Archive of Pastor Darby's Sermon Notes, transcribed from his original typewritten documents
LEARNING IN THE JAIL HOUSE
Nov 2, 1969 pm
THE MYSTERIOUS GRACE OF GOD IS SHOWN IN A JAIL HOUSE IN EGYPT IN AN AMAZING WAY
- The terrible series of events that dragged Joseph to the bottom of the prison did not find him lacking.
- God has used prison experiences for great purposes - John Bunyan, Apostle Paul
- The strange set of circumstances typifies the entire human race, showing two types of people and their response to God leading to two separate destinies-
I. THE MINISTRY OF JOSEPH IN JAIL Gen 39:20-40:8
Joseph reached prison- v.20, the very bottom of the suffering ladder- deserted, despised, etc.
A. JOSEPH FOUND FAVOR IN THE SIGHT OF THE LORD 39:21 - WHO CARES WHAT MEN MAY SAY OR THINK?
- The Lord was with Joseph- Rom 8:28 still applies; the Lord's mercies and favor is worth it all
- v. 22 Joseph became a type of Christ- given the responsibility of caring for the prisoners
- "After these things" v.1, here is a strange set of circumstances showing the gospel of Christ
B. PHARAOH WAS VERY WROTH - v.2 - THERE IS NO RECORD OF WHY THE EARTHLY KING WAS ANGRY- BUT GREAT SYMBOLISM
- This is a picture of the King of all Glory - the Almighty God- with power of life and death
- He was offended- v.1; these two men had sin in their lives- and sin provokes God's wrath
- The Pharaoh was wroth- v.2 - The wrath of God is against all lack of faith - John 3:36
C. THE CAPTAIN OF THE GUARD TRUSTED JOSEPH v. 4
- This man may well have been Potiphar, the man of Chapter 39, could do nothing else for Joseph
- The two men of the story were bound with Joseph- and Jesus partook of same flesh as all men
- Indeed, our weak, marred image of God, flesh is a prison house- no escape for Jesus
Every man serves his season of life in prison house of the flesh - how do you fare?
II. THE DREAM OF THE CHIEF BUTLER v. 9-15
V. 8 We dream dreams- and God gives us revelation through the seat of the conscience
A. THE VINE WAS BEFORE ME - v. 9
- A beautiful picture of salvation found in Jesus Christ - John 15 - "He is the vine"
- The branches - shoot forth- a picture of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ
- In the fruitful vine there is grace enough for you- and it is all of God's doing
B. PHARAOH'S CUP WAS IN MY HAND v. 11
- Because of what the vine did- the butler could serve Pharaoh-
- The grapes were pressed to the cup- "Nothing in my hand I bring- Simply to Thy cross I cling"
- The cup to Pharaoh - the picture of the sinner offering before God his claim to Christ's blood
C. THE INTERPRETATION IS FOR THREE DAYS v. 12
- The butler had to wait for three days- and so do we - the day of flesh, of death, and of judgment
- Lift up your head- v.13 by faith now- and when the Lord comes- by fact- man's nobility with God
- The glory of serving the Lord now- and all eternity- made possible by blood of Christ
V. 14 Joseph only asked- remember me- do we remember to be thankful to Christ?
III. THE DREAM OF THE BAKER v. 16-22
He saw Joseph interpret good for the butler- and he wanted good too- but no "me to salvation"
A. THERE WERE THREE BASKETS OF WHITE ON HIS HEAD v. 16-17a
- This showed not a hand of faith- plucking grapes, but a head of intellect- offering to God
- The baskets - filled with the white breads- self-righteous works, good deeds - Cain's offering
- The fruit of the Spirit versus the works of the flesh - be sure we choose best for God
B. THE BIRDS DID EAT THEM OUT OF THE BASKET UPON MY HEAD v.17b
- The fine man-made good works - sweet to man - but devoured by birds- Matt 13:4,19
- All our good works end up mocking us, and dishonoring God- total depravity of mankind
- The just shall live by faith - and know that all our good works are nothing in God's sight
C. THE INTERPRETATION IS FOR THREE DAYS v. 18
- The gospel contains wrath - Rom 1;17-18, as well as grace, and judgment has fallen!
- The unrepentant had his head lifted up, too- but upon a tree, in a hangman's noose
- The terrible judgement - birds eating the flesh of the baker
All this happened on Pharaoh's birthday- Jesus will have a Second Coming Day soon!
WHAT WILL BE YOUR FATE WHEN THE LORD CALLS FOR HIS FEAST CELEBRATING HIS SECOND COMING?
- Will you be as the butler - offering fruit of the vine - marred fellowship restored- accepted?
- Will you be like the baker - offering works of hands- human good leads but to wrath!
- Whatever your choice of destiny, do not forget Joseph while you continue to labor!