Topic: The Master Dream Prophet I: I Just Can’t Keep Anything Nice
Episode: Joseph King Of Dreams Part I
Lesson PDF link: 38a.pdf
Toonspirit Ministries is proud to present a ministry first. We are taking a feature length secular film and using it for this curriculum. This three-part lesson is using “Joseph King Of Dreams”. This is a Dreamworks picture that actually does a good job depicting this big biblical hero.
In the 1st part, we join Joseph as he is given the coat of many colors and then sold into slavery by his brothers.
Scriptures Used Include: Genesis 37 and 38.
Today, we are opening up a three part series on Joseph. This lesson will need particular attention because of the length of Bible passages used. All in all, there are 14 chapters in the actual Joseph account. Joseph’s account starts with him as an adolescent or so. He was tending flocks. Trouble was brewing however, as Joseph became the father’s pet, meaning he got some special treatment. Have you ever received or seen someone receive something that envy was a factor about? Not only that, Joseph received other things that turned out to be gifts from God that envy reared its ugly head because of. What were those special things and gifts?
I am going to show a Biblical case of envy because of Joseph being special.
Clip: Movie: "Joseph King Of Dreams I" (Note: Start The Movie And Go Until Marker 26:46):
We are studying Genesis 37 and 38. Unfortunately, only Genesis 37 is mentioned —the next part of the movie omits chapter 38, so part II of this lesson will skip that part. Why do you think the author of this movie skipped this even if it is a sidebar scripture sort of?
The Bible States:
Ge 37:1 Jacob lived in the land where his father had stayed, the land of Canaan.
Ge 37:2 This is the account of Jacob. Joseph, a young man of seventeen, was tending the flocks with his brothers, the sons of Bilhah and the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives, and he brought their father a bad report about them.
Ge 37:3 Now Israel loved Joseph more than any of his other sons, because he had been born to him in his old age; and he made a richly ornamented robe for him.
Ge 37:4 When his brothers saw that their father loved him more than any of them, they hated him and could not speak a kind word to him.
Ge 37:5 Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brothers, they hated him all the more.
Ge 37:6 He said to them, “Listen to this dream I had:
Ge 37:7 We were binding sheaves of grain out in the field when suddenly my sheaf rose and stood upright, while your sheaves gathered around mine and bowed down to it.”
Ge 37:8 His brothers said to him, “Do you intend to reign over us? Will you actually rule us?” And they hated him all the more because of his dream and what he had said.
Ge 37:9 Then he had another dream, and he told it to his brothers. “Listen,” he said, “I had another dream, and this time the sun and moon and eleven stars were bowing down to me.”
Ge 37:10 When he told his father as well as his brothers, his father rebuked him and said, “What is this dream you had? Will your mother and I and your brothers actually come and bow down to the ground before you?”
Ge 37:11 His brothers were jealous of him, but his father kept the matter in mind.
Ge 37:12 Now his brothers had gone to graze their father’s flocks near Shechem,
Ge 37:13 and Israel said to Joseph, “As you know, your brothers are grazing the flocks near Shechem. Come, I am going to send you to them.” “Very well,” he replied.
Ge 37:14 So he said to him, “Go and see if all is well with your brothers and with the flocks, and bring word back to me.” Then he sent him off from the Valley of Hebron. When Joseph arrived at Shechem,
Ge 37:15 a man found him wandering around in the fields and asked him, “What are you looking for?”
Ge 37:16 He replied, “I’m looking for my brothers. Can you tell me where they are grazing their flocks?”
Ge 37:17 “They have moved on from here,” the man answered. “I heard them say, ‘Let’s go to Dothan.’ ” So Joseph went after his brothers and found them near Dothan.
Ge 37:18 But they saw him in the distance, and before he reached them, they plotted to kill him.
Ge 37:19 “Here comes that dreamer!” they said to each other.
Ge 37:20 “Come now, let’s kill him and throw him into one of these cisterns and say that a ferocious animal devoured him. Then we’ll see what comes of his dreams.”
Ge 37:21 When Reuben heard this, he tried to rescue him from their hands. “Let’s not take his life,” he said.
Ge 37:22 “Don’t shed any blood. Throw him into this cistern here in the desert, but don’t lay a hand on him.” Reuben said this to rescue him from them and take him back to his father.
Ge 37:23 So when Joseph came to his brothers, they stripped him of his robe—the richly ornamented robe he was wearing—
Ge 37:24 and they took him and threw him into the cistern. Now the cistern was empty; there was no water in it.
Ge 37:25 As they sat down to eat their meal, they looked up and saw a caravan of Ishmaelites coming from Gilead. Their camels were loaded with spices, balm and myrrh, and they were on their way to take them down to Egypt.
Ge 37:26 Judah said to his brothers, “What will we gain if we kill our brother and cover up his blood?
Ge 37:27 Come, let’s sell him to the Ishmaelites and not lay our hands on him; after all, he is our brother, our own flesh and blood.” His brothers agreed.
Ge 37:28 So when the Midianite merchants came by, his brothers pulled Joseph up out of the cistern and sold him for twenty shekels of silver to the Ishmaelites, who took him to Egypt.
Ge 37:29 When Reuben returned to the cistern and saw that Joseph was not there, he tore his clothes.
Ge 37:30 He went back to his brothers and said, “The boy isn’t there! Where can I turn now?”
Ge 37:31 Then they got Joseph’s robe, slaughtered a goat and dipped the robe in the blood.
Ge 37:32 They took the ornamented robe back to their father and said, “We found this. Examine it to see whether it is your son’s robe.”
Ge 37:33 He recognized it and said, “It is my son’s robe! Some ferocious animal has devoured him. Joseph has surely been torn to pieces.”
Ge 37:34 Then Jacob tore his clothes, put on sackcloth and mourned for his son many days.
Ge 37:35 All his sons and daughters came to comfort him, but he refused to be comforted. “No,” he said, “in mourning will I go down to the grave to my son.” So his father wept for him.
Ge 37:36 Meanwhile, the Midianites sold Joseph in Egypt to Potiphar, one of Pharaoh’s officials, the captain of the guard.
Ge 38:1 At that time, Judah left his brothers and went down to stay with a man of Adullam named Hirah.
Ge 38:2 There Judah met the daughter of a Canaanite man named Shua. He married her and lay with her;
Ge 38:3 she became pregnant and gave birth to a son, who was named Er.
Ge 38:4 She conceived again and gave birth to a son and named him Onan.
Ge 38:5 She gave birth to still another son and named him Shelah. It was at Kezib that she gave birth to him.
Ge 38:6 Judah got a wife for Er, his firstborn, and her name was Tamar.
Ge 38:7 But Er, Judah’s firstborn, was wicked in the LORD'S sight; so the LORD put him to death.
Ge 38:8 Then Judah said to Onan, “Lie with your brother’s wife and fulfill your duty to her as a brother-in-law to produce offspring for your brother.”
Ge 38:9 But Onan knew that the offspring would not be his; so whenever he lay with his brother’s wife, he spilled his semen on the ground to keep from producing offspring for his brother.
Ge 38:10 What he did was wicked in the LORD'S sight; so he put him to death also.
Ge 38:11 Judah then said to his daughter-in-law Tamar, “Live as a widow in your father’s house until my son Shelah grows up.” For he thought, “He may die too, just like his brothers.” So Tamar went to live in her father’s house.
Ge 38:12 After a long time Judah’s wife, the daughter of Shua, died. When Judah had recovered from his grief, he went up to Timnah, to the men who were shearing his sheep, and his friend Hirah the Adullamite went with him.
Ge 38:13 When Tamar was told, “Your father-inlaw is on his way to Timnah to shear his sheep,”
Ge 38:14 she took off her widow’s clothes, covered herself with a veil to disguise herself, and then sat down at the entrance to Enaim, which is on the road to Timnah. For she saw that, though Shelah had now grown up, she had not been given to him as his wife.
Ge 38:15 When Judah saw her, he thought she was a prostitute, for she had covered her face.
Ge 38:16 Not realizing that she was his daughter-in-law, he went over to her by the roadside and said, “Come now, let me sleep with you.” “And what will you give me to sleep with you?” she asked.
Ge 38:17 “I’ll send you a young goat from my flock,” he said. “Will you give me something as a pledge until you send it?” she asked.
Ge 38:18 He said, “What pledge should I give you?” “Your seal and its cord, and the staff in your hand,” she answered. So he gave them to her and slept with her, and she became pregnant by him.
Ge 38:19 After she left, she took off her veil and put on her widow’s clothes again.
Ge 38:20 Meanwhile Judah sent the young goat by his friend the Adullamite in order to get his pledge back from the woman, but he did not find her.
Ge 38:21 He asked the men who lived there, “Where is the shrine prostitute who was beside the road at Enaim?” “There hasn’t been any shrine prostitute here,” they said.
Ge 38:22 So he went back to Judah and said, “I didn’t find her. Besides, the men who lived there said, ‘There hasn’t been any shrine prostitute here.’ ”
Ge 38:23 Then Judah said, “Let her keep what she has, or we will become a laughingstock. After all, I did send her this young goat, but you didn’t find her.”
Ge 38:24 About three months later Judah was told, “Your daughter-in-law Tamar is guilty of prostitution, and as a result she is now pregnant.” Judah said, “Bring her out and have her burned to death!”
Ge 38:25 As she was being brought out, she sent a message to her father-in-law. “I am pregnant by the man who owns these,” she said. And she added, “See if you recognize whose seal and cord and staff these are.”
Ge 38:26 Judah recognized them and said, “She is more righteous than I, since I wouldn’t give her to my son Shelah.” And he did not sleep with her again.
Ge 38:27 When the time came for her to give birth, there were twin boys in her womb.
Ge 38:28 As she was giving birth, one of them put out his hand; so the midwife took a scarlet thread and tied it on his wrist and said, “This one came out first.”
Ge 38:29 But when he drew back his hand, his brother came out, and she said, “So this is how you have broken out!” And he was named Perez.
Ge 38:30 Then his brother, who had the scarlet thread on his wrist, came out and he was given the name
At this point, what do you think about Joseph, his situation, his brothers, about Jacob about Joseph’s dreams? (We will take these one at a time.)
I found a couple of things that were interesting in the movie. During the aforementioned scripture about the sun, moon and stars, there were too many stars (13 stars and the sun/moon encircling Joseph’s obvious central star). Why do you think that this was done? The only way I think this could work is that the author of the movie was trying to make us understand the scope of the dream. Even the parents would be subservient to Joseph later for their very lives. The parents might have gotten two signs each (moon and star for mom and sun and star for dad). There is also a place where the movie shows a dream not listed in literal scripture. Do you remember what it is? Yes, it is the sheep about to be eaten by a pack of vicious wolves. This would make sense in a way because Joseph and his brothers were shepherds - interesting move.
This whole situation however with Joseph and his brothers is full of envy and is a bad situation. Joseph’s brothers now hated him. If you were Joseph, what would you be feeling like at this point; would you have faith?
Now, let’s talk about Genesis 38. Since this movie omits the entire chapter, we are left to imagine and perhaps infer what’s happening back at the ranch. What do you think about Judah - is the movie right with its overtones of womanizing or laziness on the part of Joseph’s brother(s)? Is this perhaps why Joseph was favored a little by Jacob? What can we infer about Judah and his sons (and maybe his daughter in-law)?
At this point at least, Judah and his sons weren’t the highest of moral caliber and two of Judah’s sons were struck dead by God because of this. Er married Tamar but was obviously not righteous and died. Onan was told to take Er’s place to breed offspring which would have been credited as Er’s offspring (in Jewish culture/religion this was the rule). Onan didn’t comply and was struck down. The only way seemingly that this would work the way it looks to me is the marriage between Er and Tamar was still active after the death of Er. Therefore, Onan would be a surrogate or substitute/pinch husband. At this point, we see that Judah isn’t particularly better than his sons. He sends Tamar out away from him on false pretenses and then after his third son grows up (without fulfilling his promise), he goes out to find a prostitute and gets himself involved with Tamar again, this time in the most unholy of fashions. Consequently, Tamar was pregnant and was about to give birth to twin boys. Oh, she was shrewd and Judah came out of this situation looking the worst that one could ever look in a situation like this seemingly. This, in my opinion, shows that God and Jacob showed favor to Joseph because of righteousness and faith. Even though things seem not to be favorable to Joseph at this time in the scriptures, just wait for what happens next time. The scriptures alluded to the favor of God on Joseph, but now God proves it in the next sessions of the lesson. How will you handle seemingly unfavorable conditions in your life with the right attitude until the next session?