*We would like to thank World Challenge, Inc. for allowing us to share past pertinent newsletter messages that might encourage us to see what the Lord has tried to share with His people for many years. These newsletters always opened my eyes to what the Spirit was trying to convey to the churches. David Wilkerson cared about God and His people and also wanted us ready for the Lord's soon return. We hope these messages challenge you as much as they impacted my life in my walk with our Savior. (By Permission)

The Joseph Company! David Wilkerson

Part 1 l2-2l-l992

I know of one Bible scholar who has discovered more than a hundred ways in which Joseph was a type of Jesus Christ. Yet, as much as I believe Joseph was a type of Christ, I also believe He was a type of last-day remnant – a people whom God is raising up right now to show His church how to break out of its spiritual famine!

Let me show you the Joseph Company-a small body of last-day believers wholly given to the Lord. They commune with God daily. They are led by the Spirit in every detail of their lives. And at this moment they are coming out of great trials and testings to enter a place of revelation wisdom, and fruitfulness. God is working in them, giving them His truth and knowledge. And the time is coming soon when He is going to call upon them as He did Joseph!

Right now, the church of Jesus Christ is growing increasingly worldly, sensual, wicked, and cold. Our ministry receives literally thousands of letters from pastors and laypeople who are burdened down by the condition of their church. People complain that they don't hear convicting, life-changing sermons. Pastors complain that few want to hear the truth.

Yes, there are some powerful “lamp-stick” churches in America – full of 'light' and glory and the holiness of God. The pastors are on fire, preaching righteousness, and God is moving mightily among the people.

But for the most part, the church today is experiencing widespread spiritual famine: shallow sermons, dead hearers, “lively” worship that is not backed up by righteous living. A Laodicean blindness has fallen like a cloud over the eyes of multitudes who once were on fire for God.

Many true ministers of God are becoming disheartened. One pastor wrote recently:

“A great number of godly pastors are being fired or forced out by their churches. I resigned my church last December 3l. A colleague just ten miles away also left his church under a cloud. A third pastor sixty miles away submitted his resignation under duress. A fourth was fired by his church in October....

“In my region, churches are not growing by making new converts, but from Christians moving around, shopping with a consumers mentality. It's a revolving door...Please find out for yourself how many men of God are heartbroken defeated, discouraged—yet also saying, “Even so, come, Lord Jesus”!

What Is God's Solution to Such Backsliding and Famine?

God has always been at work far in advance of every spiritual famine in His church. In every generation He has moved ahead to prepare a way out for His people!

The seventy-five members of Jacob's clan would have died in the great world-wide (and the promise of Israel would have been destroyed) had not God been working ahead of it all. In fact, some twenty years before the famine hit, God was already setting in motion a plan to save His people from destruction.

He sent Joseph ahead to Egypt! For twenty years God worked on this man – isolated him, trying him, preparing him for a place of authority – because Joseph was to become the life-saver of God's chosen. He kept Joseph from the limelight – to be disciplined for a coming day of chaos and death!

Beloved, just as surely as God isolated Joseph. He has a Joseph Company today that is hidden from all eyes. These are in the furnace of affliction, prisons of testing, battlegrounds of trials and temptation. They are dying to this world, wanting nothing of its fame, honor, money or pleasure. And they are growing hungry to become more intimate with Christ – to know His heart and His voice.

You may not understand all the mysterious testings, trials and troubles in your life. But if your heart is fully set on following Christ, you can rest assured God has purpose in it all: He is wanting to bring you into His Joseph Company!

There are three things that went into the making of Joseph as a tried and tested servant. And you too will experience these things if you are a part of this last-day company:

            1. Joseph Responded to the Spirit's Call to a Holy, Separated Life.

God's Spirit has always been calling mankind to Himself – to holiness, purity of heart and a separated life. Tragically, few ever respond – but in every generation God has a small remnant who do answer His call. They separate themselves, purify their lives and give themselves wholly to Him.

Joseph responded to God's call at a very early age. And he had ten older brothers who received the same call to surrender, walk righteously and separate themselves. But they chose to remain in the world – and their walk with God was half-hearted.

There were at least two occasions when all of Jacob's sons received the Spirit's call very clearly. The first was at

Shalem, in Shechem, where Jacob built an altar to THE GOD OF ISRAEL..JACOB CALLED HIS SONS TO THE ALTAR TO BECOME WORSHIPERS WITH HIM – Jacob called his sons to the altar to become worshipers with him – to kneel before the Lord and follow Him wholeheartedly.

But Joseph's brothers instead turned to revenge and bloodshed. When a Shechemite defiled their sister Dinah, they rushed into the city, burning it down and killing every man, woman and child (see Genesis 34). These ten brothers hadn't given themselves wholly to trust and serve God. No – their violence made Jacob a stench among the Canaanites!

Yet God called out to them clearly once more, this time at Bethel. Jacob knew his sons were bound with idolatry and were rejecting God's call to purity and righteousness. So he warned them. “Put away the strange gods that are among you, and be clean, and change your garments: and let us arise, and go up to Bethel, and I will make there an altar unto God” (Genesis 35:2-3).

Beloved, this is one of the clearest calls in all of God's Word! The phrase “change your garments” in Hebrew means a moral and spiritual purification of the mind and heart. Outwardly, Jacob's sons surrendered: “And they gave unto Jacob all the strange gods which were in their hand, and all their earrings” (verse 4). But their repentance was only on the surface – they never had a true heart-change. They went right back to their rebellion, becoming full of hate, envy, and strife!

Yet there was something different about Joseph: his repentance had been from the heart. He had responded to the Spirit's call – and from the age of seventeen, he was wholly set on following the Lord. In the midst of a wicked, evil environment, Joseph maintained clean hands and a pure heart.

Now, Jacob had other sons who were born to Bilhah and Zilpah, his maid and concubine. These sons cared for the family flocks, and Joseph was sent out to the fields to work among them. But he was soon grieved – because his brothers spoke and lived like heathen. His pure heart was crushed by the wickedness in his own family.

“And Joseph brought unto his father their evil report” (37:2). Joseph unburdened his heart to his father. “You wouldn't believe the way they live, Father. They speak against your God and mine. They're grieving Him!”

Beloved, this is a mark of the Joseph Company: they have a grief for sin! They have forsaken all idols and are in love with Jesus – their hearts are aflame with His holiness! They see the sin in the land, but they are grieved most of all by the sin in the church. They cry out from their souls, “Oh, Father – look at what is happening among Your children!”

If you are a part of this last-day company, you can't overlook sin. Rather, something has to rise up in you that says, “Oh God, I can't stand what they're doing to Your name!” You begin to pray – not against people, but against the inroads of demonic powers into the church of Jesus Christ!

Continued in Part 2