It began with a coat. The blessings and the jealousies and the betrayals and the separations – all because of a coat. Of many colors. Each color prophesying of Joseph’s eventual leadership over agriculture, husbandry and even people. It became a coat of destiny, of self honor and pride. And he clung to it. Like an idol. And, like all idols, it comforted him, reassured him and puffed him up. Only, His God didn’t allow anything – even a good thing – to take His rightful place, so He intervened. Down, down, down Joseph fell – into the miry well, his beloved coat rent among the mockers. He was half naked and alone – his idol not able to save him.
It wasn’t long before he was in a place of honor – second in command of Potiphar’s house. He’d worked his way from slave to trusted servant. He, once again, had been bestowed a coat of honor. He was head over all of Potiphar’s belongings, save his wife, but she was now before him, tempting him. What would he do? In a moment that allowed no planning, he ran away – abandoning his coat of honor in the hand of a temptress. He rejected the idol he’d clung to in the past, choosing instead an invisible coat of obedience. He, again, was left naked, not knowing his fate.
His obedience to God was rewarded by setting him up to enter Pharaoh’s service – in prison. Joseph’s living God had seemingly abandoned him. For years in prison he remained, until the appointed time. Joseph was eventually summoned before the King and rose to second in command, receiving a coat of honor. Fulfilling the prophesy of his youthful coat of many colors, he ruled over all agriculture, husbandry, and trade in Egypt – not because of an idol, but because of his Lord’s plan.
He first clung to his coat, then abandoned his coat, then (after enduring trials) was bestowed a coat of honor. Throughout his life, the coat was a constant reminder of God’s plan. What is your coat? Is it an idol or an honor?