Pharaoh Tells Joseph His Dream

The story is told of a man who was drafted into the armed forces. Wherever he went he would stoop to pick up a piece of paper which was on the ground. And every time he picked up a piece of paper, he would look at it, shake his head no, and then throw it away. It didn’t take lon … More


It becomes very evident in this passage that it was God’s will to elevate Joseph to a position of great power in this world system. The long years of discipline and development had been designed to prepare Joseph for the high position that was soon to be his. It was the will of God to present him to Pharaoh and once he did things began to move very quickly. One hour Joseph was in prison  hustling to and fro as right hand man to the prison governor and the next his name was called and he was arrayed in court robes being hurried off to see Pharaoh. Pharaoh was  a man who claimed to be god, a man whose functions were as much religious as political. However Joseph saw beyond his trappings of power and saw a lost, lonely man who needed to be saved.

On the way to see Pharaoh Joseph shaved and put on clean clothing (v. 14). As explained in the previous verses Pharaoh had two dreams (v. 15). When the Butler told him about Joseph and how he could interpret a dream he immediately sent for him. When Joseph came before the king, he spoke boldly of the God he worshiped even though he knew the king worshiped the idols of Egypt. When Pharaoh told him that he understood he could interpret dreams Joseph said, “It is not in me to interpret dreams, but God has the power” (v. 16). Pharaoh told how in his dream  seven skinny cows ate seven healthy cows (vv. 17-21). In another dream seven thin heads of grain swallowed seven good heads of grain (vv. 22-24). His magicians could not tell him the meaning.

What an opportunity this would have been for Joseph to take the credit. Satan must have whispered  into Joseph’s ear, “Don’t be preaching to this fellow about God. Remember he’s a god himself and very powerful. He will have your head off if you insult him.” As we see in the following passage Joseph gave him a strong testimony of who God is and Pharaoh was dethroned and the true God is put in absolute control. 


I may not find it easy to give God the credit for everything that He allows me to do like Joseph did? It is so easy to be proud of what I have done and think that I am great. I need God’s help in this. The urge is so great to want recogition in all the wonderful experiences in life that I try to claim credit myself.

Genesis 41:14-24 (English Standard Version)

Then Pharaoh sent and called Joseph, and they quickly brought him out of the pit. And when he had shaved himself and changed his clothes, he came in before Pharaoh. And Pharaoh said to Joseph, "I have had a dream, and there is no one who can interpret it. I have heard it said of you that when you hear a dream you can interpret it." Joseph answered Pharaoh, "It is not in me; God will give Pharaoh a favorable answer." Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, "Behold, in my dream I was standing on the banks of the Nile. Seven cows, plump and attractive, came up out of the Nile and fed in the reed grass. Seven other cows came up after them, poor and very ugly and thin, such as I had never seen in all the land of Egypt. And the thin, ugly cows ate up the first seven plump cows, but when they had eaten them no one would have known that they had eaten them, for they were still as ugly as at the beginning. Then I awoke. I also saw in my dream seven ears growing on one stalk, full and good. Seven ears, withered, thin, and blighted by the east wind, sprouted after them, and the thin ears swallowed up the seven good ears. And I told it to the magicians, but there was no one who could explain it to me."

View this passage in NIV (Bible Gateway) »