Parsha Vayeshev: Genesis 37:1 - 40:23
Yet again, G-d protected Joseph and in the jail he quickly rose to a trusted position. In total, he spends about twelve years in prison but instead of wallowing in his anger or sorrow, he handles the situation with grace. After several years, Pharaoh's wine steward and baker were thrown in jail. In line with his graceful attitude, he reaches out to other prisoners and is kind to them. He noticed one day that they were unusually down. They were more upset than the day before. If we look toward the future and the situation in Egypt, the entire world is saved from famine because of Joseph's sensitivity toward these two people.
The wine steward tells Joseph his dream. There were three grape vines and he was squeezing them into Pharaoh's cup. Joseph tells him that this means in three days time, he will be restored to Pharaoh's good graces and be released. He asks the steward to remember him to Pharaoh. The baker sees that Joseph got it right (how? Rashi says that each man was given his own dream and the correct interpretation of the other man's dream) and asks for help with his dream. He has three baskets of bread. Joseph tells him that in three days, he will be killed for his crimes.
Three days later, it was Pharaoh's birthday. He reevaluated all the cases and released the wine steward and executed the baker. But the steward did not remember Joseph, purposefully. On the surface, he did this because he didn't want to remind Pharaoh that he had been in jail but Rashi tells us it was because G-d was punishing Joseph for relying on a man and not G-d to get him out of jail.
This parsha begins and ends with dreams. Joseph sees that there is more to his future than being a shepherd like his brothers but the process of how he got to his future path, that is what makes this story interesting.
Parshat Vayeshev from G-dcast.com
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As the daughter, niece, granddaughter, and great-granddaughter of rabbis, Talia Davis has been immersed in Jewish culture and communities throughout her life. She has lived in Israel and served as the Religious and Cultural Vice President of the Southeast Region of North American Federation of Temple Youth. Presently she enjoys attending synagogue at a variety of shuls that range from Chabad Orthodox to her father's post-denominational, Rocky Mountain Hai.