There’s no telling what the Lord can do if we just be faithful and wait on the Lord. I remember I was in an ordination council meeting one time and after we did all the question, they wanted the preachers to go around and say a little just a little word of encouragement. Encouragement for the candidate. And the preacher said, I know you’re all preachers. I don’t want you to preach, but I want you to give him a word of encouragement. You know how preachers are. So anyway, we started with the boy’s grandfather who had been preaching for years and years. And he just looked at him and he said, give God time to work. And after he said that, I thought none of the rest of us had anything worth saying. The Lord will work. Give him time. Trust Him. And I believe he will. He’ll do his will. We’ll just be faithful. Amen. They don’t wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up with wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary. They shall walk and not faint. Amen. Well genesis Chapter Number 43. Genesis 43. I enjoyed the good sermon last night, Brother Blockston. Preach forrest did a wonderful job. Appreciated that good Sunday school hour yesterday morning. I enjoyed that. And I appreciate the nice place I have to stay. We’re staying at the Davis Bed and Breakfast. Amen. And that’s pretty good. You get to stay somewhere and it comes completely furnished with grandchildren. That makes it worthwhile staying. Amen. We’ve rode a lot of horses and shot a lot of guns and had a lot of sword fights since I’ve been here. And I’ve enjoyed every moment of it in Genesis 43. You are familiar with what’s taking place here, no doubt. Joseph was the beloved son of Jacob. He gave him a coat of many colors, I believe. Put him in charge over his brethren. And they didn’t like that. And then God gave him dreams of how one day they would bow down to him. And they didn’t like that. Those brothers didn’t like that. And they envied him. They hated him. The Bible said they could not speak peaceably unto him. Chapter 37. They sold him into slavery and he was carried off into Egypt. They were going to kill him, but they sold him. Carried off into Egypt. Sold in the house of Potiphar. You know about all of this, but I just remind you. And there Potipher’s wife lied about it. He ended up in the prison. He walked into the prison house one day into a certain place and the butler and the baker were there and they looked sad. It always tickled me. Joseph looked at them and said, why look, he’s so sad today? And I want to say, Because we’re all in jail, that’s why we look sad. But they said to him, Because we’ve had a dream and there is none to interpret. And Joseph said, do not dreams, do not interpretation belonging to God tell me the dream thereof? So they give him the interpretation he tells the baker basically that he’s going to lose his life he tells the butler he’s going to be restored to his position and it happens just exactly as Joseph says and as the butlers headed out the door, joseph says, Remember me? And he promptly forgets him and for two years he’s up there with Pharaoh and then Pharaoh has a dream and that dream there are seven years of plenty followed by seven years of famine but Pharaoh didn’t understand that that’s what the dream is about they called Joseph up from the prison pharaoh says to him. I’ve heard of thee that thou canst interpret dreams and Joseph said. It’s not in me. O king god shall give Pharaoh an answer of peace and Joseph interprets the dream and tells him seven years of plenty followed by seven years of famine and so when the Pharaoh hears the interpretation and Joseph gives him counsel to put somebody over the food and all the stores and all the crops and to gather up and so Pharaoh said. Well. Who is there in the kingdom wiser than thee? And he makes Joseph the prime minister you’re familiar with all of this? And now the seven years have gone through the seven years of plenty and now we’re in the seven years of famine and the famine is not just in Egypt the famine is everywhere back in Canaan. Where Joseph’s brothers are there’s no corn there’s nothing to eat they’re going to starve and so their father says. I’ve heard that there’s corn in Egypt and he said. I want you to go down and get corn I want you to get bread. Buy corn so they head down there and they meet Joseph but they don’t know it’s Joseph he’s dressed like an Egyptian he is in a position of power I’m sure they never thought they’d see him again probably never mentioned him again one to another but now they’re standing before him and he treats them roughly in fact. All they can say about him to their father is the lord of that country the Spake roughly to us they buy corn and he sends them home but he keeps simeon and he tells them. Don’t come back unless you bring your little brother Benjamin so they go home and when they go home. They find out they don’t know how it happened but Joseph has put all their money back in their sacks and boy. When they see it. They don’t know what to do they’re afraid to go back they tell their father about it their father sends them back finally he says. You must go back they take Benjamin with him and that’s what we’re going to read about in this passage this will be the first time that Joseph will see his little brother Benjamin since they have sold him into slavery. And Joseph is going to invite them to dinner and I want us to attend that dinner tonight and wants to see what goes on in that dinner. The Bible says in verse number six of chapter 42 and Joseph was the governor of the land. He it was whoops I’m in chapter 42. I want to be in chapter 43, the Bible said in let’s start in verse 26, chapter 43. And when Joseph came home, they brought in the present which was in their hand, into the house and bowed themselves to him, to the earth. And he asked them of their welfare and said, Is your father well? The old man of whom he spake, is he yet alive? And they answered, Thy servant, our Father, is in good help. He is yet alive. And they bowed down their heads and made obesity. And he lifted up his eyes and saw his brother Benjamin, his mother’s son, and said, Is this your younger brother of whom he spake unto me? And he said, God be gracious unto thee, my son. And Joseph made haste for his vows to yearn upon his brother. And he saw it where to weep. And he entered into his chamber and wept there. Now, here’s our text. And he washed his face and went out and refrained himself, and said, Set on bread. And they set on for him by himself, and for them by themselves and for the Egyptians would eat with him by themselves because the Egyptians might not eat bread with the Hebrews, for that is an abomination under the Egyptians. And they sat before him, the first born according to his birthright and the youngest according to his youth. And the men marveled one another and he took and sent Messes unto them from before him. But Benjamin’s Mess was five times as much as any of theirs and they drank and were merry with him. And I’m going to pray a moment. I want to preach for a little while about this dinner. And I’m going to call it tonight, the dinner designed for discovery. Let’s pray. Father, help us now in the next few moments, help me to say what needs to be said and leave off everything else and help me to glorify you. And, Lord, may our minds and our hearts be set upon thee tonight. For Isaiah said, thou will keep him in perfect peace whose mind stayed upon thee. Help that to be our mindset tonight. In Jesus name, amen. Now, we’re going to attend a dinner tonight. I have been to a lot of dinners. I’m thinking about dinners tonight and what the purpose of them, what they’re for. Why do we get together and we eat? And I’m thinking tonight the preacher mentioned about eating fish. I love to eat fish. My favorite fish to eat is walleye. I think it’s the best freshwater fish that you can eat. And we go up north and we go fishing every year, the Lord willing, where I used to pasture. And we go walleye fishing. We have a guide. The fellow takes us out. He takes us where the fish are, tells us how to go about catching them. And we usually do pretty good. And we bring enough home to have some fish fries at the house. And we have several during the year. And I thought one, sometimes we have a fish fry, a dinner, and all it is about is eating. That’s what it’s for. We just get together because we want to eat. We’ll say, you know, we got some of that walleye in the refrigerator. Let’s fry it up. Mama will fry that, deep fry that walleye. She’ll make a hash brown casserole that would make a tadpole slap a whale, it’s so good. And she’ll make hush puppies, homemade hush puppies. And we’ll have what else do we have with it? That coleslaw. I couldn’t think of that coleslaw. And then when it’s all said and done, then we have hot. We have chocolate brownies with vanilla ice cream and hot fudge poured all over the top. You want to talk about good, you say, Preacher, what is that meal for? It’s about eating. That’s all it’s for. We don’t care who’s there. We don’t care what’s going to happen afterwards. We just do it because we like to eat some meals. That’s what they’re for. They’re for eating. But we have another fish fry. We used to have it on Thanksgiving. We used to have it in our house up in Beanblossom, Indiana. And we’ll have a fish fry. And this fish fry, though we’re going to eat, it’s not just about eating because it’s Thanksgiving and the grandkids are there and it’s not about eating. It’s more about entertaining. We enjoy the fish, but we enjoy the grandchildren more. And of course, Rachel and Eric are there, too, and we enjoy them a little bit. But that meal is not just about eating. And you know, it’s true. Sometimes meals are about entertaining, not about eating. My pastor was invited to go to a retreat, they called it, for pastors and their wives on Mackinaw Island up in Michigan. And they went to the Grand Hotel. And it’s a fancy place. You sit down to eat and there’ll be five different forks and six different spoons, and you got to figure out which one you’re supposed to use. And my pastor from Chalk, Tall County, Mississippi, he looked at that menu and couldn’t understand one word on the menu. So he’s reading through the menu and finally he found the word tuna. And he said, I know what tuna is. I’ll order tuna. What he didn’t realize was it was raw tuna. And he ate some of that and, man, it was awful. He said, I couldn’t get the taste out of mouth. In fact, when he got back to Indiana, we just had a fish fry and we brought the leftovers over so he could wash that out of his mouth. But all that business, all that fancy food, that really wasn’t about eating, that was about entertaining, being with friends. And then sometimes a meal is about encouragement. The man who takes us out, takes us fishing, he doesn’t do it anymore, but he said to me, Preacher said, I take people out, I guide them. They pay me a certain amount of money. I take them out on the manusteak lake and I show them where the fish are. But he said, I can take them where the fish are and show them the fish, but I can’t catch the fish for them. And he said, Sometimes I’ll take people out. They have no idea how to get a fish on the line. And so he said, we’ll fish all day. And he said, I’m looking at my fish finder and there’s fish everywhere and I can catch fish, but they can’t catch a fish. So he said, you know what I do? I take them back to the house and I feed them fish that I caught another time. And he said, and he does it. He didn’t say this to me, but I’m smart enough to know he does it for this reason. If they get to eat fish, they’ll come back, even if they didn’t catch any. So sometimes a meal is for encouragement. But the meal that we’re going to look at tonight, this dinner is not about eating. It’s not about entertaining so much or even encouragement. It’s about enlightenment. This dinner is designed for one thing. It’s designed to get these boys thinking about Joseph and about who he is. Because when we look at our text and we wouldn’t have time to look at all the texts surrounding this, that would bolster this point. Everything that Joseph does from the first day he sees these boys when they come to Egypt, everything he does is with one thing in mind to reconcile them to himself. You say, Well, Preacher, he seemed a little harsh to him. They thought he was the Lord of that country that spake roughly to them. But he didn’t do that because he hated them. He didn’t do that to get even. He’s trying to bring them to a place of repentance. He wants them to be reconciled unto him. Can I say this to you about Jesus? Everything he does, he does that we might be reconciled unto him. And this dinner is all about them thinking about who Joseph can be to get their mind thinking. So I want you to see three things in this passage quickly tonight. I want you to notice, first of all, the separating in this passage in this dinner. The Bible says in verse 31, he washed his face and went out and refrained himself and said, Set on bread. Now, notice this next verse. There are several. There is a separation taking place here and they sat on for him by himself and for them by themselves and for the egyptians which did eat with him by themselves because the Egyptians might not eat bread with the Hebrews. For that is an abomination of the Egyptians. So they bring these boys in and they set them in certain places. And what they do is they set the Egyptians in a certain place. They set the Hebrews in a certain place. They don’t set them together. The Bible tells us it’s an abomination for the Egyptians to eat with the Hebrews. The Bible never explains all that. I have some ideas about that, but it’s not important that we go into those. But so they’re separated. The Hebrews are over here. The Egyptians are over here. They’re separated. But notice not only are the Hebrews over here and the Egyptians over here, but notice that Joseph is by himself. He’s not sitting with the Hebrews, and he’s not sitting with the Egyptians. So I can see the Hebrews over here. The Egyptians over here. Look at Joseph. He’s not sitting with us. Maybe they know maybe they know something about Joseph. Maybe they know something about his background. I don’t know what the Egyptians are thinking. Joseph sitting by himself. But I think the Hebrews are looking over and saying, well, he’s supposed to be an Egyptian, but he’s not sitting with the Egyptians. He’s somehow different than the Egyptians and he’s somehow different than us. And I think the question that would come up in their mind is who can this man be? Who can he be? He’s not like us, and he’s not like them. You know what they might say? He’s in a class all by himself. There’s nobody that he fits in with. He stands out. He’s got to sit by himself. I want to tell you something about Jesus. He is in a class all by himself. He stands out. I know he’s God, and I know he’s man. But I want to tell you the God man, he was the God who humbled himself and became a man. But while he was a man, he was still God. There’s never been anybody like him. He stands out by himself. There’s nobody like him. Dr. Wallace Little was preaching at the Pine Bluff Baptist Church in Albany, Georgia. Albany if you’re from up here, albini if you’re from down there. And he was preaching the Pine Bluff Baptist Church and he’s preaching about Jesus. He used every adjective in his vocabulary that he knew to describe Jesus. And he got a little flustered finally, and he said, he’s the onlyest one that ever was. There nobody like him. And that’s the truth. There’s nobody like Jesus. There is a priority here. Notice the Bible said and they sat on for him by himself. They set on for him first. He had the priority in the meal. And I want to say to you, in everything in life, he must have the priority and he must have the preeminence and then the placement. He is different from the Hebrews and he’s different from the Egyptians. There’s never been anybody like Jesus. There never has been. There never will be anybody. Somebody said, Preacher, I cannot understand how he can be God and how he can be man. No, you’re not supposed to understand it. It’s a mystery. Paul said without controversy, great is the mystery of Godliness, how that God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the spirit, seen of angels, preached on among the Gentiles, believed on in the world, and received up into glory. And then there is the preeminence by Himself. You know, I read our brother was preaching out of Hebrews ten. In Hebrews one, the Bible said, who being the brightness of his glory and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by Himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the majesty on high. I’ll tell you what we need to get back to tonight. We need to stop thinking about God as though he is like us and about Jesus as though he thinks like we think and would do what we would do. I know he’s touched with the feelings of our infirmities, but he is God manifest in the flesh. He is above us, friend. His thoughts are not my thoughts. His ways are higher than my ways. He knows the beginning from the end. He’s the King of Kings. I’m the Lord of Lords. He is by himself. There’s none else. There’s none like him. We need to think about him. Who can he be? He is separate from you and I. I know he loves me. I know he knows my heart. I know he’s touched with the feelings of my infirmities. I know the Bible said it behooved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and a faithful high priest. But above that and beyond that, he is more than I can imagine and more than I can tell and more than I know. He is the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. I’m just saying to you tonight, who can he be? There’s nobody like him. We need to get back the awe of our God and the awe of our Savior. God made an accusation against the Jews one day. He said, you thought that I was altogether such as yourself, that I was like you are. But I’m going to tell you, he’s better than we are. He’s above what we are. He cannot be explained. He cannot be figured out. You know what you might as well do? You might as well just trust Him, just like he is. So there is the separating. He wants them to think, who can he be? But then notice the next verse, verse 33. And they sat before him, the first born according to his birthright, and the youngest according to his youth. Now watch this. And the men marveled one another. Why are they marveling? Because Joseph has had them placed according to their birth. The seating. Now, wait a minute. As far as they know, Joseph has just met them. He doesn’t know anything about them except that they came from Canaan and they have a father. And they told him we have one brother. That’s not well, he’s not he’s not not Amen. He’s alive and a little brother. But they don’t know that he knows anything about them. And now Joseph has had them seated from the eldest to the youngest. So, what would be the question? Not only who can he be, but the question’s second question is how does he know? How does he know? How can Joseph? How can this man know all about them before they tell him anything? Can I remind you something about Jesus? He knew all about you before you told him anything. Why do we get this idea? Sometimes we need to let him in on what’s going on. We need to somehow tell him how we’re feeling. We need to remind him of something we think he’s overlooked. No. He knows the beginning from the ending. The eyes of the Lord and all the earth. Beholding the good and the evil. The Hebrew writer said, all things are naked and open with whom we have to do. He knew all about them. He knew who they were before they knew who he was. I’m glad he knew me before I knew him. And not only did he know me before I knew him he loved me before I loved him. John said we love him because he first loved us. I think about the fact that he knew their place. He knew their ages. He looked at them. He knew that Reuben was the first born. He knew about cement and Levi. He knew about Judy. He knew them all. He set them all right down the line. I’ve read them I don’t know how many times and I still can’t keep them in order. But Joseph kept them in order. Why is it we think we know more than God knows? We don’t know. We’d like to think we know. We don’t know. He knows better than I know and more than I know. And he’ll treat me better than I can treat myself because he knows me better than I know myself. He knew their place. He knew their practices. He knew, apparently, this Lord of that country would speak roughly unto them. He knew their practice and the importance and the preference and the preeminence they put on the firstborn and on the birth order there was the portion and the priest and the prophecies that would go along with being the first born be the family priest and the prophecy of the Messiah coming. And apparently, he knows about all that. He knows about all that before they ever bring it up to him. He knows that. And I can see them looking at him, saying, how does he know that he knew what would provoke their interest. The Bible said they marveled it. When they saw what he did, they thought, how does this guy know about all of us? In their minds? You know what God does in our lives and the Lord does in our lives, he does it not to harm us, to provoke our interest in Him, to get us thinking about Him and reminding us that he knows more than we know. Amen. There is the separating. Who can he be? There is the seating. How does he know? And then there is descending. Why does he care? Look in verse 34 and he took and sent messages unto them. I like this little phrase from before him. But Benjamin’s mess was five times so much as any of theirs. They drank and were merry with him. Now, there’s a lot of things going on here. I think one of the things that Joseph is doing and it will become clearer in chapter 44 that Joseph is making sure that these boys don’t hold the same animosity toward Benjamin that they held toward him. Because remember, there are two families here. There’s one family, but two sides to the family, the sons of Rachel and the sons of Leah, and the sons of Leah hated Joseph. And Joseph will make sure in chapter 44 that they’ve got past that. But he begins working on it here in this passage. He took and sent messages. Now, think about this. Think about his personal care for them. He took and sent messages. It doesn’t say they took. It says he took. So when I take that demeanors, everything they got came through his hands. Everything they got, he took it. And it said from before him. So he looked at everything they got and he handled everything. They got everything. Now, you think about that. The things that come into my life, they come from before Him, and he handles them all. He doesn’t say, oh, send something down there to Brian McBride. He said, I want to send something down there to Brian McBride. I have something. So if he’s looked at it, it’s from before him. And if he’s handled it, if I’ll go back to my last point that he knows, then must be it’s just exactly what’s right for me. It didn’t come to me by accident. It didn’t come to me from a hand that doesn’t love me. It comes to me from a hand that cares about me. So he sent it to me. He had personal care. He had particular care for Benjamin. Now, remember, Joseph has been gone for quite a while. And the only thing that he when he would think about them, he would remember how they treated him. But when we study our Bible in Genesis, how did these boys feel about Benjamin? How did they feel well, whenever you read about him, they call him a little one. And whenever you read about him, they’re doing everything they can to protect him and to care for him. They love Benjamin. So you know what I think we find out here? I think those boys are looking at Joseph and he gives Benjamin five times more than anybody else. And I can see them thinking he cares about what we care about. What’s important to us is important to him. And I would say to you, that’s true about Jesus. This seems like a little thing. Well, if it means something to you, it means something to him. If it’s a big thing and it breaks your heart, it breaks his heart. Here’s what the Bible said. For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feelings of our infirmities. I was reading a fellow one time and he said that word touched. He explained it this way. He said, if you take two harps and put them in a room, if they’re in perfect tune, when you pluck the string on this harp, the string on the other harp will vibrate. In response, he said, that’s what that word touched me. And he said, it’s the idea that when my heart strings are plucked, the heartstrings of my savior are plucked. In response, it behooved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest. You remember when Moses stood at the burning bush and God said he said to him, I have surely seen the affliction of my people, and I have heard their cry by reason of their taskmasters, and I know their sorrows, and I am come down to deliver them. I’ve probably told you this before, but I love that verse. He said, I heard, I’ve seen, I’ve seen it’s good when you’re having trouble, if somebody will just see, if somebody will just notice. But then what’s better even than being seen is somebody who here who listened to you. I had a boy come to me one time. He’s getting ready to get married. I was pastoring a church. He’s having cold feet. And he came and sat in my living room and he sat in the I don’t remember if I was in the chair and he was on the couch, but we sat across from each other. He started talking and he said, there’s this and there’s that, and there’s this other thing. And I said my, oh, my and he talked a little further. And I went and he talked a little more. And I said, what about that? And he talked a little more. And I said my, oh, my and he talked a little more. And I said, and he talked a little more. And I said, what about that 3 hours that went on. And when we got done, he looked at me and he said thank you, Pastor. Thank you. You give me such good advice. You’ve helped me so much. All I said was, My, oh, my, oh, my. What about that? He just wanted somebody that’ll hear. I’m glad he hears us. He heard Israel. He saw them. He heard them. But he said, there’s something better I know. I know their sorrows. And then he said something better than that. I am come down to deliver them. Why does he care? His particular care for Benjamin? I think it proved to them he cared about what they cared about. I’m glad he cares about what I care about. You know, the grandkids things will go on at the house. They’ll bring something over. And it’s not a big thing in the grand scheme of things, but it’s a big thing to them. And I pay particular attention to it. Think about God in heaven looking at my life. And in the grand scheme of things, he said, well, if it breaks your heart, it breaks mine. If it’s dear to you, it’s dear to me. His personal care for them, his particular care for them, and then his pricey care for them. Go back to the first verse, verse 31. And he washed his face and went out and refrained himself and said, set on bread. Now, wait a minute. We’re in the middle of a famine. Bread is scarce. In fact, Egypt is the only place you can get any. Joseph is the only one that has it. People in Egypt have sold their farms, they sold their livestock, they sold their land, they’ve even sold themselves to get what Joseph is giving away to these boys. He takes what is scarce and precious because he cares. Yes. And you know what he called himself? Jesus called himself in the New Testament, that bread which came down from heaven. How would they know Joseph cared? Because he’s giving them what’s precious and scarce. The best thing he has something there’s very little of. How do I know God cares about me? Because he gave me what was precious and what was scarce and what there was very little of. He gave me the most precious thing in heaven. Bread is the most precious thing in Egypt right now. And God gave me what heaven had that was most precious, more precious than anything else. He gave me Jesus, the Son of God. He cares for me. He said, Verily, I send you moses gave you not that bread from heaven, but my Father gave you the true bread from heaven. He said, I am the bread of life. So everything that goes on in this meal is with one thing in mind that they might get joseph have the foremost joseph have the foremost place in their thoughts and the priority in their mind that they might think of Him. And I want to say to you, everything that Jesus does for us, he does for that same reason that he might be the foremost thing in our mind that he might have the preeminence and he might have the priority. And he did it when we were lost to draw us to him that we might be reconciled. And now he does it that we’re saved so that we can have peace because our minds are stayed upon Him. I want you to bow your heads a moment. Heads about and your eyes are closed. Let’s not doubt him tonight. Let’s think about who can he be? There’s nobody like him. Let’s think about how does he know? I’m glad he saw me in my mother’s womb. He’s known me. Let’s think about why does he care? Oh, he must care for us to give us the most precious thing that he had. Father, help us tonight to set our affections on things above. Help us to get our mind stayed upon Thee. Help us, Lord, the more we know about you, help it to cause us to want to know more about you be the focal point of our lives and our thoughts have the preeminence in our hearts, lord, it’s the only way we’ll have peace. It’s the only way we’ll have victory. Lord, what great lengths Joseph went to to get these boys thinking about Him. What great lengths you have gone to to get us thinking about you. Help us to think about you and to love you and respond to you. In Jesus name, I pray, amen.