His brothers were challenged several times, when they came to Egypt searching for food. He did not made things easy for them, even though his heart was hurting for them. When he could no longer restrain himself from all those who stood by him he eventually gave in and revealed himself to his brothers, although they had not recognized him. He wept and sobbed aloud, as he revealed himself to his brothers, saying, I am Joseph! Is my father still alive? Come near to me, I pray, I am Joseph your brother, whom you sold into Egypt! But now, do not be distressed and disheartened or vexed and angry with yourselves because you sold me here, for God sent me ahead of you to preserve life (Gen. 45).
This is a story with prophetic meaning concerning the restauration of the Jewish nation. This is a wonderful story of forgiveness, endurance and faithfulness. Joseph faced rejection, scorn and prison, but God in His time rewarded him with greatness and exaltation. The life of Joseph parallels that of YAHSHUA in many ways, but I will cover here only the rejection aspect of his life. YAHSHUA came, was rejected by His own; his brothers sold Him and had Him crucified in a rage of rejection. But YAHSHUA will be exalted someday in the eyes of the entire world, when every knee will bow down before Him and every tongue will confess that He is Lord for the glory of His Father. The Apostle Paul said so in these words: therefore, God has highly exalted Him and has freely bestowed on Him the name that is above every name, that in the name of YAHSHUA every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth and every tongue confess and acknowledge that YAHSHUA the Messiah is Lord, to the glory of God the Father (Phil. 2:9-11).
A baby taken from the Nile River, received the name Moses. In the course of time after Joseph and all his brothers had passed on and another Pharaoh, who did not know Joseph, arose to power. He burdened the Israelites with heavy work. They were considered slaves and treated as one. Because they multiplied in numbers Pharaoh had their babies destroyed at the moment of deliverance. Out of that experience Moses arose. His mother hid him for several months until she could no longer do it. God spared the life of baby Moses for a purpose only he could fulfill. To Moses was given the opportunity to be Pharaoh’s daughter’s son. He had the privilege of a son as if he were their own, but Moses forsook all the pleasures for the sake of his brothers. By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter; choosing rather to endure ill-treatment with the people of God, than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin (Heb. 11:23-25). After having killed an Egyptian for mistreating one of his brothers, he fled to the desert. He was then forty-years old. He settled there for another forty years, when at the age of eighty years God called him out to deliver Israel from slavery in Egypt. God’s promise to Abraham was to be fulfilled through Moses. He led over a million people to the promised land through the wilderness for another forty years. His life was remarkable, like no one else’s. He experienced God face to face like no other man has. He spent forty days and nights with God on the mountain more than one time. Coming down the mountain the presence of the Lord radiated on his face so brightly that people could not look at him. God said this of Moses to Aaron and his sister Miriam who talked against him for having taken a Cushite wife: Hear now My words: If there is a prophet among you, I the Lord make Myself known to him in a vision and speak to him in a dream, but not so with My servant Moses; he is entrusted and faithful in all My house. With him I speak mouth to mouth, clearly and not in dark speeches; and he beholds the form of the Lord. Why then were you not afraid to speak against My servant Moses? And the anger of the Lord was kindled against them, and He departed (Numbers 12: 6-9). Before Moses was born, he was chosen for such a time.
An orphan young girl reared by an uncle, was raised to the position of a queen. Yes, God raised her for a time as these to deliver her people from death. Encouraged by her uncle Mordecai, who emphatically warned her of the danger her people were facing, she courageously made the decision to do something about it with these words: “If I perish, I perish” even if she had to go against the law of the country. God’s anointing came upon her when to her was given the opportunity to speak up for her people; deliverance came from above because she understood her position in the palace, believing that for a time as these she was chosen to be queen. Her son, king Cyrus aka Darius was also chosen in another opportune time to rebuild the temple in Jerusalem and to release the Jews people from captivity (Isa. 45; II Chron. 36:22-23; Ezra 2:1,7). God chose these two generations to bring about life and deliverance to His people, Israel.
We find ourselves facing many challenges sometimes, not understanding the reason for them. The best thing is to conform to the situations and humbly accept them, for who knows if that is not preparation to be chosen for a time as these? Life is like classrooms filled with teachers – experiences preparing us for tomorrow’s unknown. Many of us chose the short cut way to avoid sufferings. But we will be the ones flunking the tests life presents to us. We must be ready to be chosen by God for a time as these.