Genesis 41:1-32 Pharaoh’s Dreams

Posted by on Jul 13, 2003 in Genesis, Text | Comments Off on Genesis 41:1-32 Pharaoh’s Dreams

In this lesson, Pharaoh dreams of cattle and corn.  Joseph is called upon to interpret the dreams when the magicians and wise men of Egypt failed to discover their meaning.  Some more types of Christ are found in these verses.

 

The Dreams – v. 1-7; 17-23

Kine – The definition of kine is “cattle.” The seven fat cows that fed in a meadow got eaten by seven skinny cows at the riverbank (the “brink”).

 

Ears of corn – The first ears of corn were “rank.”  The definition of “rank” is “showing vigorous growth,” also called “full” in v. 22.  The seven full ears of corn in one stalk were eaten by seven thin ears blasted with the east wind (see Ex. 10:13; 14:21; Eze. 17:10; 19:12, God’s judgment).

 

The Dreams Interpretation – v. 25-32

Both dreams prophesy the same events: seven years of great plenty (v. 29) followed by seven years of famine (v. 30-31) which will wipe out any memory of the years of plenty.  These two dreams establish the same facts (v. 32) because Matt. 18: 16 and Deut. 19: 15 say, “at the mouth of two witnesses, or at the mouth of three witnesses, shall the matter be established.”

 

God’s Work with Kings

God uses kings to accomplish his will in the earth (Prov. 21: 1; Dan. 4:32).  In some instances, God revealed his will to kings before hand, like he did to Pharaoh here.  As examples of God using kings for his purposes, God used:

 

  • Pharaoh to demonstrate his power in Egypt – Rom. 9:17
  • Pharaoh to preserve Joseph and his family in Egypt – Gen. 50: 20-21
  • Rehoboam to split Israel and Judah – 2 Chr. 10: 15
  • PharaohNecho to fight against Carchemish – 2 Chr. 35: 20-21
  • Nebuchadnezzar to destroy Judah and Jerusalem – Jer. 25: 8-12
  • Cyrus to rebuild Jerusalem – Ezra 1: 2

 

Kings’ Work with Wise Men

Most kings knew that events during their reigns were determined by “heavenly powers.”  So, they used a variety of means to “fore tell” or “affect the outcome of” the future to their advantage.  They used:

 

  • Magicians (v. 8) – like Pharaoh did in Ex. 7:11, 22;
  • Diviners (Deut. 18: 10) – like the king of Babylon did in Eze. 21: 21-23;
  • Observers of times (Deut. 18: 10 [astrologers, stargazers, and monthly prognosticators, Is. 47:13]) – like Nebuchadnezzar did in Dan. 1: 20.  The wise men in Matt. 2:2 were like this;
  • Enchanters (Deut. 18: 10, ones who cast spells) – like Manasseh did in 2 Ki. 21: 6;
  • Witches (Deut. 18: 10) – like Jezebel did in 2 Ki. 9:22;
  • Charmers (Deut. 18: 11, as in snake charmers, Ps. 58:4-5) – like the Egyptians did in Isaiah 19: 1-3;
  • Familiar spirits (Deut. 18: 11) – like Saul did in 1 Sam. 28: 7;
  • Wizards (Deut. 18:11, male witches or magicians) – like Manasseh did in 2 Ki. 21: 6;
  • Necromancers (Deut. 18: 11, talk with the dead) – like Saul did in 1 Sam. 28: 8-20;
  • Sorcerers (Ex. 7:11) – like Nebuchadnezzar did in Dan. 2:2; and
  • Prophets (Deut. 18:22) – like Ahab did in 1 Ki. 22: 6, 22

 

While all of these different types of “prophets” had some sort of power (Ex. 7:11-12; 7:22; 8:7; Acts 8:9-11), they were no match for God and God’s men (Ex. 8:18-19; Dan. 5:15-17; Acts 13:9-11; etc.).

 

Pharaoh’s Need of Joseph

The magicians and wise men could not interpret the dreams (v. 8).  So, Joseph was called in because he, like Daniel (Dan. 2: 28-30), had received the interpretation from God (v. 15-16).

 

Joseph’s Types of Christ

Since we have seen 48 of Joseph’s types of Jesus Christ in other lessons, we begin here numbering these types with number 49.

 

# Similarity Joseph’sReference Jesus’Reference
49 Both Prophets 41:13 Matt. 21:11; Mk. 6:4
50 Both raised up 41:14 Acts 2:32
51 Both changed their raiment 41:14 Jn. 19:23-24; 20:6-7

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