Holding Position with Integrity: God’s Plan for the Advancement of His Eternal Cause.

From Genesis 42, we can learn about wise stewardship, political leadership, and the fact that sin will always find you out. But the main focus of this chapter is a servant leader who lives faithfully wherever God puts him because he knows he has a divine purpose.

A person will know 10,000 people in a lifetime and strongly influence 10. Each of those 10 will influence 10 more, who each influence 10 more, until the number grows to 8 billion people being influenced in 6 generations. These chapters show Joseph’s influence expanding rapidly. Joseph served his father as a boy, led while serving his brothers, then did the same under Potiphar and in prison, and now serving as a leader under Pharaoh. Our Lord Jesus came as the ultimate servant (see Philippians 2:5-7), and Joseph is one of the richest examples of a servant leader in the Old Testament.

Joseph was Responsible.

Joseph used the spiritual and physical gifts God had given him responsibly. He didn’t use position for his own benefit but for the benefit of others. His interpretation of the dream and counsel to Pharaoh was for the good of Pharaoh and all of Egypt.

This attitude is necessary for servant-leadership. Servant leaders must be faithful to their calling, willing to be a learner and a follower of others, and serve even in the little things at home and at work.

Joseph was Reliable.

Joseph was so dependable his bosses didn’t even concern themselves with whatever he oversaw. He wasn’t distracted in times of abundance or want. It is God’s natural design for us to work for the benefit of others, but that original intent for servant leadership took its first hit at the Fall in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 2-3). Sin makes us self-aware of our own needs, but righteousness makes us aware of others’ needs and God’s eternal purposes.

Everyone leads somehow. Every Christian, who God has remade, has influence where He’s put them. We should be known as dependable and for being servants to those we lead.

Joseph Excelled.

Being gifted and talented is one thing, but developing those gifts and talents is another.

Joseph developed his talents and gifts through hard work. He learned to delegate and trust others. He was still always involved where he had oversight; he participated in the work too. Joseph’s servant leadership motivated other people to serve God’s purpose.

Servant leaders are always developing their talents by learning and growing deep roots in the Word and the local church. Spiritual gifts are developed by using them in the flock. Serving the Lord takes labor and effort, but God commands and rewards such work (1 Thessalonians 1:3). Our primary goal is to do God’s will according to God’s Word.

Application Points

  • Are you someone who is faithful in any environment? Do you believe that God has designed a specific and unique reason for your existence?
  • Are you a servant wherever God has given you influence? Do you serve even in the little things, at home, and at work? This week, practice finding one way to make someone’s day better. How can you esteem everybody higher than yourself?
  • If you are committed to servant leadership, let’s go deeper. Why are you being a servant leader? What is your goal? Keep in mind Jesus’ directions for every believer in His church: “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you” (Matthew 28:19-20). “And you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth” (Acts 1:8).

Tools for Further Study

Cross References to Explore:
  • Philippians 1-2, 1 Thessalonians 2-3 – Paul’s desire to minister to others.
  • Philippians 2:3-4, Luke 16:10 – Serve others above yourself.
A Hymn to Encourage: “A Tender Heart”

Take me now, Lord Jesus, take me;
I would give my heart to Thee.
Thy devoted servant make me,
Only Thine to be.
Savior, while my heart is tender,
I would give Thee every part.
All my talents I surrender;
I am Thine, Lord, here's my heart.

Use me now, Lord Jesus, use me,
As I tell of Calvary.
May Thy Spirit move within me,
Bringing souls to Thee.
Savior, while my heart is tender,
I would give Thee every part.
All my talents I surrender;
I am Thine, Lord, here's my heart.

Send me now, Lord Jesus, send me,
Lead me in Thy perfect way.
Thy command shall always guide me;
Gladly I obey.
Savior, while my heart is tender,
I would give Thee every part.
All my talents I surrender;
I am Thine, Lord, here's my heart.