Dave Burnette's Commentary

Genesis Chapter 40

Written By: God through Inspiration
Penned By: Moses
Date Penned: (1450-1410 BC)
Overview: The Record of God's Chosen People (c 23-50)
Theme: The Story of Joseph (c 37-50)
Message: Joseph Goes to Jail  (v 1-23 )

Genesis 40 Commentary

(40:1-3) The Butler and the Baker - The butler and the baker were two of the most trusted men in Pharaoh's kingdom. The baker was in charge of making Pharaoh's food, and the butler tasted Pharaoh's wine before giving it to him to make sure it was not contaminated or poisoned. These trusted men must have been suspected of a serious wrong, perhaps of conspiring against Pharaoh. Later, the butler was released and the baker executed.

(40:8) Joseph Focuses on God -  When the subject of dreams came up, Joseph focused everyone's attention on God. Rather than using the situation to make himself look good, he turned it into a powerful witness for the Lord. One secret of effective witnessing is to recognize opportunities to relate God to the other person's experience. When the opportunity arises, we must have the courage to speak, as Joseph did.

(40:23) The Butler Forgets Joseph -  When Pharaoh's butler was freed from prison, he forgot about Joseph. Two full years passed before Joseph had another opportunity to be freed (41:1). Yet Joseph's faith was deep, and he would be ready when the next chance came. When we feel passed by, overlooked, or forgotten, we shouldn't be surprised that people are often ungrateful. In similar situations, we should trust God as Joseph did. Better opportunities may be waiting.

Dave Burnette's Life Application

Unconditional Love

Each day we walk through the Bible chapter by chapter, making application of our text to help us grow in the Lord. There are many applications we can make from each day's text. Today we Continue in the book of Genesis with Chapter 40. In today's text, the Bible focuses on Joseph as he continues to stay faithful to God, although his circumstances seem far from what we consider blessed by God. Yesterday we were encouraged by Joseph not to quit. Today, we are encouraged as he continues to testify of God as he interprets the baker's and the butler's dreams. Even though Joseph's interpretation of the butler came true, we see the butler forgot Joseph. Still, Joseph stays faithful to God, and his love for Him shows even more through this continuing story. The truth is that Joseph loves the God of Abraham, and this love is unconditional; no matter his circumstance, he stays true to Lord. In making an application today, even in Christian circles, people don't serve the Lord. They don't attend church, give to the Lord's work, or even testify of his saving grace. Why? They don't love the Lord with the unconditional love Joseph shows in our text. How about you? Do you love the Lord? If so, serve him unconditionally no matter what your circumstances. 


Genesis 40

Genesis 40

 1And it came to pass after these things, that the butler of the king of Egypt and his baker had offended their lord the king of Egypt.

 2And Pharaoh was wroth against two of his officers, against the chief of the butlers, and against the chief of the bakers.

 3And he put them in ward in the house of the captain of the guard, into the prison, the place where Joseph was bound.

 4And the captain of the guard charged Joseph with them, and he served them: and they continued a season in ward.

 5And they dreamed a dream both of them, each man his dream in one night, each man according to the interpretation of his dream, the butler and the baker of the king of Egypt, which were bound in the prison.

 6And Joseph came in unto them in the morning, and looked upon them, and, behold, they were sad.

 7And he asked Pharaoh's officers that were with him in the ward of his lord's house, saying, Wherefore look ye so sadly to day?

 8And they said unto him, We have dreamed a dream, and there is no interpreter of it. And Joseph said unto them, Do not interpretations belong to God? tell me them, I pray you.

 9And the chief butler told his dream to Joseph, and said to him, In my dream, behold, a vine was before me;

 10And in the vine were three branches: and it was as though it budded, and her blossoms shot forth; and the clusters thereof brought forth ripe grapes:

 11And Pharaoh's cup was in my hand: and I took the grapes, and pressed them into Pharaoh's cup, and I gave the cup into Pharaoh's hand.

 12And Joseph said unto him, This is the interpretation of it: The three branches are three days:

 13Yet within three days shall Pharaoh lift up thine head, and restore thee unto thy place: and thou shalt deliver Pharaoh's cup into his hand, after the former manner when thou wast his butler.

 14But think on me when it shall be well with thee, and shew kindness, I pray thee, unto me, and make mention of me unto Pharaoh, and bring me out of this house:

 15For indeed I was stolen away out of the land of the Hebrews: and here also have I done nothing that they should put me into the dungeon.

 16When the chief baker saw that the interpretation was good, he said unto Joseph, I also was in my dream, and, behold, I had three white baskets on my head:

 17And in the uppermost basket there was of all manner of bakemeats for Pharaoh; and the birds did eat them out of the basket upon my head.

 18And Joseph answered and said, This is the interpretation thereof: The three baskets are three days:

 19Yet within three days shall Pharaoh lift up thy head from off thee, and shall hang thee on a tree; and the birds shall eat thy flesh from off thee.

 20And it came to pass the third day, which was Pharaoh's birthday, that he made a feast unto all his servants: and he lifted up the head of the chief butler and of the chief baker among his servants.

 21And he restored the chief butler unto his butlership again; and he gave the cup into Pharaoh's hand:

 22But he hanged the chief baker: as Joseph had interpreted to them.

 23Yet did not the chief butler remember Joseph, but forgat him.