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1. In those days Joseph was still confined in the prison house in the land of Egypt.

2. At that time the attendants of Pharaoh were standing before him, the chief of the butlers and the chief of the bakers which belonged to the king of Egypt.

3.And the butler took wine and placed it before the king to drink, and the baker placed bread before the king to eat, and the king drank of the wine and ate of the bread, he and his servants and ministers that ate at the king's table.

4. And whilst they were eating and drinking, the butler and the baker remained there, and Pharaoh's ministers found many flies in the wine, which the butler had brought, and stones of nitre were found in the baker's bread.

5. And the captain of the guard placed Joseph as an attendant on Pharaoh's officers, and Pharaoh's officers were in confinement one year.

6. And at the end of the year, they both dreamed dreams in one night, in the place of confinement where they were, and in the morning Joseph came to them to attend upon them as usual, and he saw them, and behold their countenances were dejected and sad.

7. And Joseph asked them, Why are your countenances sad and dejected this day? And they said unto him, We dreamed a dream, and there is no one to interpret it; and Joseph said unto them, Relate, I pray you, your dream unto me, and God shall give you an answer of peace as you desire.

8. And the butler related his dream unto Joseph, and he said, I saw in my dream, and behold a large vine was before me, and upon that vine I saw three branches, and the vine speedily blossomed and reached a great height, and its clusters were ripened and became grapes.

9. And I took the grapes and pressed them in a cup, and placed it in Pharaoh's hand and he drank; and Joseph said unto him, The three branches that were upon the vine are three days.

10. Yet within three days, the king will order thee to be brought out and he will restore thee to thy office, and thou shalt give the king his wine to drink as at first when thou wast his butler; but let me find favor in thy sight, that thou shalt remember me to Pharaoh when it will be well with thee, and do kindness unto me, and get me brought forth from this prison, for I was stolen away from the land of Canaan and was sold for a slave in this place.

11. And also that which was told thee concerning my master's wife is false, for they placed me in this dungeon for naught; and the butler answered Joseph, saying, If the king deal well with me as at first, as thou hast interpreted to me, I will do all that thou desirest, and get thee brought out of this dungeon.

12. And the baker, seeing that Joseph had accurately interpreted the butler's dream, also approached, and related the whole of his dream to Joseph.

13. And he said unto him, In my dream I saw and behold three white baskets upon my head, and I looked, and behold there were in the uppermost basket all manner of baked meats for Pharaoh, and behold the birds were eating them from off my head.

14. And Joseph said unto him, The three baskets which thou didst see are three days, yet within three days Pharaoh will take off thy head, and hang thee upon a tree, and the birds will eat thy flesh from off thee, as thou sawest in thy dream.

15. In those days the queen was about to be delivered, and upon that day she bare a son unto the king of Egypt, and they proclaimed that the king had gotten his first born son and all the people of Egypt together with the officers and servants of Pharaoh rejoiced greatly.

16. And upon the third day of his birth Pharaoh made a feast for his officers and servants, for the hosts of the land of Zoar and of the land of Egypt.

17. And all the people of Egypt and the servants of Pharaoh came to eat and drink with the king at the feast of his son, and to rejoice at the king's rejoicing.

18. And all the officers of the king and his servants were rejoicing at that time for eight days at the feast, and they made merry with all sorts of musical instruments, with timbrels and with dances in the king's house for eight days.

19. And the butler, to whom Joseph had interpreted his dream, forgot Joseph, and he did not mention him to the king as he had promised, for this thing was from the Lord in order to punish Joseph because he had trusted in man.

20. And Joseph remained after this in the prison house two years, until he had completed twelve years.


Joseph spent many years in prison, and yet only a small part of the time there is explained to us. Much of the time, Joseph spent serving the other prisoners. He was as a servant to some of the other prisoners.

Two of the men who were with him in the prison were the cup-bearer, and the baker of the Pharaoh.

The chief butler was the overseer of the vineyards, keeper of the wine cellar, and the cup bearer of Pharaoh himself. He was responsible to test the wine, to make sure of its quality, and of its safety for the Pharaoh.

The baker was the cook for the Pharaoh, and he was to prepare the meals for the court. He was responsible to make sure they were not only delicious, but also not poisoned.

The offenses of these two, even if not intentional, were indicators that they had failed at their job. Certainly, the flies in the wine would be noticed, and were not deadly, if not noticed, so this crime was very likely not intentional.

The nitre in the food could have been dangerous to the Pharaoh, and may have been intentional, or at least the Pharaoh, after reflection seemed to think so, and resulted in capital punishment.

Within the prison, each of the two experienced a dream from the Lord. The Lord was going to allow Joseph to interpret the dreams for the two. Many think dreams are simply reflective of subconscious thoughts, fears, and desires. To a large degree, dreams are not well understood. The Bible tells us that many dreams are from the Lord, and many can be inspired by the demonic powers. Some can hear from God by thoughts implanted into the conscious mind, and this is fine, some find that God needs to implant the thoughts into the sub-conscious mind.

The dreams which Joseph dealt seemed to always come in pairs. He had two dreams himself, the cupbearer's and the baker's dreams, Pharaoh had two dreams. When God speaks by dreams, it is not a question whether or not God is speaking. God will keep giving dreams, over and over, and not allow them to be dismissed, forgotten, or ignored.

When a dream is from God, it will make a definite impression. They are usually unforgettable, and will cause great concern. Joseph noticed this pre-occupation of the two men the next morning. They told him the dreams, and told him that they did not know how to interpret them. Since these dreams were from God, only God could interpret them, and Joseph was on speaking terms with God.

There are 34 recorded dreams in the Bible. 22 are in the Old Testament, and 12 are in the New Testament.

How did Joseph know what the dreams meant?

How did he hear from God?

Those who obey, can hear the voice of the Spirit:

Acts 5:32


When we grieve the Holy Spirit, we lose the ability to hear His voice as we did before. The Spirit still speaks, in conviction to us. If we resist long enough, we may lose that. Some have hardened themselves so much that they don't hear the voice of the Spirit, even in conviction. We, as the saints of God, need to be sensitive to sin in ourselves in order that we may continue to hear the voice of the Spirit.

Some think they can hear from God if God would allow everything to go right for them. Yet, here was Joseph in prison, betrayed, falsely accused, abused, and yet, he was still hearing from God!

The Spirit speaks to us often also. Has He spoken to you, today ? Yes, He has. Have you heard Him ? Many do not hear the voice of the Spirit speaking to them. The Spirit was sent by God to be our "Comforter." If He has not comforted you, spoken words of cheer and blessing, then He is not doing His job. Yet, we know He is doing His job, and we need to evaluate our hearing if we do not sense His comfort.

If the Lord were still on the earth and walked with you, would He be comforting you in your trial? Yes, He would. This Spirit that has come to replace the Lord during this age, is here to comfort, testify of Jesus, bear witness that we are God's children, etc. All of these involve speaking to us. The Spirit is often speaking to us. We need to learn how to hear Him.

Jesus said to the church ages, as John recorded in the Book of Revelation, that "HE WHO HAS AN EAR, LET HIM HEAR WHAT THE SPIRIT SAYS." (Rev. 2:7,11,17).

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