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July 11, 2015


by Leslie John


Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law. (1 John 3:4)

There are two clauses in 1 John 3:4. The first one says whoever commits sin transgresses the law and the second one gives the definition of sin which is transgression of the law. Obviously the first clause is the result of the second clause. Whoever transgresses the law is the one who is categorized as sinner. But then, why Joseph should have avoided illegal relationship with Potiphar’s wife if it was not considered as sin? It brings out another question as to whether or not there was law before Mosaic Law was given.

If there was no law then why people during Noah’s period were punished? If there was no law then why Sodom and Gomorrah was destroyed by God? The answer is clear. God punished everyone who transgressed God’s oral law from the beginning. Adam and Eve were the first couple who were punished but not cursed. That is why there is a way for man to be saved.  Satan, who was in the form of Serpent was cursed by God, leaving no salvation for Satan.

The Mosaic Law was written and given to the children of Israel when they were on their journey from Egypt to Canaan. All those who transgressed Mosaic Law were punished. They were all under “Old Covenant” and those who transgressed Mosaic Law did not inherit the blessings of God and the generation that left Egypt perished in the wilderness.

Yielding to sin will not only make a person sinner, but also will consume him with the consequence of sin. Every sin brings with it not only physical suffering but also mental agony. Every time a person is tempted to commit sin, he also finds a way to escape from it. It is for the Christian to seek and find what that way is.

Some times, the escapement may not bring immediate good results, but will bring good results in the long run. Here, Joseph did not yield to sin even though he could have pleased Potiphar’s wife, in order to retain his job. Joseph could have committed sin with her and escaped from her wrath temporarily, but that sin would not have gone concealed for a long time. If he committed sin and that came to light he would have faced more serious punishment than that he faced as a result of false allegation of molesting Potiphar’s wife.

“And the LORD was with Joseph, and he was a prosperous man; and he was in the house of his master the Egyptian”. (Genesis 39:2)

Joseph escaped the trouble but got into another trouble, when she cried out loudly, saying Joseph tried to molest her. She called men around to catch him and obeying her plea the men caught Joseph and put him in prison based on the orders of his master.

In Genesis Chapter 39 we read that Potiphar trusted Joseph and made in charge of his house. Joseph was made overseer of his house and all that he had, and because of Joseph, God blessed Potiphar and his house. Many times in our lives also it so happens that even though we do not deserve good, or blessing, God shows mercy on us for helping some one some time, or chooses us to help some one some time. God achieves many of his purposes through men and His Word.

“Cast thy bread upon the waters: for thou shalt find it after many days”. (Ecclesiastes 11:1)

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