Sculpted By Grace
God Really Meant It For Good
When we proclaim the goodness of our God, we are using our definition of the word good.
Good as we know it. Good as we have experienced it.
God has a different definition;
Gen 1 “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” …31 And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good.
Good - Pleasant, Agreeable, Good
(Translated: Beautiful, Best, Beneficial, Delightful, Favorable, Pleasing, Precious, Pure, Right)
When we say, Good, we compare it the mess Adam created
When God says Good, He compares it to the perfection He created
His Good = the RECLAMATION of His Original, Divine Intent for you… His PLANS! (Jer 29:18)
No matter what you’re dreaming for, believing for, hoping for, praying for
You’re thinking so far below the mark of the GOOD that God truly sees…
Gen 50:15 When Joseph’s brothers saw that their father was dead, they said, “It may be that Joseph will hate us and pay us back for all the evil that we did to him.” 16 So they sent a message to Joseph, saying, “Your father gave this command before he died: 17 ‘Say to Joseph, “Please forgive the transgression of your brothers and their sin, because they did evil to you.” ’ And now, please forgive the transgression of the servants of the God of your father.” Joseph wept when they spoke to him.18 His brothers also came and fell down before him and said, “Behold, we are your servants.” 19 But Joseph said to them, “Do not fear, for am I in the place of God?20 As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today. 21 So do not fear; I will provide for you and your little ones.” Thus he comforted them and spoke kindly to them.
Jospeh’s story presents us with a powerful spiritual perspective
God’s GOOD is so much BIGGER, BETTER and goes BEYOND us.
1) God’s Good REALLY means His BEST for you
Vs 20 As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good
The Biblical narrative shifts, for 22 years we've followed Jospeh's journey. Now his family comes back into the picture and shifts Jospeh's perspective.
“8 And Joseph recognized his brothers, but they did not recognize him. 9 And Joseph remembered the dreams that he had dreamed of them.” (Ge 42:8–9)
22 years of his wilderness season suddenly makes sense
God did this…this was His plan
Hard to gain proper perspective when you’re in the midst of the pit…
Hard to see clearly when all you see is the problem
22 years gave him something powerful - perspective
This was God's plan all along...and it was FULLY GOOD
1 Cor 2:9 But, as it is written, “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him”
When you find yourself in the center of God’s will, you find yourself
For 22 years Jospeh longed for home, now he realizes he has been home all along
Remember we compare… Jospeh could have reasonably concluded that
- God gave him good, because of how he handled a bad situation
- God honored him because of the way he was treated
But now he remembers the dream, and sees, this was the plan…I am exactly where I am supposed to be!
Perspective changes everything
What is the biggest thing you are worried about right now? What is the greatest thing that concerns you? Write it down. Now, divide your life in half (Ex: If you're 40, remember when you were 20). Think about what concerns, fears, problems you were facing. What would you tell your younger self? What did you need to hear then? Now Imagine your twice as old as you are now. What would your older self tell you about the situations you are facing at this moment?
Joseph learned that everything had been preparation for this moment. Nothing was an accident, and it was all for His Good.
2) God's Good really means His Best for those BESIDE us
God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive,
Ps 105:19 TPT God’s promise to Joseph purged his character until it was time for his dreams to come true.
Jospeh went through a 13 year long refining process to prepare him for this moment. But it was beyond Himself.
When a silversmith refines silver, he heats the silver to remove the impurities. What comes to the surface, the dross, is removed and the process is repeated. The silversmith knows when the silver is ready when the silver becomes a mirror and he can see his own reflection.
The GOOD that God brings to us, He desires to bring through us
The Lord can see himself in Jospeh, now He wants to Reveal Himself through Jospeh.
This wasn’t about JOSEPH’S salvation…it is about the salvation of his brothers
21 Then they said to one another, “In truth we are guilty concerning our brother, in that we saw the distress of his soul, when he begged us and we did not listen. That is why this distress has come upon us.” 22 And Reuben answered them, “Did I not tell you not to sin against the boy? But you did not listen. So now there comes a reckoning for his blood.” 23 They did not know that Joseph understood them, for there was an interpreter between them. 24 Then he turned away from them and wept
Joseph saw they were carrying 22 years of guilt
Jospeh begins a work of reconciliation
What is this that God has done to us?”
They wrongly concluded that God was paying them back for the sins of twenty-two years ago
God was setting them up for an encounter with His GRACE twenty-two years in the making
They thought they were being chased down by an angry God
In truth…they were being sought out by a forgiving God
Gen 45 Then Joseph could not control himself before all those who stood by him. He cried, “Make everyone go out from me.” So no one stayed with him when Joseph made himself known to his brothers. 2 And he wept aloud, so that the Egyptians heard it, and the household of Pharaoh heard it. 3 And Joseph said to his brothers, “I am Joseph! Is my father still alive?” But his brothers could not answer him, for they were dismayed at his presence.
What a revelation!
Hardest things for man to accept
1) That Jesus is FULLY God
2) That He FULLY forgives us
3) That everything He’s done for us is FULLY Good
4 So Joseph said to his brothers, “Come near to me, please.” And they came near. And he said, “I am your brother, Joseph, whom you sold into Egypt. 5 And now do not be distressed or angry with yourselves because you sold me here, for God sent me before you to preserve life. 6 For the famine has been in the land these two years, and there are yet five years in which there will be neither plowing nor harvest. 7 And God sent me before you to preserve for you a remnant on earth, and to keep alive for you many survivors. 8 So it was not you who sent me here, but God.
3) God's Good really means His Best for those BEYOND us
Jospeh came as a forerunner... to prepare a place ahead of his family. This was about more than Jospeh, and it was about more than his brothers. It was about the generations that would come after Jospeh.
God’s good is bigger than you
God’s good is bigger than now
18 His brothers also came and fell down before him and said, “Behold, we are your servants.” 19 But Joseph said to them, “Do not fear, for am I in the place of God? 20 As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today. 21 So do not fear; I will provide for you and your little ones.” Thus he comforted them and spoke kindly to them.
Jer 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.
Remember God has PLANS (plural) for you!
but He has no “plan B”
How far are you willing for that future to extend? What GOOD are you willing to let God work through your life to go beyond yourself?
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good (agathos, most noble, most excellent), for those who are called according to his purpose.
Rom 8:28 ESV