"...and they will afflict them four hundred years. And also the nation whom they serve I will judge; afterward they shall come out with great possessions." Genesis 15:13-14
Text: Exodus 1:8
THE FOREKNOWLEDGE OF GOD
God in His foreknowledge saw the affliction that Israel would have to endure! Suffering is never easy to bear at any time, but it would help if there was that faith in God and in His foreknowledge!
In His grace, His foreknowledge was made known and revealed through prophecy. Man’s part is to know that prophetic word and to believe in it! That faith in God would go a long way to sustain the spirit in times of suffering!
JOSEPH’S CONTRIBUTION FORGOTTEN
If Joseph had not been there at the right time and at the right place, Egypt would have been devastated! Through good and skilful administration, Egypt not only survived a great famine, but also had emerged as an even more powerful nation.
“Then Joseph bought all the land of Egypt for Pharaoh;
for every man of the Egyptians sold his field, because
the famine was severe upon them.
So the land became Pharaoh’s.
And as for the people, he moved them into the cities,
from one end of the borders of Egypt to the other end.”
This great feat of Joseph was all but forgotten with the passing of time. Worse was yet to come!
A NEW PHARAOH
In the process of time, a new pharaoh arose. He decided that he owed nothing to Joseph and his clan.
“Now there arose a new king over Egypt, who
did not know Joseph.”
Of course, this new Pharaoh could not have known Joseph personally. The word “know” however has an added idea. He refused to acknowledge all that Joseph had done for Egypt. What Joseph did belonged to the annals of history. He did not feel compelled in any way to make any concessions to Joseph and his family! He was after all the Pharaoh of the land, and he had supreme authority over all Egypt!
A NEW POLICY
This new Pharaoh had his own unique way of interpreting past history. He also had his own special way of interpreting the present. In his opinion, Israel was to be seen as a potential threat to the security of Egypt. He felt that a new policy had to be implemented. As Pharaoh, he felt that he must safeguard his country from potential danger! This new policy was to afflict Israel!