God Keeps His Promises
Sunday in our introduction to Esther we saw that our God is a covenant keeping God. He is a God whose word can be trusted and relied upon. One of the examples mentioned was Joseph, who believed God would return Israel to the promised land. His belief was so firm that he forced the sons of Israel to promise to take his bones with them when they left Egypt.
“Joseph said to his brothers, “I am about to die, but God will surely take care of you and bring you up from this land to the land which He promised on oath to Abraham, to Isaac and to Jacob.” Then Joseph made the sons of Israel swear, saying, “God will surely take care of you, and you shall carry my bones up from here.” So Joseph died at the age of one hundred and ten years; and he was embalmed and placed in a coffin in Egypt.” – Genesis 50:24–26
Moses showed a reflection of that same faith 400 years later. He did so by taking Joseph’s bones with them as they left Egypt.
“Moses took the bones of Joseph with him, for he had made the sons of Israel solemnly swear, saying, ‘God will surely take care of you, and you shall carry my bones from here with you.’” – Exodus 13:19
Joshua and the people of Israel completed the task when they returned to the land.
“Now they buried the bones of Joseph, which the sons of Israel brought up from Egypt, at Shechem, in the piece of ground which Jacob had bought from the sons of Hamor the father of Shechem for one hundred pieces of money; and they became the inheritance of Joseph’s sons.” – Joshua 24:32
(As a side note, the Arabs so strongly believe Joseph was buried in Shechem that in 2016 they burned the tomb Joseph is thought to have been buried in. The photo above is of the traditional tomb of Joseph as it appeared in the late 1800’s, before the area was engulfed by the modern city.)
The author of Hebrews, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit had this to say about Joseph:
“By faith Joseph, when he was dying, made mention of the exodus of the sons of Israel, and gave orders concerning his bones.” – Hebrews 11:22
Joseph trusted God on a promise almost 400 years in the making. Do you trust God for your needs today? Tomorrow? How is your faith in our “Promise Keeping God” (Jeremiah 29:11, 1 Peter 1:3-4, 2 Corinthians 4:17-18)?
“‘For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.” – Jeremiah 29:11
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you.” – 1 Peter 1:3–4
“For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” – 2 Corinthians 4:17–18