Genesis Chapter 40

Joseph, the beloved son of Jacob (Israel), was sold into Egypt by his jealous brothers, because he was a favored son and had the gift of dreams. He had worked for Potiphar, and had prospered and was given charge over his household. He was propositioned by Potiphar’s wife, but refused her and so she lied and falsely accused him of taking advantage of her. Joseph was thrown into the Egyptian prison with the prisoners of the king. The prison prospered, and Joseph had been put in charge of the men he was with while there. This chapter continues the story as Joseph, beginning with the following:

1 And it came to pass after these things, that the butler of the king of Egypt and his baker had offended their lord the king of Egypt.
2 And Pharaoh was wroth against two of his officers, against the chief of the butlers, and against the chief of the bakers.
3 And he put them in ward in the house of the captain of the guard, into the prison, the place where Joseph was bound.
4 And the captain of the guard charged Joseph with them, and he served them: and they continued a season in ward.

Pharoah had two men who worked for him, a chief butler and a chief baker. These men had landed themselves in the same part of the prison as Joseph.

5 And they dreamed a dream both of them, each man his dream in one night, each man according to the interpretation of his dream, the butler and the baker of the king of Egypt, which were bound in the prison.
6 And Joseph came in unto them in the morning, and looked upon them, and, behold, they were sad.
7 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?
8 And they said unto him, We have dreamed a dream, and there is no interpreter of it. And Joseph said unto them, Do not interpretations belong to God? tell me them, I pray you.
9 And the chief butler told his dream to Joseph, and said to him, In my dream, behold, a vine was before me;
10 And in the vine were three branches: and it was as though it budded, and her blossoms shot forth; and the clusters thereof brought forth ripe grapes:
11 And Pharaoh’s cup was in my hand: and I took the grapes, and pressed them into Pharaoh’s cup, and I gave the cup into Pharaoh’s hand.
12 And Joseph said unto him, This is the interpretation of it: The three branches are three days:
13 Yet within three days shall Pharaoh lift up thine head, and restore thee unto thy place: and thou shalt deliver Pharaoh’s cup into his hand, after the former manner when thou wast his butler.
14 But think on me when it shall be well with thee, and shew kindness, I pray thee, unto me, and make mention of me unto Pharaoh, and bring me out of this house:
15 For indeed I was stolen away out of the land of the Hebrews: and here also have I done nothing that they should put me into the dungeon.
16 When the chief baker saw that the interpretation was good, he said unto Joseph, I also was in my dream, and, behold, I had three white baskets on my head:
17 And in the uppermost basket there was of all manner of bakemeats for Pharaoh; and the birds did eat them out of the basket upon my head.
18 And Joseph answered and said, This is the interpretation thereof: The three baskets are three days:
19 Yet within three days shall Pharaoh lift up thy head from off thee, and shall hang thee on a tree; and the birds shall eat thy flesh from off thee.

Both the chief butler and chief baker, had dreams. And Joseph found them the next day, in sadness over the meaning of their dreams. Joseph, explained that God would be able to interpret them for them and told them to go ahead and tell him what they had dreamed. The butler had dreamt about a grape vine with three branches, that brought forth fruit. He put the grapes in Pharaoh’s cup and made a drink for his master to drink. Joseph understood his dream and told him that in three days, he would be taken back by Pharaoh and he would serve him again. Joseph asked the butler to remember him when he worked for Pharaoh, so that he might be freed from the prison as well.

The baker heard the interpretation and its outcome, so he told Joseph of his dream as well. He had dreamt that he had 3 white baskets of baked goods on his head. The birds came and ate the bread from the top basket. Joseph told him that in three days, Pharaoh would have him killed and the birds would eat his flesh.

20 And it came to pass the third day, which was Pharaoh’s birthday, that he made a feast unto all his servants: and he lifted up the head of the chief butler and of the chief baker among his servants.
21 And he restored the chief butler unto his butlership again; and he gave the cup into Pharaoh’s hand:
22 But he hanged the chief baker: as Joseph had interpreted to them.
23 Yet did not the chief butler remember Joseph, but forgat him.

Three days later, Pharaoh remembered the chief butler and baker. Then he did as Joseph had interpreted. The butler was restored to his previous job and served Pharaoh his drink, while the baker was put to death. Even though it had happened just as they were told, the butler who had been forgiven himself, forgot about Joseph and did not tell Pharaoh about him.

Dreams have been a means of revelation from ancient days. In the scriptures we read of worthy men of God, being blessed to interpret dreams, or rather to learn the interpretation of dreams through revelation from God. This gift had been the reason that Joseph was sold into slavery. He could have taken that as a reason to deny this gift and held back from sharing the things that were revealed to him, but he was a man of great faith. Joseph continued to use this gift and the Lord was mindful of him. One of the things that I get from this chapter of scripture, is that we should not deny the gifts and talents we are given. They may not always bring about the results we expect, but they are a gift from our Father in Heaven. We need to use them and cultivate them, so that we can become instruments in the hands of the Lord.


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About My Scripture Study Buddy

I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I love the scriptures, but I am not a scriptorian. I've been told that I'm too "deep" for some, but if you are willing, I'd love to have others join me in my quest for a greater understanding of the gospel. Please feel free to leave me comments and hopefully we can help each other to learn.


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