“Now Joseph had been taken down to Egypt. And Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh, captain of the guard, an Egyptian, bought him from the Ishmaelites who had taken him down there. 2 The Lord was with Joseph, and he was a successful 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 he did to prosper in his hand. 4 So Joseph found favor in his sight, and served him. Then he made him overseer of his house, and all that he had he put under his authority. 5 So it was, from the time that he had made him overseer of his house and all that he had, that the Lord blessed the Egyptian’s house for Joseph’s sake; and the blessing of the Lord was on all that he had in the house and in the field. 6 Thus he left all that he had in Joseph’s hand, and he did not know what he had except for the bread which he ate. And Joseph was a goodly person, and well favoured. 7 And it came to pass after these things that his master’s wife cast longing eyes on Joseph, and she said, “Lie with me.” 8 But he refused and said to his master’s wife, “Look, my master trusts me with everything in his entire household. 9 There is no one greater in this house than I, nor has he kept back anything from me but you, because you are his wife. How then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?” 10 So it was, as she spoke to Joseph day by day, that he did not heed her, to lie with her or to be with her.”
Hello and welcome back to Being a Good Man. Let’s jump right in to the craziness of Joseph’s life. The situation Joseph found himself in is not an uncommon one, especially now with social media; men are encountering women more and more than ever before. BUT men, just because you have encounters does not mean you need to act. Let’s look closer at Joseph to learn how you too can be a goodly person (v.6).
- Endure with a Good Attitude
Joseph was sold into slavery and taken as a slave to a foreign land that involved traveling through the desert. Take notice, he was “taken as a slave”. That means there was no emergency exit row with extra leg room, no car service with air conditioning and radio nor was he driving the newest and latest hands free capable car, he was a slave and he traveled as such from his home to a foreign land. Regardless of his circumstance he still conducted himself well. How do I know? Look at verse 2:
“The Lord was with Joseph, and he was a successful man; and he was in the house of his master the Egyptian.”
Joseph was just bought and taken out of a hole in the wilderness. A hole he was placed in by his brothers. [Now scripture does not state whether this man knew these were his brothers who sold Joseph or not]. But can you imagine being the head of the US military and being given a random man another group of men found in a hole (v.1). I know if I found a man in a hole and was going to give him employment, the last place I would put him would be in my house, near my family. But Potiphar did, he placed Joseph in his house [or Pharaoh’s house which could have been the same place]. This seems insane, how did he get to the “White House”? Look at the map below.
Joseph was sold into slavery in Dothan after he went to visit his brothers out in the field (Gen. 37:14-17). The Joseph traveled over 200 miles as a slave before cars, trains, buses and airplanes existed with the Ishmaelites. Once he arrived in Egypt, Potiphar purchased and him and just like today when making a purchase you check the reviews. After a 200 mile journey, the Ishmaelites became familiar with Joseph’s strengths and abilities. This long journey was probably a long, hot miserable experience for Joseph but it was also good for him because by the time he arrived in Egypt, the Ishmaelites could recommend him to Potiphar based on what they learned about him during the long journey. So now, Joseph is working in the house.
“…his master saw that the Lord was with him and the Lord made all that he did to prosper in his hand.”
What does it look like to have the LORD with you? The second part of verse 3 is the highlight of God being with him. Things are looking up for Joseph’s master, ever since Joseph arrived every job they give him prospers. Let’s begin with his strengths: Joseph was intelligent and articulate; his father kept him from working in the field and required him to study. He may not have been super muscular either because of this. Do what you can do well and try your best at any task given to you, any right-minded person will see your strengths when you are given various tasks. Commit to all you do and watch God bless you as he blessed Joseph.
2. The Lord is With You
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…”
The second point I want to make from looking at Joseph’s situation is how man elevated him based on his favor with God. This is the real version of “started from the bottom now we here!”
He went from a pit to being the head of Potiphar’s estate. You need to look at this and be encouraged! Who cares where you started, when you have God’s favor your future can look nothing like you ever imagined. A servant turned CEO – only God can do that. And if you notice in the text, it mentions three times “the Lord was with him”. Joseph did not get here because of a college degree or a business connection, he had the LORD on His side. Remember in all you do, God is with you always!
3. Make it Better
The third point I would like to make is: be a blessing wherever you go.
5 So it was, from the time that he had made him overseer of his house and all that he had, that the Lord blessed the Egyptian’s house for Joseph’s sake; and the blessing of the Lord was on all that he had in the house and in the field.
This is amazing and inspiring! Joseph’s presence in the master’s house allowed God’s favor to overflow from Joseph to his master. Are you a benefit to your employer and household? Survey your surroundings and see are things better when you are around, do people move closer to you at work when they need help? Reflect over different places you have been, did people who interacted with you grow and learn when you came around? If so, then you God is using you to reach people. It is important to acknowledge this as God not anything you did. God will place you in different arenas to move through you to make an impact in the lives of other people. But in this you must keep your eyes open because others will take notice and they might become jealous or worse. This brings us to the next point…
4. Be aware
“And it came to pass after these things, that his master’s wife cast her eyes upon Joseph; and she said, Lie with me.”
Men when you begin to accomplish things pay attention, are women looking at you or your stuff? When Joseph first came to town after surviving a 200 mile journey through the desert, Potiphar’s wife paid him no attention. She probably did not even know his name nor care. But, the brother Joseph just came up; he’s running the show now, new job, responsibilities, people working for him and now… Mrs. “Potiphar” is intrigued. She has a man, he’s the only person above Joseph, meaning he is “Top Dog” but she is not satisfied with that, she wants the new young one. (Just a little head’s up gentlemen, if your boss’ wife ever wants to sleep with you…JUST SAY NO!) Now pay close attention to verse 8:
“and she said, Lie with me. 8 But he refused…”
Gentlemen learn just because you have been made an offer DOES NOT mean you should accept. Rebuke the fear of missing out and simply say no!
5. Resist temptation
I cannot stress how important this next step is for your life: you need to resist temptation!
8 But he refused and said to his master’s wife, “Look, my master trusts me with everything in his entire household. 9 There is no one greater in this house than I, nor has he kept back anything from me but you, because you are his wife.
I know it’s hard out here, women just throw themselves at you, ladies DM you, pictures appear on your phone without request however, it does not give you a reason to sin. Take these steps and apply them to your life when you encounter temptation.
- Recognize your blessings. When Potiphar’s wife tempts him, Joseph immediately responded by saying: “Look, my master trusts me with everything in his entire household. 9 There is none greater in this house than I.” He refused but he also knew it would take more than a no to resist the temptation. He had to remind himself what he had to realize he was not lacking anything.
- Appreciate what you have. Joseph accepts what all the master has given him and what he did not give to him. “9 There is none greater in this house than I; neither has he kept back any thing from me but you.” This is the 80-20 rule Old Testament edition. Joseph says I have everything (80%) the only thing I do not have is you (20%). “I could be with you but that means I would be giving more than I would be getting.” For Joseph, it was clear, what he had was better than what he did not.
- Prioritize your relationship with God. If you find yourself in a situation where you are willing to lose your belongings and job, think about what you have with God. Notice what Joseph says in the latter part of verse 9, “How then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?” Joseph had lived life with God’s favor, that’s how he was raised differently from his brothers, was spared from death, and became a servant who rose to leadership in his master’s household. This one moment could have a negative affect on his whole future. No woman is worth losing God’s anointing on your life.
6. Be trustworthy
“10 So it was, as she spoke to Joseph day by day, that he did not heed her, to lie with her or to be with her.”
This is the last point and title of the post because this is one of the qualities that makes you a good man. Joseph’s trustworthiness is highlighted in verse 10. Did you see that? Let me repeat it: “…she spoke to Joseph day by day, that he did not heed her, to lie with her or to be with her.“ She kept trying and he said, “NO!” She tempted him everyday but he held onto his relationship with God, his job, his status and most of all his good name. Was this easy for him? ABSOLUTELY NOT! But he did it, why? I believe it was God’s favor. It was the holding onto God’s favor through this temptation of sin that allowed Him to resist this woman. The strength gained from refusing to lie with her allowed him to maintain God’s favor in the future.
Men, I encourage you to be trustworthy men. My favorite definition of trustworthy is: above suspicion. The resistance, recognition of blessings, appreciation of life and prioritization of God moves you above suspicion. You will not be questioned because of how you live your life. You know you are a good man when things go wrong or a rumor is spread about you and your wife is unbothered. This means you are above suspicion. How great would it be to live above suspicion because your character and actions have proven you are worthy of trust. Don’t you want that kind of life? A life above suspicion, a life of blessings and to know wherever you go God is blessing others just because of you. I know that is the kind of man I would want for myself, family and friends. So, I encourage and pray you are becoming a good man.
Be trustworthy, be blessed and be a blessing!