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The Oxford Study Bible Study Bible supplemented with commentary from scholars of various religions.

Chapter 40

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1Some time after these events it happened that the king's cupbearer and the royal baker gave offence to their lord, the king of Egypt. 2Pharaoh was displeased with his two officials, his chief cupbearer and chief baker, 3and put them in custody in the house of the captain of the guard, in the guardhouse where Joseph was imprisoned. 4The captain appointed Joseph as their attendant, and he waited on them.

They had been in prison in the guardhouse for some time, 5when one night the king's cupbearer and his baker both had dreams, each with a meaning of its own. 6Coming to them in the morning, Joseph saw that they looked dispirited, 7and asked these officials in custody with him in his master's house, why they were so downcast that day. 8They replied, ‘We have each had a dream, but there is no one to interpret them.’ Joseph said to them, ‘All interpretation belongs to God. Why not tell me your dreams?’ 9So the chief cupbearer told Joseph his dream: ‘In my dream’, he said, ‘there was a vine in front of me. 10On the vine there were three branches, and as soon as it budded, it blossomed and its clusters ripened into grapes. 11I plucked the grapes and pressed them into Pharaoh's cup which I was holding, and then put the cup into Pharaoh's hand.’ 12Joseph said to him, ‘This is the interpretation. The three branches are three days: 13within three days Pharaoh will raise your head and restore you to your post; then you will put the cup into Pharaoh's hand as you used to do when you were his cupbearer. 14When things go well with you, remember me and do me the kindness of bringing my case to Pharaoh's notice; help me to get out of this prison. 15I was carried off by force from the land of the Hebrews, and here I have done nothing to deserve being put into this dungeon.’

16When the chief baker saw that the interpretation given by Joseph had been favourable, he said to him, ‘I too had a dream, and in my dream there were three baskets of white bread on my head. 17In the top basket there was every kind of food such as a baker might prepare for Pharaoh, but the birds were eating out of the top basket on my head.’ 18Joseph answered, ‘This is the interpretation. The three baskets are three days: 19within three days Pharaoh will raise your head off your shoulders and hang you on a tree, and the birds of the air will devour the flesh off your bones.’

20The third day was Pharaoh's birthday and he gave a banquet for all his officials. He had the chief cupbearer and the chief baker brought up where they were all assembled. 21The cupbearer was restored to his position, and he put the cup into Pharaoh's hand; 22but the baker was hanged. All went as Joseph had said in interpreting the dreams for them. 23The cupbearer, however, did not bear Joseph in mind; he forgot him.

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