Different from ownership, all that we have is God’s.
  • God is the ultimate owner of everything and we want to be good stewards and faithful servants 
  • Ministry is working upstream
  • They tried to make Joseph Egyptian but he remained true to his identity; we should do the same. Don’t accept or acknowledge who people say you are apart from what God says
  • One sign of the Spirit is good stewardship at work as well as at home
  • Joseph has a family, gives his sons Hebrew names, and he is only around 30 years old
  • You need to decide what your family is going to look like 
  • Joseph names his sons forgetful and fruitful. The blessing of his sons makes him forget the pain of the past and be hopeful for the future. This is what we can all pray for in our own lives.
  • Not only are they in a famine but they are also hungry for the Bread of Life. God is warning them not only that they need Joseph to survive but that they need a Savior in Jesus.

Sign #2 – Relational wisdom

  • Joseph is bilingual at this point in the story
  • Some people don’t get motivated until they are in severe pain. 
  • Joseph’s family comes to Egypt because they are going to starve to death 
  • God is usually late and always on time 
  • Joseph’s brothers came before him in Egypt and he recognized them but they didn’t know who he was. Joseph then tests them.
  • When you are dealing with people who are potentially evil, you need to be wise and not foolish. Joseph needs to test if his brothers have changed or not. 
  • God’s destiny takes precedence over your family. God should always be your first priority. 

Sign #3 – Emotional health

  • Proverbs says the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom
  • Forgiveness is free; trust is earned. Joseph needs to test his brother to see if he can trust them after he has forgiven them. If they come back for the brother left behind, then they have changed.
  • Let God work on your family 
  • Joseph weeping shows he has a heart, he has compassion and he has the heart of God.
  • Joseph is emotionally healthy because he knows when to be tough and when to be tender. 
  • A sign of being emotionally healthy is dealing with things as they happen not letting them stack up

Sign #4 – Financially generous 

  • If Joseph had not forgiven his brothers, he would have sought vengeance against them 
  • It is not generous unless you are giving someone something that they are not owed 
  • Humility requires that we ask, “how did I participate”
  • We always see foolishness in someone else’s family more than our own
  • If you can give then you can forgive 

Sign #5 – Giving and forgiving from the heart 

  • Joseph matures quickly because he faced a lot of adversity 
  • Teach your children to tell the truth even when it costs them 
  • The lie is always the problem
  • Judah takes responsibility (it is through the line of Judah that Jesus Christ comes)
  • We are the brothers, Jesus is Joseph and Heaven is like a banquet that Jesus throws for us not because we deserve it but because he is good. 
  • There is financial and relational currency, generosity and forgiveness. They go hand in hand. 
  • Joseph was unburned of trying to be in control of his life 
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Mark Driscoll

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