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The Pit

Staring through the prison bars from his "pit," Joseph's mind wandered to the last time he looked through a dusty haze into the sky. That time, his brothers ripped his robe off of him, soiled it with the blood of a wild animal and threw him into a pit. With his garment, they deceived his father, telling him that Joseph was dead. Joseph didn't stay in the pit. They sold him as a slave to an Egyptian caravan.

Egypt wasn't all that bad for Joseph. Sure, he missed his father and longed for home, but he had a good assignment-watching after Potiphar's household. He'd done well for himself and became head over the entire household. Potiphar didn't keep anything from him, except of course, his wife.

Potiphar's wife had another idea. She found Joseph attractive and made a pass at him. "But Joseph refused. "Look," he told her, "my master trusts me with everything in his entire household. [9] No one here has more authority than I do! He has held back nothing from me except you, because you are his wife. How could I ever do such a wicked thing? It would be a great sin against God." (Genesis 39:8-9 NLT)

Later, Potiphar's wife wouldn't take "no" for an answer. She clutched onto Joseph and demanded he sleep with her. Joseph didn't. Instead he turned and ran. As he ran from the seductresses' grasp, his clothes tore. Once again, Joseph sat in a "pit" with his clothes in someone else's hand. This time his brothers did not tear off his clothes. It was his boss's wife. She used the garment to deceive her husband into thinking that Joseph made a pass at her and he threw Joseph into prison.

Joseph may have thought that once again he'd lost it all. How could he know that soon God would use him to preserve Egypt and his family through a time of famine? At the time, he probably thought he had nothing. Nothing except his integrity and his faith. But then again, whether you live in Pharaoh's palace or in a prison, what else is there? 

Read the sermon, Extreme Intimacy that corresponds to this devotional.


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