I’m an Indian and I’m not used to Podcasts but as i heard the title of “Let my people Think” i thought i should go for it and it has become the only Podcast I’m listening to because Ravi-ji’s talks helped how to think. After listening to Joseph’s life from Ravi-ji, i put my thought as a question.
Did God impress by Joseph’s life and gave his lifestyle as Ten Commandments?
Hello @PRASANGI Thank you for your post. I seem to be having trouble understanding the question. Would you mind asking it in a different way to see if that helps me? If I get the chance this weekend, I will listen to the podcast in order to understand further. Thank you again for getting involved so soon after joining.
Welcome @PRASANGI - great to meet you!
It looks like you are asking if God was impressed with how Joseph (in Genesis) lived, and if God considered Joseph to have truly kept the Ten Commandments. Is that what you meant?
Hello @MaryBeth1 @jlyons -Thank you for responding my question.
Firstly, my english isn’t good. Sometimes i had to listen a podcast 2-3 times to catch up Ravi-ji’s pace. To understand his high vocabulary i had to look into a dictionary and for some idioms i had to google them. I do all this because I want to learn. Sorry for troubling you with my half knowledge.
Secondly, what i want to ask is this did Joseph live well, so Isarelites may live well by following his lifestyle through Law?
If the question is still unclear, forgive me for it. Thank you.
Well, I congratulate you on the extra efforts that you are making to learn even with the language difficulties. I am confident that you will improve with time. Just remember that Joseph also had to learn Egyptian! And your English is much better than my Hindi!
As for how Joseph lived - yes, he did live very well - far better than his brothers.
But he did not do it through law, he did it through faith. The Law of Moses, Including the Ten Commandments, would not be given until hundreds of years after Joseph died.
Hebrews 11:22 speaks of Joseph’s great faith. And all through his life he showed great faith in the things God had revealed to him through his childhood dreams - even when he was betrayed by his brothers, he never gave up. When lied about by his master’s wife, when forgotten by the king’s butler, he never gave up. When he did everything right, and it all seemed to go wrong, Joseph’s faith remained strong.
And that faith was what enabled him live well - even when his life was difficult, even when the years became many, even without ever hearing of the Ten Commandments, his faith was what pleased God. Hebrews 11:6 says, without faith, it is impossible to please him, for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.
I hope these thoughts will help you - and I hope that you will press forward in learning about the faith that drove Joseph - may it drive your life as well!
I think your English is very good considering it is not your first language. If I had to learn the language you speak, I’m not sure I could do it.
Reading Ravi’s books takes two hands for me, too. A dictionary in one hand and Ravi’s book in the other. I am currently reading “A Shattered Visage: The Real Face of Atheism” and it is going slowly because of all the words I have to look up. I am determined to get through it.
Thank you for your patience with us as we are grateful to be able to interact with you and answer your questions. If we continue to misunderstand your questions, here is something that may help us in the process: Google Translate. You type the text in your native language and on the other side of the page it will translate it into English. What is your native language?
Here is what I think you are saying and asking in the questions you have posted. Please do not hesitate to correct me if I am wrong. We want to learn from you, too.
“Was God impressed by the life that Joseph lived? If God was impressed with Joseph’s life, did God write the Ten Commandments based on Joseph’s example for the rest of us to follow?”
I will send this off to you and wait for your reply. If I have misunderstood the question or even a part of it, please correct me. Thank you again for your patience with us as we strive to communicate well.
May the Lord bless you!
Thank you, Sir. I wish i could teach you but I’m not good in hindi, too. I’m a South Indian, i speak telugu.
That’s what i meant, thank you @MaryBeth1.
Thank you for asking this question Prasangi. I think this conversation is very interesting. I like reading what everyone has contributed so far. I believe God is the author of the moral code that Joseph chose to live by. I also believe God was the author of the moral code of the 10 commandments that were given about 400 years later. So that is why the two were so similar. God did indeed honor Joseph’s choices because they were in keeping with God’s moral code (even though it was not in written form at the time that Joseph lived). But God was also the author of the 10 commandments and they are based on God’s character rather than on Joseph’s character. So God is the common measure of morality in these two examples, rather than Joseph. This is what I understand the Bible to say. Does this help with your question? I think it is a very good question. I can see how that might have been confusing. I look forward to hearing what you think about this!
Hello @PRASANGI First, I think it is important to look at what is meant by the word ‘impress’.
There are several definitions, but the one that applies directly to your question is: to admire or respect someone or to gain the interest or admiration of.
In questioning whether or not God was impressed with Joseph, I think it is safe to say, if He was impressed with any fallible (sinful) human, it would have been with, according to Jesus’ own words, John the Baptist.
“Truly I tell you, among those born of women, there is no one greater than John the Baptist; yet the one who is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he [John the Baptist]”. (Matthew 11.11 and Luke 7.28)
Was Jesus impressed with John the Baptist? Understanding the context or circumstances surrounding Jesus’ statement is imperative to drawing the proper conclusion. Three things must be weighed in the balance to arrive at the truth.
What does Jesus mean by great?
Does God’s admiration of any human being line up with His nature and character?
Does the rest of scripture support the idea that God was impressed with Joseph, John the Baptist or any one else?
First, when we examine why Jesus says there was “no one greater than John the Baptist” we must look at John’s role in history and office in ministry. John’s role was the equivalent of being the forerunner or “best man” to the Groom.
In Jewish weddings, right before the ceremony was to take place, the best man would walk through the streets and announce in a loud voice, “The bridegroom is coming! The bridegroom is coming!” Those in the wedding party were listening, dressed, prepared and ready for this announcement and would come out quickly to meet the groom.
In like fashion, John the Baptist announced the coming of the Jesus to the nation of Israel. His office in ministry was to be the last of the prophets in Old Testament history. He saw Jesus in the flesh. No other Old Testament prophet had been given the privilege. These gifts bestowed upon him by God were what made him great. Not any personal status, ability or merit of his own.
Secondly, we must examine what God says about His nature and character to get a balanced view. In chapter 42 and verse 8 of Isaiah, the prophet writes: “I am the LORD; that is my name! I will not yield my glory to another or my praise to idols.”
An interesting verse that shows us the effects of our righteousness upon God is found in Job 35.7. “If you are righteous, what do you give to God, or what does He receive from your hand?”
God is other. Set apart from us and completely holy, infallible, and pure. He needs nothing from us as He is all sufficient in Himself.
Thirdly, we examine what scripture says regarding God’s admiration or respect towards people. In Acts 10.34 the apostle Peter addresses that point. “God is no respecter of persons.” What does that mean? He certainly respects each and every person’s right to believe in Him or reject Him. This context refers to God not having any favorites whatsoever. He absolutely loves and died for the Dalit as much as He did the dignitary. There is no caste system in the kingdom of God. We are all sons and daughters of the King through adoption by the blood of Christ. The adoption process is the exact same for everyone. Saved by grace and through faith.
I realize this answers only one of your two questions. I wanted to do it justice. I will respond to the second one soon. If this causes any more questions or confusion, please let me know. I am interested in your feedback.