Did the Old Testament Greats Understand God’s Plan? Part 20

This entry is part 20 of 45 in the series Did the Old Testament Greats Understand God's Plan?

After the three days the butler is restored to his position while the baker is hanged for his crimes. This of course was foretold by the interpretations Joseph gave them. However, the baker forgets his promise to Joseph. Joseph remains in prison for two more years. “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. And he restored the chief butler unto his butlership again; and he gave the cup into Pharaoh’s hand: But he hanged the chief baker: as Joseph had interpreted to them. Yet did not the chief butler remember Joseph, but forgat him” (Genesis 40:20-23).

Interestingly, the next event that occurs in Egypt is Pharaoh’s dream. The Pharaoh of that time period had a dream that greatly burdened him. He called all the people of the land to come to him and interpret his dream, but none could. “Pharaoh dreamed: and, behold, he stood by the river. And, behold, there came up out of the river seven well favoured kine and fatfleshed; and they fed in a meadow. And, behold, seven other kine came up after them out of the river, ill favoured and leanfleshed; and stood by the other kine upon the brink of the river. And the ill favoured and leanfleshed kine did eat up the seven well favoured and fat kine. So Pharaoh awoke. And he slept and dreamed the second time: and, behold, seven ears of corn came up upon one stalk, rank and good. And, behold, seven thin ears and blasted with the east wind sprung up after them. And the seven thin ears devoured the seven rank and full ears. And Pharaoh awoke, and, behold, it was a dream” (Genesis 41:1-8).

I am sure that Joseph had days in which he felt discouraged or hopeless. I am sure his time in prison was an inconvenience. He did not even commit the crime which they imprisoned him for. What kind of stress would you feel? How heavy would this be upon you? How upset would you be? Would this change your outlook? Would it cause you to be a negative person? Would you become a miserable person who hates life? We as readers of this story know what happens next, but he lived this story and had no idea what good or evil awaited him next. Do we have any idea what awaits us?

Recap of Part 19: Joseph gives both prisoners, the butler and the baker, the interpretation of their dreams leaving one pleased and the other in distress. The butler promises to remember Joseph when he is restored to his position. Will he in fact keep that promise?

Part 20

After the three days the butler is restored to his position while the baker is hanged for his crimes. This of course was foretold by the interpretations Joseph gave them. However, the baker forgets his promise to Joseph. Joseph remains in prison for two more years. “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. And he restored the chief butler unto his butlership again; and he gave the cup into Pharaoh’s hand: But he hanged the chief baker: as Joseph had interpreted to them. Yet did not the chief butler remember Joseph, but forgat him” (Genesis 40:20-23).

Interestingly, the next event that occurs in Egypt is Pharaoh’s dream. The Pharaoh of that time period had a dream that greatly burdened him. He called all the people of the land to come to him and interpret his dream, but none could. “Pharaoh dreamed: and, behold, he stood by the river. And, behold, there came up out of the river seven well favoured kine and fatfleshed; and they fed in a meadow. And, behold, seven other kine came up after them out of the river, ill favoured and leanfleshed; and stood by the other kine upon the brink of the river. And the ill favoured and leanfleshed kine did eat up the seven well favoured and fat kine. So Pharaoh awoke. And he slept and dreamed the second time: and, behold, seven ears of corn came up upon one stalk, rank and good. And, behold, seven thin ears and blasted with the east wind sprung up after them. And the seven thin ears devoured the seven rank and full ears. And Pharaoh awoke, and, behold, it was a dream” (Genesis 41:1-8).

I am sure that Joseph had days in which he felt discouraged or hopeless. I am sure his time in prison was an inconvenience. He did not even commit the crime which they imprisoned him for. What kind of stress would you feel? How heavy would this be upon you? How upset would you be? Would this change your outlook? Would it cause you to be a negative person? Would you become a miserable person who hates life? We as readers of this story know what happens next, but he lived this story and had no idea what good or evil awaited him next. Do we have any idea what awaits us?

In such a time, when we as Christians face adversity, when we struggle with the path set before us, when we are dissatisfied with our current situations, we must recall the lessons Christ taught and must place all our faith in him. “Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof” (Matthew 6:25-34). What did Joseph know?

In such a time, when we as Christians face adversity, when we struggle with the path set before us, when we are dissatisfied with our current situations, we must recall the lessons Christ taught and must place all our faith in him. “Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof” (Matthew 6:25-34). What did Joseph know?

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