Wisdom Wednesday :The Wisdom of Joseph

Wisdom Wednesday :The Wisdom of Joseph

Submitted by Debbie’s Dad

And Pharaoh said to his servants, “Can we find such a one as this [Joseph], a man in whom is the Spirit of God?”  Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, “In as much as God has shown you all this, there is no one as discerning and wise as you.. Genesis 41:38–39 (NKJV)

As a grown man, Joseph demonstrated to the Pharoah his wisdom and discernment by interpreting the Pharaoh’s dreams and warning him of the grave situation that he was facing—famine in the land.

Remember, Joseph, at only 17 years old, had been sold by his brothers into slavery by offering him to traveling traders that took him to Egypt. (Genesis 37). There, he was sold to one of the Pharaoh’s officers, named Potiphar, who saw that “that the Lord was with him and that the Lord made all he did to prosper in his hand. (Genesis 39:3) But Potiphar’s wife falsely accused Joseph of a sexual assault and he was imprisoned, and yet again, Joseph prospered and gained responsibility in the prison. (Genesis 39:11-33) In prison, Joseph correctly interpreted the dreams of the imprisoned chief butler and baker, but when the butler was restored, he did not fulfill his promise to recommend Joseph for release from prison (Genesis 40). After 2 more years, when Joseph is approaching 30-years old, he is remembered by the butler and brought out to interpret the Pharaoh’s dream. Giving God the credit, Joseph explained the dream predicting the coming famine, and he also laid out a plan of preparation (Genesis 41:1-36).

The Pharaoh was pleased and gave Joseph an Egyptian name, Zaphnath-Paaneah, and the authority to carry out the plan to Joseph. (Genesis 41:42-57). This occurred because the Pharaoh recognized:

  • He was unique in all of Egypt: Can we find (another) one like this? No.
  • He exhibited the presence of the Spirit of God.
  • He was uniquely discerning and wise.

Through all of Joseph’s trials, Joseph trusted God. Enslaved at 17, served Potiphar for about a decade to age 27, then spent 2 years in prison, and at age 29-30, he was elevated from a slave and prisoner to a high authority in Egypt! And the Genesis narrative points out that “the Lord was with Joseph” four times throughout his experience from enslavement to prison. (Genesis 39:2, 3,21,23). The Lord gave Joseph His Spirit’s presence, discernment, and wisdom–and Joseph revealed the wisdom of God’s character to Pharaoh. This glorified God.

May we, like Joseph, be known by unbelievers as men and women who are unique, and “in whom is the Spirit of God”, and who are both discerning and wise in the way we live.

Leave a Comment