Genesis 42:9: And Joseph remembered the dreams which he dreamed of them, and said unto them, Ye are spies; to see the nakedness of the land ye are come.
Joseph dreamed many years before the incident related in the focus verse that his brothers will bow down to him and the dreams came to pass. However, it was many years after the initial dream that it became reality (Genesis 37, 39-50).
His brothers’ attempt to do away with him, so that the dreams will not be fulfilled, eventually turned out to be part of the plan of God to have them fulfilled. Joseph will be the first to tell you that all things work together for good for those who love God and are the called according to his purpose (Romans 8:28).
Joseph was thrown into prison when he was 17, was made to be in charge of all Egypt when 30, and he saw his brothers 9 years after that. So between the time of the dream and its fulfillment, was over 20 years.
What about Moses? By the time he was 40 years of age, the bible says that he thought that the people of Israel should know that he has been sent for their deliverance (Acts 7:20-37). Based on that conviction, he killed an Egyptian who was fighting an Israelite. He had zeal but he was without the power and presence of God, as would be the case 40 years later when God sent him, backed by supernatural signs and wonders, to confront Pharaoh to let the people go.
He knew he had the calling forty years before but he went about it the wrong way. After forty years of sojourning in the desert leading sheep, God deemed him ready to go take Egypt by storm, but now not by his own power or might (brute force fueled by a temperamental personality) by the Spirit of God (Zechariah 4:6).
Your God-given dream will not become real until God cures you of self-dependence, which was what happened with Moses. And also, until you have proved your faithfulness to him, just like Joseph did.
Joseph refused to yield to the sexual advances of wife of Potiphar when he was a servant in their house. Because he was a stickler for purity and not interested at all in yielding to the pressure from a woman, Joseph became a prisoner.
But without that phase of his life (he would have dodged that phase if he compromised his stand against fornication), if you follow the narrative of his life very well, he would not have met two of Pharaoh’s servants when he sent them to prison. He would not have interpreted their dream for them. And based on that, 2 years later, when the king had a dream which was a hard knock to crack for his wise men, one of them remembered what Joseph did for them in the prison, mentioned him to Pharaoh. From there he became the Prime Minister of Egypt, and his dream came true.
God made a promise to Abraham to make his offspring as the stars in heaven, but it wasn’t until many years later that it became a reality (and in a sense it is still being unfolded) (Genesis 15:1-6).
God described himself as the one who declares the end from the beginning, from ancient time making known what is yet to take place, saying, “I will perform my counsel and carry out my pleasure (Isaiah 46:9-10).”
In the first chapters of the bible, after the sin of Adam, in declaring the punishment of the serpent, God said that he would bruise the feet of the seed of the woman, who will in turn crush his head. That took place at the cross (Jesus is the seed of the woman), which was thousands of years later (Genesis 3:14-15).
Your dream will come to pass in God’s time and in God’s way.
– 2Samuel 5). It was a public occasion. It took place in the midst of his father and his brothers.
But it will be many years and tears later that that will become a reality. Before that dream came through, he passed through several highs and lows.
From the height of killing Goliath, to the low of running for his life, into the wilderness; from the low of being insulted by Nabal as a vagabond, while on the run from Saul (and in response to that insult, David with anger, embarked on visiting total destruction on his house, and Abigail the wife of Nabal came quickly to meet him along the way bringing supplies with her, turning his mind away from that vengeful venture) to the height of marrying Abigail when Nabal died after suffering for ten days from a sickness.
From the height of successful raids with his squad of warriors, to the low of almost getting stoned by the same people because their families were taken captive when they were not at home.
From the height of recovering all that was taken away to the low of hearing that King Saul and Jonathan have been killed in battle;
For the height of being made the king of Judah, to the low of Joab’s (David’s number one military man) killing of the general in the opposing army (of the rest of the tribes of Israel) who came on a peace mission to David, then to the height of being made king over the whole of Israel.
That dreams come through in God’s time is a truism for Moses, for Joseph, for David, and also for you.
David had the dream of bringing the ark of God to Jerusalem. But that dream suffered a setback. While transporting such precious object (2Samuel 6), He did not follow the precepts in the word of God on how the ark should be moved, i.e., on the sons of Levi (1Chronicles 15:11-29). That was God’s way, God’s method. David learnt the hard way that it is not only important to have a dream and pursue it; you must also pursue it in God’s way.
Saul wanted victory, but he went about it the wrong way, offering a sacrifice that was not his to make (1Samuel 13:1-15), thereby losing his kingdom. Victory is good, but you have to go about getting it God’s way. A crowd is good in the church, but you have to go about getting them God’s way.
The dream of Jesus was to save the world, but when nearing the cross, he asked God if there is any other way to accomplish that apart from the gruesome death on the cross. He however said to God: not my will but yours be done (Luke 22:39-44). Since the judgment on sin was death, the price that had to be paid to remove that judgment from humanity is to be death on the object of the sacrifice for the sin of man, which was the Son of God, Jesus Christ.
Abraham would testify that dream come through in God’s way. When God promised him that he will gave him a son, it seem time was ticking away against the fulfillment of that dream (Genesis 15-19, 21). When his wife suggested that he sleep with Hagar, he did, thinking maybe Sarai was revealing the way of God, and Hagar gave birth to Ishmael.
Eventually, more than 10 years after the birth of Ishmael, God showed up, revealing his own way. His way was that Sarah will give birth to the promised child, Isaac, and that the covenant that he has with Abraham will be continued in him, not Ishmael.
Ishmael was Abraham’s own way, Isaac was God’s. You may think you have gotten away with your own way, but the best you can have from your own way is Ishmael. Isaac may take more time in coming, but there is nothing better than God’s own choice.
- Keep Faith and Keep Patience (christopherscottblog.typepad.com)
- Genesis Ch. 21 – Sarah Bore Isaac to Abraham in Her Old Age (lastdayscalendar.com)
- Women of the Word: Abigail (virtuousgirls.wordpress.com)
- Great women of the bible challenge- ABIGAIL & Anna (renaissanceideal.wordpress.com)