Sermon Notes + 7.10.2022
Trusting in God’s Providential Care
Dr. Tamene Menna, Executive Pastor
Overview: One of the most common themes throughout the book of Genesis is sibling conflict and God’s providential act of preserving a covenant line to fulfill His redemptive plan of salvation. In the narrative of Genesis 42-45, we see how Joseph, who experienced deep pain and suffering because of his brothers who treated him unjustly and sold him into slavery, responded to them in forgiveness by trusting in God’s providence. As the narrative unfolds, we learn how God, in His divine providence, brought Joseph’s brothers to repentance and used Joseph’s circumstances to preserve Jacob’s family and, in turn, the covenant line of the 12 tribes of Israel. Joseph’s story teaches us that God’s sovereign providence is over all human affairs. Therefore, whatever crisis we face today, we too can trust God and keep our focus on Him and His promises, believing that He will accomplish His purposes in our lives.
01. When we have been wronged, we can respond in forgiveness, knowing that God is able to work through others’ offenses to fulfill His purposes in our lives and in the world.
02. God is sovereign over all things, and we can trust Him in every situation. We are called to trust God even when our circumstances seem bleak knowing that God is in control of our lives and the events in the world.
QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION & DISCOVERY
1. Read Genesis 42. How did God create the circumstances that would cause the Joseph’s brothers to go to Egypt and bring them to repentance?
2. Read Genesis 42:21-22. What were the brothers reminded of when Joseph treated them like strangers and spoke roughly to them? Can you think of a circumstance in your life that you offended and caused harm to others? How did God lead you to come to grips with your sin? What was your response?
3. Read Genesis 42:36-38. Why did Jacob refuse to send Benjamin with his brothers to Egypt? How do you respond to your circumstances when you experience difficult things in your life and when things are not going the way you planned?
4. Read Genesis 44:30-34. What does Judah’s speech show about the change of character that the brothers have? What do we learn from Judah’s speech about the nature of true repentance?
5. Read Genesis 45:5-8. How would you have responded if you were in Joseph’s position? How does our conviction about the sovereignty of God shape our response to others when we experience unfair treatment?
For further reading: Alister Begg, The hand of God: Finding His Care in All Circumstances. (Moody Publishers, 2018).