By Ashlee Price
With his hands tied together with rope and his bare feet walking across the hot sand of the desert, he gave his life to God and prayed that the Lord would be with him as he entered the strange land.
Upon arriving in Egypt, they sold Joseph as a slave to Potiphar, who was the captain of the pharaoh’s guards. All around him were people who lived corrupt lives; yet Joseph determined in his heart to do good for his earthly master and to work to the best of his abilities. Though the Egyptians worshipped false gods, Joseph was not afraid to show that he worshipped the God of heaven.
Potiphar saw Joseph was diligent in all that he did, and one day, he asked, “Joseph, what is the secret to your success? I see you working hard all day, and I cannot understand what makes you work so well.”
Joseph replied, “Sir, it is my duty to complete all that you have asked me to do, and it is the Lord’s job to bless the results.”
As Joseph worked on scrubbing floors and cleaning walls, God was refining his character, and making him independent, to correct the faults that had come because of the sheltered life he had lived. But that was not his only trial.
One day, when Joseph was taking care of household matters, Potiphar’s wife came into the room and tried to trick him into committing a great sin. The temptation was extremely strong, because there was no one around to witness him disobeying his master. No one would ever know … but Joseph refused to give in. He knew God was watching him, even if no one else was. Solemnly, he declared, “How can I do this great wickedness and sin against God?”
He turned and ran, but Potiphar’s wife was devising, and when Potiphar, her husband, came home later that day, she began weeping. “Husband, the servant you put in charge over your house has done this evil against me. I say you should put him to death.” Underneath her tears were eyes that burned with hatred towards the integrity of Joseph.
Potiphar stroked his black braided beard thoughtfully, feeling anger rising against his faithful servant, yet he could not make sense of it all. Joseph has been my most loyal slave. He does everything well, and has never lied to me or stolen anything from my household, yet my wife tells me what he has done … it just doesn’t sound like something Joseph would do.
Because Potiphar believed Joseph was innocent, he did not kill him, yet because he did not want to be seen as going against his wife’s wishes, he threw Joseph in jail.
Joseph was treated poorly in jail at first, and the iron chains that bound his hands and feet dug into his skin and caused big red sores that brought forth blood. Joseph fought against the feelings of injustice that came to him: he had done nothing wrong, and yet Potiphar’s wife had falsely accused him of a serious crime. Where was God now? Doubts nibbled at his mind.
But he did not give in to the doubts. He knew he was at peace with God because he did not disobey His laws. As more criminals came to the prison, he talked with them and tried to make them feel better about their situation. One day, a short, rounded man with a shaved head who had been the pharaoh’s baker and a skinny man with a long plaited beard who had been the pharaoh’s butler came to Joseph complaining about the dreams they had experienced the night before.
“Tell me what the dreams were about,” Joseph said kindly. “My God is the Revealer of mysteries; He will make the meanings known to me.”
The butler told Joseph his dream and Joseph smiled as he told the man what God had revealed to him. “In three days, you will be called to the pharaoh’s palace to serve as his butler once again.”
The butler brightened immediately and gave Joseph a hug. “Praise be to your God, who has revealed these secret things to you.”
Next, the baker explained his dream and Joseph hung his head as he shared what God had told him about the dream. “In three days, you will be put to death by the pharaoh’s command.”
PICTURE CREDIT – FreeBibleimages