Hebrews 11 is a chapter often called the Great Hall of Faith or the Great Faith Chapter. I see it as a chapter of good reports. Every individual account is a good report given by God about these people. God noticed their faith and not their faults. Their sins were washed underneath the blood, they also had the saving faith that Abel had. And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more. Heb. 10:17
Now we have come to Joseph. Joseph is an interesting character. I may be wrong with this statement, but as far as I can tell he is one of four people in the Bible that we do not know about his sin. Those men are Abel, Joseph, Daniel, and of course Jesus. I do not believe he led a sinless life. The Bible says all have sinned, that includes Joseph and neglects Jesus because He does not have a sin nature.
We do not need to look at the entire life of Joseph for this message. Again we are just catching a glimpse of their life. Consider Jospeh. He lived a life that it would be easy to say, “that is not fair,” especially with today’s entilement mentality. He did not complain. He pressed on and he was faithful. I am sure he dealt with discouragement, but he did not allow that to hinder him.
I want us to notice our verse. By faith Joseph, when he died, made mention of the departing of the children of Israel; and gave commandment concerning his bones. Heb. 11:22 There are two expressions that give us an indication about his characteristic of faith. They are: “made mention,” and “gave commandment.” He had a stated faith. He talked about his faith.
For sake of context let us see what he is talking about. 29 And the time drew nigh that Israel must die : and he called his son Joseph, and said unto him, If now I have found grace in thy sight, put , I pray thee, thy hand under my thigh, and deal kindly and truly with me; bury me not, I pray thee, in Egypt: 30 But I will lie with my fathers, and thou shalt carry me out of Egypt, and bury me in their buryingplace. And he said , I will do as thou hast said. 31 And he said , Swear unto me. And he sware unto him. And Israel bowed himself upon the bed’s head. Gen. 47:29-31 Jacob made Jospeh promise that he would be burried with his fathers. He wanted to burried in his homeland, not Egypt. He had what they call heritage in the land of his fathers. Joseph made a similar request. 24 And Joseph said unto his brethren, I die : and God will surely visit you, and bring you out of this land unto the land which he sware to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob. 25 And Joseph took an oath of the children of Israel, saying , God will surely visit you, and ye shall carry up my bones from hence. 26 So Joseph died , being an hundred and ten years old: and they embalmed him, and he was put in a coffin in Egypt. Gn. 50:24-26 Part of his request made mention of a future event that he saw as a fact. This was his expression of a stated faith. His faith in the Lord allowed him to state what will happen, because of that he had a Biblical hope that led him to make a similar request. Although he was used greatly in Egypt and had a family because of Egypt he also had heritage in another country.
A faith worth having is a faith worth talking about. If faith in Jesus can save us then we should talk about it. If faith in Jesus can help us when we are discouraged then we should share what the Lord has done for us. If Jesus makes a difference in our lives then we should talk about it.
I know for some of Joseph’s life it seemed that his faith was a wasted faith, but God was working on putting Joseph in the right place at the right time so he could be help for his family. We don’t know what God is doing in our lives, but we must believe that God is working. We must have a stated faith even when right now does not seem like things are going are way becuase we have a God who is working in us and through us and becuase we have a sure future. (A future that we often undervalue.)