“They said to him, “We have had dreams and there is no one to interpret them.” Joseph said to them, “Do not interpretations belong to God? Please tell them to me.””
So what I love about this chapter is Joseph is in prison, he has been given all kinds of responsibility because of his integrity there in the prison. Specifically at this point he is caring for a cup-bearer and a baker who worked for the king of Egypt. They have these dreams that make them distraught and they’re saying, “We wish somebody could interpret them,” and what Joseph does is he doesn’t say, “I can do this.” He says, “Do not interpretations belong to God?” Then he says, “Please tell them to me.” Like Joseph, from the very beginning, is pointing the cup-bearer and the baker here to God who interprets dreams. Now he is gonna help with that interpretation but he’s doing it because he’s trusting and relying on God.
Through great tribulation, Joseph had an unwavering trust in God.
That seems pretty simple, but think about this situation that Joseph is in. Don’t you think he had to be at least tempted to be mad at God? Bitter toward God? Look at where purity and integrity have got him. When he fled from Potiphar’s wife and that temptation, it got him put in prison. His brothers sold him into slavery. This has been a journey for Joseph and I can just imagine him struggling in his faith. Like God, where are you in the middle of all this? He knows as soon as these people say, “Hey, we’ve had some dreams,” he points them to God. He trusts in God and oh, that’s the kind of faith I want to have in the middle of trials, that even in trials, in prison, there is trust in God.
Now when I read this passage there is obviously all kinds of application but I think specifically about our persecuted brothers and sisters around the world who may be in prison. I think about brothers and sisters in Christ who have proclaimed Christ and it has landed them in prison. They have walked with Christ. They have boldly shared the gospel and as a result right now, right now while you’re listening to this, we have brothers and sisters in Christ who have been separated from their families who are in dungeon-like pictures and they don’t know if or when they will get out. Many times they don’t have contact with the outside world like I’m thinking of people I know right now. I’m thinking of names of people I know who are in those situations and I want to lead us to pray for them that God would help them to grow and trust during their trials.
So this is something calls scripture calls us to do. Let’s pray for our persecuted brothers and sisters right now. God, we trust in you. We trust that you are working all things together for the good of those who love you and to your purpose. Oh God, we pray right now for our brothers and sisters who are in prison right now for their faith. We pray for our brothers and sisters who boldly have shared the gospel and it has landed them in captivity, in darkness, like physical darkness right now and physical pain, physical confinement, physical isolation. God, they’re separated from family, they’re separated from friends. God, we pray for their family members, we pray for their friends, for their church, family. God, we pray that you’d strengthen them, God, that they would not shrink back from trusting in you and proclaiming you as they know the cost in even greater ways right now as their mom or dad or husband or wife or child is in prison because of the gospel. In God we pray we for that brother or sister in prison. God, we pray that you would help them to trust in you.
I’m thinking of specific people right now. God, we just pray, in different places in the world, where these brothers and sisters are imprisoned, God, that you would help them to trust in you, and God, that you would be providentially working just as you were in Genesis 40, just as you were in Joseph’s life, that you would be with them and you would providentially work in these circumstances to work for their good and for your glory for them. God, we pray for the sustenance of their faith. We pray for their satisfaction and a joy in you in a way that only you can provide. God, you see them right now, you know where they are. Please, please, please help them in every way they need help. Help them to look to you and to trust in you. We pray that you would glorify yourself through them even in their chains. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
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