JOSEPH’S WALK WITH GOD
Before we go any further in our study of Hebrews chapter eleven I would like to share with you a
little bit about Joseph.
Joseph was one of the twelve sons of Jacob. Jacob was one of two sons of Isaac and Isaac was
the son of Abraham.
What so amazes me about this story is Joseph’s stand with God and how God stood with Joseph.
Joseph had it good living with his family, but, then, his brothers sold him into captivity. He was
taken to Egypt where the customs and language were completely different. A place where they
worshipped and served idols. A place stranger to Joseph than China would be to a young man
from the back woods of Kentucky.
Genesis 37:3-28 (KJV)
3 Now Israel (Jacob) loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old
age: and he made him a coat of many colours.
4 And when his brethren saw that their father loved him more than all his brethren, they hated
him, and could not speak peaceably unto him.
5 And Joseph dreamed a dream, and he told it his brethren: and they hated him yet the more.
6 And he said unto them, Hear, I pray you, this dream which I have dreamed:
7 For, behold, we were binding sheaves in the field, and, lo, my sheaf arose, and also stood
upright; and, behold, your sheaves stood round about, and made obeisance to my sheaf.
8 And his brethren said to him, Shalt thou indeed reign over us? or shalt thou indeed have
dominion over us? And they hated him yet the more for his dreams, and for his words.
9 And he dreamed yet another dream, and told it his brethren, and said, Behold, I have dreamed
a dream more; and, behold, the sun and the moon and the eleven stars made obeisance to me.
10 And he told it to his father, and to his brethren: and his father rebuked him, and said unto
him, What is this dream that thou hast dreamed? Shall I and thy mother and thy brethren indeed
come to bow down ourselves to thee to the earth?
11 And his brethren envied him; but his father observed the saying.
12 And his brethren went to feed their father’s flock in Shechem.
13 And Israel said unto Joseph, Do not thy brethren feed the flock in Shechem? come, and I will
send thee unto them. And he said to him, Here am I.
14 And he said to him, Go, I pray thee, see whether it be well with thy brethren, and well with the
flocks; and bring me word again. So he sent him out of the vale of Hebron, and he came to
15 And a certain man found him, and, behold, he was wandering in the field: and the man asked
him, saying, What seekest thou?
16 And he said, I seek my brethren: tell me, I pray thee, where they feed their flocks.
17 And the man said, They are departed hence; for I heard them say, Let us go to Dothan. And
Joseph went after his brethren, and found them in Dothan.
18 And when they saw him afar off, even before he came near unto them, they conspired against
him to slay him.
19 And they said one to another, Behold, this dreamer cometh.
20 Come now therefore, and let us slay him, and cast him into some pit, and we will say, Some
evil beast hath devoured him: and we shall see what will become of his dreams.21 And Reuben heard it, and he delivered him out of their hands; and said, Let us not kill him.
22 And Reuben said unto them, Shed no blood, but cast him into this pit that is in the wilderness,
and lay no hand upon him; that he might rid him out of their hands, to deliver him to his father
23 And it came to pass, when Joseph was come unto his brethren, that they stript Joseph out of
his coat, his coat of many colours that was on him;
24 And they took him, and cast him into a pit: and the pit was empty, there was no water in it.
25 And they sat down to eat bread: and they lifted up their eyes and looked, and, behold, a
company of Ishmeelites came from Gilead with their camels bearing spicery and balm and
myrrh, going to carry it down to Egypt.
26 And Judah said unto his brethren, What profit is it if we slay our brother, and conceal his
27 Come, and let us sell him to the Ishmeelites, and let not our hand be upon him; for he is our
brother and our flesh. And his brethren were content.
28 Then there passed by Midianites merchantmen; and they drew and lifted up Joseph out of the
pit, and sold Joseph to the Ishmeelites for twenty pieces of silver: and they brought Joseph into
Most Christians when faced with circumstances they don’t understand think God has forsaken them.
That was far from the truth with Joseph and it is even further from the truth with Christians. God
promises that He will never leave us or forsake us. He is our Father and He wants the best for each of us.
Circumstances are circumstances. But, circumstances change when you start walking with God.
Genesis 39:1-20 (KJV)
1 And Joseph was brought down to Egypt; and Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh, captain of the
guard, an Egyptian, bought him of the hands of the Ishmeelites, which had brought him down
2 And the LORD was with Joseph, and he was a prosperous man; and he was in the house of his
master the Egyptian.
3 And his master saw that the LORD was with him, and that the LORD made all that he did to
prosper in his hand.
Who made Joseph so prosperous? God did! Who will make us, the Christian, prosperous? God!
But, it is a two way street. God was helping Joseph, but, Joseph, even through adversity, was
walking with God. When I say “walking with God” I mean he was praying to God and keeping
the commandments that given to him and his fathers. Now I know that Joseph had the spirit of
God upon him, but, in that time in history the spirit was given on condition. If you screwed up
you could lose it. King Saul was such a man. But, Joseph stayed in fellowship with God.
4 And Joseph found grace in his sight, and he served him: and he made him overseer over his
house, and all that he had he put into his hand.
5 And it came to pass from the time that he had made him overseer in his house, and over all that
he had, that the LORD blessed the Egyptian’s house for Joseph’s sake; and the blessing of theLORD was upon all that he had in the house, and in the field.
6 And he left all that he had in Joseph’s hand; and he knew not ought he had, save the bread
which he did eat. And Joseph was a goodly person, and well favoured.
7 And it came to pass after these things, that his master’s wife cast her eyes upon Joseph; and
she said, Lie with me.
8 But he refused, and said unto his master’s wife, Behold, my master wotteth not what is with me
in the house, and he hath committed all that he hath to my hand;
9 There is none greater in this house than I; neither hath he kept back any thing from me but
thee, because thou art his wife: how then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?
10 And it came to pass, as she spake to Joseph day by day, that he hearkened not unto her, to lie
by her, or to be with her.
11 And it came to pass about this time, that Joseph went into the house to do his business; and
there was none of the men of the house there within.
12 And she caught him by his garment, saying, Lie with me: and he left his garment in her hand,
and fled, and got him out.
What an honorable man! How many men in our day and age would flee and how many would
stay? God sees all and remember Joseph CHOSE to walk with God.
13 And it came to pass, when she saw that he had left his garment in her hand, and was fled
14 That she called unto the men of her house, and spake unto them, saying, See, he hath brought
in an Hebrew unto us to mock us; he came in unto me to lie with me, and I cried with a loud
15 And it came to pass, when he heard that I lifted up my voice and cried, that he left his garment
with me, and fled, and got him out.
16 And she laid up his garment by her, until his lord came home.
17 And she spake unto him according to these words, saying, The Hebrew servant, which thou
hast brought unto us, came in unto me to mock me:
18 And it came to pass, as I lifted up my voice and cried, that he left his garment with me, and
19 And it came to pass, when his master heard the words of his wife, which she spake unto him,
saying, After this manner did thy servant to me; that his wrath was kindled.
20 And Joseph’s master took him, and put him into the prison, a place where the king’s prisoners
were bound: and he was there in the prison.
Yes, Joseph walked with God, but, just because he walked with God doesn’t mean that he is
going to have it all roses in life. Prison is prison back then as well as today. It is a hard miserable
place to be. Instead of looking at the circumstances Joseph continued to look toward God and
because of that God continued to prosper Joseph in some of the harshest conditions on Earth.
Genesis 39:21-23 (KJV)
21 But the LORD was with Joseph, and shewed him mercy, and gave him favour in the sight of the keeper
of the prison.22 And the keeper of the prison committed to Joseph’s hand all the prisoners that were in the prison; and
whatsoever they did there, he was the doer of it.
23 The keeper of the prison looked not to any thing that was under his hand; because the LORD was with
him, and that which he did, the LORD made it to prosper.
Genesis 40:1-19 (KJV)
1 And it came to pass after these things, that the butler of the king of Egypt and his baker had
offended their lord the king of Egypt.
2 And Pharaoh was wroth against two of his officers, against the chief of the butlers, and against
the chief of the bakers.
3 And he put them in ward in the house of the captain of the guard, into the prison, the place
where Joseph was bound.
4 And the captain of the guard charged Joseph with them, and he served them: and they
continued a season in ward.
5 And they dreamed a dream both of them, each man his dream in one night, each man
according to the interpretation of his dream, the butler and the baker of the king of Egypt, which
were bound in the prison.
6 And Joseph came in unto them in the morning, and looked upon them, and, behold, they were
7 And he asked Pharaoh’s officers that were with him in the ward of his lord’s house, saying,
Wherefore look ye so sadly to day?
8 And they said unto him, We have dreamed a dream, and there is no interpreter of it. And
Joseph said unto them, Do not interpretations belong to God? tell me them, I pray you.
9 And the chief butler told his dream to Joseph, and said to him, In my dream, behold, a vine was
10 And in the vine were three branches: and it was as though it budded, and her blossoms shot
forth; and the clusters thereof brought forth ripe grapes:
11 And Pharaoh’s cup was in my hand: and I took the grapes, and pressed them into Pharaoh’s
cup, and I gave the cup into Pharaoh’s hand.
12 And Joseph said unto him, This is the interpretation of it: The three branches are three days:
13 Yet within three days shall Pharaoh lift up thine head, and restore thee unto thy place: and
thou shalt deliver Pharaoh’s cup into his hand, after the former manner when thou wast his
14 But think on me when it shall be well with thee, and shew kindness, I pray thee, unto me, and
make mention of me unto Pharaoh, and bring me out of this house:
15 For indeed I was stolen away out of the land of the Hebrews: and here also have I done
nothing that they should put me into the dungeon.
16 When the chief baker saw that the interpretation was good, he said unto Joseph, I also was in
my dream, and, behold, I had three white baskets on my head:
17 And in the uppermost basket there was of all manner of bakemeats for Pharaoh; and the birds
did eat them out of the basket upon my head.
18 And Joseph answered and said, This is the interpretation thereof: The three baskets are three
19 Yet within three days shall Pharaoh lift up thy head from off thee, and shall hang thee on a
tree; and the birds shall eat thy flesh from off thee.Genesis 40:20-23 (KJV)
20 And it came to pass the third day, which was Pharaoh’s birthday, that he made a feast unto all
his servants: and he lifted up the head of the chief butler and of the chief baker among his
21 And he restored the chief butler unto his butlership again; and he gave the cup into Pharaoh’s
22 But he hanged the chief baker: as Joseph had interpreted to them.
23 Yet did not the chief butler remember Joseph, but forgat him.
Joseph didn’t know whether the chief butler was going to plead his case to Pharaoh or not. He
must have spent countless days hoping and anticipating the butlers help to get him out of prison,
but, nobody came. Still, Joseph kept his fellowship with God.
I want to explain something else here. Joseph didn’t necessarily hear from God every day. Days
weeks or months could go by without him hearing from God. Even though he didn’t hear from
Him every day, God was still with him and still prospering him.
Genesis 41:1 (KJV)
1 And it came to pass at the end of two full years, that Pharaoh dreamed: and, behold, he stood
by the river.
How long had Joseph been in prison before the butler showed up, I don’t know, but, it takes time
to get in the good graces of the warden. And then, for a prisoner to get full charge of the prison
takes even longer. I bet during all that time there was plenty of opportunity for Joseph to escape.
Why didn’t he? Maybe in his walk with God God told him not to. That is the only thing it could
be, otherwise, Joseph would have been long gone.
Genesis 41:9-43 (KJV)
9 Then spake the chief butler unto Pharaoh, saying, I do remember my faults this day:
10 Pharaoh was wroth with his servants, and put me in ward in the captain of the guard’s house,
both me and the chief baker:
11 And we dreamed a dream in one night, I and he; we dreamed each man according to the
interpretation of his dream.
12 And there was there with us a young man, an Hebrew, servant to the captain of the guard; and
we told him, and he interpreted to us our dreams; to each man according to his dream he did
13 And it came to pass, as he interpreted to us, so it was; me he restored unto mine office, and
him he hanged.
14 Then Pharaoh sent and called Joseph, and they brought him hastily out of the dungeon: and
he shaved himself, and changed his raiment, and came in unto Pharaoh.
15 And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, I have dreamed a dream, and there is none that can interpret
it: and I have heard say of thee, that thou canst understand a dream to interpret it.
16 And Joseph answered Pharaoh, saying, It is not in me: God shall give Pharaoh an answer of
peace.17 And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, In my dream, behold, I stood upon the bank of the river:
18 And, behold, there came up out of the river seven kine, fatfleshed and well favoured; and they
fed in a meadow:
19 And, behold, seven other kine came up after them, poor and very ill favoured and leanfleshed,
such as I never saw in all the land of Egypt for badness:
20 And the lean and the ill favoured kine did eat up the first seven fat kine:
21 And when they had eaten them up, it could not be known that they had eaten them; but they
were still ill favoured, as at the beginning. So I awoke.
22 And I saw in my dream, and, behold, seven ears came up in one stalk, full and good:
23 And, behold, seven ears, withered, thin, and blasted with the east wind, sprung up after them:
24 And the thin ears devoured the seven good ears: and I told this unto the magicians; but there
was none that could declare it to me.
25 And Joseph said unto Pharaoh, The dream of Pharaoh is one: God hath shewed Pharaoh
what he is about to do.
26 The seven good kine are seven years; and the seven good ears are seven years: the dream is
27 And the seven thin and ill favoured kine that came up after them are seven years; and the
seven empty ears blasted with the east wind shall be seven years of famine.
28 This is the thing which I have spoken unto Pharaoh: What God is about to do he sheweth unto
29 Behold, there come seven years of great plenty throughout all the land of Egypt:
30 And there shall arise after them seven years of famine; and all the plenty shall be forgotten in
the land of Egypt; and the famine shall consume the land;
31 And the plenty shall not be known in the land by reason of that famine following; for it shall
be very grievous.
32 And for that the dream was doubled unto Pharaoh twice; it is because the thing is established
by God, and God will shortly bring it to pass.
33 Now therefore let Pharaoh look out a man discreet and wise, and set him over the land of
34 Let Pharaoh do this, and let him appoint officers over the land, and take up the fifth part of
the land of Egypt in the seven plenteous years.
35 And let them gather all the food of those good years that come, and lay up corn under the
hand of Pharaoh, and let them keep food in the cities.
36 And that food shall be for store to the land against the seven years of famine, which shall be in
the land of Egypt; that the land perish not through the famine.
37 And the thing was good in the eyes of Pharaoh, and in the eyes of all his servants.
38 And Pharaoh said unto his servants, Can we find such a one as this is, a man in whom the
Spirit of God is?
39 And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, Forasmuch as God hath shewed thee all this, there is none so
discreet and wise as thou art:
40 Thou shalt be over my house, and according unto thy word shall all my people be ruled: only
in the throne will I be greater than thou.
41 And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, See, I have set thee over all the land of Egypt.
42 And Pharaoh took off his ring from his hand, and put it upon Joseph’s hand, and arrayed him
in vestures of fine linen, and put a gold chain about his neck;43 And he made him to ride in the second chariot which he had; and they cried before him, Bow
the knee: and he made him ruler over all the land of Egypt.
It took years upon years for Joseph to come to a place where he and God could save nations and one of
those nations was a little group of people called the twelve tribes of Israel, the family of Joseph.
Genesis 45:3-8 (KJV)
3 And Joseph said unto his brethren, I am Joseph; doth my father yet live? And his brethren could not
answer him; for they were troubled at his presence.
4 And Joseph said unto his brethren, Come near to me, I pray you. And they came near. And he said, I am
Joseph your brother, whom ye sold into Egypt.
5 Now therefore be not grieved, nor angry with yourselves, that ye sold me hither: for God did send me
before you to preserve life.
6 For these two years hath the famine been in the land: and yet there are five years, in the which there
shall neither be earing nor harvest.
7 And God sent me before you to preserve you a posterity in the earth, and to save your lives by a great
8 So now it was not you that sent me hither, but God: and he hath made me a father to Pharaoh, and
lord of all his house, and a ruler throughout all the land of Egypt.
Joseph’s walk, will, commitment and determination is so astounding that I marvel every time I read the
record. To be sold into slavery by your own family. To be put into prison undeservedly. To linger in
prison for years and through all of that to keep such a relationship with God that he could go directly
from prison to the presence of Pharaoh and get revelation from God is miraculous.
We don’t have to go through the things that Joseph did, but, sometimes our situations in life seem as
daunting as Joseph’s. Even so, we still have a God that loves us and is always there for us. We too can so
walk as to have answers from God.