deathbed requests, faith, faith in the future, God's promises, God's will, Joseph, our will, the bones of Joseph
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.” 25 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.” Genesis 50:24-25
I know you have heard of “death-bed confessions.” Some people also make “death-bed requests” of their family and friends as well. Maybe you have had to carry out one or two of these requests. Some have made requests like, “Don’t allow this or that to happen at my funeral. I want to be buried at so-in-so place.” Usually people make these requests when they are short on time or in need of help beyond their capabilities.
Here we have in the Bible Joseph making a deathbed request to have his bones carried out of Egypt to the land of Israel. It would take a whopping 400 years to complete. You have to have people who love you to carry out a 400 year old promise.
The question arises as to why Joseph was not content to be buried in Egypt? Why was he so insistent on going with the Israelites when they eventually did leave Egypt? I think I know the answer.
Joseph was interested in being a part of what God was doing on the earth, whether he was dead or alive.
Can you say with integrity that you want to be a part of what God is doing today, whether or not you live to see all of it fulfilled in your lifetime? Joseph knew that God would keep his promises and wanted to go where He was taking his children in the future. He not only saw his life as helping to fulfill God’s will upon the earth, but wanted to be a part of those blessings forever.
Joseph was not interested in having some pyramid named after him or having Geraldo opening His tomb some 5000 years later.
Question – What are you interested in? Are you more interested in the rich and famous than the godly and pure? Are you trying to make a lot of money so you can retire early? What motivates you? Instead of building a pyramid for man’s honor, Joseph wanted to live in the house of faith.
Faith is not getting our will done in heaven, but getting God’s will done on the earth. The vision and mission of God and His plan and promises have been passed on to us. We have to come to a spiritual place in our lives where we do not simply read the promises in the third person but apply them in the first person of our lives.
I believe God is raising up a new generation of believers called to do just this. The only question is will you believe the Lord’s promises and answer His call? If you need encouragement…remember the bones of Joseph. They carried Joseph’s casket out of Egypt, through the Red Sea, and throughout the wilderness wanderings. The Israelites carried this casket for more than forty years. There was more faith in the bones of Joseph than in the feet of the Israelites.
Don’t allow the bones of Joseph to have more faith in God’s promises than you. Ask the Lord to speak to you about what He wants to accomplish in your generation. I believe He is waiting to share with you His plans for the future.