Genesis 41–44

God’s Story

When no one can figure out Pharaoh’s dreams, the cupbearer suddenly remembers Joseph—from his prison stay two years earlier. Pharaoh sends for Joseph and tells him his dreams. God reveals to Joseph the meaning of Pharaoh’s dreams: There will be seven years of plentiful harvest in Egypt, followed by seven years of famine. To survive the famine years, Joseph advises Pharaoh to stock up on food during the bountiful years. Impressed by Joseph’s abilities, Pharaoh makes him the second-most powerful man in Egypt and puts him in charge of the harvest, food storage and food allocation.

When the famine hits, it hits hard—and wide. There’s no food even in the land of promise. God’s chosen family is in danger, so Jacob sends his ten oldest sons (all but Benjamin, Joseph’s only full brother) to buy food from the only country that has some: Egypt. Joseph’s siblings bow before him—the slave-turned-sovereign—fulfilling his dream from years before. Keeping his identity a secret, Joseph learns about his long-lost family and their hearts.

The King’s Heart

When life was more famine than feast, Joseph must have questioned, Did God really give me those dreams? He hasn’t abandoned me, has he? But in the lonely wrestling, Joseph made life’s bravest move: He trusted God. When he stood before Pharaoh after two years forgotten in prison, Joseph gave credit to the God who had allowed him to languish there. “God will give Pharaoh the answer” (Genesis 41:16) is a hard-earned, deep-rooted declaration. Years of sovereignly dark times etched this truth deep in Joseph’s soul: God is always-and-every-minute working for good.

We live bits of the story, but the author knows it all. The God who sees the beginning and the end is weaving every situation into beauty, into part of his great rescue. As Joseph’s life declares, the most redemptive chapters of God’s story often take the most groundwork—long, hard seasons where darkness is thick and painful. But when we cling to God in the dark, we are grabbing the hand of a God who knows where he is going.

We live in a story of sovereign goodness. As dark as certain chapters may be, our story will end well. When dark times come, we must grab God’s hand and fight to trust him. He is always guiding us to goodness.


Joseph was sold into slavery when he was 17 (see Genesis 37:2). Thirteen years later, when he is 30, Pharaoh brought him out of prison and made him second-in-command of Egypt (see Genesis 41:4346). That’s a long time to wait for even a hint of how God would fulfill his dreams.

Copyright © 2014 by Walk Thru the Bible Ministries, Inc. All rights reserved.

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