November 25, 2009

Up From the Pit

Genesis 41:1-16

Pharaoh sent for Joseph, and he was quickly brought from the dungeon.
Genesis 41:14


Pharaoh had two terrible dreams, and all of Egypt’s wisdom couldn’t help him understand them. But he had to know what they meant. Who could help him?

Righteousness has a way of coming out on top, sooner or—as often happens—later.

While Joseph was safely out of the temptress’s reach in jail, God helped him to interpret the dreams of a baker and a cupbearer who had offended the Pharaoh. Now the cupbearer, who was restored to Pharaoh’s court, remembered Joseph and his ability to interpret dreams. Pharaoh’s nightmares reminded the cupbearer of Joseph’s skill. So Pharaoh had Joseph brought up from the pit.

Abraham’s great-grandson would now become an instrument of blessing to the nations (see Genesis 12:3). Joseph became Egypt’s savior and would also rescue the surrounding nations from the famine’s destruction (41:39-57). The wisdom for this colossal project came from heaven and worked through Joseph.

Like Egypt of old, our world may have the skills and technology to provide for a comfortable life. But we know there are things beyond our control. Investments may crumble; hurricanes and famines may wipe out years of careful planning and cultivation. But through faith in Christ our future is secure forever.

Lord, help us to seek your wisdom, that we may be patient to learn your will for our lives. Bless us with untroubled sleep and peace that goes beyond understanding. In Jesus, Amen.

About the author — Arie C. Leder

Dr. Arie C. Leder is the Martin J. Wyngaarden Senior Professor of Old Testament Studies at Calvin Theological Seminary in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He previously served as pastor at Ebenezer Christian Reformed Church, Trenton, Ontario, and with Christian Reformed World Missions in Latin America. He teaches courses on the Pentateuch and on historical books of the Old Testament.

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