See? I told you all that this would be in several parts. That’s just how God flows through me. It’s never…well, hardly ever brief. However, good news! First, I’ve gotten access to my files from my messed up laptop. Secondly, I’ve read through the section instructed, and now, I’m actually at the journal section with the Q&A.
1. What was the specific preparation that each of the following biblical characters received through a dream?
a. Joseph (Gen. 37)
Gen 37:5 And Joseph dreamed a dream, and he told [it] his brethren: and they hated him yet the more.
Gen 37:6 And he said unto them, Hear, I pray you, this dream which I have dreamed:
In both verses, the word dreamed means the following:
1) to dream
1) to dream (ordinary)
2) to dream (prophetic)
3) to dream (of false prophets)
b) (Hiphil) to dream
2) to be healthy, be strong
a) (Qal) to be healthy
b) (Hiphil) to restore to health
In both verses the word dream means:
a) dream (ordinary)
b) dream (with prophetic meaning)
From what I can tell here, in verse 5, it seems to be indicating that it is healthy to dream, particularly prophetic dreams; and that this is the sort that Joseph had. It was not an ordinary dream.
Verse 6 reiterates this idea, when he tells his brothers to “hear” the prophetic, strong dream he had.
Gen 37:7 For, behold, we [were] binding sheaves in the field, and, lo, my sheaf arose, and also stood upright; and, behold, your sheaves stood round about, and made obeisance to my sheaf.
For the word “binding” there were two sets of definitions together.
1) to bind
1) to be dumb
2) to be bound
b) (Piel) binding (part.)
1) midst, middle
a) midst, middle
b) into, through (after verbs of motion)
c) among (of a number of persons)
d) between (of things arranged by twos)
e) from among (as to take or separate etc)
What this tells me is that he understood that he would be bound and even separated from his family. In fact, the part of the meaning says “to be dumb,” which tells me that he was aware that he would not know or understand what was happening, or perhaps why it was happening, because the second set of definitions that is coupled with this, says in the “midst” of the situation, and “into,” “through,” and “between.” Also, this meaning indicates “from among,” as in to separate.
1) sheaf (as something bound)
a) of Israel returning from exile (fig.)
What it appears is that the fact that it was sheaves he saw, made him know that he was bound, because he first said, we were binding sheaves. Then he said “my sheaf,” which was indicative of him. He didn’t say, ‘the sheaf that I had bound.’ He spoke as if the sheaves represented him and the others.
Then he said, “My sheaf arose.” If he was bound, it would take some effort to arise. He didn’t just say arose, but he also said, “And also stood upright.” If it had to arise and also to stand upright, that is indicative not only of being bound, but being unable to move; in other words, not being free to choose. Look at the word definition for “arose” and for “stood upright”.
1) to rise, arise, stand, rise up, stand up
1) to arise
2) to arise (hostile sense)
3) to arise, become powerful
4) to arise, come on the scene
5) to stand
a) to maintain oneself
b) to be established, be confirmed
c) to stand, endure
d) to be fixed
e) to be valid
f) to be proven
g) to be fulfilled
h) to persist
i) to be set, be fixed
1) to fulfil
2) to confirm, ratify, establish, impose
c) (Polel) to raise up
d) (Hithpael) to raise oneself, rise up
1) to cause to arise, raise
2) to raise, set up, erect, build
3) to raise up, bring on the scene
4) to raise up, rouse, stir up, investigate
5) to raise up, constitute
6) to cause to stand, set, station, establish
7) to make binding
8) to carry out, give effect to
f) (Hophal) to be raised up
To stand upright:
1) to stand, take one’s stand, stand upright, be set (over), establish
1) to station oneself, take one’s stand
2) to stand, be stationed
3) to stand, take an upright position
4) to be stationed, be appointed
5) deputy, prefect, appointed, deputed (subst)
6) to stand firm
1) to station, set
2) to set up, erect
3) to cause to stand erect
4) to fix, establish
c) (Hophal) to be fixed, be determined, be stationary
I think he was aware that he would be bound and enslaved or imprisoned. The biblical account never indicates that Joseph cried out or pleaded with his brothers, as many other accounts try to indicate. I think it was because he knew that this was the will of God. Meanwhile, the scriptures do relate that his father, upon finding out the brother’s version of what had happened to him, rent his clothes and wept.
But Joseph didn’t do this. He already knew that this was part of God’s plan. I think that this is because he saw that God would raise him up from whatever the situation was, and establish him. After all, remember that Joseph did not tend sheep as his brothers did.
His father made him into the overseer or manager. He oversaw what his brothers did and reported to his father. This indicates that this young man was not as immature as some accounts attempt to claim, although, it also indicates by the evil report he brought back in the first few verses of this chapter, that his report was somewhat defamatory.
He was obviously more mature, but perhaps needed to be humbled, considering his father’s preference towards him. God showed him a clear vision of his future, and he handled it with calm and grace, despite the fact that some of it was not pleasant.