HE SAW THE WAGONS
"And they told him all the words of Joseph, which he had said unto them: and when he saw the wagons which Joseph had sent to carry him, the spirit of Jacob their father revived" (Gen 45:27).
Jacob had lived for over thirteen years, thinking his favorite son Joseph was dead. After selling Joseph to a band of Ishmaelites when he was seventeen years old, his brothers dipped his coat of many colors in blood, and showed it to Jacob. After seeing it, the aged patriarch said, "an evil beast hath devoured him; Joseph is without doubt rent in pieces" (Gen 37:2,31). It was a most difficult time for Jacob. He wept and mourned "for many days," and "refused to be comforted" (37:34-35).
Now, many years later, Jacob is told "Joseph is yet alive, and he is governor over all the land of Egypt." It seemed too good to be true, only adding to his sorrow. The Word tells us, "And Jacob's heart fainted, for he believed them not" (37:31). Alas, sometimes even the best and most truthful news seems too good to be true, only adding to our sorrow.
Joseph must have sensed how difficult it would be for Jacob to believe he was alive. He sent abundant provisions back with his brothers to confirm he was, in fact, alive, and able to care for his father and brethren. The once jealous brothers returned home with "wagons," loaded with provisions. They had "provision for the way," extra clothes, ten donkeys loaded with "the good things of Egypt," and ten more loaded with "corn, and bread, and meat" for his father. They left home with virtually nothing, but what an entourage accompanied their return!
Joseph did not send a list of procedures back with his brothers, to be presented to Jacob. Nor, indeed, did he send a list of requirements to be fulfilled. Both of those were undoubtedly involved in making the move to Joseph's realm, but neither could provide sufficient incentive to initialize the move.
As soon as Jacob "saw the wagons," his spirit revived. Hope was rekindled, and the long years of sorrow were forgotten. The wagons proved Joseph was really alive.
This incident reveals much about the "great salvation" that is in Christ Jesus "with eternal glory." In redemption, the Lord has sent us wagons filled with Divine provision. The abundance of Joseph's provision is nothing to compare with the preparations brought within the good news of the Gospel. When once the soul recognizes something of what God has prepared for those who love Him, the fire of hope will be kindled, and the perceiving person will be revived. Being convinced of the promises of God equates to Jacob seeing the wagons. The incentives of the sight are strong.
Throughout the Scripture, the Spirit shows us Divine wagons, laden with the promises of God. They are designed to bring revival to our spirits. Surely you have not forgotten them. Even the invitation to come to Christ initially is attended by the sight of "wagons." "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and THOU SHALT BE SAVED" (Acts 16:31). "Repent, and be baptized every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and YOU SHALL RECEIVE THE GIFT OF THE HOLY SPIRIT" (Acts 2:38). "Repent therefore and be converted, that YOUR SINS MAY BE BLOTTED OUT, so that TIMES OF REFRESHING MAY COME from the presence of the Lord" (Acts 3:19). Oh, the blessedness of seeing "the wagons!" Only those who fail to see them can refuse the invitation.
But there are more "wagons" than we see at first. Our Lord continues to show them to us after we have entered the Kingdom and been joined to the Lord. To those fainting in the battle, the Spirit speaks of the "wagons." "Weeping may endure for a night, but JOY COMETH IN THE MORNING" (Psa 30:5). Again he speaks, "Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be BROUGHT UNTO YOU AT THE REVELATION OF JESUS CHRIST" (1 Pet 1:13). The wagons are coming, and they are laden with benefits that will dispel all recollections of the past!
If you want to move the people of God along, show them the wagons! Tell them what the Lord has "prepared for them that love Him" (1 Cor 2:9). Remind them of the "inheritance, incorruptible and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, RESERVED IN HEAVEN" for them (1 Pet 1:4). Show them the wagons! Remind them that "when He shall appear, WE SHALL BE LIKE HIM; for we shall see him as He is" (1 John 3:2). Tell them of "the crown life," their "own reward," and "a crown of glory that does not fade away" (James 1:12; 1 Cor 3:8; 1 Pet 5:4). Lift up your voice and announce "the saints shall judge the world . . . and angels" (1 Cor 6:2). Then you will see their spirits revived. Their troubles will diminish in the bright glow of "exceeding great and precious promises" (2 Pet 1:4). Show them the wagons!
In keeping with this Christmas day 1999, those with eyes to see perceive the coming of Jesus into this world as accompanied by a host of heavenly wagons, laden with good things for those bold enough to believe.
PRAYER POINT: Father, help me through Jesus Christ to see more clearly the abundance you have provided in Him.
-- Monday: A BRIEF OVERVIEW OF PERSEVERANCE --