Nepaug Bible Church - - Pastor's Prayer Meeting Lesson Notes -

Part XIX: Overcoming Inadequate Preplanning To Continue God's Work Posthumously
(Joshua 24:32 with Genesis 50:25 and Hebrews 11:22)
  1. Introduction
    1. For the Christian, death or the rapture and taxes are certainly in the future! Well, since taxes we currently pay, and since we don't know when the rapture will occur, we need to make preparations for death!
    2. However, most believers will leave possessions behind them, and there will be funeral addresses in their behalf upon their deaths. Thus, how they manage the disbursement of those possessions and what goes on at their memorial services can make a tremendous POSTHUMOUS impact for God's glory.
    3. Joshua 24:32 with Genesis 50:25 and Hebrews 11:22 shows us how to plan now for a posthumous ministry after our deaths!
  2. Overcoming Inadequate Preplanning To Continue God's Work Posthumously, Joshua 24:32 et al.
    1. When the aged Joseph came close to death, he gave thought to what would occur following his death:
      1. Genesis 50:25 reveals that Joseph realized that Egypt was not Israel's permanent home, but that God would one day take the children of Jacob up out of Egypt into the Promised Land.
      2. Joseph was second in command in Egypt to Pharaoh himself, and knew that they would therefore embalm his body following death in accord with Egyptian practice for officials, cf. Gen. 45:8.
      3. Joseph had obtained permission already to transfer his father's embalmed body to Canaan, cf. 50:1-6!
      4. Thus, he concluded that since God had not yet delivered Israel, but would probably do so following his death, and that his embalmed body could still be transferable hundreds of years following death, it was foreseeable that Israel could take his embalmed body with them during the Exodus to come, 50:25b!
    2. Though Joseph could have had his body permanently buried in Egypt or in Canaan IMMEDIATELY upon dying, he chose another plan to minister to the generation that would leave Egypt in the Exodus:
      1. Joseph believed that God would deliver Israel from Egypt, Hebrews 11:22.
      2. Thus, to encourage the future generation(s) of Israel to BELIEVE God's promise of taking them into the land, Joseph commanded that his mummified body NOT be immediately buried in Canaan, but TAKEN UP into Canaan during the EXODUS, Gen. 50:25-26 with He. 11:22.
      3. Therefore, all during the waiting period until the Exodus, all during the Exodus and all during the taking of Canaan under Joshua, Joseph's mummified body acted as an edifying reminder that their great patriarch, Joseph believed they would ARRIVE in Canaan! This encouraged them to keep going!
    3. Finally, in Joshua 24:32, we read of the final resting place of Joseph's mummy -- the plot in Shechem between Mount Ebal and Mount Gerizim which his father, Jacob had purchased, cf. Gen. 33:19!
    4. Jacob had renamed that field upon its purchase as El-Elohe-Israel, meaning, "a Mighty God is the God of Israel," cf. Ryrie St. Bib., KJV ftn to Gen. 33:20. Joseph's mummy transfer was a great testimony to that fact, and Israel fittingly laid him to rest in that plot to the glory of God's mighty deliverance of Israel!
Lesson: Joseph took advantage of his office as an official to plan for a spiritual impact following his death. He used its practice of posthumous embalming to encourage following generations to follow God during the Exodus and conquest of Canaan u ntil God had given them rest in Palestine.

Application: Though what we can do OURSELVES in THIS life to serve the Lord ends upon our dying, we can use our life's possessions and influence together with the legal system of the land to PLAN for EFFECTIVE POSTHUMOUS influence t o the glory of God. (1) We can make a will or a living trust to use the financial resources we have to meet family obligations and even contribute to worthy missionary or church related ministries toward discipling the nations. (2) Wills have special sect ions to address survivors, and our testimonies can be read in probate to the glory of God as well! (3) We can plan for our memorial service NOW, even if we don't have cause to think we will die SOON, and give the instructions to a responsible party . When our wishes for our survivors are revealed during the memorial service, great impacts for Christ may be made to God's glory!