Sunday, March 15, 2009


Joseph Accused by Potiphar's Wife,

In Potiphar's house Joseph fared well, for, seeing that he prospered in all that he did, his impressed master appointed him superintendent of his household. But Joseph was "a goodly person and well favored", and his master's wife conceived a passion for him. Her repeated advances being repulsed, she finally attempted compulsion; still failing, she brought a false accusation against him before her husband, and Joseph was thrown into prison.

There, too, God was with Joseph; the keeper of the prison, seeing that he could place confidence in him, committed the other prisoners to his charge (Gen. xxxix.).Soon afterward, two of Pharaoh's officers, the chief butler and the chief baker, having offended the king, were thrown into the prison where Joseph was, and Joseph was appointed to serve them.

One morning both officers told Joseph their dreams of the previous night, which they themselves were unable to interpret. Joseph concluded from their dreams that the chief butler would be reinstated within three days and that the chief baker would be hanged. Joseph requested the chief butler to mention him to Pharaoh and secure his release from prison, but that officer, reinstalled in office, forgot Joseph (Gen. xl.).

Joseph remained two years in prison, at the end of which period Pharaoh had an uneasy dream of seven lean kine devouring seven fat kine on the Nile, and of seven withered ears devouring seven full, ripe ears. Great importance was attached to dreams in Egypt, and Pharaoh was much troubled when his magicians proved unable to interpret them satisfactorily.

Then the chief butler remembered Joseph and spoke of his skill to Pharaoh. Accordingly he was sent for, and he interpreted Pharaoh's dream as foretelling that seven years of abundance would be followed by seven years of famine and advised the king to appoint some able man to store the surplus grain during the period of abundance. Pleased with his interpretation, Pharaoh made him viceroy over Egypt, giving him the Egyptian name of Zaphnath-paaneah and conferring on him other marks of royal favor.

Shortly afterwards, Joseph was married by Pharaoh to Asenath, the daughter of Potipherah, priest of On, through whom he soon had two sons, Manasseh and Ephraim (Gen. Xli. 1-52).

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