- Joseph interprets dreams. Remember this is where his trouble started, Genesis 37. See also Daniel 2, 4, 7.
- The upside-down kingdom: Jesus said, the first shall be last and the last shall be first. How have you seen this in Joseph’s life? With Jacob and Esau? With Judah and Tamar? Notice the signet ring is passed, Genesis 41:42, 38:18; Esther 8:8. See Matthew 5:3-6; 19:30; 1 Corinthians 1:27; Isaiah 61:1; . Look for the success of the underdog in scripture. Look how God continually exalts the humble.
- Joseph as a type of Christ: Rejected by his own, sold for coin, then he goes to the gentiles where he ends up ruling, and saving them. The famine drives his own family to him, where he eventually reveals himself and saves them as well. Then they live together with the gentiles in the land, under the rule of Joseph, who is second only to Pharoah – at his right hand so to speak.
- Spiritual Growth: We saw Jacob’s growth. Now we see some growth in Judah, Genesis 43:9.
- God’s Sovereignty: Joseph understands the sovereignty of God Genesis 45:5; 50:19-20. This should be a major lesson here as universally applying to the lives of God’s people. See Romans 8:28. God affirms to Joseph that they should all stay in Egypt, and Pharaoh is exceedingly gracious.
- God’s Covenant: God is keeping his covenant with his people – Genesis 46-47. Some details of the blessings are significant – Genesis 48-49. Joseph’s sons, Manasseh and Ephraim, are essentially adopted by Jacob as his own – becoming two of the twelve tribes.
- 16:9-20 is disputed as being “original” to Mark, but it clearly is in line with the other accounts.
- Notice that again, turning things upside-down, Jesus appeared first to women! Thinking about how seeing the risen Christ, and receiving the Holy Spirit, are the only things that can explain the explosion of the early church.
- Psalm 24: Notice clean hands AND a pure heart – the true gospel begins internally. Notice Psalm 24:5 – these are the ones that RECEIVE righteousness. See Romans 3:21-23.
- Psalm 108: God always gets first place in the Psalms. God’s people are lifted up by him.
- Psalm 25: Let’s pray Psalm 25:4-5 before we read and discuss! What else does the Psalmist ask for? What is his attitude in asking?
- Paul’s passionate letter was to people in modern-day Turkey whom he had preached the gospel to originally. Some were coming along after him adding to the gospel of Christ preaching that someone must be circumcised in addition to their faith in order to be saved. Paul makes it crystal that it is faith alone that justifies, Galatians. 2:16.
- Chapters 1-2:
- Paul argues for his authority as an Apostle by appealing to his source – Jesus himself – and to the endorsement by the leaders in Jerusalem. Notice the strength of the curse he calls upon those who would teach a false gospel. How might this letter be helpful to those who sit under the preaching of legalism? Baptismal regeneration? Works-based righteousness?
- For Circumcision – see Genesis 17:9-14. Also notice Acts 15 when this topic came before the leaders in Jerusalem, and they sent clarifying instructions to all the Gentile churches.
- Galatians 2:11-14 – Jewish practice forbade eating with Gentiles. Paul argues that if we believe in Christ, then are justified by that faith in Him, then we go on trying to secure life by observing the law, we are saying that Christ died for no reason.
- Chapter 3-4
- Paul now goes back to the beginning and asks how is it that you received the Spirit?
- He now turns to an argument from Genesis 15:6! He then proves from the Old Testament that righteousness comes by faith! See Romans 4 for more on this topic. Deuteronomy 27:26, “cursed be everyone…”
- “The righteous shall live by faith” is from Habakkuk 2:4, and is also used in Romans 1:17, and Hebrews 10:38. Because of it’s profound impact on Martin Luther in particular, this saying is sometimes called “the spark that ignited the reformation.”
- Paul clarifies that the law cannot supersede the promises made to Abraham, but that the law was intended to reveal sin. Notice that a knowledge of sin is the critical first step in the gospel.
- Galatians 3:28 – equality in Christ.
- All other religions promote adherence to certain practices as the way to salvation, enlightenment, heaven, nirvana, or whatever. This is a form of slavery – Galatians 4:8-10. This is not the design of Christianity, which is salvation by grace through faith, then good works that flow out of a now willing and cheerful heart.
- “Living by the spirit” in the Bible speaks of a life of doing the right thing out of the gratitude and devotion found in a relationship with Jesus Christ. “Living according to the flesh” in the Bible puts all focus and emphasis on the activity, not on God. How can this difference in focus lead one into sin and self-righteousness?
- Try hard to formulate from the book of Galatians how to explain the gospel to someone.