The making of a leader. Lessons on leadership from the life of Joseph.
Lesson # 2: Gifting. Title: A cocky young dreamer or a gifted potential leader?
Theme, transition: We have seen in lesson 1 that Joseph was a man of character and character is key to leadership. We will now see that he was a gifted young man both naturally and spiritually.
Summary: Joseph was chosen by God, developed natural talents, and exercised spiritual gifting.
Being an OT character Joseph is only a “shadow”, an anticipation of the manifestation of the leadership gifting taught in the NT.
I.JOSEPH A CHOSEN LEADER:
Since we know the whole story of Joseph, we may easily affirm that Joseph was elected by God for the unique mission of the survival of his family in times of famine.
His life was no biological “accident”; he was the result of his mother’s prayer.
Leaders are born for a purpose: Moses. Cyrus: Isaiah 45:1, 13
Ref: NIV Psalm 139: 16.
Contemporary examples: Billy Graham. Martin Luther King Jr.
Christians are born again for a purpose: Ephesians 2:8. For good works God has prepared for them to walk in.
II.JOSEPH MANIFESTED NATURAL AND SUPERNATURAL GIFTINGS:
A mixture of natural and supernatural gifts.
A. NATURAL GIFTINGS:
1. Leaders often manifest their potential in their youth:
When his mother died Joseph became a comforting element for his father and a support for his younger brother Benjamin.
Moses’ parents discerned a leader in the baby: Exodus 2:2
Jacob saw the gift of administration Joseph had: He make him overseer, head shepherd.
Leadership starts at home, in the family.
JFB Commentary : Gen37:2 Joseph. . . was feeding the flock--literally, "Joseph being seventeen years old was a shepherd over the flock"--he a lad, with the sons of Bilhah and Zilpah. Oversight or superintendence is evidently implied.
The robe was a sign of distinction, like a uniform.
2. The world recognizes Joseph’s talents: Joseph a leader/administrator.
Joseph impressed Potiphar; the toughest guy in town, the chosen by the Pharaoh to preside to the execution of condemened criminals.
”JFB Gen 39: 2 captain of the guard-- but that which seems best founded is "chief of the executioners," the same as the captain of the watch, made him overseer in his house-- made him his chief, his confidential servant (compare Ephesians 6:7 , Colossians 3:23 ).
Application: Our talents should stand out in the workforce, in the work place: it is a good place to use and develop our talents, to get training for the “works” God has in store for us in his kingdom.
Joseph impressed the prison goaler:
Joseph impressed Pharaoh: by his administrative gifting not just by his ability to interpret dreams.
KJV Gen 41: 33Now therefore let Pharaoh look out a man discreet and wise, and set him over the land of Egypt. 34Let Pharaoh do this, and let him appoint officers over the land, and take up the fifth part of the land of Egypt in the seven plenteous years. 35And 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. 36And that food shall be for store to the land against the seven years of famine, which shall be in the land of Egypt; that the land perish not through the famine. Gen 41: KJV 38And Pharaoh said unto his servants, Can we find such a one as this is, a man in whom the Spirit of God is?
Joseph will administer the whole Egyptian kingdom:
III.JOSEPH’S SPIRITUAL GIFTS:
Theological remarks: OT characters were empowered by the Spirit for special missions, not filled the way the NT believers are because Jesus had not died yet for our sanctification and the Spirit could not come and dwell yet in unsanctified flesh.
KJV John 7:39 But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.
The OT contains shadows of the blessings to come.
1. Joseph was a good spiritual soil, a good heart: he had developed a fellowship with God, God does not speak just to anyone, and he only reveals his secrets to his prophets.
He probably developed his fellowship with God under his father’s influence. Joseph was close to his father, Jacob who shared with his son his altar experiences, the revelations God had given him.
2. The gifts of Dreams and Interpretation of Dreams.
God given dreams contain inspiration, undestanding of God’s will, hearing God’s voice.
Joseph was receptive to God’s voice, God’s Spirit.
Parallel with the NT: Gifts of knowledge. prophecy (preaching).
Dreams and visions are part of the Pentecostal promise quoted in Acts.
KJV Acts 2: 16But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel; 17And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:
Application: Spiritual leaders need to be able to discern God’s message, hear God’s voice, and discern his plans.
a. Spiritual dreams and their authenticity: Do they come from God? That is the question!
The double occurrence sign.
KJV Gen 41:32 And for that the dream was doubled unto Pharaoh twice; it is because the thing is established by God, and God will shortly bring it to pass.
Discerning is very important when it relates to dreams or visions:
KJV 1 John 4: Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.
KJV 1 Cor 14: 29Let the prophets speak two or three, and let the other judge.
Application: Spiritual leaders must develop the ability to exercise sound judgment.
b. The gift of interpretation of dreams and foreseeing the future:
Joseph exercised that ability all of his life: for the Cup bearer, for the Chief Baker, for Pharaoh, for the Egyptians .
KJV Genesis 44:4 And when they were gone out of the city, and not yet far off, Joseph said unto his steward, Up, follow after the men; and when thou dost overtake them, say unto them, Wherefore have ye rewarded evil for good? 5Is not this it in which my lord drinketh, and whereby indeed he divineth?
I do not believe Joseph used psychic methods. This is how the Egyptian servant “perceived” it referring to the cup. I believe that Joseph continued to help people with his ability from God to know things supernaturally and had a reputation about it.
3.The test of accuracy . The rule to discern the true prophet in the OT: if what the prophet says comes to pass, then he truly is a prophet.
KJV Deuteronomy 18: 22When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him.
// NT Ministry of Interpreting the Scriptures(teaching, preaching), giving a Word of Knowledge, a Word of Wisdom, expressing Tongues with Interpretation.
4.An expression of several gifts in action:
His interpreting dreams included several gifts that will later be listed in the NT.
Discernings of spirits: who the dream came from; from God.
Word of Knowledge: what the dream meant.
. Word of Wisdom: what to do with the revelation.
5.An expression of the attitude in which gifts must accompany the gift:
He cared for the prisoners, for their faces being down, he was sensitive to other people’s needs.
KJV Genesis 40: 6 When Joseph came to them the next morning, he saw that they were dejected. 7 So he asked Pharaoh's officials who were in custody with him in his master's house, "Why are your faces so sad today?"
Joseph had the love (1 Cor 12) that went with the gifts:
KJV 1 Corinthians 13: 3If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames,[b] but have not love, I gain nothing.
He had the fruit and the gifts of the Spirit.
Joseph combined love and truth:
Ephesians 4:15 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into him who is the Head, that is, Christ.
Application: Preach not as “prophets of doom” but loving messengers. Do the same in counseling, etc.
6.The gift of interpreting was the key to his mission: preservation of his life and placement on the throne of Egypt to save Egypt and his family.
The gift of interpreting dreams will be the key note of the spiritual mission of Joseph, it will save his life, his adopted county men’s lives, and the lives of his family members. It will allow the survival of the family carrying the blessing of Abraham, the survival of the chosen people who would be given God’s oracles, and give the Savior to the World.
KJV Romans 3: 2Much every way: chiefly, because that unto them were committed the oracles of God.
Divine gifting is important, essential in leadership. It is what makes the difference between secular leaders and NT spiritual leaders.
Paul admonishes us to aspire after, to pursue ‘Spiritual gifts”.
KJV 1 Cor 14: 31But covet earnestly the best gifts:
IV.INDIVIDUAL APPLICATION: What is my gifting? Self-test to discover your gifting:
Using the NT gifts list grid, read and ponder on the gifts. Read the 3 main Scripture texts.
Pray for wisdom and understanding.
Follow these steps:
Image: God asked Joshua to look back, look up, look inside, and look forward (Joshua 1: 1-9)
Examine your life wisely to identify your gifts:
A. LEARN FROM YOUR PAST EXPERIENCE (look back):
God is sovereign. Look at who you are now, the qualities and talents you have developed, what you have become good at. Do you see a God woven pattern? Do you see what your upbringing has taught you, what your education has taught you, what your experience has taught you?
In the Gifting Self-Test Grid:
1. List the qualities and talents you have developed.
2. List the spiritual gifts that you see manifested in your life starting when you received Christ as Savior and Lord.
3. List your motivations, what your heart goes to?
How do those accomplishments relate to your motivational gifts? What are my spiritual accomplishments? Make a list.
4. List the accomplishments you did well? Can others testify to it?
Check how those accomplishments relate to the list of spiritual gifts. Do they show that I manifested such and such gift? Be specific.
5. What is my level of efficiency in each accomplishment?
B. LEARN FROM YOUR HEART, (look inside):
The motivational, peace and joy test.
The peace of Christ keeps our thoughts and emotions in Christ: Phil 4:4-7.
Do those qualities and talents you have discovered in looking back generate a sense of peace, joy, contentment when you apply them? What accomplishments bring you inner peace and joy?
This is usually an indicator of the Holy Spirit to confirm your gifts.
C. WHAT IS THERE IN THE CHURCH FOR ME TO DO (look around, forward:)
What church needs could the motivational and spiritual gifts I identified meet?
How could these talents be used in the Church where God has placed you?
C. WRITE DOWN IN SELF-TEST GRID:
D. PRAY THROUGH (look up)
E. TALK TO YOUR PASTOR:
Accept his authority and godly advice.
V. Start with writing down a general list of your:
Motivations, drives, passions:
You may request free XL or pdf files of the following tests for lesson #2
or email your questions at : firstname.lastname@example.org
I will send them to you.
|Joseph lesson # 2 : NT Gifts tentative list|
|CATEGORIES||GIFTS||IS IT MY GIFT?||EXAMPLE|
|Motivational gifts||KJV and other renderings||Yes, no, maybe|
|1 Peter 4:9-10||hospitality|
|Manifestation gifts||Knowledge||word of knowledge|
|1 Corinthians 12: 7-10||Acts 8:23, 17:11,1 Jn 4:1||discernings of spirits|
|word of wisdom|
|1 Cor 13:2||faith|
|Other according to Peter Wagner|
|1 Cor 7:7||celibacy|
|1 Cor 13:3||poverty, etc.|
|Acts 16:26-8||intercession, exorcism|
|Greek words defining the giftings|
|charismaton||1 Cor 12:4||gifts of grace|
|pneumatikon||1 Cor 12: 1||expressions of the Spirit|
|domata||Eph 4 : 8||gifts of Christ|
|diakonion||1 Cor 12: 5||services|
|energematon||1 Cor 12: 6,11||operations|
|phanerosis||1 Cor 12:7||manifestatons|
|Joseph lesson 2 : Giftings Self-Test|
|Set # 1||#2||Etc.|
|Talent (looking back)|
|Quality (looking back)|
|Spiritual gift manifested|
|Level of effeciency (0 to 10)|
|Level of Peace/Joy/Contentment (0 t0 10)|
|Corresponding Church Need|