BY PASTOR T. O. BANSO
“Now Joseph had been taken down to Egypt. And Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh, captain of the guard, an Egyptian, bought him from the Ishmaelites who had taken him down there. The LORD was with Joseph, and he was a successful man; and he was in the house of his master the Egyptian. And his master saw that the LORD was with him and that the LORD made all he did to prosper in his hand” (Genesis 39:1-3 New King James Version).
From the scripture above, we learnt that the LORD was with Joseph. Not only was the LORD with him, his master saw that the LORD was with him. Acts 7:9-10 also refers to God being with Joseph in Egypt where he was a slave: “These sons of Jacob were very jealous of their brother Joseph, and they sold him to be a slave in Egypt. But God was with him and delivered him from his anguish. And God gave him favor before Pharaoh, king of Egypt. God also gave Joseph unusual wisdom, so that Pharaoh appointed him governor over all of Egypt and put him in charge of all the affairs of the palace” (New Living Translation).
God’s presence with Joseph was not in vain. He benefitted from the relationship. However, Joseph was not the only Bible character that the Bible specifically mentioned enjoyed the presence of the LORD. The LORD was also with Abraham (Genesis 21:22), Ishmael (Genesis 21:19-20), Joshua (Joshua 6:27), the house of Judah (the descendants of Judah) (Judges 1:19), the house of Joseph (the descendants of Joseph) (Judges 1:22), the judges of Israel (Judges 2:18), Samuel (1 Samuel 3:19) and King David (1 Samuel 18:12,14, 28).
Other Bible characters are King Solomon (2 Chronicles 1:1), King Hezekiah (2 Kings 18:7), Phinehas the son of Eleazar (1 Chronicles 9:20), King Asa of Judah (2 Chronicles 15:8-9), King Jehoshaphat (2 Chronicles 17:3) and Jesus Christ (Acts 10:38). Luke 1:66 says the hand of the Lord was with John the Baptist.
That does not mean that God was not with the other Bible characters. I’ve only made references to those to whom that phrase was used.
It will be good for the LORD to be with you, for you to know it, and for others, too, to see it. There are some benefits you’ll enjoy when the LORD is with you, which we can learn from the lives of those characters that were specifically mentioned in the Bible.
Benefits of the LORD being with you
1.You’ll enjoy God’s mercy. The LORD’s mercy causes him to help the helpless. His mercy makes him to act in someone’s favour. Genesis 39:21 says, “But the LORD was with Joseph and showed him mercy…” (New King James Version).
The LORD says, “I will have mercy on whomever I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whomever I will have compassion. So then it is not of him who wills, nor of him who runs, but of God who shows mercy” (Romans 9:15-16 New King James Version). Psalm 102:13 says, “You will arise and have mercy on Zion; For the time to favor her, Yes, the set time, has come” (New King James Version). This season, the LORD shall be with you in a special way, and will have mercy on you.
When someone is enjoying the mercy of the LORD, he’ll record outstanding results that are not because of his labour or anything spectacular that he had done. It will surprise the recipient of the LORD’s mercy and everybody who sees him or knows him.
The LORD says in Hosea 1:7, “Yet I will have mercy on the house of Judah, will save them by the LORD their God, and will not save them by bow, nor by sword or battle, by horses or horsemen” (New King James Version). Compare verse 7 with verse 6: “Call her name Lo-Ruhamah, For I will no longer have mercy on the house of Israel, But I will utterly take them away” (New King James Version). Lo-Ruhamah means no mercy. There would be mercy on the house of Judah, but no more mercy on the house of Israel. That voice – no mercy – shall not come to you this season in Jesus’ name. There is mercy for you from the LORD.
Your fighting skills, and, the weapons in your arsenal, do not determine the outcome of a battle; there is the God factor. Psalm 33:16-17 says, “The best-equipped army cannot save a king, nor is great strength enough to save a warrior. Don’t count on your warhorse to give you victory — for all its strength, it cannot save you” (New Living Translation). According to Proverbs 21:31, “The horse is prepared for the day of battle, but deliverance is of the LORD” (New king James Version).
You shall experience the deliverance of the LORD. That shall be your testimony. The LORD shall show you mercy. You’ll enjoy the presence of the LORD; the mercy of the LORD shall single you out from the crowd for favour, for promotion, for provision. Even if you say you’ve not experienced the mercy of the LORD before, you shall experience it this season, for the LORD says in Hosea 2:23b, “And I will have mercy on her who had not obtained mercy” (New King James Version).
2. You’ll be successful and prosperous. Genesis 39:2-3 says “The LORD was with Joseph, and he was a successful man; and he was in the house of his master the Egyptian. And his master saw that the LORD was with him and that the LORD made all he did to prosper in his hand” (New King James Version).
When the LORD is with you, whatever you do shall prosper. Psalm 1:3 says the blessed man shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also shall not wither; and whatever he does shall prosper. That doesn’t mean the LORD will make everyone he is with a millionaire or billionaire!
Because of the presence of the LORD with Joseph, he was elevated to the office of the Prime Minister in Egypt, even though he was not a citizen. Therefore, he became famous all over the known world then.
Joshua also became famous in Israel because the LORD was with him.. Joshua 6:27 says, “So the LORD was with Joshua, and his name became famous throughout the land” (New Living Translation). That was after the defeat and destruction of Jericho. He subsequently led the Israelites in other conquests in their quest to possess the land of Canaan. This season, the LORD shall announce your name to the world; your business shall become a household name.
Joseph was a problem solver. Be a problem solver. If you solve a problem afflicting the world, no demon can hide your name. Genesis 41:57 says, “So all countries came to Joseph in Egypt to buy grain, because the famine was severe in all lands” (New King James Version). Joseph solved the problem of hunger for the whole world then and he became famous. He told his brothers, “He [God] brought me to the high position I have today so I could save the lives of many people” (Genesis 50:20b New Living Translation). May the LORD baptize you with uncommon wisdom to solve problems facing humanity. May the LORD give you innovative ideas that will impact your world positively.
3. Those who have relationship with you will be blessed. Genesis 39:5 says, “So it was, from the time that he had made him overseer of his house and all that he had, that the LORD blessed the Egyptian’s house for Joseph’s sake; and the blessing of the LORD was on all that he had in the house and in the field” (New King James Version). The presence of the LORD with Joseph made him a blessing to the house of his Egyptian master.
The presence of the LORD with you makes you a blessing wherever you go. Anywhere you go, the impact of God’s presence with you will be felt; those who are associated with you or have dealings with you will be blessed.
4. You’ll enjoy favour with people. Joseph enjoyed favour in the house of Potiphar because God was with him. He was not treated like a servant; favour made Potiphar give Joseph preferential treatment.
Acts 7:10b says God gave Joseph favor before Pharaoh and unusual wisdom so that Pharaoh appointed him governor over all of Egypt and put him in charge of all the affairs of the palace. Verse 9 says it was because God was with him.
Also in prison, Joseph found favour with the keeper of prison. Genesis 39:21b says, “He [God] gave him favor in the sight of the keeper of the prison” (New King James Version). May you find favour with people everywhere you go.
5. You’ll be promoted. Though Joseph was a slave in the house of Potiphar, God’s presence with him put him in charge of all that his master had. Joseph began to call the shots because Potiphar put him in charge of his entire household and entrusted him with all his business dealings (Genesis 39:4). Verse 6 says, “So Potiphar gave Joseph complete administrative responsibility over everything he owned. With Joseph there, he didn’t have a worry in the world, except to decide what he wanted to eat!” (New Living Translation) That’s serious!
How could you treat a slave like that? Because the LORD was with him. Only those who knew when Joseph was bought as a slave could, probably, know that he was a slave! Joseph, himself, spoke about the extent of his power in Potiphar’s house when he told Potiphar’s seductive wife: “Look, my master does not know what is with me in the house, and he has committed all that he has to my hand. There is no one greater in this house than I, nor has he kept back anything from me but you, because you are his wife. How then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?” (Genesis 39:8-9 New King James Version) Joseph wasn’t exaggerating otherwise Mrs. Potiphar would have disproved him!
The same thing happened when Joseph was thrown into prison. He was put in charge of all other prisoners because God was with him. The keeper of prison committed everything into his hands and didn’t bother to check what Joseph was doing (Genesis 39:22b-23).
Later, Joseph was in charge of the entire land of Egypt, as the second-in-command. Pharaoh recognized a man that carried the presence of God, and had solution to the impending food crisis. He had to appoint him to be in charge, and Joseph became the de-facto king (Genesis 41:41-44).
It was as if Joseph was in charge of the entire known world then, as people came to him from everywhere to buy food because of the famine. Genesis 41:55 says, “So when all the land of Egypt was famished, the people cried to Pharaoh for bread. Then Pharaoh said to all the Egyptians, ‘Go to Joseph; whatever he says to you, do’” (New King James Version). Did you see that? Pharaoh surrendered his authority to a foreigner, who helped him to effectively manage a monumental food crisis!
Genesis 42:6 says Joseph “was governor of all Egypt and in charge of the sale of the grain, it was to him that his brothers came” (New Living Translation). After he eventually revealed his identity to his brother in Egypt, Joseph said, “So now it was not you who sent me here, but God; and He has made me a father to Pharaoh, and LORD of all his house, and a ruler throughout all the land of Egypt” (Genesis 45:8 New King James Version).
When the LORD is with you, you’re in charge, you exercise dominion. The Bible says of King Solomon, “Solomon, the son of King David, now took firm control of the kingdom, for the LORD his God was with him and made him very powerful” (2 Chronicles 1:1 New Living Translation). This season, you shall take firm control because the LORD is with you – power shall change hands, and it shall be in your favour.
In the days of Asa, King of Judah, the Bible says many people moved to Judah during his reign when they saw that the LORD his God, was with him (2 Chronicles 15:8-9). I pray that, this season, people shall defect to your side; they shall support you. You shall be in charge; the LORD shall put you in total control. People shall submit to you because it shall be evident to them that the LORD is with you. Who wants to be in the camp of someone the LORD is against? If God be for you, who can be against you? (Romans 8:31) You won’t lose any more! God shall support you, and people shall support you!
Pharaoh submitted to Joseph. This season, even your superiors shall hand over to you! You shall exercise power over them, because the LORD shall promote you.
6. You’ll not be afraid or discouraged. The LORD never wants his children to be afraid or discouraged. His presence is reassuring that there is nothing to be afraid of and nothing to be discouraged about. Deuteronomy 20:1 says, “When you go out to battle against your enemies, and see horses and chariots and people more numerous than you, do not be afraid of them; for the LORD your God is with you , who brought you up from the land of Egypt” (New King James Version).
When the LORD is with you, you don’t have to be afraid or be discouraged by your enemies or any opposition for those who are with you are more than those who are with them (2 Kings 6:16). King Hezekiah encouraged his people, the people of Judah, “Be strong and courageous; do not be afraid nor dismayed before the king of Assyria, nor before all the multitude that is with him; for there are more with us than with him. With him is an arm of flesh; but with us is the LORD our God, to help us and to fight our battles” (2 Chronicles 32:7-8 New King James Version).
You’ve got nothing to be afraid of and to discourage you when the LORD is with you. “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go” (Josh 1: 9 New King James Version).
7. You’ll be victorious. The Bible says concerning Ishmael, “And God was with the boy as he grew up in the wilderness of Paran. He became an expert archer …” (Genesis 21:20-21 New Living Translation). Though Ishmael was a product of human wisdom, God was still with him for Abraham’s sake – in response to Abraham’s prayer. Abraham had asked God to bless Ishmael. He was the only child he had at that time. Isaac had not been born. “And Abraham said to God, ‘Yes, may Ishmael enjoy your special blessing!’” (Genesis 17:18New Living Translation)
Abraham’s response was like a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush! God told him He would establish Hiscovenant with Isaac, but He would bless Ishmael, make him fruitful, and multiply him exceedingly. God added that twelve princes would be among his descendants and he would become a great nation (Genesis 17:20).
Prior to this, when Hagar was pregnant with Ishmael, the angel of the LORD had appeared to her, and said about the boy, “He shall be a wild man; His hand shall be against every man, and every man’s hand against him. And he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren” (Genesis 16:11-12 New King James Version). Since he would be a wild man, it is, therefore, not surprising that he became an expert archer, because God was with him.
Moses understood the importance of the presence of the LORD; hence, he insisted that he would not take the Israelites to the Promised Land as the LORD hadcommanded himunless his presence would go with them. “And He said, ‘My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.’ Then he said to Him, ‘If Your Presence does not go with us, do not bring us up from here’” (Exodus 33:14-15 New King James Version). How can you lose a battle when the presence of the LORD goes with you? The presence of the LORD with you means that the LORD is with you, though you don’t see him physically. I like the way the New Living Translation puts Exodus 33:14-15. It says, “And the LORD replied, ‘I will personally go with you, Moses. I will give you rest — everything will be fine for you.’ Then Moses said, ‘If you don’t go with us personally, don’t let us move a step from this place.” The LORD shall go personally with you this season, and you must go with the consciousness of his personal presence.
When the LORD is with you, you’ll have victory. Joshua 6 records Israel’s victory over Jericho in the battle led by Joshua, and fought in an unconventional way. The wall of Jericho felldown flat without any physical attack against it, but by simply following divine instructions. That chapter ends by saying, “So the LORD was with Joshua, and his fame spread throughout all the country” (verse 27 New King James Version). Nevertheless, the LORD’s presence had been with Joshua from the outset; that was the secret of his victory.
While commissioning Joshua to leadtheIsraelites after Moses’ death, the LORD had told Joshua, “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go” (Joshua 1:9 New King James Version). In verse 17, even the Israelites, while pledging their loyalty to him, recognized the importance of the presence of the LORD as a requirement for his success in leading them. They told Joshua, “Just as we heeded Moses in all things, so we will heed you. Only the LORD your God be with you, as He was with Moses” (New King James Version). Therefore, the presence of the LORD with him gave him victory.
Judges 1:19 says, “So the LORD was with Judah. And they drove out the mountaineers, but they could not drive out the inhabitants of the lowland, because they had chariots of iron” (New King James Version). Were the chariots of iron more powerful than the presence of the LORD with Judah that Judah could not defeat these people? No. It was the fault of the people of Judah, and not that of God. The New Living Translation brings out clearly what happened. “The LORD was with the people of Judah, and they took possession of the hill country. But they failed to drive out the people living in the plains because the people there had iron chariots” (Judges 1:19 New Living Translation). Judah failed to drive out the people of the hill country; it was not that the presence of the LORD or the LORD failed them.
Furthermore, all the judges that God raised up for the Israelites were successful in delivering them out of the hand of their enemies because the LORD was with them. Judges 2:18 records, “And when the LORD raised up judges for them, the LORD was with the judge and delivered them out of the hand of their enemies all the days of the judge; for the LORD was moved to pity by their groaning because of those who oppressed them and harassed them” (New King James Version).
If you hold on to the promise of God’s presence, victory is assured; success is guaranteed. Jesus has promised, “I am with you always, even to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:20 New King James Version). Isaiah 43:2 says, “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, nor shall the flame scorch you” (New King James Version). Believe God to fulfill His promise.
8. You’ll be a channel of divine power. Jesus was a carrier of divine power and performed many miracles because God was with him. “And no doubt you know that God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power. Then Jesus went around doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the Devil, for God was with him” (Acts 10:38 New Living Translation). Miracles were performed through the apostles of old, and are being performed by the followers of Jesus today, because of the presence of the LORD. The Bible says concerning the disciples, “And they went out and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word through the accompanying signs. Amen” (Mark 16:20 New King James Version). If the LORD had not gone with them and worked with them, they wouldn’t have seen signs and wonders.
9. The LORD will confirm the word of your mouth.1 Samuel 3:19 says, “So Samuel grew, and the LORD was with him and let none of his words fall to the ground” (New King James Version).When the LORD is with you, the words of your mouth receive heaven’s backing, heaven’s approval. That doesn’t mean that heaven approves of everything you say, even when it is against God’s Word.
The truth is that those who’re conscious of heaven’s presence are very careful what they say; they don’t just say anything, because they know they can’t do anything without the LORD (John 15:5). Jesus said in John 5:30, “I can of Myself do nothing. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is righteous, because I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me” (New King James Version).
Those whose words are confirmed by the LORD, like Samuel, first hear from him before they speak – they enforce the will of the LORD on earth that is already written in heaven. When they say “at my word,” like Elijah said in 1 Kings 17:1, they’re asking according to his will, so he hears them (1 John 5:14).
Conclusion: If you’ve accepted Jesus as your LORD and Saviour, God is with you. One of the names of Jesus is Emmanuel, meaning “God with us” or “With us is God” (Matthew 1:23). Every born again child of God must know that God is with Him personally, walk in this understanding and live to please Him by obeying His Word. Then he will enjoy the benefits of the presence of God with him personally. If you’re not born again, give your life to Jesus.
If you’re not born again, I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit you’re a sinner and you can’t save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your LORD and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start to attend a Bible-believing, Bible -teaching church. There you will be taught how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O LORD God, I come unto you today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and resurrected the third day. I repent and confess my sins. I confess Jesus as my LORD and Saviour and surrender my life to him today. I invite Jesus into my heart today. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank you Jesus for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible believing, Bible teaching church in your area where you will be taught how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like the palm tree and grow like the cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I’ll be glad to hear from you. May the LORD be with you.
T.O. Banso is the President, Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
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