For the next few weeks we will look at our relationship with nonbelievers and even those in the Body of Christ who have caused harm or aimed evil at us. As we’ve journeyed through Romans 12 we’ve found out some truths about true spirituality. Romans 12 really outlines 5 key relationships and their biblical responses. So far, we have looked at four of them:
- True spirituality is about our relationship with God in which we must SURRENDER to God to receive His power
- True spirituality is about our relationship with the world from which we must SEPARATE to receive God’s peace
- True spirituality is about our relationship with ourselves in which we must take a SOBER SELF-ASSESSMENT to understand God’s purpose for our lives
- True spirituality is about our relationship with other believers in which we must SERVE to experience God’s presence
Today we come to our final relationship:
5. True spirituality is shown in our relationship with nonbelievers in which we must SUPERNATURALLY RESPOND to evil with good so that we can receive God’s perspective
You and I at some point will be betrayed, lied on and mistreated. Peter said to not think it strange that things would come to try you. Even Paul said to us that we shouldn’t be surprised with afflictions come. He said although they may seem heavy, they a nothing to do with the eternal weight of glory that we will experience. If you choose to live in glory, you will suffer persecution. The question I have for you is,
“Who has wounded you? Who has betrayed you? Who has lied to you and who has hurt you? Who?” – Pastor Ferne Sapp
Let’s turn to Genesis 45 and examine Joseph. Joseph grew up in a dysfunctional family:
- His father stole his brother’s birthright.
- Joseph’s father was a trickster.
- Joseph’s grandmother was a liar.
- Then his sister was raped. She went down to the wilderness “mall” and Shechem violated her and he took her.
- Joseph’s brothers were thugs. They went down and killed all the men in Shechem because of what happened.
- Joseph was rejected by his only siblings.
- Joseph’s brothers wanedt to kill him all because he had a dream.
- His brothers ultimately decided to sell him in to slavery.
In spite of all of this, Joseph was able to overcome by what he knew.
Joseph Knew That God Had Sent Him To Egypt
Joseph understood that no matter what it looked like, God was in control. You can handle a lot of stuff that comes your way because God is in control. We see in the story, when Joseph was finally reunited with his brothers, his brothers feared for their lives knowing what they did to him. Yet, Joseph was able to weep and cry with them because he knew it was God. He said you thought it was you but you don’t have that kind of power. You blame your mother and father but God would never give them that much power. They were only an instrument that God used.
Joseph Knew He Had An Assignment
No matter where you are at or what you are going through. There is a purpose to your assignment. Everything in your life is about purpose and assignment. Declare: “I am here TO___________”. Get in your prayer closet and ask God what you are suppose to do. Your “To” is beyond you. It is more than a bigger house or a new car. Your assignment is beyond material things. In everything you must see the eternal value of your actions. I went through all of this so that you could be saved. God made Joseph over all of Egypt so he could give Pharaoh the instruction on what to do during the famine, so that many, including his family, could be saved.
“My ‘To’ is wrapped up in someone else.” – Pastor Ferne Sapp
Joseph Knew That God Was Working It Out For His Good And His Glory
Joseph said that God had allowed him to be a Father to Pharaoh. God will give you a place that you will have authority and insight to those in authority. Ask God what your “To” is. If you do your “To” well enough, it will bring you in the presence of kings and queens.
When evil comes upon you say, “I am not a victim because God is in control.” – Pastor Ferne Sapp