Bryan Hopper uses the story of Joseph to show God’s calling of greatness onto the lives of the students at Jessup.
Well, I’m glad to be here with you this morning. I normally speak to much rowdier crowds than this. Now that I am going around the country with the dare to dream assembly program, you get 1300 middle schoolers or high schoolers in a room, and you give them caffeine and shake them up. And they’re just like a soda bottle. And I just want to encourage you today Get some energy in your life, maybe look at that example of some of those who are younger than you. Because you have everything at your disposal. Except for money. Probably most of you don’t have much money. But that’s okay, your college students and you’re not supposed to have much money. I am super glad to be here with you this morning. We have a short amount of time typically I like to get into the message. And there might be examples and there might be pictures. And usually I’ll preach. But we have a short amount of time today. So I want to get right to it. I want to thank pastor Thomas, can you guys give a hand for your campus? Pastor here this morning for inviting me to come and share with you all I love what is happening at William Jessup University. I love you guys. I love college students. I’ve only been out of the role that I was in as the young adults pastor for less than two months, and I already missed you guys. Because those Junior hires can be annoying. How many of you have younger brothers and sisters? Haha, I’m preaching already. Alright, it’s good. But we love them. And we’re glad for them. How many of you have this is your first semester at Jessup? Show hands? Dang. All right. What’s a good place? Please don’t leave. And how many of you are here as a guest today? I understand we have some guests in the house today. Well, not you, Joseph. No, there’s another church. Here are some interns here where you guys from? I heard there was another church here today. That was a lie. Okay, cool. We’re glad that you’re all here. I was last in this auditorium in January for something called the collective. How many of you were here by show of hands? How many of you were here for the collective? Yeah, that’s like 6% of you. And you need to be at the collective quickly. What is the collective the collective is a gathering of all the churches, all the young adult and college ministries in the Sacramento region and every quarter, we get together to worship together to pray together to seek God together. We actually hosted it here in this room. In January, we had it at the church that I was a pastor at and bridgeway just recently, in June, and it’s going to be October 24. You can put that in your calendar, you can put it in your phone right now. Pull them out, don’t snap me, I’m still rocking the dadbod. But pull your phone out and Mark October 24. That’s a Thursday night it’s going to be at Bayside. This is everybody in the region, Jesus culture hosts bridgeway hosts destiny hosts, and we hosted it right here at Jessup. There is nothing like the Bible says unity. He says how good it is when brothers dwell together in unity and where there is unity, God commands a blessing. And so when we get black churches and white churches and quiet churches and loud churches and all the churches together, praising God, how many of you know and believe God blesses that, and he does something special about that. And I don’t want you to take it lightly. You are living in days that when I was younger, when pastor Thomas was younger, and some of your teachers were younger, this did not happen. You are in a generation and you’re in a time where God is doing something in the earth and let me be more specific. He is doing something in Sacramento, I have the opportunity now to travel around the country. What happens here does not happen everywhere else. And you guys are positioned right here in Roseville, Rocklin. I think it’s funny, just outside the capital of the state of California. And how many of you know that California is the most influential state in the nation. And you are positioned in this college if you didn’t know I’m here to wake someone up this morning. You are here positioned in college right outside the capital of the most important state in the nation. As Sacramento goes, so goes California. And as California goes, so goes the nation. And so ask God, maybe why are you here this morning? Why are you here? In 2019, in this college, in this area, where God is doing a regional move of unity, and bringing people together, what might be happening in history right now. And what is your part in it? Amen. Amen. All right, so quickly, we are going to open our Bibles to Genesis 37. Genesis 37. As I said, I’m more like a preacher and less like a teacher. I have taught new beginners classes, and I have taught new members classes and spiritual gifts, classes and all those things. But typically, I just get up and yell at people. So I’m going to try to what we’re going to do is we’re going to go through some scripture, and then we’re going to make a couple application points. And then I’m going to yell at you at the end. So I’m good. It’s a good yell because I love you. Genesis 37, chapter five. Excuse me, Genesis 37, verse five, and it may be on the screen behind me, I’m not sure.
Now Joseph had a dream. And he told it to his brothers and like typical Big Brothers, they hated him even more. So he said to them, please hear this dream which I have dreamed of There we were a binding sheaves in the field. And behold, my sheaf arose, and also stood upright. And indeed your sheep stood all around and bowed down to my sheep. And his brother said to him, shall you indeed reign over us? So like big brothers, they hated him even more for his dreams and his words, then he dreams to another dream. And he told it to his brothers and said, Look, I have dreamed another dream. And this time, the sun and the moon, and the 11 stars, that’s all you people that live in this family and live in this home, they bow down to me. So he told it to his father and his brothers. And his father rebuked him and said to him, what is this dream that you have dreamed, shall your mother and I and your brothers indeed, come to bow down to the earth before you and his brothers envied him? But his father, it’s a wise man, he did keep it in mind. I want you to jump forward a little bit, and they’ll have it on the screen for you. Most of you who are familiar with this story, understand and know that Joseph’s brothers hate him. They are jealous of him. And so they come up with a plot to kill him. They just said they’re not going to kill him. They’re going to go ahead and and throw them in a pit. They’re going to start a startup business. It’s their own Amazon. It’s their own calm. It’s called Hebrew boys for sale. And so they sell him into slavery. And he goes actually, often to Egypt, and he is bought at auction. It’s actually it’s not so funny. It’s funny, but it’s actually human trafficking. And so he is sold into the possession in Egypt. And so we’re gonna pick it up in chapter 39. Verse 21.
guys doing good. Whoa, 40 Niners are for No, I don’t know who that helps. But it certainly helps me. JT looks like the quarterback to Garoppolo. Okay, that has nothing to do with God. But it excites me and I’m here. So it’s good. Chapter 39 and verse 21. So now we see that Joseph is in the place of captivity, he’s in potter’s house, and it says this, this is fascinating. But the Lord was with
Joseph, and showed him mercy. And he gave him favor inside of the keeper of the prison. And the keeper of the prison committed to Joseph’s hands, all the prisoners who were in prison, whatever they did, there was in his doing, the keeper of the prison did not look into anything that was under Joseph’s authority, because the Lord was with him. And Lord made whatever he did to prosper. A little bit earlier in the story, we understand that Joseph was falsely accused of rape. Master Potter for his wife, in Potiphar, hasn’t thrown in the prison. How many of you knew at that moment, you’ve received a dream from God, you’ve been given a vision from God, and instead of it happening, you’re sold into slavery? And then you’re doing well and you’re you’re rising up among the ranks in the Masters house? And then there’s a false accusation. How many of you have ever been following God and found people talk about you? That is not really true. To have you cool, wait a while it’ll keep happening. But all this time, Joseph is trying to follow God. He’s trying to follow the word that God has given him. He’s trying to follow the dream that God gave to him, and he finds himself stepping back, every step seems like a step back. And every time he takes a step forward, in potter’s house, he rises up and gets a little bit of authority, but then he stepped back even worse into prison. How many of you’ve been there, and if you haven’t, let me tell you, sometimes this Christian life can feel like one step forward, and then it can feel like one step back. The interesting thing about Joseph is that he didn’t sin. He had the opportunity with Potter for his wife, yet he ran from it. He had the opportunity to be bitter, but he served in that place and got promoted. And then when he was put into prison, he had the opportunity to be very angry with God, he had the opportunity to be frustrated with God. And the Bible says that while he was in prison, the same thing as in potter’s house, God was with him. And everything that he did, God caused the prosper. And every time his overseers his supervisors, in his authority noticed the hand of God was on Joseph’s life. Pick it up here, Chapter 41, verse 37, there’s a couple more guys that come to prison, there’s a butler, and there’s a baker. And if you’re familiar with the story, they they’re with Joseph and Joseph has some dreams about them and understands that one is going to live and one is going to die and it comes true. The baker is the one who’s going to die and he does and the Butler’s gonna get out and he does and he goes back to his place. And like a good buddy who told Joseph, he would remember him when he got back to his job in the palace, he completely forgot about him. And that will happen to you as well in your Christian life. You need to understand that there will be people who will promise you things, and then completely ghost you. I’m talking about. Don’t look at your professors don’t look at people next to you. But it is on you to follow through with what it is that God places in front of you. So that’s the context of the story. Now Pharaoh has a dream. Joseph is a little bit of a dreamer. In fact, an earlier part of the Bible when it talks about his brothers condemning him They call him the master of dreams. He’s MC dream. He has the master it in dreams. He’s got the doctorate dreams. So Pharaoh has a dream. And the butler guy remembers. I knew a dude in prison who had uninterpreted dreams, there was a dream and it meant the Baker was going to die. And he did. And it meant I was going to get out. And I did. And maybe we should talk to Joseph. Joseph knows how to interpret dreams. So we’re going to pick it up in Genesis 41, verse 37. Joseph comes to Pharaoh and he tells him what his dream means got seven skinny cows, those are going to be seven years of famine, he’s got seven fat cows, those are going to be the years of plenty before the years of famine, and it gives them advice to store up and to save during the plentiful years, so that they will have enough during the famine years. So this is what Joseph does. He comes he interprets Pharaoh’s dream. And then this is where we pick it up in verse 37, and tells them what to do so that they should save and be ready for the nationwide economic crisis and famine. Sound familiar? So the advice was good in the eyes of Pharaoh, and in the eyes of all his servants. And Pharaoh said to his servants, this is fascinating to me, you guys, can we find such a one is this a man in whom is the Spirit of God? Pause. Pharaoh is not a believer in Yahweh. He is not a Hebrew, he’s not been raised with the Torah. He’s not been brought up in the temple. But yet this man who is of a foreign nation, and of different false gods, recognizes in Joseph, the Spirit of God is in this man. And he’s with him. And I just want to encourage someone today that God’s Spirit will mark you, you will be marked. And you will go out from this place. Now from your years in university, some of you as pastors, some of us worship leaders, but quite honestly, many of you will be engineers, many of you will be educators, you might go into the police force, you might go into different areas of society and life and government. And I’m just believing for a generation, maybe some that are in this room, that you will be like Joseph, and when you sit in different places out in the secular society, they will say here is one, she’s got the Spirit of God inside of
her. Her advice just seems good. Her projects always get done on time, there’s a little bit more excellence in the way that he puts together a report. Pharaoh said to Joseph, and as much as God has shown you all this there is no one as discerning and wise as you, you shall be over my house and all my people shall be ruled according to your word. Only in regard to the throne Will I be greater than you. And Pharaoh said to Joseph, see, I have set you over all the land of Egypt. Then Pharaoh took his signet ring off his hand symbolizing authority and put it on Joseph Han. And he clothed them in garments of fine linen, and put a gold chain around his neck, he was on fleek. And he made him ride in the second chariot, which he had, and they cried out before him bow the knee. So he sent him over all the land of Egypt. Pharaoh also said to Joseph, I am Pharaoh, and without your consent, no man may lift his hand or foot in all the land of Egypt. And Pharaoh called Joseph’s name, something I can’t pronounce. And he gave him a wife, another name, I’m not going to pronounce the daughter of someone else I’m not going to pronounce of on I can pronounce where she was from, she was from on her own, depending on your pronunciation. So Joseph went out over all the land of Egypt. This is very important. Now though, watch this. Joseph, was 30 years old, when he stood before the king of Egypt. And Joseph went out from the presence of Pharaoh, and went throughout all the land of Egypt. We don’t know exactly how old Joseph was when he received his dream from the Lord. Most scholars believe that he was anywhere from 12 to 13 years old. And he received the fulfillment of that dream at the age of 30. There were seven teen years in between when he heard from God, when he got a dream from God. And then he actually saw it come to pass. I know you guys, as college students, your favorite word is wait. But I’m just going to tell you the way things work in the economy of God and the kingdom of God is that he will plant a seed inside of you. And I know we’re all super familiar with agriculture these days, and he will water it. And then you like have to sit in the sun. By the way the sun is the sun and being in the warmth of his presence is a great way to water the seed that’s inside of you. So I just want to encourage you in your devotional life and your Bible life and in your worship life. Get in the sun, take your seed to the sun, and also bring it to the water The Bible says that the Holy Spirit is like rivers of living water and so I want to encourage you whatever that looks like for you have a devotional life with your Bible have a prayer life that is you in God just you and God outside of this room or any other corporate gathering times and have a worship life. Cry out in your car in your dorm room and make your roommates mad. But having a personal history with God is what will watch her your see that he has planted inside of you. But again, Joseph waited third teen excuse me 17 most scholars leave between 1317 years for the fulfillment of his dream. How many of you can hardly wait to pick up your mobile order from Starbucks?
I get so mad like if I go in there I’m like I ordered this four minutes ago and no No, no, no, my wife some of you know my wife. If that Starbucks is not ready guys, I’m in Trouble, like she is so basic pumpkin spice white girl latte that if I don’t show up with the Starbucks, it’s not good for your friend. So let me ask you though, what are you waiting on? What is God got for you that he wants you to wait and see once you to wait and see what he will do. So here’s the dilemma.
We are often told or made to think that desiring power, or greatness is wrong. Part of what pastor Thomas spoke to me about and there’s gonna be some other speakers who are coming in the coming weeks and months to talk about things that Christians have been taught, or thought or made to believe, are bad or wrong. How many of you would probably say that somebody who wants to have power, somebody who wants to be great and be known, that person is not a very mature Christian. The rest of you really need to read your Bible because the person who wants power and who wants to be great, it doesn’t necessarily have the heart of God. Amen. It works back when you talk, amen. I’ll go faster. Okay. But the idea that you would desire power, you would desire control, that you would desire to rule over other people. Most of us have been taught or believe that’s a bad thing. Like, you should not want power. You should not want power. You are to be meek. It’d be kind, your to be loving, you’re to be sweet. You’re to be humble. Those things are true. By the way, I am not here to tell you that any of those things are not true that they’re not parts of the heart of God or the character of God, or the fruit of the Spirit in our life. Some of you know peace, patience, gentleness, self control, all of those things are true. But is the Christian life, a life without power? my studies of the Bible show me that in the gospels, there’s a whole lot of power. Jesus had a lot of power. He had power to heal sick bodies, he had power to raise up those who were laying he had power to cast the demons out of the people that were being oppressed by the enemy. Jesus had power. When I read the epistles, the apostle Paul had power. The disciples waited in the book of Acts chapter two in the upper room, because Jesus told them to where they would receive the Holy Spirit and his power to be witnesses. Paul said, I did not come. Listen to me, university student, I did not come with persuasive words of human wisdom. But I came my preaching, and a demonstration of the Spirit, and of power. This is Paul, who wrote two thirds of the New Testament This is Paul, who is one of the most accomplished Pharisees of the day, he knew the doctrine he knew back in front the Torah, and also the law and the prophets and all of the other books that would have been in the Old Testament he knew and yet, Paul said, I can’t persuade people to this cause. I cannot argue people into a loving relationship with the Father. I cannot convince them with arguments or apologetics. And please study all of it. And please know it and be prepared to give an answer. But all of that’s not going to do anything. If there’s no power behind it. And we know that a hand stretched out and love to pray for someone whose parents are going through divorce and saying, God, please be with them. Give them refreshing, right now in Jesus name, that simple prayer with power behind it. We’ll do more of an hour of you online debating. And please stop. By the way, if you’re a Christian debating online, just really, really stop it. You ain’t winning nobody, and you make us look bad. Okay? You get it, you still love me, I still love you. I love you too much to lie to you. Here’s the deal. Joseph was promised power, not just spiritual power with like we’re talking about. But God Himself gave Joseph a dream where he would rule. Not only would he rule over his brothers and his mother and his father, but eventually as we saw, he ruled over the land of Egypt. That was actually a political position. That was a government position. That was actual literal power. But it has to come from God. So God does want you to have power. God wants you to have influence. God wants you to be someone who speaks and things happen. But it has to come from him. So many times, those of us that maybe come from a little bit of a broken environment, or maybe we’re in a good environment, but internally we’re broken. power can be used to validate inadequacy. power or influence or having a little bit of say about what goes on in a group project or praise God, some of us getting leadership in our churches, and we really think we got power. And it’s actually, it’s our way of working out our insecurity. That’s not the kind of power we’re talking about. We’re talking about a power that God gives you it is his calling
he places inside of you. And then he’s going to mature it. See, when you look at the life of Joseph, God caused a delay. For his development, a 17 year delay between when he was told and promised by God, he would have power, he was delayed in the pit, he was delayed in potter’s house, he was delayed in the prison, and God will delay I know that’s such a favorite word for our 32nd 24 hour story generation, but God will delay grow you, to mature you, to heal you
to clean out some of those family wounds, to clean out some of those church rooms, to clean out some of those things so that you can be prepared and ready for the power he will give you the promise early, and then he will prepare you for what the promise will be for when you get there. Look at Joseph 13 years look at David anointed as King as a young age, then he went back out into the field attend the sheep. And then he still brought his brothers from lunch. And then he still fought the giant. And then he still played worship for King Saul. And then he was still persecuted and ran and hid out. And he had over a decade from when he was anointed. And the Bible says that Samuel the Prophet came and anointed David, the king in the Spirit of God, the Holy Spirit rested upon him from that day forward. That was how he was able to do what he did with Goliath. And in other places. He was anointed, he was appointed, but yet he had not been positioned and put in that place because God wanted to develop maturity in him. How many of you are familiar with the story where David comes in, he sees the camp of Saul and Saul is sleeping and David actually sneaks down into where Saul is and he could kill him. You guys know what I’m talking about you familiar with the story yet rather than doing so he said, I will not touch God’s Anointed. Spoiler alert. That’s not a verse that pastors used to tell you that you have to obey them and be controlled and be a manipulation. But what God was, excuse me what David was saying was, God put this guy in authority and whether I agree with him or not, it’s not my place to take him out. So he cut a little bit of his cloth and took it back to say I could have killed Saul. But I waited. That is fascinating maturity, you guys to be able to say, God called me. God put it in me. I’m supposed to be the leader. But I didn’t kill it. I’m gonna wait. Jesus came into this world is the Son of God, prophesied savior of humankind. He was found in the temple at 12. He was baptized in the Holy Spirit fell upon him in the river at age 30. But even he had a delay. And he went 40 days into the wilderness before he came out and did ministry. I just want to encourage you if you are feeling delay, or as you will feel delay in your next few years. It’s part of God’s maturing process. Filling out our story, you notice that at the end of the story when the brothers come and they have the whole fun thing, and he hides this stuff. And Joseph’s a little bit of a jokester, and he he like tricks them and makes them think he’s gonna execute them or he’s gonna keep the youngest brother and like you guys know the story. He’s kind of has a little bit of fun with them. But then once he takes off his makeup, and he pulls off his head dress, and he lets them know, it’s me. It’s Joseph, it’s me. And they’re like, oh, and they cry, and they have a big hug. Joseph received them with love. The same brothers who sold him in human trafficking, because God had matured him over 13 years. And he received them differently. Now he had the position. Now he had the power. And that word from God came true. And he ruled second in command over Egypt and over their nation because they were dependent upon Egypt. And yet his heart at that time was love for his family. forgiveness for those who’ve wronged him and the Father’s heart to help and provide. Joseph saved his family. He was able to provide for them and have the rest of them come and his elderly father come and stay the rest of their days in Egypt. The words and the instructions God gave them more true. They were able to build up and store up through the plentiful years and have enough during the time of economic crisis and famine. He saved his nation. He saved his whole nation. They all moved over there so much so that another part of the story was Charlton Heston, or in the animated movie Prince of Egypt, those people all of them getting taken captive, when all the kings and Pharaohs everybody who knew those people died, but he brought the whole nation. He saved them all. So the point is this. We are called to have power, His power, not ours. And we are called to have power. for other people. It’s never for ourselves. It is to bless and to help, and to minister to other people.
I have Sarah come and play the piano. Want to pray for you? It always sounds better if there’s music behind it. Not sure your theological pennis persuasion I’m clearly a Pentecostal the cats out of the bag. But
I just want to pray for you. Thank you, sir. This world needs you to step into the calling that you have. And I know people have told you that Come on, I know that you’ve heard that before God is waiting on you. The city is waiting on you step up, young man step up. But can I just say this today? God doesn’t need you to be anything other than what he wanted you to be. And that might be an educator. That might be a politician, might be a doctor might be a lawyer of your mother might be a father. God needs you to be whoever you’re called to be. But I know that this world is not getting any better. I know that people are only saved when the people of God, reach out with the love of God. And they know who they are in God. And they have the power of God. I’m just believing that God wants to help you trust that there’s power for you. He’ll mature you and he’ll take time to work all the junk out of each one of us even as he does with me still to this day. 36 years old, you guys, I still sin. I know it’s a shock. But God wants to heal some people today. He started already this morning, and he wants to encourage you. And he wants to strengthen you and to strengthen your faith to believe what God can do. For sake of time, I didn’t get into the story of my life and how God radically delivered me from a life of crime and drugs. I didn’t get into the story of how there’s a medical miracle living in my house. And some of these young adults on the front row. No, I didn’t get into the story of how 50 people prayed in a room. And just over a year ago, my father’s house was saved in paradise when five miles around every house was burned. But 50 people worshipped and prayed and power of God came in for a man who didn’t know Jesus, I could show you a map today. We’re all around his house, the circle of trust and protection that we prayed happened. But we didn’t have time for that today. But there is power. Follow me on Facebook. I’ll put it on there. Some
of you guys stand here. But would you stand I just want to pray for you. Heavenly Father, we’re standing here. This is a room of your sons and daughters. This is a family room, we’re in the family room. I want some of you to picture that. I want you to picture sitting in a family room with your eyes closed right now I want you to picture the father, sitting in his chair, he loves you. And it’s a warm place. He’s by the fire. It’s a family place. Whether that’s very familiar to you, or if you grew up like me without your father, and that’s foreign to you doesn’t matter. You’re welcomed into the Father’s house, there’s a seat at the table. And the father would draw you close this morning and say I have something for you. He pulls out the blueprints of the family plan of the family business and he shows you I have some things for you. They’re individual to you. You are as unique as the thumbprint on your head. Not one of us is the same. Each one of us has an individual purpose and calling in our life. The Father God this morning, we thank you that you call us to partner with you to reach and to love people. Not because we’re good but because you are not because we’re worthy, but because you made us worthy, not because we’re righteous but because Jesus Christ is our righteousness and we have been made the righteousness of God through Christ Jesus. So we’re guilty less. We are free. We’re family and you just have some things that belong to people. You have encouragement. I pray right now whoever’s feeling discouraged, or you would lighten the load on their shoulders. Pray for anybody right now who is feeling stressed. Class load, workload, relationships, all stress be lifted off in the name of Jesus quickly if that’s you, you feel so stressed. so stressed, you are trying hard to make it. There’s too many alerts in your account. You get mad when your phone dings. I’m talking specifically to a couple of people raise your hand real quick. Raise your hand. Yeah, so many, so many. Okay, Lord, I just pray for peace, Grace. And you’re refreshing to fall on busy and stressed hearts right now. Refreshing in the name of Jesus, refreshing in the name of Jesus. Practically The answer is simply do each one as it comes, guys. Just one, knock off one thing on the list and then get to the other. Don’t stress yourselves. But just go one by one, you’ll get it done. And lastly, Father, I pray that you would encourage us with faith, a spirit of faith, to believe your word that we’re called to reach out to those who don’t know, we’re called to pray for those who are hurting. We’re called to love on those who are broken, and bring them into this family that we’re all in right here right now this morning. We love you. We praise you. We thank you. Right refreshing right now. Refreshing right now. Jesus. Thank you Holy Spirit.
Sarah, actually, when I was watching you, just practicing and getting ready for today, you have such a beautiful voice and you’re very gifted and skilled at worship, but actually see worship for you is not so much serving others, but it blesses you almost more than it blesses other people. And there are times I want to say this to you. There are times when you feel tired, and you feel upset and you feel broken. And and it’s almost hard to get up and play. It’s almost hard to sing into worship, but what you find is about a few minutes into it, the load lifts and the burden comes off. And God wants to say to you that when you’re weak, he makes you strong, he called you he put a gift of worship in you, you cannot drum it up, you cannot make it happen. And there are times when you feel like I’m not even good enough to do this. But God would say to you, I made you good. And you don’t have to come into the place of worship being perfect. None of those people from any of those large worship movements are any different than you. They’re just people too. And I want to encourage you to just take some worry off and trust him and not feel like you need to measure up to some standard while you worship, but just to be you and worship Him. Like there’s nobody here and he will anoint that. More than any preparation. Is that true? Does that make sense to you? Praise God.
All right. Well, I think we’re out of time. Got to get you going. Love you. Appreciate you. You’re a man of God. Love you all. Go to your class, wherever you need to be next. Have a great day.