Two examples—one divine Principle

Joseph and Moses were among the many courageous, spiritually-minded men and women in the Old Testament. Those two outstanding individuals, whose lives we catch glimpses of through recorded Bible history, both loved God and endeavored to obey Him. Yet as human beings, each of whom perceived God's goodness according to his individual understanding, their experiences in proving the law of God were quite different.

The way they each proved that God's goodness is ample to supply mankind with every necessity of life illustrates this. When Joseph spiritually perceived, through interpreting Pharaoh's unusual dream, that Egypt would undergo a severe famine after seven years of good harvest, he did a practical thing. He recommended to Pharaoh that someone be appointed to be in charge of setting aside provisions for the future. As the Bible tells us, he said to Pharaoh, "And let them gather all the food of those good years that come, and lay up corn under the hand of Pharaoh, and let them keep food in the cities." (See Genesis, entire chapter 41, especially verse 35.) Pharaoh accepted the recommendation, put Joseph himself in charge of accumulating and storing the food, and consequently Egypt survived the famine.

Moses' experience was quite different. He was responsible for leading the children of Israel safely through their forty years in the wilderness before they reached the Promised Land of Canaan. Virtually no provision was made for this journey. Moses was specifically directed of God to tell the children of Israel they were to gather their food daily from the bread and quail they would find on the ground each day. And the necessary food was always there—even an extra amount to be kept over for the Sabbath each week. The Bible says of this remarkable experience, "And the children of Israel did eat manna forty years, until they came to a land inhabited; they did eat manna, until they came unto the borders of the land of Canaan." (See Exodus, entire chapter 16, especially verse 35.)

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A lesson from the lions' den
December 9, 1985

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