This Week's Sermon

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IT IS my intention to speak to you today concerning the double appearance of the Word “sad.”  Genesis 40.6,7. In regard to this double appearance, there are three things I want to say.  I. A review of the Words in the Text.  II. The double appearance of the Word “sad.”  III. The instructions that may be learned.

     I. A review of the Words in the Text.  In our King James Version, there are 42 Words in the Text.  “And Joseph came in unto them in the morning, and looked upon them, and, behold, they were sad.  And he asked Pharaoh's officers that were with him in the ward of his lord's house, saying, Wherefore look ye so sadly to day?”

     Among the 42 Words, there are important recurrences and delightful singularities.  The important recurrences chiefly lie in the characters and conjunctions.  Joseph and the officers of Pharaoh are the leading characters.  In one way or another, sometimes through such Words as “he” and “them,” they appear 8 times.  The conjunction “and” appears 4 times.  This is due in part to the quick paced action of the Story.

     As for the delightful singularities, the central Words happen only once.  Such Words as “came,” “morning,” “looked,” and “behold” (which are key Words) show up one time.  Yet among these central Words, there is one Word that is repeated two times.  It is the Word “sad.”  I shall read the two sections.  See how the Word “sad” is mentioned twice.  The first section is: “Joseph looked upon them, and, behold, they were sad.”  The second section reads: “Joseph asked them, saying, Wherefore look ye so sadly to day?”

     II. The double appearance of the Word “sad.”  In our King James Version, there is only one Word that is used.  It's not that the Word “sad” is used the first time and then something like the Word “grief” is used the second time.  In both sections, the use of the Word “sad” is well done.

     In the Hebrew, there are two Words.  The first time the Word “sad” is used in the Text I have already showed which Hebrew root Word is used.  The idea of the Word is “to boil up.”  The Word is used only 5 times in the entire Old Testament.  The Word hints at the internal aspects of sadness.  In sadness, the heart is inwardly moved.  Up from that inward experience, the heart as it were “boils up” and the sadness naturally shows itself in thoughts, feelings, and looks.  The second time the Word “sad” is used in the Text (which is in Joseph's question) there is a different Hebrew Word.  The Hebrew root involved in this Word means “to spoil.”  This Word is used about 664 times in the Old Testament.  One simple idea present in Joseph's question is: “Wherefore have you allowed yourselves to be spoiled?”  As if the officers of Pharaoh had allowed a treasure to be taken from them.  Genesis 34.29.

     III. The instructions.  There are three instructions I would insist on.  1. The first instruction is GOD has given us a treasure.  There are many in this world who think they have no treasure.  When they look on themselves, they see no treasure.  When they look on those around them, they fancy that those around them have treasures they don't have.  But what does GOD say about these things?  In Joseph's question, it is distinctly suggested that GOD has given us a treasure.  Therefore the matter comes down to who you are going to believe.  Are you going to believe your own heart?  Or are you going to believe GOD?  Psalm 118.8 says: “It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man.”

     2. In the second instruction, I would remind you what this treasure is.  Throughout the Scripture, the Gift of GOD'S SON JESUS is constantly spoken of.  Galatians 4.4 says: “God sent His Son.”  I John 4.9 says: “God sent His only begotten Son.”  And when the Scripture speaks of the Gift of GOD'S SON JESUS, the Scripture sets forth this Gift as a Gift of inestimable worth.  In Matthew 13.44, JESUS is called “treasure.”  In Matthew 13.46, JESUS is called the “pearl of great price.”

     3. The third instruction: do not allow yourself to be spoiled of the treasure.  In today's Text, the officers of Pharaoh had allowed themselves to be spoiled of the treasure.  Surely, GOD has put their examples in Scripture to be a solemn warning.  Hebrews 2.1 says: “Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let them slip.”

     Question. How is it you can be spoiled of the treasure?  The answer is if you reject it, neglect it, or forget it.  It is by this means you allow yourself to be spoiled of the treasure.  First: If you reject it.  In the Scripture, GOD lays before you JESUS.  GOD desires you repent of your sins to Him in Prayer and believe JESUS died for you.  If you turn your back on this, you are rejecting a treasure.  Second: If you neglect it.  Hebrews 2.3 says Salvation can be lost by neglect.  Neglect is more subtle.  Neglect happens when you don't do something because of carelessness.  You know what you are supposed to do.  But you don't do it.  Third: If you forget it.  There are many who have forgotten!  In their youths, they had fond thoughts of JESUS.  Their hearts were warm toward THE SAVIOUR.  But as the years have rolled on, the cares of life have so filled their minds that JESUS has been crowded out.  They have forgotten THE LORD was Gracious.  O let me say to you today, GOD has given a treasure!  This treasure is the unspeakable Gift of JESUS.  Be sure to receive, prize, and cherish this treasure.  Amen.